Photo By: Nick Hubbard
The basketball bounce pass is one of the most fundamentally solid, yet under-appreciated plays in the sports. Whether making a post entry pass or zipping up court on a fast break, the bounce pass is one of the most effective and valuable ways to move the basketball.
Below are four reasons that using the bounce pass is so important to basketball passing, as well as how and when to use it.
The video below demonstrates how to throw a proper bounce pass. You’ll want to have a fundamentally sound pass, which includes stepping into it, hitting a spot on the floor about 3/4ths of the distance to your teammate, and snapping your thumbs down for a hard pass. Advanced passing can be done with one or two hands. It can also be done from different angles, such as from the side to get around the defense. You’ll want to be accurate and hit your teammate exactly where they are asking for the ball.
The video below demonstrates when to actually use a bounce pass. The simple answer is pretty much anytime. One notable exception is the point guard making a wing entry pass. This can be an easy spot for the defender to deflect or even steal the basketball, which would give them a clear route to two points. The best times to use it are:
A bounce pass can be particularly tough to defend on the fast break. The defender will most likely be sprinting to defend the hoop or backpedaling to stay in front of the ball. The defender won’t be able to quickly change direction to knock away the ball, and the offense will have the basketball in a good position for an easy score.
Post defense usually has an arm up to prevent passes straight to the numbers. If the big man has his defender sealed, they’ll be able to get a low pass and be in position to score. The defense won’t be able to get around and low enough to make a play on the basketball. A chest pass in this situation could easily be knocked away.
An accurate bounce pass is one of the best ways for a player to move the basketball. It is a fundamental that is often overlooked by young players today, but it should be a point of emphasis for any quality program.