FanPost

Bucks ATO Play: Zaza Pachulia's screens set up Khris Middleton's three

Late in games, such as Tuesday night when the Bucks lost in overtime to the Blazers, timeouts become extremely valuable. They can be used to save a possession, advance the ball up the court and draw up plays.

In the closing minute of overtime, we saw a great example of how a timeout can be used to set up a play and get an easy basket. Although the Bucks still ended up losing the game, it doesn't diminish the quality of the after timeout (ATO) play.

We start with Brandon Knight inbounding the ball to Khris Middleton, who is posted up near the elbow. Knight then receives a screen from Zaza Pachulia and makes his way towards the top of the key, where he gets the ball back from Middleton.

As you can see, the great screen by Zaza picks off Damian Lillard, and forces Robin Lopez to help, preventing Knight an open path to the basket and giving Lillard time to recover. The play, however, is not for Knight. (Though if the lane were open he surely would have taken the layup.)

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via i.imgur.com

After setting the screen for Knight, Zaza immediately makes his way over to the wing to set a down screen on Nicolas Batum, freeing up Middleton. Lopez, however, is still recovering back to Zaza after helping on Knight.

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Zaza sets another great screen, rendering Batum useless as Middleton steps behind the three-point line. Knight hits him with the pass and Middleton buries the three.

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The play is so successful because of the multiple screens set by one player—Zaza. Lopez had to help on the first screen to prevent Knight getting an easy layup, so he isn’t in position to help on the second screen, which leaves Middleton wide open.

This was a nice bit of work by Drew to set up a simple little play that got the Bucks a very easy look at a three, which they desperately needed late in the game.

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