Weekly X’s and O’s – McCormick Finishing

Last week we introduced our practice drill Loaded Shooting. As we build up on that drill and players get comfortable, we want to incorporate it into a team finishing or shooting drill.

I’m not really a fan of the two line lay-ups lines in the pre-game warm-ups and here’s how we have used McCormick Finishing to add an element of randomness into our pre-game warm ups.

We generally try and use spots from our offense in our drills. With this, we will tend to use the two slots of the wings as our initial attack point.

NB: If you want to add a conditioning element, move the cones way back into the opposite half of the court.


Initially as we introduce the drill, we are just working on a couple of basic finishes that we want.

The combination of footwork, hands and body positioning allow for multiple finishes.

Generally, we have two basic footwork that we like and we offer players 3 – 5 hand and body positions to choose from.


After a couple of practices, our guys understand the drill and the rotations. We begin to add guided defense.

The defender is not contesting, just trying to give a guide. There are two ways we do this. Here’s one of them.

We tell a specific group of players to sprint into one of two defensive positions. This requires the offense to read and finish with a specific move.


Depending on the age group and ability of players, we may move on to this progression in the same practice.

Now, we are actively telling the defense to contest. This means that they will jump to block or try and swipe at the ball. They can even wall up if they choose to.

There is no guide, and we definitely don’t want them playing live yet.


We are at a stage now where our teams will actually use this drill in the warm-up. Here, we don’t need to build it up again. The guys know what they’re doing and during the warm up, it’s contesting at fifty percent intensity.


Back to our practices, we can turn this into a small game or live one on one without any major changes.

Defense has to get a stop to go on offense. We also tell our players that if they score on a three, they get two points and have to rotate to defense.

The reason why is that in this set-up, all players will have a huge advantage in shooting threes and it negates the read aspect of finishing at the rim.


I hope you guys enjoyed seeing what we do in our practices. If there is a specific action or drill you would like us to share, just drop us a message and we’ll be happy to share.

Until next week.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑