April 16, 2020 at 10:14 pm #176165
well, never to diss your predecessor, but it seems clear why you got the gig ?
It sounds like you have an installed R&R base you can work with, so introducing a new defensive system seems feasible without player overload.
It’s hard for me to say how the LL would work for the team you describe. My team this year was extraordinarily quick. But I don’t think our quickness explained our defensive success with the LL.
If you were committing to full deny 1 pass away, it sounds like you created a lot of perimeter space for drivers to beat you 1v1. LL 1 pass away is more like packline spacing, with players filling gaps (HOW they fill gaps depends on which side of the ball they are on, which is a tricky learning point) . Done right, this should mean less chasing and more vectoring. The LL also contracts the amount of space you have to defend–both by controlling bias and walling help 2 passes away on the midline– so positioning and discipline seem more important than 1v1 ball defense.
As I’ve said before, most of my doubts about the LL disappeared when I realized its “secret sauce”: by forcing players to play out of their comfort zone (weak hand, weak side) they get so out of rhythm and in their own heads that, even when they beat us, they miss their shots at a remarkably higher rate. The LL puts an imprint on the game larger than its parts.
It is not, however, something you can “experiment with.” I think you have to commit to it, focusing on the weaknesses it reveals and training through them over time.
I will add that other coaches here have reported it quite easy to add a 2-3 or 1-3-1 zone later in this season, playing the same LL principles. I did this in practice one day, and found it to be true, but never felt it necessary in a game.