Flex Offense - Low

Notice: This article was written by Steve Jordan, founder of the Coach's Notebook. Email the author at sjordan@alaskalife.net

Flex Offense - Low

This is a common offensive pattern that can be run continuously until a shot is presented. You can run this to use up the clock, too, which means you won't need to learn a special offense for that purpose. The Flex is considered advantageous for teams that are smaller and all the players have reasonable ball handling, passing and shooting skills. You'll notice that all the players move to post and perimeter positions throughout the process.

To see the article on Coach MacKinney's Flex Offense, click here.


Diagram 1

Diagrams 1-3 show how your team gets set up for the Flex. Once they get to Diagram 4, they will be in a repeating process.

Players set up in a high 1 - 4 pattern as shown. The point guard passes to either side, then uses the closest post to get clear for the basket. Here we show the point passing to Y2 and cutting past Y4 and getting the ball back for a layup ... aah, if it were only that easy!

Y5 (or Y4 if the pass had gone to Y3) drops to the block.

The wing that did not get the pass, Y3, moves to fill the spot vacated by the point.


Diagram 2

Here the high post drops and screens for the low post. The purpose is to make sure the low post (Y5) is free for the pass from Y2.

Y1 stays in the low block position on the ball side.



Diagram 3

OK, Y5 has a couple options. He should always look inside for Y4 just in case there is an opening. Having no open pass low, he passes to Y3.

This is very important - note how Y4 moves out to the perimeter area. This step repeats throughout the flex. The person on the lox block must move to the outside and hopefully take a defender with them. The next move that person will make will be to cut along the baseline and use a screen to get open near the basket.


Diagram 4

Now the flex offense begins. The following patterns repeat as often as necessary. Each player needs to learn every position because eventually they will be in every spot. Fortunately, the movement are easy to learn.

The first step is that the outside person away from the ball, Y2, uses the screen on the block and hopes to get a pass from Y3. If she doesn't get the pass, she stops and take a position on the ball side low block.  Y4 will use Y1 for a screen later.

If there is no pass to Y2, Y5 drops to screen for Y1. This is necessary because Y1 must get free to get a pass from Y3. Y5 is "screening the screener".



Diagram 5

Like we mentioned for Y4 in Diagram 3, Y5 must flare out to the perimeter.

Y4 now uses the pick from Y2 to get free near the basket. If Y 4 does not get the ball, then she must set up on the block away from the ball.

If Y4 doesn't get the ball, Y3 down screens for Y2 to free him for a pass from Y1.


Diagram 6

This diagram is just like diagram 4. This time Y2 is looking for Y5 using the screen by Y4.

If that doesn't happen, Y1 down screens for Y4 to get Y4 open for a pass from Y2.


Diagram 7

This diagram looks a lot like Diagram 5, doesn't it?

Y4 looks for Y3 coming off the screen by Y5. If that doesn't happen, Y2 drops down to pick for Y5 who can get open for a pass from Y4.

Y1 moves out to the perimeter.

If Y3 doesn't get the ball he will stop at the post away from the ball (Y5 will have it by now) and screen for Y1 when he returns.

You see, the pattern can repeat endlessly. Pick your moment and score the easy basket. The best defense is your offense, because they can't score if you have the ball!