6 Easy Tips to Set a Good Screen in a Basketball Game

As the old saying go, a good offense is sometimes the best defense. This is very true when it comes to setting a good screen in basketball, so make sure to learn a few tips in accomplishing this technique.


While shooting a few hoops will let you win a basketball game, it’s not the only thing that players need to focus on to become great in the sport. There’s also dribbling, rebounding, and passing among other things. You’ll also need to know how to work with a team to push your way to victory.

Knowing how to set up a good screen is an essential technique to learn for all players. This is an excellent way to support your team mates on your offense strategy and ensure that your team will score.

What is a Good Screen?

Before we go any further in discussing screening, those who aren’t well-versed in basketball jargon might be wondering what a screen actually is.

Simply put, this is a move to block a defensive player of the opposite team to free your teammate to receive a pass or shoot. Also known as a pick, this technique requires you to guard a teammate so they can successfully score.


A good screen is using effective defense techniques so your team, who’s on the offense, can score some points. Not every screen can be considered as a good one, and you need a good one on every game to ensure your team’s success.

How to Set a Good Screen

Now that you have a good idea what a screen is, you might be wondering just how to set a good screen in a basketball game. To do that, here are a few things you need to observe when setting a good screen.

1. Stance

How the screener puts themselves between the cutter and the defender will determine a good screen. If you wish to screen an opponent, you first need the right stance to keep yourself balanced.

A wide, strong, base should be achieved so you can properly shield the cutter from the attempts of intervening of your opponent. Get yourself in the right stance by having your feet set wide apart.


This will plant you to the spot, providing a wall in between your shooting teammate and a defender.

2. Getting in Contact with an Opponent

A good screen will also need the screener to get in contact with the defender. This will need you to be at the right spot and angle to make sure that you’ll be effectively blocking the attempts of the rival team towards your teammate who has the ball.

The screener needs to make sure that they’re directly in the way of the defender, even while the cutter is on the move.

You should also be able to make sure that the defender won’t be able to go around you, therefore effectively preventing the block that they are about to perform.

Just make sure to place your arms and hands near you or where the referees can see it so you won’t be accused of grabbing or pushing the defender while setting a screen.

3. Teamwork

This is possibly the most vital thing in setting a good screen. Your teammates should be in on your strategy so they can take full advantage of it. The team must know when to set a screen and the cutter needs to know when to anticipate it.

You should also know your teammates well enough to anticipate the directions of the cutter’s movements, allowing you to set up a solid screen.

The cutter or receiver of the screen should be well aware of the technique before someone does it for them. This way, they can take full advantage of the screen and not try to go off and find an opening elsewhere.


They can also benefit from rubbing off the screen to further protect the possession and give the defenders more difficulties in blocking the shot.

4. Timing

The right timing is also key to a great screen. The receiver should have patience for it to be set without taking too long.

This way, their teammates’ efforts won’t go to waste and the defenders won’t anticipate the screen. The screener should also time their set up perfectly to make it more effective.

5. Roll

To get the full extent of this offensive strategy, make sure to perform a roll once the contact has been made between the defender and screener.

The screener should pivot and pin the defender with their forearm while raising the other arm to completely block the latter and keep them away from the basket.

6. Anticipate the Ball

Because setting a screen is a method to create an opening for a teammate, it might also result to the screener becoming open in turn. So after performing a screen, be ready to receive the ball as well.

Doing a screen requires a lot of quick thinking and fast reactions to how the offense and defense are working. If you want to set up a good screen, you should always be on your toes and anticipating what you should do next.


This way, you can do your best in contributing to your team’s offensive strategies.

Final Words

Setting a good screen may seem complicated, but in reality, it should come as an instinct to teams who have good communication and teamwork. Pair these tips with practice and quick thinking and your team will surely benefit from the technique.

Shooting may be the most important thing to do to win a basketball game but it’s important to note that it can’t be done without auxiliary techniques like screening.

Learning how to execute this offensive strategy can help boost your chances at winning, especially if you’re facing an opponent known for their defense.

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