The drop step is the move all post players must master. By combining it with shot fakes, step throughs, baby or Mikan hooks and the four possible directions a post player can go with the move, it is highly versatile. The following ten coaching pointers can make a big difference in the impact and quality of a player’s drop step.
1) Point the toe of the “drop foot” at the rim. This insures the post player goes directly at the rim, getting closer to the goal and not moving towards the baseline, creating a more difficult shooting angle.
2) When attacking the middle, point the toe of the “drop foot” directly at the center of the lane. This insures the post player goes directly to the middle and no further away from the rim than necessary. Always remember Lou Hudson’s advice, “get as close to the rim as you can!”
3) When attacking on the baseline side, point the toes of both feet at the baseline. This forces the defender to reach across and foul in order to block the shot attempt. Squaring up to the goal in the traditional sense allows a clean look for a block by the defender.
4) Always the chin the ball after the crab dribble. This is the strongest possible position to hold the ball.
5) Cover distance with your drop step. Go somewhere. Try to create a moment of space between you and the defender.
6) Kiss the ball high and soft off the glass. The glass is the post player’s best friend!
7) Try to position your inside shoulder under the net, particularly against a taller defender. This forces the defender to go through the net, a violation, to block the shot.
8) Always keep the bend in your knees when you shot fake. Straightening the knees requires the knees be bent again before jumping, losing the advantage gained with the shot fake.
9) All shot fakes must be two inches, no more. Longer shot fakes take the bend out of the knees!
10) Check over the high shoulder upon receiving the ball. If you see the defender, you know you have open space for a drop step on the baseline side. Really good perimeters “key the shot” by passing the ball to the open side.
These 10 coaching pointers will help post players at any level of play, youth basketball, girls basketball, middle school basketball, high school basketball or the college game.
For your convenience, a handout with these 10 pointers is available for download. Click on the link provided below.