Thursday, March 17, 2011

Solo Variations

In today's post we will take a look at some of the different setups the Lakers use for the Solo series.

In the triangle offense, there are a series of options that involve the two man game on the non-triangle side of the floor called the solo cut series.  In the Lakers' last game against the Orlando Magic, the Lakers showed some different ways to go into and out of the solo.

In the first clip we will see the Lakers go from a solo into a triangle:



The ball is entered into Lamar Odom, who waits for Andrew Bynum to shape up along the line of deployment to form a solo.  The solo takes too long to develop, so Odom reverses the ball up top.  This acts as a lag pass for a center opposite.  Bynum has a choice to stay and set a rub screen for Odom or go across.  Odom signals for Bynum to go across so Bynum fills the post and a triangle is formed.  The two pass to the post is made keying: a rebound screen cut option and Derek Fisher to fan away to the garden spot.  Shannon Brown receives a handoff from the rebound screen cut.  He drives the ball, sucking in the defense, allowing Fisher just enough time to get the catch and shoot three off.

In the next clip, Fisher holds up a "one," which is the signal for a solo:



Kobe is being denied at the wing so, instead of a solo, the play naturally develops into a wing reverse.  By denying Kobe at the wing, the Magic denied the formation of a solo, but the wing reverse forces Pau Gasol's defender to help just enough for Pau to acquire deeper position and hit the running hook shot.

In the next clip we see an interesting solo setup:



Artest makes a dribble entry, pushing Pau to the corner.  Artest lags the ball to Kobe, which would normally key a center opposite: Artest begins his cut across the lane as Bynum comes across to set the rub screen and Fisher pops out to receive the ball on the opposite wing.  Instead of cutting to the opposite corner, Artest sets an additional screen for Pau to use.  A solo between Fisher and Pau is established on the opposite side of the floor.  Gasol's defender gets caught in the screens and Pau is able to easily finish over the defense.



The ball is entered into Pau in the wing as Fisher fills the corner to form the triangle.  Pau quickly two passes the ball up top to Kobe and Pau's defender gets caught ball watching.  Pau step fakes the rebound screen cut then rubs off of Bynum for a "solo opposite."  Artest makes the solo cut, clearing Pau's side of the floor.  Pau looks for the repost but gets interrupted by Jason Richardson's face.

In the next clip we see the same play flipped to establish the solo on the right side of the floor:



Once again, Pau is isolated and kicks the ball out after Jason Richardson digs in.  Kobe is chased off the three point line but is prepared to hit the pull up jumper.



Instead of making a lag pass, Steve Blake crossgrains over to the opposite wing.  Matt Barnes rubs over to form a solo.  Barnes' defender is ready for the rub screen and stays attached to Barnes.  Barnes quickly moves away from the post and Bynum follows to set a screen for Blake.  Dwight Howard is not ready for Bynum to set this screen so Richardson has to help to prevent Blake from driving.  The ball is passed to Brown in the wing and quickly swung to Barnes, who has cut to the corner.  This swing pass is actually a two pass to the corner, which keys: Odom to flash to the high post, and Brown to banana cut.  Barnes' defender cedes the recently emptied baseline allowing Barnes a direct line drive to the basket.

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