Unfortunately I was only able to catch the Spain vs Croatia game last night but thankfully it was a great game. I thought Spain came out fired up early and Croatia could never quite make up the necessary ground after being down 10-1.

One of the things that I like about Spain and especially their forwards and big men is the way they set screens. Specifically Marc and Pao Gasol, we've all seen Pao playing for the Lakers, he does a great job. But Marc does a great job as well, really gets into a nice wide stance. Let's also not forget that it takes 2 to tango. In any screen, on-ball or off-ball, it takes a combination of the screener and mover working together to make it work and Spain does it all very well.

Stay Wide:

Get wide son! Of course, the bigger you are, the wider you can get. Though you don't want to get your feet too much wider than shoulder width. When you have a wide base, you cover more area and your feet are firmly planted. I've watched too many screens where the screener almost had feet together and the defender could easily get around or through the screener.

Be Patient, Shoulder to Hip:

In the previous pictures, there was a gap between screener and mover. Mainly because the defender was playing off their check. You hear as a coach that movers should be shoulder to hip with the screener so that the defender cannot squeeze through. That may not always be the case, especially when the defender is playing off in which case you have to see whether the defense will hedge, trap, or go underneath. However, if the defender is playing 1 hand away or hand on hip, then you definitely want your movers to go shoulder to hip with the screener so that the defender cannot squeeze in between, like so,


Spain moves on to the semi-finals starting tomorrow night to face Lithuania. I suspect Spain to come out and play hard, especially after that tragic plane crash in Madrid today. Those events usually fire up players, gives them more motivation. Lithuania is a very good team, and I think it could very well come down to a last possession in the 4th quarter.

If your a regular at coaching clinics every year, you'll recognize the name Don Meyer. If you want a nice guide to coaching you should check out Don Meyer's new DVD on Basketball the Don Meyer Way. Coach Meyer is the head coach of DivII Northern State University and the second winningest coach in college basketball history. Don't forget to check out the X's and O's of Basketball Forum to talk about this and your favorite basketball topics.