Basketball Offense

Basketball Offense

The Offense

The team with the ball is on offense. When a team has the ball, they are said to have possession. Players on offense are called offensive players.

On Offense

When a team is on offense, they have the following goals:

  • to maintain possession of the ball
  • to move the ball on the court
  • to score points in their basket


Basketball Dribbler

The player that has the ball is called the dribbler or ball-handler. The dribbler has the option to shoot, pass, dribble, or pivot with the ball. All other players move on the court and get into position.

Basketball Transitions

When teams score points with a field goal or a turnover is made like from a rebound or steal, teams switch from offense to defense. The same five players play both offense and defense and must get into position for the next play.

Types Of Basketball Offenses

There are lots of offenses in basketball. Here is a list of the types of offenses you should know.

A good offense will also master the following skills:

Basketball Set Offense

A set offense in basketball is a general term that describes an offensive strategy where coaches create multiple pre-planned set plays. There are lots of set offenses that coaches have designed like

Set Plays In Basketball

set plays in basketball

A set play is a play that coaches and teams can rely on, that they have practiced, drilled, and planned for. Set plays can incorporate an isolation, pick and roll, screen, or cut.

Basketball Motion Offense

A motion offense in basketball is a type of offensive strategy that focuses heavily on the movement or motion of the players. Motion offenses focus on the offensive moves:

Motion offenses are more flexible than traditional set offenses, because they can adapt to changing circumstances more easily on the court.

Basketball Zone Offense

Basketball Zone Offense

In a zone offense, offensive players are assigned areas on the court. The defense can also play some form of zone defense. You can think of a zone offense as a way to beat a zone defense. When choosing which zone offense to run, make sure you know what type of defense the other team is playing. Zone offenses rely on perimeter plays, as well as moving in between the gaps of the defensive zones.

Basketball Transition Offense

A transition offense focuses on the transition from defense to offense when the team first gets possession of the ball. Transition offenses rely on fast breaks and excel when they give the defense little time to get into position. If a transition play is run correctly, it will leave the ball-handler open in a one-on-one, two-on-one, or three-on-two situation.