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Fluke Plays NBA Teams Should Adopt as Staples

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Fluke Plays NBA Teams Should Adopt as Staples
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The give-and-go, pick-and-roll, backdoor cut—all traditional, effective and predictable.

This is 2013. It's time to move away from some of the classic offense that's been introduced to us by guys who wore tighty-whities and shorts you'd find at Baby Gap. Why not embrace creativity and look for new ways to score outside of the conventional basketball box?

 

The Hail Mary

In today's game, where some of the athletes are 6'9'' and capable of dunking on 12-foot hoops, jumping over cars and outrunning horses, teams must look to take advantage of these unique physical gifts.

The Hail Mary might be a desperation play in football, but it doesn't have to be in basketball. When you put LeBron James in a 50-50 ball competition, chances are he's going to come down with it.

 

The Intentionally Missed Free Throw

Why score one or two points when you can score three or four?

The intentionally missed free throw does come with a warning label on the packaging, but under the appropriate circumstances and if executed with precision, it could be one of the most devastating plays in the game.

Below is classic footage. Allan Houston, at Tennessee, heads to the line, down three with two free throws. He calmly hits the first and intentionally misses the second.

The team that commits the foul doesn't necessarily have to have the advantage on the defensive glass. With the right trajectory on the foul shot, you can turn a miss into a 50-50 ball and, potentially, two points into three.

 

The Self-Pass

Why play with four teammates when you can play with five?

There are different variations of the self-pass, all of which can be effective if executed properly.

 

1. Off a Defender's Back

You've likely all seen this and have been dying to try it. I know I have.

If the defender guarding the inbound pass isn't facing the baseline, then use him. A defender's front side might be playing defense, but his back side is just another one of your teammates.

 

2. Off a Teammate's Back

This play certainly wasn't designed, but there's no reason it can't be replicated. Nobody would see this one coming, which is what makes it such an intriguing idea.

Kevin Love gives up his dribble but not his mind. After leaving his feet and getting his defender in the air, Love tosses it off a teammate's back to regain his dribble and get a better look at the rim.

This isn't recommended unless you have a long, wide back to use. Nikola Pekovic sounds like the ideal candidate.

 

3. Off the Glass

Unlike most teammates, the backboard always gives it back. The glass is your friend. It's an extra teammate who's going to set you up whenever and wherever you want it.

I'm pretty sure Jamal Crawford leads the universe in this play, but more players are starting to realize it may not be as fluky as it looks.

 

The Barking Dog

Here's an all-time favorite. I used to suggest this play during every timeout growing up as a kid, but no coach had the marbles to call it.

There's nothing more helpful offensively than the element of distraction. Inbounding the ball under the other team's basket, a player on offense gets on all fours and starts barking like a dog. While the defense wonders what the hell is going on, another offensive player cuts to the hole for the easy finish.

Brilliant play design, flawless execution. Give this barker the team ball and an Oscar. 

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