Listed below are what I feel are the true advantages of the Shuffle Offense.
CONTINUITY OF THE PATTERN
Once the offense has started it can be ran with pause or delay until the desired shot is obtained. There is no need to reset or have players return to certain positions. Instead each player moves through the offense from position to position as the pattern is completed and repeated.
VERSUS ALL DEFENSES
The offense will work against both man-to-man and zone defenses. It will work against match up defenses, pressure defenses, sagging defenses and switching defenses.
TRUE TEAM OFFENSE
Every player must be able to pass, set good screens, use screens properly, etc. It is not an offense that revolves around one or two players. On the other hand, it is an offense that can be used to take advantage of the skills of an outstanding player or a mis-match in a game situation. It is an offense that presents each player as a scoring threat. Now your opponent must prepare to defend all five players rather than just one or two scoreres. This is a factor that develops team pride and unity. We tell our players that a "team" of five players playing together can beat one, two or three individuals even if they have more talent. We tell them, "the team that executes the best, beats the best."
PLAYERS PLAY EVERY POSITION
Every player will play every position in the offense. This makes it very difficult for the defense. Especially, for the other team's center who is used to defending the opponent's center who only plays in one of the post areas. This also gives our players a more complete understanding of our game plan and philosophy.
CONTROLS THE TEMPO
The offense can be a power packed quick-hitting offense or it can be a ball control slow-down offense. Or anything in-between. This is perhaps the greatest advantage from the stand-point of being adaptable from team to team and from year to year.
NO POST PLAYERS - NO PROBLEM
The offense does not require a true center or post player to be successful. And you do not "have" to get the ball into the post to make the offense work.
EVERYONE IS INVOLVED
In many offense the game revolves around two or three players while the others simply "stay out of the way". Those who are asked to "stay out of the way" usually do a poor job on the few things they are asked to do. Every player wants to be a part of the offense and have the oppoetunity to do something with the basketball. In the Shuffle Offense every player is definitely a part of everything that is done. "There is no reason to put on the uniform unless there is something to do."
STRONG OFFENSIVE REBOUNDING
First, the Shuffle Offense allocates definite offensive rebounding assignments. Thus improving your offensive rebounding as well as your defensive balance. Second, with all players in constant motion, offensive players are harder to block off the boards.
EXCELLENT SHOT SELECTION
The Shuffle Offense has a high degree of good short and medium shots which will develop and are of the high percentage nature. This inside threat makes the offense a great offense in which to utilize your three point shooters.
FREELANCE IN THE PATTERN
The Shuffle Offense allows use to freelance and still remain in our set pattern. This prevents the defense from disrupting the offense by denying a certain option. Not only can the defense "playing the play" be used to punish the defense, but if no shot results from the freelance play we are still in our set pattern and usually have an easier time executing it after a freelance play.
PLAYERS LEARN MORE BASKETBALL
Since each player must learn each position in the offense they will learn more basketball. The fundamentals that must be practiced in order to successfully execute at each position results in players being more fundamentally sound.
HARD TO SCOUT
While at first glance this may appear to be opposite the fact the truth of the matter is that the Shuffle Offense is hard to scout. Once players learn all the options and freelance moves then the defense can never be quite sure what the offense will do. If the defense has only prepared to stop the basic offense then they will be at a large disadvantage when they "play the play" and the offense uses an option or freelances.
The fact that each player plays every position in the offense allows us to substitute with the player that will be most beneficial for us to have in the game. We do not have to substitute a guard for a guard or a center for a center.
ABILITY TO MANEUVER THE DEFENSE
Against any type of man-to-man defense, we can move a defensive player into any position on the court that we want, thus forcing them more or less to play defense in an unfamiliar position on the court. Usually, man-to-man defenders are accustomed to guarding players on the perimeter or in the post. In the Shuffle Offense we can make them play defense in both areas. When you find a defender who has trouble defending in a certain area of the court, then you are ready and capable of exploiting this weakness. The Shuffle Offense prevents the defense from playing its players where it wants them, unless it is playing a tyoe of zone.
THE FAST BREAK
The Shuffle Offense works extremely well with the fast break. We run a numbered fast break (which will be covered in the chapter on the fast break) thus we are automatically in our Shuffle positions at the end of the fast break if no shot opportunity presented itself on the break.
PASSING IS SIMPLE
It is a simple offense and easy to learn thus it reduces bad passing to a minimum.
ALL OPPONENTS MUST WORK ON DEFENSE
Many players rest on defense so that they can go hard on offense. In fact many coaches assign their best offensive player to defend the opponents weakest offensive player so that he will not get tired or get into foul trouble. It is impossible to rest against the Shuffle Offense without getting hurt. And even the weakest player on the Shuffle team is an offensive threat to score.
PLAYERS RECEIVE THE BALL IN SCORING POSITION
On every pass in the Shuffle Offense the receiver receives the ball in a scoring position. Players open on the shuffle cut receive the ball for a layup moving toward the basket without having to dribble the ball through traffic.
GREAT OFFENSE FOR AVERAGE TEAM PERSONNEL
The fact that the Shuffle is such a team oriented offense helps us in that a player is not put in a position that he must convert in a one-on-one situation for us to be successful. Instead he receives help from his teammates. Actually the ability of his teammates is combined with is in the effort to get the good shot. In this combination, there is added strength and a higher probability of success.