Let me tell you something that you already know: each one of your players is different. Each has a unique set of skills, a unique capacity for learning, a unique hype number, and of course, a unique personality.
But, are you treating them that way?
Please read as deeply into that question as possible, but for the purposes of this blog, I’m going to focus on what that means for you as a Read & React coach.
Players can be taught layers according to their own abilities.
That means you can have some players using Layers 1-6, some using 1-10, and some using 1-20 (or even, 1-6, 10, 14, and 15). As long as the foundation layers have been covered, those with fewer layers will not hinder the impact of those with more.
Let’s put this in a practical perspective. There are two types of Post Slides: Basic (layer 5) and Advanced (layer 16). There are also two ways to fill out after a player has cut: simply fill out (layer 1) or backscreen out (layer 10).
You can train one post player to only react with a Basic Post Slide and train another to react with the Advanced Post Slide based on their skill, ability, understanding, etc. (That’s your job to figure out.) And, the same is true with filling out and backscreening. Maybe a handful of players can’t (or won’t backscreen) – that’s ok.
My point is this: don’t keep high IQ players from going higher in the layers for the sake of team consistency. And, don’t slow the development of the team based on one player who can’t seem to master the early layers.
It’s all about layer identification. Some players are going to naturally gravitate toward specific layers. Some are going to naturally shy away from layers. It’s fine to let that occur organically, but remember, you as a coach have the ability to control it to suit your team’s needs.
Has anyone done something like this? Experimented with it? What did you find? Let us know in the comments section.
This post was inspired by a conversation started in the forum. Thanks to bryan, Rick, coachEd, and jqmoney for making it happen.