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From Behind the Play: The Rearview Contest Defense

When it comes to defense, staying in front of your opponent is crucial. But what happens when you find yourself trailing the offensive player? This is where the rearview contest comes into play. In this blog post, we will explore the technique and strategies behind the rearview contest, a defensive move that allows defenders to disrupt jump shots from behind and never give up on a play. With any defensive teaching, we want our players to make multiple efforts and never concede an easy, uncontested jump shot - the rearview contest is important in hammering home this point.

rearview contest

Understanding the Rearview Contest:

The rearview contest is a defensive technique used to challenge jump shots from behind and the side of the offensive player. It comes into play when you are trailing the ball-handler, particularly in situations like pick-and-roll scenarios. Instead of conceding an open shot, or peeling off, the rearview contest allows you to quickly contest and hopefully disrupt the shooter's vision. This technique also allows the big defender (in the pick and roll) to commit to boxing out the roller and getting into the rebounding scrum, instead of contesting the shooter and pulling him/her away from the rebound. The rearview contest is not only crucial to help lower shooting percentage but to balance the defense on the glass.

rearview contest

rearview contest

The High-Late Hand:

To effectively contest the shot from behind, the defender should utilize a high-late hand technique. As the offensive player picks up and prepares to release the ball, the defender extends their hand high, aiming to alter the shot without contact and fouling a jump shooter. By contesting the shot in the peripheral vision of the shooter, you increase the chances of disrupting rhythm.

Adapting to Physical Attributes:

The rearview contest can be adjusted based on your physical attributes. If you have a long wingspan or a taller frame, you can be more aggressive in your contest. Instead of solely relying on the high-late hand, you can utilize your length to impact the shot from behind, similar to a fly-by or a chase down block. Matisse Thybulle is great at this (full breakdown here). This adaptation adds an extra layer of disruption, making it even more challenging for the offensive player to convert their shot.

thybulle block from behind


Using the rearview contest is a valuable skill for any defensive player. By effectively challenging jump shots from behind, you can disrupt the offensive player's rhythm, increase the chances of a miss, and provide a better rebounding balance for the defense. Remember to time the pick-up, utilize the high-late hand technique, and never give up on the play.

lockdown defense

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