It's why we love this game. The Jazz and Lakers played a fantastic game tonight. It was an epic battle with the Lakers always staying just barely ahead of the Jazz and still the Jazz kept battling. I wrote earlier that this series would be one about possessions and in the past few games we've seen that take place, where every possession becomes so important.

I remember from the Game 4 OT the other night. Phil Jackson kept telling his guys, "run the offense! run the offense!" Though they still break down to 1v1 once in a while, I thought for the most part, the Lakers went through Pao Gasol and their triangle offense tonight. You can always tell when they do by looking at Gasol's assist stats, tonight 8 assists; Game 4, only 4 assists. Here are a few great sequences showing the many options out of the Lakers triangle offense,

I wrote earlier in the year when the Lakers were doing so well with Andrew Bynum about their triangle offense. With Pao, the Lakers look as good if not better as Pao is probably a better passer than Andrew. The offense begins with a post entry pass,

Give and Go:

Most motion or continuity offenses have some form of a give and go option. The triangle offense is no different. After the post entry, the first option is always to look for the backdoor give and go. What about the bounce pass by Gasol, very very nice,

Pass and Pick Away to Curl:

Another option they can run for one of your shooters (Farmar in this case), is to pass and pick away. O1 is going to to a sort of mini-curl and drag the arc where Gasol will find him for the 3-pointer. I love Collins on the call "Uh, oh, FARMAR, FARMAR, the lid is off the basket..."

A few other options include Pao Gasol who turns around and shoots over Okur who is playing him soft in the post. The other is a pass and pick away then it turns into a PNR with Gasol and Kobe.


I like the triangle offense. I think you can run it very much like a continuity and have the ball reversed and the pattern maintained until you get the best shot. Also, the offense relies on your players to read the defense and make plays based on how they are being played. As Doug Collins in the TNT color commentary points out though, you require very good passing posts.

If you're looking at implementing any variation of the Triangle or triple post offense, you can check out 5 Star Basketball's new 2-pack DVDs on the Triangle Offense. Be sure to check out the X's and O's Basketball Forum to talk about your favorite basketball topics.