How to properly run transition offense


Transition offense is often seen as just running down the court and getting a basket as fast as possible, but there is more to it than just a quick bucket. For one, you must have the proper personnel that possesses the quickness you’re striving for, and your team must understand the proper way to run the fast break so it’s effective. 

The purpose of fast breaks are to get easy scoring opportunities, control the tempo of the game, and to wear your opponent down. It’s often started on a defensive rebound or a turnover and the offense has some type of advantage whether its 2-on-1, 3-on-2, etc. It allows you to keep your opponents on their heels and doesn’t allow them to set up their half-court defense.

Often today, guys are stopping at the three-point line on fast breaks to get a shot, and even though that’s not all bad, the main purpose of a fast break is to get a quick, high percentage shot. There are instances where it makes sense to stop at the three-point line, like if you’re a trailer in the secondary break, but we’ll save that for another segment…. STAY TUNED!!

The main goal is to get to the basket for a lay-up, dunk, or a short shot but if you want your players pulling up for threes on fast breaks then to each its own. I’m going to highlight some tips and pointers that you want to keep in mind when running the fast break.russwe-1000x600

1.) Spacing is Everything – The closer the offensive players are, the easier it is for the defenders. You want your players to stay spaced so that the defense has to cover more ground and to keep all your options open.

2.) Bring the ball down the middle (unless its a 2 on 1) – When you bring the ball down the middle of the court then you become unpredictable because you have players on each side, but when you bring the ball down the side then your options become limited.

3.) Don’t Overpass – Sometimes too many passes becomes a bad thing because you give the defense a chance to catch up which decreases your chances of getting a good, uncontested shot.

3.) Keep it simple – Fastbreaks are often a chance to bring out the tricks and antics and at times, players can get out of character trying to force a highlight play. That’s why its best to preach “Keep it simple” because the ultimate goal is to get a basket, not to WOW the crowd.

Here are some drills  that all teams run from middle school to the professional level.

My personal favorite, 5 man weave back to 3 on 2 to 2 on 1 – It works on spacing and how to operate against a defense in transition opportunities.

3 man weave – Here you see the USA basketball team doing the 3 man weave which is a drill that works on spacing and passing in transition.

11 man drill – Last but not least, the 11 man drill which is a rapid fire drill that works on 3 on 2 transition offense as well as throwing a proper outlet pass and conditioning your team.


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