Kids Newsletter

NBA Basketball 101: How to get better at defence


We've talked about one of the most commonly used plays in the NBA, the pick and roll, and we've also learned the importance of an assist.

Now it's time to talk about the defence and take a look at how players can be impactful on that other side of the floor.

When we begin learning to play basketball, we spend a lot of time on offensive skills. Dribbling, shooting and passing are some of the first things we learn how to do when we first pick up the game. But, defence is equally as important to basketball as offence is. Some of the best players in the NBA thrive on defence as much as they do on offence.

Players like LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Kawhi Leonard are known for impacting games on both ends of the floor.

The Raptors also have some of the best defenders in the NBA. Kyle Lowry and Fred VanVleet may not be the biggest players on the court, but their energy and effort defensively have made them key pieces to the Raptors' success over the years.

This season, VanVleet is ranked third in the NBA in total deflections of the ball with 62. It's a great sign of him being active and using his hands without fouling to make things hard for the opposing team.

Lowry on the other hand leads the NBA in drawing charges, which are offensive fouls, with nine. That's a great sign of him moving his feet to stay in front of offensive players and forcing them to make a mistake.

Both Lowry and VanVleet work on their defensive skills as much as they do their offensive skills, making them complete players.

Here's a video of Toronto Raptors assistant coach Adrian Griffin showing you a drill you can do at home to improve your skill on the defensive end.

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