The Science Behind a Lebron James Chase-Down BlockCategory: Basketball
In yesterday’s 104-86 loss to the Boston Celtics on Game 2 of their Semifinal Round series, about the only thing that was exciting for the Cleveland Cavaliers was seeing Lebron James do his signature move, the chase-down block on Tony Allen.
A chase-down block is a block from behind or the side in which a defender chases and then blocks the shot of an offensive player who is running ahead. Usually, the player being blocked assumes that he is going for the shot uncontested and seems destined to score until someone soars and just sends the ball flying out of the hoop.
The term “chase-down block” was coined by Fred McLeod, who first started to notice it when he worked for the Detroit Pistons and Tayshaun Prince made a habit of it.
In the 2004 NBA Playoffs Eastern Conference Semifinals between the Detroit Pistons and the Indiana Pacers, Prince’s chase-down block on Reggie Miller’s layup in the final minute of Game 2 preserved the Pistons’ lead. The Pistons went on to win the series and, eventually, the NBA championship. The play was recognized as one the greatest moments in NBA playoff history and the NBA also made a commercial out of it.
Although not the originator of the move, Lebron started doing it frequently in the 2008-09 NBA season when he decided to integrate defense that it has become his trademark on the defensive end. He was even voted as runner-up to Dwight Howard for the 2009 NBA Defensive Player of the Year award because of it.
Check out this compilation of Lebron chase-down blocks for that season:
It was not included above but this is my favorite, Lebron’s chase-down block on Jason Richardson’s 360 dunk attempt:
Now, to see the science behind a Lebron James chase-down block, watch how the ESPN TV show Sports Science dissect the play.
It’s just amazing isn’t it?If you want to receive my latest posts, please subscribe to my full feed RSS or have them delivered through email. Just enter your email address below and hit the Subscribe button.