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The Chase Down Block

Updated: Oct 10, 2022

The Chase Down Block is not a tool only used by the ultra-athletic. I’ve seen it used by far less athletic athletes, now they may not be pinning it against the backboard, but they are disrupting an easy shot attempt.

Of course it does help to have athleticism and an extreme leaping ability. These tools make the chase down block into something awe inspiring.

But the technique of the chase down block is one any player can understand and it may be the difference between their hustle paying off.

The first key is to jump to the opponent’s outside shoulder. Since this is where the ball will most likely be released, with an outside hand finish attempt.

The second key to this technique is to use your inside hand. Think; inside hand to outside shoulder. The defender may need to jump along the opponents back to reach this ideal positioning. And this is ok, it is ensuring that we avoid a foul call while also attempting to block a layup.

The last key is timing and placement. Defenders should not be trying to swat the ball, they should be trying to block a spot, a spot that the ball has to travel through. The moment a defender tries to stuff a ball is the moment they hit the arm and get a foul. Aim for the spot the ball will go - and understand, they need to beat the ball to that spot if they have any chance at blocking it. The ball moves faster than the body.

At the end of the day, this is a recovery tool. This is for defenders who appear out of the play and do not have the space or time to recover back in front. This technique allows those defenders to still make a difference. So whether you have an elite athlete who you want to unlock or an average athlete who you want to have more options, this is a viable technique that could save the day when you least expect it.

See you next time.

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