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Thread: Zone Defense

  1. #1
    No White Flags Soundwave's Avatar
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    Zone Defense

    What are the advantages and disadvantages of zone vs Man-to-man?


    What would fit this roster best?
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    All-Star Zolinho's Avatar
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  3. #3
    I've been thinking for a while Monty has great personnel for the zone. Some sort of zone may be the most realistic shot at playing Anderson, Davis, and Lopez at the same time.

    I think Davis has great skills for the zone with his mobility and instincts. He doesn't need to be glued to a man to have a defensive impact. In fact, letting him roam may let him be more effective early in his career as he adds size.

    Anyone remember the Tyson-anchored zone Dallas used in the Finals against the Heat? Downright nasty. Would love to have that in our pocket.
    Last edited by greewe; 10-05-2012 at 04:32 PM.

  4. #4
    Fire Monty!! Contributor AD23forMVP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soundwave View Post
    What are the advantages and disadvantages of zone vs Man-to-man?


    What would fit this roster best?
    For starters, you must have a team with a good IQ to be effective defensively in a zone. A synchorized effort between the front, middle, and back line defenders is the single most important thing about a zone. One of the front line defenders pick up the ball handler and becomes the "up" defender. This is important because it dictates where the other four guys need to be in the zone.

    One of the main uses for a 2-3 zone (or 2-1-2 zone) is that it always the coach to take away a post player that he doesn't think his team can effectively guard man to man. The 2-3 is the "inside-out" defense, meaning the zone takes away the inside game from your opponent, but it usually leaves jumpers on the wings, point, or the elbow. So that is your basic advantage and disadvantage, I could go much more in detail about the advantages and disadvantages if you want.
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    No White Flags Soundwave's Avatar
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    Please do. That's why I started the thread.

  6. #6
    Most teams play both zone and man. Defensive adjustments are contingent on the way the game is going/flowing/tempo. The Hornets can and will play both. Which style is better for our roster? Hard to say this early on. But judging from the type of players the Hornets acquired this year, they should be able to thrive in either defensive sets. We have the athleticism and speed to play man and the IQ to play zone.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Nola Hornet View Post
    Most teams play both zone and man. Defensive adjustments are contingent on the way the game is going/flowing/tempo. The Hornets can and will play both. Which style is better for our roster? Hard to say this early on. But judging from the type of players the Hornets acquired this year, they should be able to thrive in either defensive sets. We have the athleticism and speed to play man and the IQ to play zone.
    I defer to your knowledge of the defenses, and I hope you are correct.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by CP3forMVP View Post
    For starters, you must have a team with a good IQ to be effective defensively in a zone. A synchorized effort between the front, middle, and back line defenders is the single most important thing about a zone. One of the front line defenders pick up the ball handler and becomes the "up" defender. This is important because it dictates where the other four guys need to be in the zone.

    One of the main uses for a 2-3 zone (or 2-1-2 zone) is that it always the coach to take away a post player that he doesn't think his team can effectively guard man to man. The 2-3 is the "inside-out" defense, meaning the zone takes away the inside game from your opponent, but it usually leaves jumpers on the wings, point, or the elbow. So that is your basic advantage and disadvantage, I could go much more in detail about the advantages and disadvantages if you want.
    This is true. Good post.

    There is also another very big reason why teams run a zone defense, and that is if you have a defender who isn't capable of playing adequate man-man defense. This would be the case when Anderson is trying to defend SFs, so I would imagine that when he is in the game at SF, we switch our defense from man to zone. That said, I think our team can play both effectively - especially with Monty at the helm.

    Baylor did it when they had that white kid who could only shoot 3s, but he couldn't play any defense. They stuck to their zone, and it neutralized his defensive faults.

  9. #9
    Fire Monty!! Contributor AD23forMVP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soundwave View Post
    Please do. That's why I started the thread.
    Sure. For starters, it is my belief that most people feel the way a 2-3 zone is set up is the way diagram A is set up, but that is not true. A zone is actually meant to be set up the way diagram B is set up. Now I'm not saying A is completely wrong, because there are things like extended zones that you can play.

    http://www.sportzin.com/forums/uploa...151-U10500.jpg

    The "1" needs to be able to move well laterally and well having active hands (hands up is always important), he needs to be able to anticipate plays and cover wing and points, he's also normally your best ball handler so you can get into your fast break. The "2" is the same, but instead of being your best ball handler he may be the player most capable of running with your point. The "3" and "4" both need to be able to cover wing-to-lane quickly, as well as not shying away from contact. The "5" is your strongest and tallest of the back line defenders. He needs to able to defend the post and be an enforcer in the paint, as well as a strong rebounder and a good outlet passer to initiate the break. One of the things that is enticing about zones are that they can be passive or aggressive depending on what you want to play.

    One use you see (especially in the NBA) of the zone is that coaches will go into it when a player they have to rely on gets into foul trouble. Zones have a way of hiding players and limits the number of fouls you commit. You also don't have to do as much work in the zone, and allows you to play less athletic players. Take into account Jimmer Fredette at BYU. They played zone there because they didn't want him getting into foul trouble, because he didn't have to put forth much effort defensively, and because he just wasn't a very good defender.

    Zones work with athletic and slower players though. That's the beauty of it. There are also not as many offenses out there that can beat a zone, which leads to the fact that players just aren't as skilled at passing the ball as they used to be. The zone requires the offense to be patient (not rush shots) and requires that they be able to pass the ball. Two things that are lost arts in the game today.

    However, like I mentioned earlier, zones leave a lot of long looks available to the offense. If you are facing a team that can shoot from range, you probably will not have very much success. Offensive players can also get lost in the zone, some guys just know how to operate and find the holes in the zone, which gives coaches fits. Rebounding from the zone is also much more difficult than it is in a man-to-man defense, it's just tough to know who you need to put a body on. Then of course there are your responsibilities, rotations or slides, that take time to master. One of the best ways to defeat a zone is by ball reversal, which means the defense has a lot of moving, which leaves a lot of time for mistakes.

  10. #10
    NOLA Sports Addict Smow-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CP3forMVP View Post
    Awesome basketball knowledge
    You sir, are a boss. Thank you for taking the time to write all of that. I now feel 20x more basketball literate. Lol
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  11. #11
    No White Flags Soundwave's Avatar
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    Thanks for the lesson. Another home run from CP3

  12. #12
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    Zones in the pros are primarily to give the offense a different look. The greatest advantage to running the zone is to protect the interior of the defense. However guys are such good to great shooters in the NBA most offenses can exploit even the best zone schemes by leaving their best shooters at or around the 3pt line. This is why the NBA is a predominantly man-to-man league.

    However when using different zone looks at certain times and/or against certain line ups it can be very effective. It gives the person who's running the opposing teams offense something to think about and may be the perfect defense for whatever set they have called or whatever they are looking to do offensively.

    Man-to-man is pretty simple. You assign a defender one or the five offensive players and it's his responsibility to keep that guy from scoring or creating easy shots for his teammates. Because there are far too few premier on ball and/or post defenders help side defense has become a huge part of the game. So if one player is beaten it's the responsibility of the interior defender to slide over and contest that player. Like wise it's the whole defenses job to shift over and find a offensives assignment.

    The downside to man is if your team is full of poor on ball and post defenders it puts a huge strain on the entire defense because guys will be sliding and shifting all night to compensate for his teammate which creates open looks for guys in a league full of good to great shooters, slashers, and finishers.

  13. #13
    Fire Monty!! Contributor AD23forMVP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smow- View Post
    You sir, are a boss. Thank you for taking the time to write all of that. I now feel 20x more basketball literate. Lol
    Glad to help. I'll have to look on my hard drive later, but I'm like 90% sure I have some Jim Boeheim zone notes.

  14. #14
    CP3forMVP, good point about the difficulty of rebounding from the zone. That is usually a problem of the zone defense. It is easy for the offense to sneak a lot of offensive rebounds due to boxing out confusion from the defense. If we are already hurting for boards with a Davis/Anderson big man combo, the zone could very well hurt us.

    I'd be interested to see us use a variation of the 1-3-1 trap. Davis could weak havoc in the passing lanes as the man in the middle of the "3".

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