MVP Practice Plans

At the MVP Level, players will begin competing more frequently in order to apply and refine the skills they have developed. Players will also begin to specialize and fit into more specific roles and positions. Team tactics and game strategy will also be further implemented in the MVP Level.

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MVP Practice Plan 12

Cultivating Values & Developing Wellness


Time Management

  • Positive Coaching Alliance recommends some practical ways to manage your time. For example, use travel time to and from school, practices and games to read or to complete homework assignments. Take short breaks between tasks to clear your mind so that you can move on to the next task or project and complete it efficiently. Don’t procrastinate. The temptation to do so often means you are dreading a certain project. Diving right in reduces the dread, so that the time you might have spent worrying you now are spending on completing the assignment and eliminating the need for worry. Best of all that clears your mind to focus 100% on your basketball, making it more likely you will excel on the court.

Warm Up


Dynamic Warm-Up Part 14

(1 x each from baseline to half court or vice versa)
  • Walking Hamstrings
  • Knee Hugs
  • Jump to Stick
  • Lateral Squat Hold
  • Quick Feet
  • 2 Foot Hops

Building Skills


Ball Handling

Figure 8 Dribble 4

(2 x 20 seconds)
  • All players will get a ball and line up with some space on the baseline.
  • The players will be allowed 4 dribbles to dribble the ball in the figure 8 motion for the allotted amount of time.
  • The first dribble will be to their right side with their right hand.
  • The second dribble will between the legs from the right hand to the left.
  • The third dribble will be with the left hand on the left side of the body.
  • The fifth dribble will be between the legs from the left side between the legs to the right side.
  • This process will continue.

In & Out Around the Lane

(3 each side)
  • Have the players get a ball and start in a line on the baseline at the point where the lane line meets the baseline.
  • The first player up will take a dribble and then drop for a quick in and out move coming up the lane line.
  • The player will do this 2 to 3 more times coming up the lane line until they pass the elbow.
  • Once the player gets above the elbow, they will turn the corner back towards the basket and attack for a lay up.
  • As soon as the player in front of them is halfway up the lane, the next player will start.
  • Continue this process for the allotted reps and utilize multiple baskets if needed.

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1-Ball Pound, 1-Ball Control

(3 x 20 seconds each way)
  • Have the players get 2 balls and find an open space on the court facing coach.
  • 1 ball will be on the floor with a hand touching it while maintaining a good stance and dribbling the other ball with eyes and chest up.
  • The coach will indicate that when they say a number 1 through 4 that each of those 4 numbers will correlate to moving the ball on the floor a certain direction and then back to the starting point.
  • As the players point the ball, coach might say “3!” at which time the players will continue dribbling and also quickly move the ball that is on the ground to the 3 spot and back to the starting spot.
  • This process will continue for the allotted time and with both hands.

Early-Cross Jab Series

(4 minutes)
  • Have the players get a ball and a partner.
  • The player with the ball will dribble towards the defender but before they are too close to the defender, they will change the ball from one hand to the other.
  • Right after changing hands, the player will drop and give jab step that will push them in the opposite direction past the defender.
  • Make sure to work on it with both hands and changes roles with the partner.


1st to 50

(1 game)
  • In this drill there will be two teams of five and one ball.
  • The team that starts on offense will be allowed no dribbles and no screens but must past the ball from player to player without taking a shot.
  • They must count every pass as the attempt to reach 50 passes to win.
  • If the defensive team gets a steal, a turnover or a deflection, it will immediately be their ball and they will start passing and counting their passes.
  • When the possessions change, the offense will start counting from the number they left off on before their last change of possession.
  • So if a team has 12 passes and then turn it over, the next time the get the ball back, they will start with 12 and build from there.
  • This game allows the defense to really pressure the ball and aggressively seek turnovers so it’s important for the offense to be strong and make good passes under pressure.


Jump Through the Hips & Finish

(3 minutes each way)
  • Have the players get in lines with a couple of balls at the front of each line.
  • The players will dribble in as if they are taking a traditional layup.
  • Prior to getting to the basket, the players will imagine a defender cutting in front of them and will take a hard last dribble as they jump and twist their hips to the middle of the floor.
  • Upon landing, the players will quickly jump back up to shoot.
  • Repeat this process for the allotted amount of time and on both sides of the court.

4-5-4 Drop Step Drill

(3 x)
  • Have the players get in groups of 3 at a basket with 2 balls.
  • The two basketballs will be on the blocks and there will be a player responsible for rebounding that ball and putting it back quickly each time.
  • The shooter will quickly go from block to block executing a great drop step and finish.
  • After this player has completed the 4th drop step, the player on the other side will change rolls and begin.
  • This player will complete 5 drop steps and change with the last player who will complete 4 drop steps.

Key Points

The numbers 4-5-4 will help for a quick and smooth transition in the drill.

Team Concepts


Post Pass Shooting Drill

(2 x 15)
  • Have the players players start in a line at the top with a couple of balls in the line.
  • Also start with a player on the post and a player on the wing.
  • The player at the top will pass the ball to the player on the wing.
  • The player on the wing will pass the ball to the player on the post and then cut.
  • The post player will pass the ball to the cutter for an open jump shot.
  • After the shot, the shooter will get the rebound and go to the back of the line.
  • The post player will quickly flash out to the wing and receive a pass from the next player at the top.
  • The previous player at the top will sprint to the baseline and then back to the block to post up and receive the pass from the player from the wing.
  • The wing player will pass and cut and the post player will pass the ball back for a shot.
  • This process will continue for the allotted amount of makes.

Curl & Pop Drill

(15 makes each way)
  • Have 2 lines, 1 on the elbow and one on the same side wing.
  • The players on the elbow will have a ball and toss it to the coach at the top.
  • The player at the elbow will go set a screen for the player on the wing.
  • The player on the wing will curl hard assuming that their defender is going over top.
  • The screener will assume that his defender must help on the curl and pop back to the ball.
  • The coach will pass the screener the ball who will shoot the designated shot.
  • The players will switch lines and continue the process.
  • Continue until the allotted number of shots has been made and then switch sides.

1 on 1 From Post Cross Screen

(games to 4)
  • Have the players partner up and have 2 teams start on offense and defense on the blocks.
  • The coach will start with the ball on the wing and the player on the ball side wing will set a cross screen for the other big.
  • The defensive players aren’t allowed to switch and when the coach passes the ball into the post, the game is live.
  • After the possession, the defense will go to offense and the offense will rotate off as a new team comes on defense.
  • Play to the designated score.

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3 on 3 from Closeout

(games to 5)
  • Have a player on both wings and the top of the key and 3 lines on the baseline lined up across from them.
  • When the coach passes the ball to one of the players on the perimeter, the first 3 players on the baseline will close out to the ball and then begin playing 3 on 3.
  • Each team gets 1 shot.
  • The offensive team will go off and the defensive team will become offense as the next team on the baseline will execute the next closeout.

Key Points

Make sure the players work on good closeouts and playing good defense.

5 on 5 Full Court Man to Man

(games to 5)
  • Divide the players into balanced teams and play 5 on 5.
  • In this game the players will be responsible for matching up and guarding each other full court.
  • The coach needs to emphasize full court pressure while also have the other players to the line of the ball.

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 MVP 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