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Matt Wheeler

Matt Wheeler Basketball Contributor since 07/20/16

About Matt Wheeler

Matt Wheeler has spent the last 10 years coaching in the Orlando, FL area.  For the last 6 seasons he was at Olympia High School where he spent time as assistant boys varsity coach, head girls varsity coach, and head boys varsity coach.  During his tenure there he saw 4 players reach the Division 1 level and 12 players receive basketball scholarships.

Previously, Coach Wheeler was an assistant coach at Montverde Academy under then head coach Kevin Sutton.  While at Montverde Academy he assisted with player development, conditioning programs and created team playbooks and scouting reports. Coach Wheeler's experience also includes winning the 2008 3A Girls Basketball Florida State Championship as an assistant at Bishop Moore Catholic High School.

Coach Wheeler was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. He got his coaching start at Cascade College where he was the student assistant for the women’s basketball program while also participating on the men’s JV basketball team. Coach Wheeler resides in Orlando, Florida with his wife Kiana. 

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Basketball Play - Communication Drill: 50 Passes

Communication Drill: 50 Passes

Matt Wheeler 11/19/2018

50 passes is a competitive team drill that focuses on ball toughness, passing, screening and communication. The goal of 50 passes is to be the first team to successfully complete 50 passes without getting the ball deflected and having the passer say the name of the person they are passing to. Eliminating dribbles after the first pass increases the pressure that the defense can put on the offense, making it more difficult to complete the passes. Requiring the passer to say the name of the receiver helps to build good communication habits while under duress. On the FMS blog: Building Communication With Your Team Building Communication on Defense See More

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Basketball Play - Communication Drill: 4v3 Scramble Defense

Communication Drill: 4v3 Scramble Defense

Matt Wheeler 11/01/2018

This defensive drill works on defending scramble situations when the defense is temporarily outnumbered. Once the ball is entered the drill is live and the offense tries to score 4v3. The 4th defender can enter play after 7 seconds or after a shot is taken. The three initial defenders will not have a match-up, but whoever is closest to the ball must pick it up as they buy time for the 4th defender to get on the floor. To add a communication component to the drill, require defenders to say "I Got Ball" when they closeout on the ball so they don't accidently get two defenders on the ball. If a defender is in a situation where they are guarding two people, have them say " I Got Two." The 4th player enters the floor going furthest from the ball. They must communicate who they are guarding and tell their teammates where to matchup so they can get out of the scramble situation. On the FMS blog: Building Communication With Your Team Building Communication on Defense See More

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Basketball Play - Communication Drill: 2 Sprints, 2 Stunts, Live

Communication Drill: 2 Sprints, 2 Stunts, Live

Matt Wheeler 11/01/2018

This competitive defensive drill focuses on closeouts, sprinting to help, and stunting at the ball. To add a communication component to it, require the defenders to say "I Got Ball" on the closeouts and "Help" when they are in help. The defense must defend and communicate four passes perfectly then they can play live 2v2. On the first two passes, the defenders sprint to help/closeout. On the third and fourth pass the defenders stunt at the ball as it is driven at them, then sprint to closeout/help. Use defense scoring in this drill. If the defense gets a stop they get a point and they stay on defense against the next team. If the defense doesn't communicate, sprint to help, close out correctly or they get scored on, they immediately lose and go to the end of the line and the offensive team goes to defense. On the FMS blog: Building Communication With Your Team Building Communication on Defense See More

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Basketball Play - Communication Drill: 3v3 Flex Screen Defense

Communication Drill: 3v3 Flex Screen Defense

Matt Wheeler 11/01/2018

This continuous 3v3 drill teaches the defense to defend the flex action using different roles with different communication responsibilities. The drill will will be repeated three times so each defensive player has an opportunity to practice each part. 3 calls the screen and provides help. 2 goes over the cross screen on the baseline and communicates when matched back up. 1 communicates the down screen and opens up to allow 3 to get through the screen. 3 informs 1 when he is through the screen and matched up. On the FMS blog: Building Communication With Your Team Building Communication on Defense See More

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Basketball Play - Cleveland Cavaliers - 13 PNP Switch

Cleveland Cavaliers - 13 PNP Switch

Matt Wheeler 05/31/2018

The Cleveland Cavaliers frequently use this play to force the defense to make a switch on the ball screen and get LeBron James an advantage against a smaller defender in the mid-post area. 1 looks to get the ball directly to James (3) out of the ball screen then lets him go to work. If the defense is fronting James and 1 can't get him the ball, 5 cuts to the high post area to receive the pass from 1. With the defender now on James' back, 5 can make a pass leading James to the basket. NBA Finals Preview: Cleveland Cavaliers See More

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Basketball Play - Cleveland Cavaliers - Flip PNR

Cleveland Cavaliers - Flip PNR

Matt Wheeler 05/31/2018

The Cleveland Cavaliers have taken a page out of the playbook from LeBron James' time with the Miami Heat to put him in a situation where he can attack the basket and create out of a ball screen. The pindown screen for 1 and the pass back to James (3) sets 1 up for the flare screen. x5 has to stay back on the flare screen from 5 to protect against a layup from 1. This puts x5 in a drop coverage where he has to contain the ball as James come off the ball screen from 5. 5 rolls to the basket to look for the layup as 4 and 2 provide spacing on the weak side. NBA Finals Preview: Cleveland Cavaliers See More

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Basketball Play - Cleveland Cavaliers - Hawk Stagger

Cleveland Cavaliers - Hawk Stagger

Matt Wheeler 05/31/2018

Cleveland frequently runs this play to get a 3pt shot for JR Smith (2) off of a stagger screen. It is a difficult action for Smith's defender to guard, since he has to navigate his way around 3 screens. This play also puts the ball in LeBron James' hands so he can make the read on how to get the ball to Smith. NBA Finals Preview: Cleveland Cavaliers See More

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Basketball Play - Cleveland Cavaliers - Swing Pin 4

Cleveland Cavaliers - Swing Pin 4

Matt Wheeler 05/31/2018

The Cleveland Cavaliers run this play to close out situation for Kevin Love (4) where he has the option to shoot the three or attack the basket. Once the ball is entered to the wing the Cavs reverse the ball to LeBron James (3) so he can make the decision to pass to Love or create for himself. Once the ball is reversed, 5 cuts to the left side of the lane. This puts him in weak-side rebounding position in case Love shoots the three. 2 sets the pindown screen for 4 so if the defenders switch Love will have a smaller defender to shoot over. If the defense doesn't switch the screen, Love can attack the closeout against a post player and get to the basket. NBA Finals Preview: Cleveland Cavaliers See More

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Basketball Play - Boston Celtics - Pindown 4 Iso

Boston Celtics - Pindown 4 Iso

Matt Wheeler 05/22/2018

The Boston Celtics were struggling to get a basket early in game 3 against the Cleveland Cavaliers so they ran this play to get Al Horford (4) isolated in a one-on-one situation at the free throw line. As 5 screens for 4, 3 cuts to the ball side corner and 2 cuts to the opposite corner. This clears the right side of the floor for 4 to drive to the basket. The Celtics put a good shooter in Jayson Tatum (2) in the opposite corner, keeping x2 from helping on the drive. FMS Blog: Boston Celtics - Spread Offense See More

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Basketball Play - Cleveland Cavaliers - Swing Flare Slip

Cleveland Cavaliers - Swing Flare Slip

Matt Wheeler 05/22/2018

Cleveland ran this ATO play to take advantage of Boston's tactic of switching the flare screen, and got a layup for Jeff Green (4). The play started with LeBron James (3) cutting to the top to receive the pass from 1. This got the ball in the hands of their best passer. 4 sets the flare screen for 2 and slips to the basket. 5 sets a flare screen for 1 on the other side of the floor to occupy the defense. NBA Finals Preview: Cleveland Cavaliers See More

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Basketball Play - Cleveland Cavaliers - Dive Clear Runner

Cleveland Cavaliers - Dive Clear Runner

Matt Wheeler 05/22/2018

The Cavs needed to some open shots for their supporting cast in game 3 against the Boston Celtics. They used this play to get Kyle Korver (2) one of his four three-pointers on the night. As 3 dribbles at 4, 4 goes backdoor and 1 clears to the opposite wing. This puts 2 in a position to cut off a stagger screen from 4 and 5 for the shot. NBA Finals Preview: Cleveland Cavaliers See More

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Basketball Play - Boston Celtics - Weave Top Iso

Boston Celtics - Weave Top Iso

Matt Wheeler 05/22/2018

The Boston Celtics ran this play to start the 3rd quarter of Game 3 against the Cleveland Cavaliers in order to to use their quickness advantage at the 4 spot and get Marcus Morris (4) an isolation opportunity against Kevin Love on the perimeter. The Celtics begin the play with a weave action to get the ball to 2 on the wing. 4 then flashes to the top to receive the pass from 4. 1 screens away for 3 in order to occupy the defense and allow 4 to attack his defender one on one. See More

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Basketball Play - Boston Celtics - EOG Clear Lob SLOB

Boston Celtics - EOG Clear Lob SLOB

Matt Wheeler 05/07/2018

The Boston Celtics were down 2 with 25.8 seconds left in regulation when Brad Stevens called a timeout, noticing his team was not likely to get a good shot attempt late in the shot clock. The Celtics used this play to combat the late game switching strategy that the 76ers were using and get a quick shot at the rim. 5 started the play by curling around the screen from 4 and to screen for 1. This occupied Philadelphia's defenders and forced the only help on the lob to come from x1 as he switched onto 5 on the screen. Jaylen Brown (2) then screened for 4 and cut to the rim. Because the 76ers were switching that screen, Brown was able to seal his new defender and cut to the basket to receive the lob pass for a quick finish. A Lesson in Late Game Situatinos: Celtics-Sixers Game 3 See More

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Basketball Play - Boston Celtics - EOG Post Seal SLOB

Boston Celtics - EOG Post Seal SLOB

Matt Wheeler 05/06/2018

The Boston Celtics were down 1 with 8.4 seconds left in overtime when the got the ball stuck in the corner and they had to call a timeout to save the possession. They initially ran a play to get the ball to Jayson Tatum but had to call their final timeout when the 76ers nearly forced a five-second call on the inbounds pass. Down to their final chance, the Celtics ran this play to get Al Horford (5) isolated at the rim. The 76ers were switching all screens to keep the Celtics from getting an open look. This worked to the Celtics advantage as Horford screened for 2, bringing Joel Embid (x5) away from the basket to deny the pass to 2. x2 and x3 had already switched assignments when 3 cut along the baseline. This isolated Horford against Robert Covington (x3) in the post. Covington fronted Horford to deny the pass but with the weak side cleared, Horford sealed his defender to get the lob pass at the rim for the game-winning basket. A Lesson in Late Game Situations: Celtics-Sixers Game 3 See More

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Basketball Play - Philadelphia 76ers - EOG Corner SLOB

Philadelphia 76ers - EOG Corner SLOB

Matt Wheeler 05/06/2018

The Philadelphia 76ers were down 2 with 1.7 seconds left in Game 3 of their playoff series with the Boston Celtics and needed to get a shot off in a catch and shoot situation. The Sixers were able to get a look for their first option in this play with Bellinelli (3) cutting to the corner to receive the pass from Ben Simmons (1) and send the game into overtime. With no timeouts left in the game, Philadelphia embedded secondary options into the play with Joel Embid (5) screening for J.J. Redick (2) at the rim. 5 seals his defender after the screen to get an opportunity at the basket. 2 cuts off the screen up top for the final option in the play. A Lesson in Late Game Situations: Celtics-Sixers Game 3 See More

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