K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Scorers)
There are many ways to score the basketball. The key is to find the most simple moves that you can master then add some counters. The NBA legend Kobe Bryant believes you only need two moves.
"How many people think you have to have a lot of moves? I have two. On the perimeter, I have two moves. In the post, two moves. That's it. On the perimeter, I'll go right, pull up, shoot; left, pull up, shoot. In the post, turn left shoulder, fadeaway; turn right, fadeaway." - Kobe Bryant
I know you are reading this and thinking I need to have way more than two moves. You will be surprised at how many players can not make the same move going right and left at the high school, college and professional level. As an offensive player, you have to be skilled enough to read the defense to score. The key word is “read” due to the fact that the floor will never move. The floor doesn’t move, yet many players dribble while looking down at the floor. The best scorers are able to break the court down and read the other people on the floor. You have to know where your offensive players are for spacing reasons to see how much room you can operate in. Then you will need to know where the help defenders are before and during your moves to score. If you put the ball on the floor with no plan, you will more than likely end up shooting a bad shot or turning the ball over.
Kobe felt that your moves should be calculated and predictable. Kobe said, “To be unstoppable, you have to first be predictable, because if you're unpredictable you don't know what the heck you're going to do, so how can you dictate to the defense what you're going to do? I know, if I have a chance, I'm going to go right and shoot. You know I want to go right and shoot, because now I've gone right two times, made it and you're expecting me to go right. Now, I control you. Now, I'll fake right, go left. (Then), I go left, and you're like, 'Oh, you're going to make another one.' Now, I pump fake, you jump — pfft, now I draw a foul."
Kobe just described a combination of moves based off of two moves he mastered going right and left. As a player, work on making moves off of either pivot foot. Most players feel they will never need to but if you jump stop and bumped by the defender. What if the defender bumped you into the pivot foot you are not comfortable using? Will you travel or will you be skilled enough to show the defender you are still able to get to your spot to score or pass?
Kobe scored in a variety of ways throughout his career. He had great footwork and could score in the post, was a terrific finisher around the rim, a lethal mid-range jump-shooter and was very athletic in his prime. Kobe shot 20,654 two point field goal attempts and made 48% of them. Kobe was also great at getting fouled and converting. He made 8,378 free throws at 83.7%. Kobe’s scoring at all 3 levels plus efficient free throw shooting helped him become one of the NBA’s top 10 scorers of All-Time.
The top 10 NBA scorers are all different but they were and are very effective in their own ways. The leading scorer in NBA history, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, had one of the most unstoppable moves ever in the sky hook. In 20 seasons, he took 28,307 shots and made 56% from the field plus only 1 3pt make. Abdul-Jabbar also made 6,712 free throws (72%) to average 24.6 for his 20 year career.
Study the top scorers and steal a move from a few of them that will work for you. Although the top 10 scorers in the NBA are great scorers, each one of them could not score the same way as the others. Do not try to do a move that is difficult for you. Your footwork will determine how well you are able to score.
The simpler you are, the better. Use pump fakes. Use jab steps. Use angles. Use change of speed. Use change of direction. Use your right pivot. Use your left pivot. Use your right hand. Use your left hand. Make sure you are balanced after every move. Every move will not work for you and that’s okay, just be so skilled that the defense is helpless at your every move.