Video Breakdown: Explaining what a flare screen is in an NBA offense

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You’ve probably heard the term flare screen before, no doubt as your team has faced off against the Golden State Warriors or Portland Trail Blazers as they’ve rained down 3-pointers upon their unsuspecting defense.

Today on NBA Glossary we’re going over just exactly what a flare screen is when it comes to an NBA offense, how teams around the league use it, and what variations you can expect to see once you’ve identified this staple of professional basketball motion.

Some things to remember before we get started:

First, flare screens are set typically to the side of another player who does not have the ball.

Second, flare screens usually happen around the elbow, and are most commonly used to get shots off at the arc for 3-pointers. However, they can also be used to get backdoor plays to the rim, to act as weakside deception, or simply to move a help defender out of the way by making them chase a guy to the sideline.

Let’s take a look at the flare screen in the full video breakdown above.