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Nov 23, 2017 7:30 PM est
USA 85 vs. PUR 78
FIBA World Cup of Basketball for Men
2017-19 Americas World Cup Qualifier
Nov 26, 2017 5:00 PM est
USA 91 vs. MEX 55
FIBA World Cup of Basketball for Men
2017-19 Americas World Cup Qualifier

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Women's Teams

2017 USA Women's Teams Schedule
Jul 29, 2017 3:00 PM edt ESPN3
USA 73 vs. JPN 66
USA Women's U19 World Cup Team
2017 FIBA Women's U19 World Cup
Jul 30, 2017 3:00 PM edt ESPN3
USA 82 vs. RUS 86
USA Women's U19 World Cup Team
2017 FIBA Women's U19 World Cup - Gold Medal Game
Aug 12, 2017 3:00 PM edt
USA 78 vs. AUS 60
USA Women's U23 National Team
2017 U24 Four Nations Tournament
Aug 13, 2017 3:00 PM edt
USA 107 vs. CAN 61
USA Women's U23 National Team
2017 U24 Four Nations Tournament
Aug 15, 2017 3:00 PM edt
USA 103 vs. JPN 71
USA Women's U23 National Team
2017 U24 Four Nations Tournament

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DeMarcus Cousins Anthony Davis

The Ultimate Guide to Playing Center

  • Date:
    Jan 25, 2016

Perhaps no player is more important to getting results than the center.

Centers need to be physical and tough. They are close to the basket, so they're counted on for high-percentage shots. Their rebounding skills are crucial, and they need to play strong defense to prevent easy baskets by the opposing team. They are the last line of defense and, often, a team's best chance on offense.

If you're the center on your basketball team, you have a unique skill set to work on. So start here -- this is a collection of tips, drills and advice that will help you achieve your maximum potential at an intensely demanding position.

Defense and Shot Blocking

You are the most important defender on the floor because you stand between an opponent and two points. Here's how to make the most of your presence inside.

8 Drills to Create a Great Shot Blocker: These practice drills will help you better anticipate shot-blocking opportunities.

• VIDEO: Defensive Slides -- Strong footwork is the difference between frustrating your opponent and giving up easy points all game long.

Shooting

Banging around inside offers chances at close-range shots, which your team needs. Here are tips for taking advantage of your size and position.

• VIDEO: The Mikan Drill

• VIDEO: The Reverse Mikan Drill

• VIDEO: Shooting Tips

Rebounding

A simple rebound can be the difference between a big win and a heartbreaking loss. Finish every play by crashing the glass, grabbing caroms and giving your team crucial possessions.

• 5 Simple Ways to Improve Your Rebounding: Here are five ways to improve rebounding that you probably never thought about.

• VIDEO: Boxing Out


Strength and Conditioning

Centers play the most physical position on the floor. Make sure you're in top shape by taking care of business away from the court.

• 5 Exercises to Improve Power: Building strength is key to gaining an advantage inside. Here are five ways to do that.

• 3 Best Exercises For The Vertical Jump

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In 2017, USA Basketball hosted Coach Academies in nine different cities around the country: Chicago, Los Angeles, Boston, New York, Sioux Falls, Cleveland, Las Vegas, Memphis and New Rochelle. Hear what attendees had to say about the guest speakers and the knowledge they gained and stay tuned for...

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