Rick Adelman Minnesota Timberwolves Pistol / Hammer ATO
The 2013-14 Minnesota Timberwolves came into the season with high expectations. They had a super star in the making and had rounded out the rest of their team with key role players in Ricky Rubio, Kevin Martin and JJ Barea. The only thing standing between Minnesota making the playoffs for the first time since the Kevin Garnett era seemed to be their health. Unfortunately, for the Timberwolves they didn’t get any help in that department either. They rode an up and down season to a disappointing 40-42 record and speculation began on whether or not Kevin Love would remain a Timberwolve for much longer.
The Minnesota Timberwolves were coached by Rick Adelman for the 2013-14 season. It would be his third and final season before he retired. Adelman spent an impressive 23 years as Head Coach on an NBA sideline with 5 different teams. During those years he racked up nearly 1,900 wins and had a .582 winning percentage. He advanced to the Western Conference Finals 4 times and the NBA Finals twice, but he never broke through and won that elusive NBA Championship.
Throughout his time on an NBA sideline he was largely regarded as an offensive guru. His Minnesota Timberwolves teams always played with great tempo and he always gave his players the freedom to be themselves and make plays. The following set combines a couple popular actions that are run in the NBA. The play starts off in a “Horns” alignment which is an inverted offense set where the 2 forwards are positioned high on the pinch post.
The ball is eventually entered into one of the forwards at the pinch post. The strong side guard on the wing sets down screen for the guard in the strong side corner who enters into a dribble handoff with the forward. This action is called “pistol” and was made popular by Tony Parker and the San Antonio Spurs to get the point guard going downhill and have his defender chasing him.
As soon as the point guard has the ball and gets into the lane the opposite big at the pinch post steps up and sets a flare screen for a guard. This action is known as a “hammer’ as the ball handler and cutter off the flare screen are both going down hill leading to a passing lane.
Coach John Zall just completed his first season as an Assistant Coach at Division II Franklin Pierce University in Rindge, NH. This past season Franklin Pierce University won 20 games and advanced to the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament. Zall arrived at Franklin Pierce after spending the past 3 seasons as the Associate Head Coach/Head JV Coach at O’Bryant High school in Roxbury, MA. During his tenure at O’Bryant the program improved from 4 wins to 12 wins and qualified for the MIAA State Tournament twice.
Coach Zall also has experience as an AAU Head Coach for the Boston Warriors. As Head Coach for the Warriors his team won the 2011 16U State Title and twice competed in AAU Nationals down in Orlando, FL. On top of being a student at Northeastern University, Zall was named Head Coach of the Men’s Club Basketball team for the 2012-13 season. During his lone season as Head Coach, Northeastern finished second in the Northeast Regional Tournament featuring colleges from throughout the East Coast. Coach Zall has also spent time as a Head Coach in the Bay State Games where his team won the Bronze Medal in 2012 and at various camps including: Five Star, Boston Celtics, NIKE, Franklin Pierce University, Hoop Group and The Elite 75.
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