Went through some more recorded NBA games. There are some awful teams in the western conference this year. Of that bunch of 6 teams at the bottom, the Memphis Grizzlies show the most promise. They strung together 4 wins the past week before losing a close one to the Hornets. I took a look at their win over the Miami Heat and took some clips.

Their offense is quite basic but it does compliment the players they have. They have a lot of young athletic guys so they run a spread offense and either go 1v1 dribble drive, run cutters through the lane, or pick and roll. Take a look,

In many ways, it's similar to the spread offense Duke runs and what the Phoenix Suns used to run. I was watching a JV high school tournament over the weekend, and they basically ran this same offense. They went 4-out 1-in, and either went 1v1 on the perimeter, ran random cutters, and end of shot clock ball-screen. It worked pretty good too.

Spread 1v1:

If you've got superior athletes who can create their own shot, the spread is great. The key of course is spacing. You must be spread as far as possible. In the first sequence, once Rudy Gay (O3) gets the ball, the corner relocates along the baseline to maximize the driving lane. Notice in the video though, that X2 still stays for help defense, but Gay still gets the floater over the top,

Spread Basket Cuts:

When I teach 5-out offense to middle school kids, I teach a basic pass, cut, fill. That's basically what this is, except in a 4-out 1-in look. Marc Gasol (O4) receives the pass in the post, the corner relocates, a player from the top of the key does a basket cut,

Another basket cut, everyone shuffles up on the weakside,

Finally, Darko Milicic (O5) does a basket cut from the weak side elbow and Gasol finds him for the nice easy layup,

Spread Wing PNR:

In the Billy Donovan Spread PNR, they initiate from the top and hence they use a flat screen. Here, it is similar but from the wing. First, there are a couple of basket cuts but none are open so they run the PNR at the end of the shot clock. O5 basically screens the area.

O1 comes off the screen, splits the hedge, and finds O5 rolling to the basket before help comes,


The Grizzlies are from what I've read, one of the youngest teams in the league. But they have a lot of talent. Their offense is a work in progress, but I think they have potential to be a good team. Their defense is also patchwork, but again, once they learn to work together instead of doing it all 1v5, they will flourish. I didn't include any OJ Mayo sequences, but he is a terrific talent. He really exploits the gaps in the spread offense very well.

For another kind of a spread offense based out of a 4-out 1-in set, take a look at Jamie Dixon's Spread 4-out 1-in Offense. Coach Dixon is the head coach of University of Pittsburgh, currently ranked third overall in the nation. To discuss this and many more of your favorite basketball topics, head over to the X's and O's of Basketball Forum to talk with other coaches from around the world.