(Rental)-Cutthroat 4 on 4 Drills & Variations
Cutthroat 4-on-4 Drills & Variations
The Cutthroat Drill has become a staple in NBA and FIBA practices. While primarily a defensive drill, Nike scout and International Basketball Consultant Terry Layton offers a different take on Cutthroat using it as the cornerstone of his approach to coaching the sport.
Layton has over 300 wins as a high school, junior college, and college coach in the U.S. as well as 300-plus wins coaching at the international level. In this video, Layton shows you how he has taken the defensive-minded Cutthroat Drill and used it to maximize practice time by using it to work on offensive concepts as well.
Cutthroat Drill – The Set Up
The traditional Cutthroat drill was derived from the basic Shell Drill and has been used primarily to develop sound team defenses. Layton prefers to get the most out of the drill by teach offensive concepts as well. In preparing for Cutthroat, Layton teaches varying formations starting with the basic 2-2 as well a 1-2-1 alignment that many prefer.
Layton works on offensive concepts such as cutting, creating movement, passing, and communication as part of the Cutthroat Drill. Players drill simple actions like stepping toward a pass in this live-action situation. This version of Cutthroat is much livelier and the fast pace prepares players for game situations.
With improved offensive play, the Cutthroat Drill becomes even more of a challenge for the defense. Layton will teach players the basics of defense including proper closeout technique. He will use the four-line closeout drill where he teaches players to close out with their feet parallel and pointed at the ball. This creates a wall that prevents dribble penetration.
With a solid understanding of closeouts, Layton introduces live 4-on-4. The drill begins with a pass to a perimeter player. The defense then touches hands before closing out to defend while the offense begins to attack the defense.
Keeping Everyone Involved
In an effort to avoid players standing around while the drill is in progress, Layton uses a number of ways to keep everyone active and engaged. Coach Layton likes to have at least 75 percent of his players active at all times. Some of the ways to do so are to have players work on conditioning or on passing fundamentals.
Coach Layton’s take on Cutthroat is what every coach should want from his practices: a competitive environment where players are actively engaged and improving their skills. This 67-minute video will have a lasting impact on how you approach practice daily.