Basketball Glossary A-B

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Basketball Glossary A-B:
Basketball Terms A


Advance step: A step in which the defender's lead foot steps toward their man, and her back foot slides forward.

Air ball: A shot that hits only air-it misses the rim and the backboard.

Air pass: A pass that goes straight through the air to the receiver.

And one: The free throw awarded to a shooter who is fouled as they score.

Assist: A pass thrown to a player who immediately scores.

Basketball Glossary A-B:
Basketball Terms B


Backcourt: The half of the court a team is defending. The opposite of the frontcourt. Also refers to a team's guards.

Back cut: See backdoor cut.

Backdoor cut: An offensive play in which a player on the perimeter steps away from the basket, drawing the defender with them, and suddenly cuts to the basket behind the defender for a pass. The opposite of a V-cut.

Back screen: An offensive play in which a player comes from the low post to set a screen for a player on the perimeter.

Ball fake: A sudden movement by the player with the ball intended to cause the defender to move in one direction, allowing the passer to pass in another direction. Also called "pass fake."

Ball reversal: Passing the ball from one side of the court to the other.

Ball screen: An offensive play in which a player sets a screen on the defender guarding the player with the ball.

Ball side: The half of the court (if the court is divided lengthwise) that the ball is on. Also called the "strong side." The opposite of the help side.

Banana cut: A wide, curving cut, as opposed to a cut that is a straight line.

Bank shot: A shot that hits the backboard before hitting the rim or going through the net.

Baseball pass: A one-handed pass thrown like a baseball.

Baseline: The line that marks the playing boundary at each end of the court. Also called the "end line."

Baseline out-of-bounds play: The play used to return the ball to the court from outside the baseline along the opponent's basket.

Basket cut: A cut toward the basket.

Bench: Refers to substitutes sitting on the sideline, as well as to the bench or chairs they sit on.

Blindside screen: A screen set directly behind a defender where she can't see it.

Block: (1) A violation in which a defender steps in front of a dribbler but is still moving when they collide. Also called a "blocking foul." (2) To tip or deflect a shooter's shot, altering its flight so the shot misses. (3) The small painted square on the floor next to the basket just outside the lane.

Block out: To make contact with an opposing player to establish rebounding position between the player and the ball. Also called "box out."

Bonus: A team is "in the bonus" when it accumulates seven or more team fouls in a half, giving the other team a free throw on each subsequent foul. Also called being "over the limit."

Bounce pass: A pass that bounces once before reaching the receiver.

Box-and-one: A combination defense in which four defenders play zone in a box formation, and the fifth defender guards one player man-to-man.

Box out: See block out.

Box set: A formation in which four players align themselves as the four corners of a box. Often used for baseline out-of-bounds plays.

Brick: A bad shot that clanks off the backboard or rim.

Bump the cutter: To step in the way of a cutter who is trying to cut to the ball for a pass.

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