Author Topic: Yet another new pickup basketball question  (Read 8973 times)

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Yet another new pickup basketball question
« on: May 06, 2008, 04:15:26 PM »

Offline Hoops

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I know I'm stealing the keys to the bandwagon by starting another thread about pickup basketball, but it's a different question and deserves to be separate:

I've played ball my whole life (e.g., including 3 yrs. varsity ball in HS, top tier intra-murals in college, etc.). I'm not as quick as I used to be (I'm 31) and I've lost a lot of my ball-handling sharpness (I only get to play like once a week). I don't claim to be a superstar or anything, but I'm very comfortable playing with high quality talent. I know how to play the game. I'm 5'11" and I'm a point guard - a real, honest-to-goodness point guard. So, my natural instinct is to wait for the inbound pass after a made basket in order to bring the ball up the court - I love pushing the tempo and finding guys for easy buckets. However, my problem is that EVERYONE thinks they're a point guard. There are usually at least 2 other guys always hanging around after a made basket, wanting to bring the ball up the court as well. I'm pretty easy going and would be happy to defer to someone else...if they had any sort of clue how to run the point. About 90% of the time when I defer, I'll sprint up the wing only to find the guy with ball isn't looking up the court or isn't interested in passing it if he is - even if I or another guy is wide open with a clear path to the basket.

How incredibly frustrating it is!!!!

I've tried encouraging people to look up the court when they bring the ball up, but that seldom works. I'd much prefer to bring the up the court myself, but I haven't figured out a tactful way of communicating it.

Thoughts?


Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2008, 04:44:14 PM »

Online bdm860

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I think the best way is to just show your skills.  Sounds to me like you play with a mix of guys, some know how to play, some don't.  You know the saying, game recognizes game.  If you can really play, and the other guys bringing the ball up the court can't, the rest of your teammates would hopeully recognize this and just start inbounding to you every time.

If I was playing with you and another guy who didn't know how to play (but always wanted to bring the ball up), and if I saw you come down the court push the tempo, hit the cutter, hit the open man, create, etc. I would inbound the ball to you every time, knowing you're going to be our point and you're going to handle that job well for us.  It only takes about one time down the court for me to see a guy completely miss the open man, never pass, make poor decisions to say ya know what, I think I'm going to inbound the ball to this other guy who can actually make things happen for us.

You can defer at first (nothing wrong with that) and if your other guys who want to run the point turn out to be the guys you have problems with, then hang back and if you've demonstated any skills, your teammates will probably gladly inbound to you first. 

Also in my experience the guys who want to run the point but can't usually need some help soon as the D applies even the slightest bit of pressure.  They'll probably need you to help them out anyway.

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Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2008, 04:56:23 PM »

Offline GroverTheClover

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I used to play the point in high school and later in college pickup games, people would often times wave me off when I'd be there to receive the inbounds pass. However, over time, I found that if I hung around setting picks and helping the weaker ball handler, I'd be prone to receive the inbounds pass as well as a bailout pass.

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2008, 02:56:24 PM »

Offline KevinIsSars

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Just let the other guy take the inbounds pass. Then you can steal it from him. Just start hacking away...since you're on the same team it's not a reach-in foul.

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2008, 03:16:33 PM »

Offline speedster

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I completely understand your frustration.  bdm860 is right... you need to show your skills.  Establish yourself as the primary ballhandler.  The best thing for you to do is to show up to the court with a couple friends who will defer to you, and then throttle a few teams.  Some people just don't have a clue, and they're hopeless cases... but some will eventually understand that you should be the one running the point.

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2008, 04:09:41 PM »

Offline Celtic

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This is a major pet peeve of mine, and it is definitely a trend that is sweeping the nation, garbage players deciding they are point guards. It seems that most of the time these players are lacking the most basic of basketball knowledge, are very far from possessing point guard skills, and based on their play have minimal experience playing basketball. I think the problem is todays game is so one on one based that a lot of players really think objective #1 is to get the ball, and objective #2 is to shoot, no in between, no deviating. It is extremely frustrating when you play with these types of players, they ruin the game from start to finish, and most frequently blame everyone but themselves for the team's failure.

My solution, hit the free throw, pick the team. Get the guys on your team that you know can play as a team and you will win almost every time. Five guys that play as a unit will beat five individuals.

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2008, 04:19:45 PM »

Offline threzd

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It's funny, I just had the opposite situation as you. I'm about 5'11"-6'0", mainly I play shooting guard. But the last time I played (I'm a college student), absolutely no one wanted to bring the ball up and left me to take it up. My handle isn't great, especially if I'm being pressured in the backcourt, and as a result I rarely play point. I guess it's just luck of the draw regarding who you get stuck on a team with.

And as for your situation, I agree with the guy who said to show off your skills first. Generally players will defer to whoever establishes themselves as the best player.

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2008, 04:45:18 PM »

Offline shakeswilla

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Even if others hang around after, what you want to do is literally walk up to your inbounding teamate, stand in front of him and show your palms.
Not like a jerk, do it casual, but do it so it's clear that  you bring the ball up.

Don't expect people to remember. since you're playing point, you're gonna have some nice assists anyway, so people won't care, just keep everypne happy. That's the burden of a true 1. I'm glad i'm too tall to run point well. I just body people. ;D

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2008, 04:49:30 PM »

Offline cdif911

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So I have sort of an opposite problem - I'm 5'9, but I like to bang around the basket, especially defensively - I can guard anyone up to about 6'4 - my guy rarely scores, especially if its a big (my lateral quickness stinks, so I don't want to guard guards) but what happens is b/c of my size, a lot of times people won't let me guard bigs, and I end up guarding a point or a 2 who burns me b/c I can't guard them. Offensively, I like to be the emergency pg, I'm more than happy to let someone else bring it up, but I can help bail people out when needed. 

As for your problem of not getting the ball, I'd say A) share the wealth, make the most of your chances and B) if someone is really sucking it up and refusing to pass, you'll be in a new game soon anyways

As for the question of "true point guard" if you are one, I'd be impressed, as they are few and far between whether on the playground, the hs court, college, even the NBA.
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Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2008, 04:52:44 PM »

Offline Hoops

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And as for your situation, I agree with the guy who said to show off your skills first. Generally players will defer to whoever establishes themselves as the best player.

Good comments from all. Thanks. I generally agree with the idea that people will defer to the best player. Part of my challenge is that I'm not necessarily the best player - I try to play in fairly exclusive pickup games with high quality talent. A lot of these guys are actually pretty good players overall - but they're not point guards and don't appreciate the value of court awareness and distributing the ball in transition. In pickup games, anybody (that can dribble) can bring the ball up in the half-court - it's mostly just pass and screen-away at that point. But the fun of pickup ball is to make plays in transition, before the defense is set. Just because you're 6'6" and have a killer post-up game doesn't mean you have a clue about running the point. 

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #10 on: May 08, 2008, 05:02:49 PM »

Offline Hoops

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As for the question of "true point guard" if you are one, I'd be impressed, as they are few and far between whether on the playground, the hs court, college, even the NBA.
You're totally right - true point guards are few and far between. To really play the point, you have to have played organized ball at some level (I'm sure there are a few exceptions). Most high school teams have 1 or 2 point guards on a roster of 12-13 guys. So yeah, they're sort of a rare breed. And for a long time now, the trend has been to have guys that are really more like combo guards (aka Dwyane Wade, etc.) running the point. That trend ends up filtering down all the way to the junior high level.

Fortunately, guys like Nash, Chris Paul and Deron Williams are making the point guard position cool again. I hope it sticks and filters its way down to the kids.

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #11 on: May 08, 2008, 05:05:42 PM »

Offline Hoops

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As for the question of "true point guard" if you are one, I'd be impressed, as they are few and far between whether on the playground, the hs court, college, even the NBA.
You're totally right - true point guards are few and far between. To really play the point, you have to have played organized ball at some level (I'm sure there are a few exceptions). Most high school teams have 1 or 2 point guards on a roster of 12-13 guys. So yeah, they're sort of a rare breed. And for a long time now, the trend has been to have guys that are really more like combo guards (aka Dwyane Wade, etc.) running the point. That trend ends up filtering down all the way to the junior high level.

Fortunately, guys like Nash, Chris Paul and Deron Williams are making the point guard position cool again. I hope it sticks and filters its way down to the kids.
And Rondo too!!!

Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #12 on: May 08, 2008, 05:09:01 PM »

Offline youcanthandlethetruth113

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This is a great thread!

Seems like a rather simple solution to a rather simple problem....Communication and Recognition...

1. Communication is key - Before your game starts you should talk to the other (weaker) guard and work out a game plan for bringing up the ball, distributing the ball, etc...

2. Game recognizes Game - I know it's been said before but it really is  true. I'm in this one run on Sunday evenings where I have 2 guards on my team. One is really good and one is really bad. I always inbound the ball to the good PG even though the weaker PG is standing right there hoping to bring the ball up. By me inbounding the ball to the better PG i'm actually sending a message to both PG's.

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Re: Yet another new pickup basketball question
« Reply #13 on: May 08, 2008, 05:27:58 PM »

Offline CoachCowens

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As a big guy(for pickup. I'm only 6'4") I generally pass it to the guy who I think can get it up the floor the best. Unless of course he doesn't pass it back to me then I will choose someone else.  But generally everyone knows who should be bringing the ball up. It's kind of a non-issue in most pickup games I have played in.