What’s a Post Entry Pass in Basketball?

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What’s a Post Entry Pass in Basketball?

Welcome to the exciting world of basketball strategy! In this blog post, we’re diving into one of the essential skills that often goes underappreciated: the post entry pass. A masterful pass can make all the difference in a game’s outcome, and the post entry pass is no exception. Perfect for those looking to expand their basketball knowledge, we’ll discuss the importance of this pass, the techniques involved, and share tips from the pros on how to execute it flawlessly. So, brace yourself to learn all there is to know about the post entry pass, and elevate your basketball expertise to new heights!

What’s a Post Entry Pass in Basketball?

A post entry pass in basketball is a specialized type of pass that is made to a teammate playing in the post position, typically near the low block or the high post area of the court. The goal is to get the ball to the post player in an optimal position and angle, allowing them to score efficiently or create scoring opportunities for others through various post moves or quick passes. The post entry pass requires precision, timing, and communication between the passer and the post player.

Understanding the Significance of the Post Entry Pass

To truly grasp the art of the post entry pass, it’s important to recognize the value it holds in a basketball game. The post entry pass is essential, as many offensive strategies depend on skillfully delivering the ball to a post player. These targeted deliveries can create scoring opportunities and open up the court for other tactical moves. By familiarizing yourself with the mechanics, techniques, and decisions surrounding the post entry pass, you’ll not only elevate your basketball knowledge, but also become a more complete player or coach.

Types of Post Entry Passes

There are multiple types of post entry passes that cater to different game situations, player positions, and offensive schemes. By understanding these various options, players can choose the right pass at the right time for maximum efficiency.

The Overhead Pass

The overhead pass involves holding the basketball above the head with both hands and delivering it high to the post player. This pass is useful when the passer has a height advantage or when defenders are closely guarding the targeted post player. By passing the ball high, the passer minimizes the chances of a deflection or turnover.

The Bounce Pass

The bounce pass is executed by bouncing the basketball off the floor to reach the post player. It is effective in situations when a direct pass is impossible and when the post player has sealed their defender. The trajectory of the ball bouncing off the floor can make it difficult for defenders to steal or deflect the pass, creating more opportunities for a successful post entry.

The Hook Pass

The hook pass involves swinging your arm around the defender in a hook-like motion and delivering the ball to the post player. This pass is ideal when the passer faces significant defensive pressure or when the defender attempts to create a deflection by putting their hands in the passing lane. The hook pass minimizes the chances of a turnover by bypassing the defender’s hands and making it nearly impossible for them to reach the ball.

Mastering Post Entry Pass Techniques

To become proficient in executing the post entry pass, consider the following techniques to radically enhance your passing skills.


Delivery of a successful post entry pass is highly dependent on proper positioning. Typically, the passer should be on the wing or the top of the key, depending on where the post player is positioned. Additionally, the passer should evaluate the court and determine the best angle to deliver the pass, reducing the chances of a deflection or interception by the defense.


Effective communication between the passer and the post player is crucial. Establishing eye contact, using verbal or non-verbal signals, and understanding each other’s intentions can significantly improve the chances of a successful post entry pass. In essence, both players need to remain on the same page in order to synchronize their moves throughout the game.

Post Player Sealing

For a smooth post entry pass, the post player must effectively seal their defender, creating space to receive the pass. Sealing involves the post player positioning themselves between the defender and the desired spot on the floor, using their body to shield off the defender. This maneuver creates a wider target for the passer, making it easier to deliver an accurate pass and harder for the defender to disrupt the play.


Timing is a vital component of a successful post entry pass. The passer must read the defender’s movements and anticipate the post player’s actions to deliver the ball at the precise moment. Releasing the ball too early or too late can result in a turnover or a missed scoring opportunity. Practice and enhanced understanding between teammates can lead to improved accuracy and success in game situations.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Awareness of common mistakes while executing a post entry pass can help you hone your skills and avoid costly mistakes during a game. Keep an eye out for the following pitfalls:

Forced Passes

Attempting to force a pass into the post when a defender is in a great position to intercept the ball can lead to unnecessary turnovers. In such cases, it’s essential to exhibit patience and look for alternative offensive options or wait for a better opportunity.

Improper Spacing

When the passer and other off-ball players lack proper spacing, defenders can easily collapse into the post area and double-team the post player, leading to turnovers or difficult shots. Maintaining optimal spacing is crucial to giving the post player room to operate and facilitating effective post entry passes.

Telegraphing Passes

Signaling your intentions to pass the ball could alert defenders and lead to quick interceptions. Keeping a poker face and using misdirection can keep defenders guessing and improve the chances of a successful post entry pass.

Drills to Improve Post Entry Passing

Practice makes perfect, and incorporating post entry passing drills into your training sessions can significantly enhance your skills. Below are some helpful drills that will take your post entry pass game to new heights:

Two-on-Two Post Entry Drills

This drill involves a passer, a post player, and two defenders. The passer and post player work together to execute successful post entry passes while the defenders apply pressure. The dynamic nature of this drill simulates real-game situations, allowing players to refine their passing, positioning, and communication skills.

Chair Drill

In the chair drill, use a chair to represent the post player and place it in the desired post position. The passer must then deliver accurate passes to the chair while varying the types of passes used. This drill helps players practice their accuracy and ball placement, eventually mastering different types of post entry passes.

Three-on-Three Shell Drill

Expanding on the two-on-two post entry drill, the three-on-three shell drill adds an off-ball player and another defender. This added complexity requires the offense to maintain proper spacing and simulate ball reversals, creating various scenarios where a post entry pass may be necessary. The drill pushes players to improve their decision-making, timing, and execution of passes under real-game pressure.

With an arsenal of information on post entry passes in the fascinating world of basketball, you’re now set to make a significant impact on the game, both as a player and a coach. Remember that practice, persistence, and communication are indispensable tools in mastering the art of this essential skill. So, gear up and get ready to transform your post entry pass game, and watch your team’s offensive prowess soar!

Defensive Strategies Against Post Entry Passes

Understanding and anticipating the defensive strategies employed against post entry passes is crucial to your success on the court. Having this insight helps the passer make informed decisions and assists post players in adapting their game. In this section, we’ll explore some common defensive strategies that can disrupt post entry passes and ways to counter them effectively.

Fronting the Post

Fronting the post involves the defender positioning themselves between the post player and the ball, effectively denying an easy pass. To counter this strategy, the passer and post player can utilize a lob pass or a high-low pass between two post players, both of which take advantage of the defender’s aggressive positioning. Alternatively, maintaining off-ball movement and using screens can create open passing lanes for the entry pass.

Three-Quarter Fronting

When a defender employs a three-quarter fronting technique, they position themselves between the ball and the post player, covering around 75% of the player’s body. This strategy offers a balance between denying the pass and covering the baseline. To counter this, passers can utilize a bounce pass, exploit the available space, or use misdirection to create an open angle for the pass.

Playing Behind the Post Player

Defenders who choose to play behind the post player are focused on contesting the shot after the pass has been received. In this case, the passer must deliver a precise pass that enables the post player to make a quick move, either by shooting, driving, or passing the ball back out to exploit open teammates.

Double-Teaming the Post

When defenses double-team the post player, it’s essential for the offense to maintain proper spacing and adapt effectively. A passer should be prepared for the post player to quickly pass the ball back out, identifying open teammates or cutting lanes to exploit the defense. Good communication will enable your team to find scoring opportunities whenever a double team is used.

Incorporating the Post Entry Pass Into Your Offense

Now that you’ve got a robust understanding of the post entry pass, it’s time to integrate it effectively into your offensive playbook. A well-structured offense maximizes the potential of post entry passes and seamlessly incorporates post play into its fabric.

The Triangle Offense

The triangle offense is an iconic basketball offensive system first popularized by Phil Jackson and Tex Winter. This offense heavily relies on post play and utilizes post entry passes as a fundamental component. Integrating the triangle offense into your team’s strategy allows the post entry pass to shine as a crucial element of your game plan.

High-Low Offensive Sets

High-low offensive sets emphasize the use of two post players (one in the high post and one in the low post) and the interchangeable relationship between them. Post entry passes are indispensable in these offensive sets, as they facilitate ball movements between post players, creating scoring opportunities and causing chaos in the defense.

Pick-and-Roll and Pick-and-Pop

The pick-and-roll and pick-and-pop plays both provide opportunities for effective post entry passes. The screener, after setting the pick, can roll or pop to the post. The passer is then responsible for delivering a timely and accurate post entry pass for the receiving player to capitalize on the scoring opportunity.

By integrating these offensive systems and plays into your team’s strategy, you’ll create opportunities to execute post entry passes efficiently and effectively. With practice and continuous improvement, your team will unlock the full potential of the post entry pass, leading to greater success on the basketball court.

FAQ Section: Post Entry Pass in Basketball

As you explore the world of post entry passes, you may find yourself seeking answers to specific questions. In this section, we provide concise answers to ten frequently asked questions semantically related to post entry passes in basketball. Feel free to refer to this FAQ section anytime you need a quick refresher on this essential basketball skill!

1. What is a post player in basketball?

A post player is a basketball player, typically a forward or center, who specializes in playing near the basket, on the low block, or high post areas of the court. These players are crucial in post offense, using their size, strength, and skills to score, rebound, or make plays for their teammates.

2. How should a post player be positioned to receive a post entry pass?

A post player should establish good positioning by sealing their defender, using their body to create space and a wider target for the passer. Creating a target hand will help the passer deliver an accurate pass and make it more difficult for the defender to disrupt the play.

3. Why is the post entry pass important in basketball?

The post entry pass is important because it creates scoring opportunities, sets up various offensive plays, and opens up the court for other offensive options. Successfully delivering the ball to a post player can lead to points in the paint or help create open shots for perimeter players.

4. How do defensive strategies affect post entry passes?

Defenders can adopt various tactics, such as fronting the post, three-quarter fronting, playing behind the post player, or double-teaming, to disrupt post entry passes. It’s essential for the passer and post player to adapt to these defensive strategies and make smart decisions to improve their post offense efficiency.

5. How does a player choose which type of post entry pass to use?

The choice of post entry pass depends on factors such as the defender’s positioning, the post player’s positioning, and the physical attributes of the players involved. A player should read the game situation and select the most effective pass which maximizes ball security, accuracy, and makes it difficult for the defender to react.

6. What are the keys to making a successful post entry pass?

To make a successful post entry pass, focus on proper positioning, establishing communication with the post player, getting the post player to seal their defender effectively, and releasing the pass with the right timing.

7. How can I improve my post entry pass skills?

Improved post entry passing skills can be achieved by practicing different types of passes (bounce pass, overhead pass, hook pass), incorporating passing drills into your training, working on your decision-making, and refining your timing and communication with your teammates. Additionally, pay keen attention to defensive strategies and learn how to adapt effectively.

8. What are some effective offensive plays that utilize post entry passes?

The triangle offense, high-low offensive sets, pick-and-roll, and pick-and-pop are some popular offensive plays that rely on successful post entry passes. Integrating these into your team’s playbook will allow the post entry pass to become a valued asset on the basketball court.

9. What are some common mistakes to avoid when making a post entry pass?

Some common mistakes to avoid include forcing passes, improper spacing, and telegraphing passes. By being patient, maintaining proper spacing, and keeping your intentions disguised, you can significantly improve your post entry passing efficiency.

10. How can I defend against a post entry pass?

To defend against a post entry pass, focus on denying the ball to the post player by positioning yourself between them and the basketball (fronting the post), covering a portion of their body while discouraging the pass (three-quarter fronting), or playing behind the post player to contest their shot or move. You can also double-team the post player, forcing them to pass the ball back out, thus disrupting their offense.

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