V Cut Drill

What is the V Cut Drill? The Best Way to Get Better at Getting Open

Do you want to get better at getting open when you play basketball? Do the V Cut Drills to improve how you move without the ball on the court.

It was in the mid-2000s and I was playing a lot of pick-up basketball.

Initially, I was playing against not-so-good players so I did fine against them. I was able to get open and/or iso pretty well. I was contributing to the offence in some way every possession.

This boosted my confidence, and unfortunately also my ego.

So, there was this one day when these two guys asked me if I wanted to play with them because they were short a player.

I said, “yeah, for sure.” My ego was big and I believed -no, I “knew”- that I could hang with them.

Boy, did my ego get cracked that game!

I was barely able to get open at all. My opponent was quicker and stronger than me and he was just more skilled than I was.

I got owned hard.

I maybe got to touch the ball twice that game. My defender stuck to me like glue and was able to predict everything that I was going to do (which to be fair, was not very many moves).

That game frustrated me so much! I couldn’t do anything that I imagined I could do! My pride and ego were hurt.

But this ass-whooping wasn’t a terrible thing. It led me to discover that I didn’t know very much and that I had to learn more about basketball if I wanted to improve.

And one of the first things that I delved into was how to get open in basketball.

By doing extensive research (I really just watched some YouTube videos and asked a friend), I found out that one of the best ways is through the V Cut.

What Are Basketball Cuts?

If you don’t know, basketball cuts are movements (or patterns) that a player without the ball does so that she can get open (or free herself from the defender).

Additionally, there are many types of cuts. If you want to learn about the most common ones, you can read about them here.

For this article, I am going to focus on the V Cut because it is one of the easiest ones to learn and apply.

What is a V Cut?

The V Cut is a cut where a player will walk their defender down past the three-point line or into the paint, and then explode out to an open area, forming the letter V.

It’s a basic movement that is commonly used in basketball. It doesn’t use a lot of energy but is effective in getting a player open.

Some of the best players who use or used the V Cut regularly are Reggie Miller, Richard Hamilton, and Steph Curry.

How to Practice the V Cut

To learn and practice the V Cut, there are two drills that you can do. One focuses on attacking the basket and the other focuses on catch-and-shoot jumpers.

V Cut Lay-Up Drill

Key Notes:

  • Remember to get into the triple-threat position and jab-step before driving into the basket
  • Cut hard and jab-step hard
  • Attack the basket hard
  • Keep your eyes up (look up)
  • Additionally, once you are comfortable doing this cut with regular layups, you can try out the finishes that Skylar Diggins-Smith does.

V Cut and Shoot Drill

Key Notes:

  • Remember to square up before taking the jumper
  • Cut hard
  • Start off shooting from the free-throw line or right inside the paint
  • For both drills, remember to call for the ball

With these two drills, I highly recommend having at least one partner to do them with. Having a rebounder and a passer makes it soooo much more effective.

However, if you really, really have to do it by yourself, I suggest you get an assist rebounder.

These will allow you to pass the basketball into something that will ricochet and pass it back to you after you do a cut.

If you’re interested, you can grab one from Amazon here.

And to be totally transparent, this link is an affiliate link. What this means is that if you use it to purchase something from the site, I will get a small commission, at no extra cost to you. So, thanks in advance!

Additionally, you can use a brick wall as an assist rebounder or you can just toss the ball to where you want to cut to.

But the best way is to do these drills with a partner.

Benefits of These Two V Cut Drills

These two drills are great for learning the fundamentals of the V Cut. If done consistently, they’ll teach you the footwork and the formation.

They’ll also help you work on off-ball movement, your ability to catch and shoot, your cardio, and your ball-handling.

Other skills that it’ll help you work on is passing and communication, which can lead to better team chemistry.

The reason why is because by being the passer, you’ll have to learn when the best time to pass is and where your teammate likes to catch a pass from.

As the shooter, you have to tell the passer when to pass it and where you like to catch the pass from.

You’ll have to communicate with each other and learn each other’s movements. You can’t just chuck the ball whenever and wherever and expect it to be the perfect assist.

You’re not Houdini. You can’t just say abracadabra and execute a magical pass.

You have to pay attention, talk, and study your teammate.

Final Thoughts

The V Cut is a highly effective basketball move that isn’t difficult to do.

Once you get the footwork and timing down, you’re all set to free yourself from the clasp of tight defenders.

So, go and grab a friend. Head to the court together and start practicing these V Cut drills.