Late Game Situations: Need a 3

By Doug Brotherton

Landry Shamet

One year ago, Villanova made a buzzer beating three pointer to win the National Championship. In Saturday’s two Final Four games, both match-ups came down to a team needing a 3-pointer to tie the score. In this year’s tournament, we have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly of this late game situation. As coaches, it is our job to be prepared for every situation. Unfortunately, some college basketball teams did not look prepared when they were down 3, in a late clock situation, with their opponent switching every screen.

Every coach should have a play for this situation. In the tournament, Princeton used a Brad Stevens’ design to generate a wide open three. In the Elite Eight, Kentucky ran their “Pistol Hammer,” which resulted in a made three. For the sake of this project, I have added some other options to the end of their “Pistol Hammer.” These are the best two sets that we have seen, when a team is needing a three.

Princeton – EOG SLOB “Winner”


Kentucky – Pistol Hammer

Pistol Hammer

Way too often, teams have put the ball into a player’s hands, and asked him to be a hero. There is no action being run, and the player dribbles into a contested shot. None were more painful to watch then the final possession of West Virginia’s loss. The goal of this is to give coaches some other actions that they can use to generate a quality shot. The following actions are set’s that were ran in the past, or my own designs.

Iverson UCLA Snap


Stagger Snap Flares


Shuffle Stagger Floppy

Shuffle Stagger

Iverson Stagger Elevator

Iverson Stagger Elevator

As you look at this article, please feel free to send FastModel Sports your favorite late game three-point set using the hashtag #XsOs. Send your sets to me at or send it to @FastModel via twitter.

The off-season is the ideal time to take your coaching game to the next level. Get FastDraw today and organize your #XsOs like a pro!


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Doug Brotherton is currently the girls varsity basketball coach at The Village School, in Houston, Texas. He has over 15 years of head coaching experience, across multiple levels. He has coached boys high school basketball, girls high school basketball, and started the Men's Basketball program at Mid-Michigan Community College. He is a former NBA Regional Advanced Scout for the Chicago Bulls. He is the founder of Dynamic Coaching Tools ( Coach Brotherton was elected as the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches Large Private School Board Member. Coach Brotherton helps develop the drill book and coaches packets for Jay Bilas Basketball Camps, as well as participating in its Coaching Development Program and presenting on the benefits of FastDraw. In 2018, Positive Coaches Alliance selected Coach Brotherton as one of the 50 Double-Goal Coach National Award Winners, for his positive impact on his athletes on the court and in life. In 2020, Brotherton led the Village School to the TAPPS 6A State Championship, earning Coach of the Year Honors in Texas. He was also the lead of the TABC Virtual Clinic, which featured over 100 speakers, made up of some of the biggest names in basketball.
March 19, 2017 – Indianapolis, IN, USA – Kentucky Wildcats forward Edrice ”Bam” Adebayo (3) blocked the last shot of the game, taken with .5 seconds on the clock, by Wichita State Shockers guard Landry Shamet (11) as the University of Kentucky played Wichita State in the second round of the NCAA tournament in Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, In., Sunday, March19, 2017. Also in on the play was Kentucky Wildcats guard Dominique Hawkins (25). This is second half action. UK won 65-62. (Credit Image: © Lexington Herald-Leader via ZUMA Wire)

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