New power forward word search puzzle available HERE.
Check out the latest episode of Good Rookies with Nelly J and Faheem by clicking HERE.
Click HERE for the latest in our 2025 men's high school rankings.


1 2 3 5 A B C D E F G H I K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Z

Middle Pick and Roll

The middle pick-and-roll is an offensive play that involves two players, usually a guard and a forward or center, operating in tandem. The play begins when the ball handler (usually the guard) dribbles towards the middle of the court, receiving a screen from the big man (forward or center). The ball handler then has the option to drive towards the basket, pass to the screener rolling towards the rim, or kick the ball out to an open teammate on the perimeter. This play forces the defense to make split-second decisions and creates opportunities for the offense to exploit mismatches and defensive breakdowns.

One of the primary reasons the middle pick-and-roll has become a staple of modern basketball is its ability to exploit defensive weaknesses. The play forces the defense to make quick decisions, opening up possibilities for mismatches and breakdowns in defensive rotations. As the ball handler dribbles towards the screen, the defense faces a dilemma: should they go over the screen, under the screen, or switch defenders? Each decision presents an opportunity for the offense to exploit.

If the defense goes over the screen, the ball handler has an opportunity to attack the rim or pull up for a mid-range jump shot. This option is particularly effective when the ball handler is a proficient scorer and possesses excellent speed or shooting skills. On the other hand, if the defense goes under the screen, the ball handler can take advantage of the space and launch a long-range shot, often a three-pointer. This scenario is ideal when the ball handler has a reliable outside shot and can create space for the shot.

In addition to the primary options for the ball handler, the middle pick-and-roll creates opportunities for other offensive players. As the screener rolls towards the rim, they become a scoring threat themselves. If the defense collapses to help guard against the ball handler, the screener can often find themselves open near the basket, ready for a lob pass or a short-range shot. This dynamic forces the defense to make quick decisions regarding help defense and rotation, often leaving shooters open on the perimeter. The ball handler can exploit this by making accurate passes to open teammates for three-point attempts or by driving and kicking the ball out to the perimeter.

Stay In Tune With The RUN

Sign up to receive special offers and information about basketball.