Lawrence Frank Coaching U Basketball Coaching Clinic Notes

Lawrence Frank Coaching U 2010 Basketball Coaching Clinic Notes


These basketball coaching clinic notes were taken by coach Larson Perkins who attended the 2010 Coach U Basketball Clinic. The speaker Lawrence Frank was the head coach for the New Jersey Nets as well as an assistant coach for the Boston Celtics. Anytime that someone becomes the head coach of an NBA basketball team it is usually worth taking the time to listen when they speak about basketball. Coach Frank is considered relatively young in the basketball coaching industry but he has proven himself as one of the great basketball minds in the game today.

Notes Taken by Larson Perkins


Miscellaneous Notes

  • Belief, Trust, Faith (3 keys to a team)
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
  • If you don’t believe it or bleed it, they won’t buy it.
  • Have to have their heads and heart before you get their execution.
  • Write down your thoughts/philosophy.
  • From Jeff Van Gundy: Know what we are about, how we play, our core values, our culture
  • Last 10 years in NBA: Only 1 team did not make playoffs that were in top 5 FG % defense.
  • 13 of last 20 NBA Champions: Top 5 FG % Defense
  • 8 of last 9 champions: Top 10 both offense FG % and defensive FG %
  • It’s not what you do, but how you do it.
  • Got to believe in what you do.  Stand for something or fall for anything.
  • Must drill actions daily.
  • Must have a defensive system.
  • Put together a notebook that covers all offensive situations you will encounter.
  • Stan Van  Gundy: There are no easy answers.  Great defense comes from commitment and trust.
  • In order to get playing time: Have to be a good individual and/or good team defender.

Why no commitment to Defense?

  • Offensive commitment
  • Small team
  • Lack of athletes
  • Low IQ
  • No consequences for not playing defense

Non-negotiable’s  on Defense

  • Sprint back and get set on defense
  • Protect the paint
  • Closeout hard and contest shot
  • Play aggressive without fouling
  • All 5 block out and rebound

Miscellaneous Notes

  • No layups, No FT’s, No Open 3’s
  • Defense is all about multiple efforts

Daily Drills

  • Closeouts/1-1 defense
  • Transition defense
  • PNR defense
  • Post up defense
  • Catch and shoot
  • Rebounding
  • Scramble/Disadvantage situations

**Pick 2-3 daily to emphasis

Good defense starts with good offense

  • Balance and spacing
  • Shot selection
  • Pace
  • No turnovers

Transition Defense: What shots can you live with?  Ok with contested 2’s


  • Layups
  • FT’s
  • Middle drives
  • Open 3’s
  • Uncontested shots
  • Buddy running
  • Ball watching

Miscellaneous Notes

  • Goal:  Contest 60% or higher shots during a game
  • On Closeout: Contest high and hard.  Impact the shot.  Buy time for your teammates to get into help spots.

Must have paint consequences

  • Charge
  • Steal
  • Deflection
  • Block
  • Hard foul


Why talk?

  • Necessary
  • Intimidating
  • Head start (calling out sets and sprint out ball screens)
  • Confidence for person guarding the ball
  • Wakes up disengaged defender
  • Catch mistake before it occurs
  • Energize the team

How to talk?

  • ELO: Early, Loud, Often
  • 1 Word,  repeated 3 times
  • Trust the talk, trust the coverage (Especially on PNRs)

Defensive Philosophy

  • Commitment by all 5 players
  • Communication by all 5 players
  • Trust by all 5 players
  • Be in help spots
  • Aware
  • Alert
  • Multiple effort
  • Resolve

Basic Principles

  • On ball defense
  • Off ball defense
  • Actions

On Ball

  • Pick up ¾ court, get 2 turns
  • 3 back on shot motion
  • Must be up helping on ball defender

Ball at wing

  • Nose in chest
  • No middle stance
  • Influence to baseline
  • Hand is flicking up or on top of ball.
  • Ball is dribbled: Hands go out, get wide

Ball at top

  • Contain and push to weak hand

If beat on middle drive

  • Get back in front
  • Help cannot get beat.  Put chest in driving line

Miscellaneous Notes

  • On any penetration:  Help and rotate
  • On a flat drive: Stunt and recover
  • Help spots: Elbows and block
  • Finish the defense
  • Enjoy the contact: Charges, first to floor, block out
  • Catch the first move, contain the second move
  • Ball above head: Swarm the ball.
  • In closeout drills: Switch between ball above head, ball down.
  • When ball comes down, jump back and get gap.
  • Adjust hands/feet on pivot, sweeps, ball location changes.
  • Hands level with ball, never below.
  • Slide and chest when guarding the dribble.  Use body to slow ball down, not hands.
  • If beaten off dribble, still pursue the ball from behind.
  • Sprint to help spots.

Transition Defense

  • No layups, deep post, open 3’s, needless fouls
  • Get ahead of ball and see the ball
  • Stop the ball above the arc, get it to a side
  • Load to the ball
  • Point and talk, may not be your assignment
  • No one should make 1 pass and hit open jump shot

Open shots beat you in transition.  Mismatches rarely do.

  • Make them throw 2 passes
  • Defend the team, not a man.
  • Find and recover to shooters
  • Drill: 5-4 Scramble/4-3 Scramble

Miscellaneous Notes

  • Put 5th defender anywhere you want.  5 passes on offense, 3 dribble limit.  Defense must guard the ball and get into help.  Cannot guard 2 passes in a row.  Do not take ball out on makes.  First big back will kick out guard to perimeter.  Come back down 5-5
  • Validate drills with FT.  Have them line up like live FT, work on box outs.

5 Passes to deny

  • Post entry
  • Flashes to elbow from weak side
  • Pass back to wing on reversal when fronting post.
  • Flash to elbow (Pinch post)
  • Big catches above the arc, deny reversal pass to wing.

Miscellaneous Notes

  • On post front, drive offense back
  • Anytime corner is filled and there is a post up, post defender slides to ¾ front and denies

On all drives:

  • Shrink
  • Stunt
  • Step up and stop the ball

Miscellaneous Notes

  • Make offense throw passes with air under it.  Buy time for teammate to recover.

On Blitz (trap) against the PNR:

  • Trap (no splits, no dribble around)
  • Protection (Alert and aware)
  • Rotation (Sprint and talk)
  • Big recovers to big


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