All-Star Practice Plans

At the All-Star Level, players will begin to gain strength, quickness and the ability to better react to game situations. Practices will shift towards team concepts and competition, while still heavily emphasizing skill development.

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All-Star Practice Plan 5

Cultivating Values & Developing Wellness



  • Positive Coaching Alliance values humility. It is one of the greatest traits a person can exhibit, and it is especially helpful in team sports, such as basketball. The best teams are the ones where even the most talented and accomplished players are humble enough to accept a less prominent role for the good of the team. For example, a player who can score more easily than many teammates can show humility by passing more and giving others the chance to score. That humility helps the other players improve and gain confidence, which contributes to the team’s overall success. Ultimately, the leading scorer’s short-term sacrifice in prominence may lead to greater long-term prominence as team success increases, opponents’ must spread their defensive focus, and the player who sacrificed has an even easier time returning to a high-scoring role.

Warm Up


Ball Tag Game

(8 taggers)
  • All the players will start and have to stay within half court.
  • One player will be designated as it.
  • The player will run around for the allotted amount of time and try to tag other players.
  • If the player tags someone else, their turn is over.
  • To add an element to the game, if the person has the basketball, they cannot be tagged.
  • So as the tagger approaches a player, whoever has the ball should try to pass it to the player about to be tagged so that they are safe.
  • The ball makes the player safe from being tagged.
  • Mix up the game based on your teams needs (2 taggers, 2 balls etc).

Key Points

Ultimately you want to get the players and their bodies warm and ready to practice in a fun way.

Building Skills


Ball Handling

Full Court Cone Dribbling

(5 minutes)
  • Line 10 cones up down the court just inside one sideline and spread out 5 cones just inside the other sideline.
  • Have all the players start on the baseline on the side with 10 cones with a ball.
  • Dictate the dribble move that you want the players to work on through the 10 cones.
  • The first player will dribble through the cones and when they are through the first 3-4 cones the next player will start.
  • When the players get through the 10th cone, have the attack the basket and finish how you have asked them to finish.
  • Then they will return up the other side of the court dribbling through the 5 cones.
  • As they dribble through the 5 cones, let them be creative and dribble as they wish and finish a shot at the other basket as they wish.
  • To ensure the players are dribbling through the 10 cones with their eyes up, have them keep their eyes on the basket in front of them and as any player in front of them shoots, they should call out “make” or “miss” according to the shot going in or not.

jrnba_allstar_pp2_fullcourtconedribbling_diagram1of2 jrnba_allstar_pp2_fullcourtconedribbling_diagram2of2

Stationary 2-Ball 1.2. Cross Drill

(2 x 40 seconds)
  • All players should get 2 balls (or share) and find space on the court.
  • The players will start by dribbling two balls at the same time for 2 dribbles.
  • After the 2 dribbles, the players will cross the balls in front of them so that the ball that was in the left hand is now in the right hand and the ball that was in the right hand is in the left hand.
  • The players will repeat this sequence for the allotted amount of time.

Key Points

Make sure the 2 dribbles are pound dribbles and they crossovers are quick.

Between Cross Behind

(2 x 30 seconds)
  • All the players should have a ball (or share) and find space on the court.
  • On the coaches command, the players will begin dribbling in the sequence of between, cross, behind.
  • If the player makes a mistake during that process, they will start over with between.
  • If they complete 3 consecutive dribbles of between, cross, behind, they will count that as 1 rep.
  • The players will continue this process and get as many reps as possible in the allotted amount of time.

Key Points

It will help the players to say the sequence as they go so they complete the reps in the correct order. Challenge the players to move quickly and beat previous scores.

Fundamentals of the Between Cross Dribble

  • The between cross dribble move is a combination move that requires the player to move as they would for any other combination move such as the between-between moves or the cross behind move. The fundamentals of these move are shifting the weight from 1 side to the opposite side in the first part of the move, loading their weight, and exploding out for the 2nd part of the move to beat the defender.

Between Cross Breakdown Drill

(2 x 30 seconds each way)
  • Have all the players get a ball (or share), get a cone or other marker and find space on the court.
  • The player will take 1 or 2 dribbles towards the cone in an upright position.
  • Once the player gets to the cone they will drop down to dribble between the legs and loading on the inside leg (the same leg the ball is transferring to on the between dribble).
  • Then the player will quickly push and dribble the ball back to the other side and move past the cone.
  • After dribbling past the cone, the player will turn around and come back doing the same thing.
  • Continue this process for the allotted amount of time and switch hands.

Key Points

The most important part of this move is loading and changing directions quickly.


Shot Fake Lay-Up Drill

(2 minutes each way)
  • Put the players into 2 or 3 groups based on the number of players.
  • Each group will have a line under the basket and on the perimeter.
  • The groups that are on the baseline will have 2 balls.
  • The first person in line will pass the ball to the first player on the perimeter and will run at them quickly.
  • The shooter will catch, shot fake by sitting low, bring the ball and eyes up on the rim and then explode out of the shot fake for a good move and lay-up designated by coach.
  • The passer will go to the back of the shooting line.
  • The shooter will get their rebound and go to the back of the passing line and the process will repeat.
  • Mix up which direction the player will go following the shot fake and which foot you would like them to step with first.

Key Points

Make sure the passer runs at the shooter in a realistic way and work on sitting and selling a good shot fake and then attacking the basket.

Step Back Breakdown Drill

(1 x 8 reps each side)
  • Have the players get a ball (or share) and find open space on the court.
  • The players will start in a good triple threat stance and will take a dribble going right by simultaneously stepping across their body with their left foot.
  • As their left foot plants out in front of them, the players will load on that leg and push back as far as possible while still staying close to the ground.
  • The players should have their right foot hit the floor first with their left foot hitting the floor quickly after.
  • The players will pick up the dribble take a balanced jump into the air as if they were going to shoot.
  • The players will repeat this movement to both sides using both hands and feet.
  • This breakdown drill only requires 1 dribble for each move.

Key Points

Make sure the players are loading and exploding back on their step back. Also, make sure the player are pushing back nice and low to the ground and not jumping up in the air which allows the defense time to recover. Lastly, make sure they are balanced and can jump straight up.

Step Back Shooting Drill

(1 x 10 makes each way)
  • Have the players get in 4 lines (left short corner, elbow, elbow, right wing).
  • The first 2 players in each line will have a ball.
  • All the players with the ball will take 1 dribble forward with their right hand and stepping with their left foot and then will take their step back, balance and shoot.
  • The player will get their rebound and give it to the next player and go to the back of the line.
  • If needed, give the players a visual and have them step back into a specified space.
  • After making the allotted number of shots, have the lines shift (right short corner & and left wing) and work on the step back going left.

Key Points

Work on maintaining good balance while creating space for the shot.

Using a Screen Shooting Drill – Straight Cut

(20 makes for the team)
  • Place a line of players at the top of the key with the first 3 players having a ball.
  • Have a shooter, a ½ speed defender and a screener all on the wing.
  • The screener will go and set a screen for the shooter, the defender will simulate defense, and the shooter will come off and shoot from a straight cut.
  • After the shot, the player will get their rebound and go to the back of the line at the top.
  • The defender will now become the shooter and the screener will now become the defender and the passer will run into setting a screen.
  • Continuously move through this drill as a passer, a screener, and a shooter working on making shots.
  • Utilize multiple baskets or both sides of 1 basket to maximize reps.

jrnba_allstar_pp5_usingascreenshootingdrillstraightcut_diagram1of4 jrnba_allstar_pp5_usingascreenshootingdrillstraightcut_diagram2of4 jrnba_allstar_pp5_usingascreenshootingdrillstraightcut_diagram3of4 jrnba_allstar_pp5_usingascreenshootingdrillstraightcut_diagram4of4

Footwork and Conditioning

Fundamentals of the Backdoor Cut

  • The backdoor cut is made by an offensive player is being overplayed or denied so that a teammate can’t make an easy pass them. Therefore, the player will cut backdoor towards the basket. To make a good back cut, the player will plant and change directions and change speeds to explode quickly towards the basket so that the defender will be out of position.

Backdoor Cut Lay-Up Drill

(1 x 15 makes each side)
  • Have the players get into 2 lines, 1 at the top and one on the wing or corner.
  • Have the balls start in the line at the top and have the player with the ball dribble towards the wing.
  • The player on the wing must time the cut and step up and then back cut.
  • The player with the ball will snap a bounce pass to the cutting player who will take a lay-up.
  • After the pass and the lay-up, the players will get the rebound and switch lines and continue.
  • Based on numbers, you can utilize 2 groups or 4 lines at each basket.


Tag & Pursue Drill

(1 x 3 minutes)
  • Have the players get in groups of three and find space at a basket.
  • Utilize as many baskets as possible and have at least 2 groups per basket.
  • 1 player will be a defensive player.
  • The other 2 players will be on offense not too far from each other with one ball.
  • The defensive player will guard the player without the ball and start by being in “help” defense and saying “help, help, help”.
  • The offensive player will pass the ball to their partner.
  • The defensive player will now close out and say “ball, ball ball.”
  • The offensive player will then pass the ball back to the other offensive player.
  • The defensive player will jump into the help position and say “help, help, help”.
  • The offensive player will then shoot.
  • The defensive player will locate their offensive player, tag and pursue the ball.

jrnba_allstar_pp4_tagandpursuedrill_diagram1of4 jrnba_allstar_pp4_tagandpursuedrill_diagram2of4 jrnba_allstar_pp4_tagandpursuedrill_diagram3of4 jrnba_allstar_pp4_tagandpursuedrill_diagram4of4


Team Concepts


Fundamentals of Post Spacing on a Drive

  • It is important for post players and guards to work together to create scoring opportunities. When a guard drives, the post player must recognize the situation and space accordingly.

Baseline Drive Same Side Post Shooting Competition

(1 x 10 makes each side)
  • Divide the players into 2 teams and have 1 team on each side of the basket.
  • Both teams will start with 1 player on the block and a line of players on the wing with two balls at the front of the line.
  • The player in the front of the line will drive to the baseline side towards the basket.
  • As this happens, the player on the block, will space away from the drive up the lane line to make it harder for the imaginary help defender to guard both players.
  • The player driving the ball will pass the ball to the post player who slid up the lane.
  • The post player will catch, shoot, get their rebound and go to the back of their line.
  • The player who made the pass will now become the post player and a new player from the line will now drive the baseline.
  • The process will continue until 1 team or the other makes 10 shots.

Shell Drill – 4 on 4

(6 minutes)
  • Divide the players into groups of 4 and start with 1 team on defense and one team on offense.
  • The offense should only have players on the perimeter and no post players.
  • The offense is only allowed to pass and cut (no screens).
  • After 5 passes, the ball will become live and the offensive team can try to score but are still not allowed to screen.
  • Switch teams every possession.

Motion 4 on 0 Pass & Cut

(5 minutes)
  • Place 4 markers on the perimeter and have a balanced line of players behind each one.
  • The first 4 players up will pass and cut or pass and always fill the open spot on the court when a player leaves it.
  • Encourage the players to work together to move the ball quickly and find and fill the open spots.
  • Complete 5-7 passes before taking a shot.
  • After the shot, the group will get their rebound and go to the back of the lines and the next 4 players will step on and repeat the process.



2 on 2 Numbers Game

(games to 3)
  • Assign 2 players to each number and have everybody stand on the baseline. The two players with the same number our teammates and will be playing together.
  • Throw the ball on the court and call out 2 numbers.
  • The 2 players with those numbers will go for the ball and whoever gets the ball will be on offense and the other 2 on defense for 1 possession and 1 shot of 2 on 2.
  • Evenly mix up the numbers you call and the game is over when any team gets to 5 points playing by 1’s.

Key Points

Encourage the players to hustle to the ball and make good team plays to score. Also encourage the defensive team to move their feet, play active defense and contest all shots.

5 on 5 Half Court

(5 possessions at a time)
  • Divide the players into groups of 5 (more if there are subs and not enough for 3 teams).
  • Have 1 team start on defense and another team on offense.
  • That team will play half-court defense for 5 possessions.
  • If there is a third team, the offensive team will change every possession.
  • A possession ends with a made shot, rebound, or a turnover.
  • A deflection out of bounds does not end a possession.
  • Each team will get a chance to play 5 possessions of defense and the team with the most defensive stops wins.

Compliment Session


Gather the players together. Players group with 1-2 players next to them and share answers to the prompted questions.

  • Ask players to share something they did well, what enjoyed about today’s practice or something positive about another player’s actions.
  • Have players switch groups and ask some players to share their groups answers. Coach can build onto the player responses.

Key Points

All compliments should be natural. Not every player has to give or receive a compliment.

Skills Checklist

At the conclusion of the All-Star Level, Jr. NBA players should be proficient at each of the following skills. Judging proficiency at this level is the responsibility of the coach.

Ball Handling



        Footwork & Conditioning