A J.P. Morgan Vice President Has Very Specific Tactical Plans For His Rec League Basketball TeamS

The latest entry in our overwrought emails series comes from the world of high finance... rec-league basketball. A vice president at J.P. Morgan in London is very enthusiastic about the upcoming season. But he's not gonna stand for his players flailing around on the court, like Mike D'Antoni might. No, he wants to install an offense and a serious defense. That's why they're going to spend the first half-hour of each twice-weekly training session drilling offensive and defensive theory.

Well, read on:

From: REDACTED [mailto:redacted@jpmorgan.com]
Sent: Wednesday, January 25, 2012 7:11 PM
Subject: Training

Fellas,
Thanks to all of you who were able to attend last night's session. I'm amped because we are finally approaching the right commitment levels to become a really strong squad. We have a very talented group of individuals, but our growth as a team will be dictated by the amount of work we put in together. I hope you guys share my enthusiasm for what we can become.

Last night's session was the first in which we've had ample numbers to look at both sides of some of the plays so I took advantage of the opportunity and went through as much theory as possible. This will not be our typical training, but I felt it was necessary to get as many people up to speed as possible. Moving forward, I would like to spend the first ½ hour to hour on theory and repetition of the offensive and defensive sets both that we run and that we anticipate other teams running against us. From there we will move into skills training and drills with the post players and guards working separately. We will close each training with a controlled scrimmage to implement the sets we learned in the first hour. To keep the theory section limited, we will need to do some homework collectively, so I will send a description of the position responsibilities on each play in advance. If we come to the session prepared we should be able to zip through that portion.

As a recap for guys who couldn't make it last night, we went over the following topics:
I have detailed only the ones which we will use in this Saturday's game

Offense:
2-3 Zone attack—The zone wants to do two things, prevent high percentage shots (penetration and post up opportunities), and force us into jumpshots. So naturally we want to get post up opportunities and penetration but we have to do it unconventionally, and we want to avoid taking quick shots from the wing.
We use a 3 guard set spread a little further out on the wings (each guard 12-14 feet apart), power forward(4) starts low and moves to the free throw line as the point guard crosses half court. He operates at the free throw line extended following the ball from side to side and sealing. Center(5) operates in the low post at the short corner sealing either ball side or weak side. We initiate with a pass to the high post if possible at which point he turns and looks to pass to the low post breaking the zone. If we cannot use the entry pass to the high post we use the safety pass to one of the guards. From there we look to skip the ball quickly from guard to guard to stretch the defense or we make shallow penetration(This means we will penetrate only until the help comes then make kick out passes) and passes around the perimeter until we can get post entry passes. We have one rule, no long jumpshots until we have either a post player touch or a skip pass.

Carolina (modified zone attack)—see [redacted]'s email
Box and 1 attack—
Motion Offense (Man 2 Man attack)
Man 2 Man press attack

Defense:
Man 2 Man help defense (The only defense!!!!) – We operate the help defense with three rules…
1. If you are one pass away from the ball, you are in ball, me, man position with your inside foot on the help zone(paint) - (never turn your back on your man or the ball!!)

2. If you are two passes away from the ball, you are in ball, me, man position with you inside foot on the help line( middle of the paint)

3. If you are beside the man who helps, help down to his man

Please take some time to catch up on these so we can use them in Saturday's game.

Just to make sure everyone is aware, the training sessions have moved to the following times:

Tuesday runs 10pm-Midnight @ Damilola Taylor centre
Saturday runs 12:30pm-2:30pm @ Flaxman

Sat 21st Jan
Tues 24th Jan
Tues 31st Jan
Tues 7th Feb
Tues 14th Feb
Sat 18th Feb
Tues 21st Feb
Sat 25th Feb
Tues 28th Feb
Tues 6th Mar
Tues 13th Mar
Sat 17th Mar
Tues 20th Mar
Tues 27th Mar
Sat 31st Mar

Those Tuesday night sessions from 10 to midnight will be a real treat.