What do Pete “the Pistol” Maravich and Magic Johnson have in common? If you answered that they were both great play makers and masters at passing the basketball, then you would be correct.
If you would like to become an elite basketball player, it is essential that you master the fundamentals of passing a basketball. Why? It is very difficult for any basketball player to compete and succeed at the highest level–especially if he would like to win championships–if he does not learn how to pass a basketball effectively to his teammates.
Basketball is a team sport. Unfortunately, a lot of basketball players, make the mistake of thinking that they can win games and championships by solely outscoring their opponent(s).
FACT: Not a single basketball player, since the invention of basketball by James Naismith in 1891, has ever won a championship without involving his teammates–that is over 100 years and counting!
Even Michael Jordan, one of the greatest basketball players of all time, did not win his first NBA championship ring until after he learned how to “share” the basketball with his teammates by creating scoring opportunities not only for himself but also for his teammates–in essence, he improved his basketball passing skills.
In a nutshell, great basketball players know how to pass the ball. With that said, there are different type of passes that you can make as a basketball player: Bounce Pass, Chest Pass, Overhead Pass, Underhand Pass, Baseball Pass, and the Hook Pass. Each type of pass is useful for different game situations.
And, you as a basketball player should definitely try to master all the different type of basketball passes. However, only the chest pass will be covered in this article.
How To Make A Chest Pass
The chest pass is one of the most important passes in basketball. To make the chest pass, do the following:
- Place one hand on either side of the ball, fingers spread evenly and loosely;
- Hold the ball in front of your chest;
- Pull your hands together until your thumbs are about four inches apart; and,
- Keep your elbows close to the body.
How To Make A Chest Pass To A Teammate
- Step directly toward him with either foot;
- Thrust your arms toward him until they are fully extended; and,
- At the end of the arm thrust, press your thumbs downward, snap your wrists up slightly and turn the backs of your hands toward each other.
The ball should be drilled at some point between your teammates shoulders and waist. As the ball travels, it should have good back spin.
Reasons why the chest pass is effective
The chest pass is effective for many reasons:
- It enables a player to easily make a fake before an actual pass.
- It can be fired quickly.
- It is accurate.
- It can be used with good power, cutting down the possibility of interception.
- It can be used at close and medium range.
- It can be converted into a bounce pass.
The correlation between the success of any basketball player and his ability to pass the ball effectively cannot be emphasized enough. To score in a game of basketball, you must first have an opportunity to shoot the ball. Since there are five opposing players, you cannot always create this opportunity alone. Most of the time, only an accurate pass will lead to a score. This is the epitome of teamwork.