If you’re the point guard of your basketball team, you know how important it is to make sure you have the right skills to help your team win games. If you have these top five must-have requirements, you’ll be able to help your team out in every game and improve your chances of winning matches consistently.
1. High Basketball IQ
This is an obvious requirement for any point guard, but it’s so important that it warrants a spot at number one. The point guard’s job is to read and react to everything happening on the court. They need to move faster than their opponents think, control the tempo, make basketball rebounder steals, and see all options available.
The point guard should know when to play aggressive defense and when to play loosely. They should direct team traffic with their voice, hands, legs, body language, and whatever players work best together on offense and defense. Being a great basketball player isn’t enough—they must also be great basketball minds.
2. Ability to run an offense
The point guard is, by nature, an offensive catalyst. The game flows through them, and their ability to command an offense—much like a quarterback in football—is imperative.
For point guards, directing traffic on offense is only part of what they must do. They also need to run an offense effectively so they know how to play best with their teammates.
Whether they prefer playing off-ball or if they are better at running pick and rolls, learning how everyone on the team operates is incredibly important. They need to take each player’s strengths into account for the offense to flourish.
3. Ability to shoot well
The best point guards have to shoot well from outside, which takes some pressure off their teammates and allows them to find a more natural rhythm.
In addition, the ability to shoot from outside opens up all kinds of options for other teammates: it gives them better space when penetrating or when driving for kick-outs. Therefore, shooting well is one of the most significant assets of a point guard. This cannot be over-emphasized.
A point guard who can consistently knock down shots will have defenses respecting their drives. It will be easy to open lanes for teammates and create opportunities for easy baskets, offcuts, or offensive rebounds.
3. Ability to break down defensive schemes
As a point guard, getting into the paint is more than just flashy alley-oops and jaw-dropping behind-the-back passes. It’s also about finding ways to create more opportunities for your teammates.
To get into prime scoring positions, you have to see what the opposition is up to and attack them when they are not expecting it. While there are tons of skills involved with ball handling and dribbling, being able to see seams in defenses will always be one of your most significant assets.
A sound basketball return system can help you improve your ability to find openings in defensive sets. Finishing on fast breaks and half-court sets around or over defenders is critical for success. When considering a basketball return system, consider both inside and outside finishing moves and your layup package.
5. Relentless defensive pressure
The most prominent role of the point guard is to run an offense, but they still have some defensive responsibilities. Depending on where they line up, a point guard might be tasked with switching or fighting through screens or chasing their opponent across half court.