Best Zone Kid

David Lawrence
• Thursday, 12 November, 2020
• 7 min read

It might seem familiar to those who have played Call of Duty: Black Ops, as it has a resemblance to Nuke town. This is a code used by pro players to get some practice in real world type situations.

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(Source: www.throwbacks.com)


A lot of players miss Tilted Towers which is one of the classic locations that was so popular in the Chapter 1 version of the map. If you want to relive those days, this is a good option for experiencing it again while working on your fight strategies.

A good mix of realistic gameplay and well-balanced loadouts combine to make one of the most fair versions of Zone Wars you can play in Fortnite! One of the most popular Zone Wars maps for pro players, it's a no frills option that just pits you against others with a pretty standard loadout.

This is a fascinating option to tryout, because it's not your traditional Zone Wars style of map. It's a Pleasant Park like area where you spawn in the air and basically hot drop into for a quick match with 2-16 players.

The loadout you start with is also random, so you won't always have an ideal set of weapons which is representative of the real game. Enigma makes quality maps and his Zone War options are some best.

Once you load up the game you will be given the three options on what you want to play (Save the World, Battle Royale, and Creative). Once it has loaded, you will see an Orange Rift that will take you to islands where you can create custom maps.

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(Source: texas.rangers.mlb.com)

First, we commend all youth coaches for taking up such an important role in developing children! In the grand scheme of things, what defense or offense you pick doesn't matter in regard to how we develop the children's character on the teams that we coach.

At times, you may not win as many games at first, but I guarantee you start winning more games by the 7th and 8th grade as long as the man to man defense principles are properly taught. And the chances of those players making their high school teams will be dramatically higher.

The feeling of seeing players succeeding at higher levels, because of the foundation you set as a coach is so much more rewarding than winning a few more games at the youth level that you and the players will forget about after a few years. We hope that you read the entire article and share your thoughts below even if you disagree with our points.

We want this to be a community where we debate things in a positive, constructive way and come to a better understanding of these issues. Under the current system in the U.S., most coaches get the unnecessary burden of having to teach skills, zone offense, man offense, press breakers, and defense with limited practice time.

Even at the high school level, it takes me at least 10 to 20 practices getting a good base to handle these situations. If we are concerned with the long-term development of youth basketball players, they should not even be playing 5v5 with the same rules as high school and NBA teams.

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This is something that I've seen youth expert Bob Bigelow and many other great coaches preach for years. Not to mention, we introduce the game to kids before they are taught how to move efficiently.

As Bob Bigelow likes to say, Adapt the game to fit the kids. Even the NBA & USA Basketball put out guidelines that eliminate the use of zone defenses before the age of 12.

So they barely have any time to educate themselves on how to teach basketball to youth players. Next, the coach implements the zone defense and realizes it only takes a few minutes a day to practice.

Players have not practiced enough yet to develop the proper ball handling skills to beat zone defenses and break presses. Players are not strong enough to throw passes far enough and crisp enough to beat a zone.

Players have not developed the cognitive skills necessary to recognize situations quickly and react in the appropriate time needed. Somebody who has to move all over the floor using many movement patterns or a defender in a zone whom only has to guard in a 7×7 feet box.

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Well, as a person that studies athletic development both as a hobby and as a basketball coach, I can tell you that even aggressive zone defenses do NOT develop athleticism the way man to man defense does. (And by the way, these “big” players probably need to work on foot coordination and athleticism more than anyone).

They rarely have to move quickly, get down in low stance, or transition from shuffle to cross over defensive movements. This changing from run, to shuffle, to cross over, is incredible for athletic development.

And let's pretend that you even rotate your big guys to the front of the zone trapping to develop their athleticism, you still won't develop the same athleticism as playing man to man defense. So you have to move faster, work harder and smarter, and react quicker to keep the ball in front of you or out of the middle of the court.

Not to mention, the zone at the youth level usually forms bad habits. You'll find that players in trapping and pressing defenses will form bad habits, because they can get away with things defensively such as lunging out of position, constantly going for steals, and reaching all the time.

Bottom line, this argument alone would deter me away from zone defenses, because of my background and belief that athleticism is so important not only in the game of basketball, but in all sports. Since we're talking about Coach Marshall, I figure we'd also mention that even Al does not allow his youth teams to play zone defense.

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(Source: www.fi.edu)

Player A shuffle back and forth between two spots and only learns to defend on one part of the floor. Now if Player B heads to a program that plays zone defense, they will be a very effective defender.

Because youth players have not developed their coordination, strength, basketball skills, and general athleticism, defensive habits such as swarming the ball and lunging out of position for the steal every time will benefit them on the scoreboard. In a zone defense, they also tend to just watch the ball, and they can still be successful in regard to wins and losses at the youth level.

As these youth players get older, all of a sudden these bad defensive habits get exposed because kids are bigger, stronger, more coordinated, and more skilled. Now, the kids with bad defensive habits are cut from teams, get less playing time, and in the extreme case, could even lose out on scholarship opportunities.

Now, if you're at a school that doesn't cut, you just end up with a poor team and this hurts the player's chance of getting recruited. After players have spent most of their youth basketball career using poor defensive fundamentals, it's very difficult to break the bad habits.

You can ask Syracuse's Jim Botham who is known for running a very successful 2-3 zone defense, and he will tell you the same thing. And I still don't believe zone defenses are age-appropriate for youth teams for the same reasons mentioned above.

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On average, players are too weak and uncoordinated to execute the offensive principles that beat zone defenses. We shorten the mound, and we don't let players take leads off of first base until they reach a certain age.

Baseball modifies the game for youth, not the other way around like the current basketball system. It's senseless for both teams to play a game where you win or lose by 40+ points.

I realize that I'm spoiled because I coach in Kansas City, so it's easier to find similar competition due to the large population, but do your best to find teams that will be productive to play against. Unless you can see the future, I don't believe anybody can truly figure out who is going to develop into a good basketball player or not.

Sometimes, passion and hard work for something will take players a lot further than somebody who is a little more naturally talented. Believe it or not, in this start earlier and do-more-at-younger-age era, it's not what you do prior to puberty that counts, it's what you do post-puberty that's going to make the biggest difference in your basketball development.

Maybe the team has lost at all levels from varsity to youth for a long time. You would still need to make sure proper defensive principles and basketball skills are being worked on in every practice.

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This one doesn't really bother me as much as long as the team doesn't get in the habit of playing zone defense every game. I prefer to try a sagging / pack-line type defense to counter the more athletic teams.

Kids also may need to learn how to drive a car, learn calculus, and learn how to raise a family and communicate with their spouse, but we're not going to throw them the keys and have them get in LA rush hour at age 10, we're not going to teach them calculus before they understand basic math, geometry, and algebra, and we're definitely not going to tell our 12-year-old kid to go start a family. Presses and zones are advanced basketball strategies and need to be saved for the older age groups.

I wouldn't advise this until the kids are 12 or 13, but if coaches got together before a game during the second half of the season and said let's work on playing against a 2-3 zone defense during the 2nd quarter, I believe the benefits would be outstanding. That way, you could introduce zone offensive principles when the kids are ready and work on them in a game environment.

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