Here are some notes and drills from a defensive clinic given by Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski.

1.  A winning basketball team makes the opponent react to them, whether they are on offense or defense.

2. Our philosophy is to attack on defense.

3.  Don’t be afraid of making a mental or physical mistake on defense.  The only mistake you can make is not playing hard.

4. We do so much defensive breakdown work that they develop good defensive habits.

5. Our defensive involves getting all five players to play together:  talking on defense, seeing the ball, and moving as the ball moves.

6. Play for the charge.

7. Defense continues until we get possession of the ball.

Ball Pressure Drills:

1.  Zig Zag Drill stresses:  Stance, Being within one step of the ballhandler, Keeping your head on the ball

2. Zig Zag and pick up the dribble-Defense now traces the ball in a dead situation.

3.  Zig Zag to mid-court then keep the ballhandler to the outside like you would in half-court defense.

4. Zig Zag influence drill–drop back to midcourt, then make fake traps and influence the ballhandler to the side.

5. Zig Zag and then defend the return pass

Adjustments on Baseline Drive


X1 Drops and helps on the post

X2 Helps in the lane/post

X3 Stays with his man

X4 Helps in the post area

X5 Comes and double teams 3.  X5 makes
himself big by getting his arms up

Help and Recover Drill


The defense guards his man and is ready to

fake a trap of the ballhandler if he drives.

Two Man Contesting (Outside-In)


Two Man Contesting (Inside Out)


Contest and Interchange


X1 Contests

X2 and X3 are working on helpside
interchange (staying with their man)

4 on 4 Contesting


The offense moves the ball and the defense works on denials, slides, and positioning.