Updated: Oct 21, 2019
I originally wrote this blog article for the blog HoopGrind.
The Blocker Mover offense is gaining in popularity amongst college and high school programs across the country for several reasons. First, this offense can be the “Great Equalizer” for the many programs with lesser talent because, when executed, it is very difficult to defend. Blocker Mover is essentially a motion offense that provides an excellent structure within it, creates many structured free lance opportunities, which for the teams with superior talent, that can be unstoppable. Next, it provides coaches an excellent system in which roles can be clearly defined and adapted based on the talent level of the team and each individual player. Simply put, you can put each player in a position in which they can best be successful. Most players want to know what their role is and this becomes much easier for a coach to define in this system. Another main reason for running the Blocker Mover offense is that it flows well with set plays. So, when you're set breaks down, there is still structure rather than basic one on one action with low efficiency. And finally, Blocker Mover is an un-scoutable offense.
Dick Bennett started running his Blocker Mover offense while at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and further developed throughout his career. Dick’s son, Tony, won the 2019 National Championship using Blocker Mover as a base offense at Virginia. Virginia has received a lot of attention over the last several years due to their success and style of play. The offense consists of Blockers who are primarily screeners and Movers who are continually cutting off of the Blockers. Each has specific rules but you have the flexibility too narrow or expand based on the player's talent in their role.
Blockers are pivotal to the success of the offense and must be willing screeners, become excellent screeners understanding that it creates opportunities for them as well, and be unselfish team players. They are constantly looking to set screens for the movers but never screen for the other blocker. It is the blockers responsibility to free the movers so they can get open and create offense. The Blockers are also assigned to specific areas in which they are looking to screen. The four main areas of the floor a Blocker is assigned to, depending on their individual skill, are Lane, Wide, Top, or Bottom. When you add both Blockers the combinations become Lane-Lane, Lane-Wide, Wide-Wide, or Top-Bottom.
Movers are the cutters in the offense. The primary job of the Mover is to set their man up and use screens from the Blockers. Ideally, Movers are hard to guard. After setting up their defender movers must cut towards the basketball or basket in a manner that makes their movements unpredictable while reading how the defense defends the screen. The mover's job is to attack the basket. A mover must love to penetrate into the gaps (north and south) and look to draw and kick to the open shooter. His dribble penetration sets up himself and others for open shots.
The Blocker Mover is an offense that coaches should consider for their program. It provides so many different options that are difficult to defend. You and your players will become more creative with it as it develops over the course of the season. As with any offense, you must be committed to it. It does take a lot of time to develop. I suggest starting simple and basic with it until one or two actions are mastered. In time your players will be running an offense that allows them to play smart team basketball that gives your program an offensive identity.