Recently, we, Sports Gamers Online, took to YouTube to show you how to master the pick and roll in NBA 2K18. As always, we provide you with a video how-to and written breakdown. You can catch the video above or on YouTube. For the written, simply continue reading below.

Activating the Pick and Roll in NBA 2K18

What makes the pick and roll great is it’s a simple yet effective way to generate offense and I’m here to show you the in’s and out’s of it. Alright, let’s get to it.

Method 1: You can either hit the LB/L1 button on your controller and whoever is closest to you, between your power forward or center, (and if you’re the power forward, it’s the small forward or center) will be your screener.

Method 2: Tap the LB/L1 button and then hold the icon of the player you want to come over.

And for both, you can let go of the button as soon as he starts to come towards you.

The Screen is set, now what?

Once the screener sets up in his stance, you don’t actually have to use the pick and roll. Sometimes the threat of the screen is enough for the defender to run straight into it before you even make a move Thus, leaving you wide open. Other times, you can utilize the crossover, cross escape and he escapes to bait them into the screen before going the other way. Generally, you want to limit the space the defender has to fight over the screen if you do decide to go around it. So going over the screen will be harder for them and easier for you to blow by them because you’re already close to the defender.

What to do once you turn the corner
  1. First, You want to look for your shot. Give the defense a second to reveal their pick and roll coverage so you’re certain your guy is open. The elite shooters like Steph curry probably won’t get as many open looks going around the screen opposed to someone like Rondo by default. Be ready to pull up regardless.
  2. Next, you want to look to drive to the basket. Whether its because you can’t take advantage of the open jumper given to you or they went over the screen and you can blow by the defender.
  3. When you’re driving and the defense packs the paint, look to see where the help defender(s) are coming from. Take note of who they’re leaving open in their rotation. Having a knock down 3-point shooter waiting just makes everybody’s job easier as the defense won’t be able to help on the drive. You and your screen man have one less defender to worry about.
  4. Now, if the defense takes away the easy shot, drive and covers your immediate kick out, you’ll want to look to your screen guy. If you forced him to roll, stop moving before you deliver the pass to limit the space between you to. The slowest of players will be able to eat here due to the pick and roll ball handler breaking down the defense and opening up chances for easy passes and alley oops. If you choose for the screen man to fade, you’ll want to pass it to him quickly before the defense can recover in time.
Advanced Techniques

Now speaking of the screen guy, you’ll be able to control the side he screens by hitting the RT/R2 button. With this, you can perform a pick and roll or a pick and pop with R1/RB which you want to utilize if your screener can shoot. Changing the direction of the screen at the last minute serves a few purposes. It can keep your opponent on their toes because the surprise of the screen is removed.  Since they can’t see everything happening behind them, that’s one way to keep the element of surprise intact.

Also, against teams that like to ice the pick and roll (which has the on ball defender block your path) you can just switch the screen to the other side.  Pick and fades are perfect to use when the screen guy’s defenders drop into the lane to protect the paint. You can even get creative with your pick and rolls like having Lebron James become a roller for Isaiah Thomas or Kevin Durant turning into the most lethal pick and pop threat for the Warriors. You can even have Joel Embiid screening for Ben Simmons if you want to go nuts.

Bottom line, the pick and roll is run by every NBA Team because it works.The beauty of it is no two pick and rolls are the same. A pick and roll run by Russell Westbrook is way different than one ran by Steph Curry. Amare Stoudemire screening is worlds different than say, Brook Lopez. What remains the same is, if executed properly, it can break down even the best defenses. So, I hope this video and breakdown helped you to be able to get busy in the pick and roll game.


Stay tuned for more NBA 2K18 content here at Sports Gamers Online. Be sure to check back here daily so you don’t miss anything!

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Christopher Walker
I have been playing football games since 99’. All starting with the NFL Game Day demo and NFL Blitz on PlayStation, then I moved on to Madden for the next 5 years, where I really didn't know what I was going yet. I flirted with NFL 2K for a year, but have played Madden and NCAA (up until its demise last year) ever since steadily improving my game each year and developing a passion for the X’s and O’s part of football.