Successful Zone Defense Users Topic

I was hoping someone who has had success using the zone could look at my team and let me know if i am on the right direction as far as building a zone team, coaching decissions, is this team over or underachieving. did i start the right players?

1/6/2013 12:36 PM
You still need ATH and DEF in the zone...
1/6/2013 1:42 PM
Perhaps a little less speed and stamina though.
1/6/2013 1:50 PM
Zone has two main benefits in my opinion:

1. You can hide a bad defender.  Since the scores are averaged, you can play the 30 ATH, 30 DEF guy that will get slaughtered in M2M.  However, the worse the one guy  is the better the other guys need to be. If your other players aren't good on defense you just have a bad defensive team.

In my opinion, a good defender at DIII is 60 DEF, 60 ATH.  It's hard to do but if you can get your team averages NEAR that you should be in good shape.

2. Players can play longer, you can get away with playing 8 or 9 guys.  You can take 3 walk on's every year it won't kill you.  In DIII, there is always a 80 DEF-80 ATH guard with ****** ratings, these guys are perfect for zone in my opinion.  They are usually cheap to sign and will totally help your team averages for DEF.   I would sign one of these guys, a couple  offensive threats and some role players and bang!

1/6/2013 2:21 PM
Been so long since I coached DIII that I don't remember what a good team looks like at that level.  Dahsdebater is right, ATH and DEF are highly important, but a lower DEF player can be hidden well in the zone.  What you don't want is two bad defensive guards in the 2-3.  Good shooting teams will eat you alive.I always put 20-22 min into IQ as well.  

Also, don't be afraid to switch it up and run the 3-2 against the right teams.  Most coaches run only 2-3.  The great advantage of zone over the other D's in this game is that you do have the ability to change it up a bit between those two sets without having to put minutes into different defenses.
1/6/2013 2:21 PM
Here is the type of player TrentonJoe is talking about.  He'll get to 96/84/100 in ath/sp/def.  Even though he doesn't rebound, I've had a lot of success moving him between the 2 and the 3, depending on where the other team's scoring comes from.  His LP/PER are poor, but his ath/sp combo allow him to draw some fouls even with low distro.  You just need to make sure you have some scorers around him.
1/6/2013 2:53 PM
You can't skimp on ATH in any system. I don't think SPD is as important in a zone. 

You will get torched in a zone if you have  a few non-athletic guys that don't play D in your starting lineup. You can get away with one of those guys, but realistically only one. 

Trentonjoe's post was dead on. 

1/6/2013 3:18 PM
So then my question is. With the zone, do i still look at postional matchups. IE: sg against sg or putting my stud defensive sg against the point to slow down his assists. My understanding of the zone is there is no real positional adavantage and its just total defense.
1/6/2013 8:12 PM
it . doesn't matter where you play him.
1/7/2013 6:24 AM (edited)
I would disagree with TJ a little bit - that stud defender with no offense is appropriate specifically for the triangle, not the zone.  A great defender is a bonus in any system.  Sure, in the zone he helps cover flaws, but if you move him around in the other sets he can be even more effective.  This is why I love to run the triangle/zone.  You can have 1 or 2 offensive specialists with marginal defense, maybe even 1 bad defender, as long as they're on opposite sides of the magic line between the 2 and the 3 in the sim.  Throw in 1 or 2 defensive studs who can't score and you only need a couple of the all-around role player types that virtually everyone needs to be in, say, motion/man.  In particular I ideally prefer to have my SF be all-offense or all-defense, preferably all-defense.  Typically you'll put 3 guys against the opponents' offensive strength, so if you have an uberstud defensive SF he's always defending the more threatening scorer.  But at least if he's an all-offense guy, he's always averaged with 2 other dudes.
1/6/2013 8:56 PM
Triangle with zone is a great combo. I run it with my S. Arkansas team in Gulf South Allen and have had pretty solid success. 
1/6/2013 9:12 PM
I would add a third benefit for running zone - the ability to switch between 2-3 and 3-2.  It takes some trial and error to figure out what works, but it is a good strategic advantage.

In my opinion, this requires that you always have a player in the SF position who is a good athlete and defender so he is either helping boost your post (2-3) or perimeter (3-2) defense.

I'm  a little more keen on speed in the zone in my guards then some of the other posters here but there are many ways to have a good defensive zone team.
1/6/2013 11:17 PM
The way I've always understood the zone to work in HD is sort of as two units.  You have the overall defensive strength of the 5 players on the court, but also the average strength of the 2 and then the average strength of the 3 working separately.  So if you're playing a 2-3, and the defensive average of your 2 is weaker than the defensive average of your 3, then it would be beneficial for the opposing team to attack the 2 backcourt defenders.  I could be wrong on this, but It seems to work for me when playing zone and playing against zone.
1/7/2013 12:27 PM
I like to have speed in my guards in zone, its just not as important as it is with some other defenses.
1/7/2013 12:28 PM
Successful Zone Defense Users Topic

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