How to Master the Allen Iverson Crossover Move in Just 5 Minutes

What words bring shivers to defenders just hearing them? Allen Iverson AND crossover.  When Allen Iverson used his patented “killer” crossover move, it was over. The defender was on skates sliding one way, and Iverson was on his way to score. It was UNSTOPPABLE. He used it going right, and he used it going left. He used it all the way to the Hall of Fame. 

Want to know something interesting? 

It wasn’t even one of his moves. Iverson attributes that move to a walk-on player. Yep! Iverson himself was being schooled by this walk-on player, and he decided he needed to learn this move. He spent time in the gym after practice every day learning from this walk-on while practicing the crossover dribble. 

So what does that mean for you?

It means you can learn and use the crossover dribble. If you can find five minutes each day to practice these drills, you can add the “killer” crossover dribble to your game.

Follow these steps and you too will be on your way toward mastering the Allen Iverson Crossover. The drills provided will give you many opportunities to practice this move AND it only takes FIVE minutes!

Keys to the Iverson Crossover

  1. You Need a Gather Dribble

The purpose of a gather dribble is to SHIFT the defender. You want the defense to go to one side or the other. This can be done with any kind of dribble: a crossover, a behind the back, an in/out, or a through the legs dribble.

  1. You Need to Take a Fake Step

You have figured what gather dribble you are going to use. Now you need to take a step in the direction you want your defender to go. You want to see how great a defender they are. You have to see how stable their footwork is. You want to see if they’re going to bite on your fake. 

Take your fake step and this will tell you if the move is there for you. If they bite on your fake step, you have them at your MERCY to get into that ankle-breaking move, the Allen Iverson crossover. 

When you take your fake step, convince the defender with your whole body. As you step, use your shoulder, head, and eyes to sell the fake going in the direction you want the defender to go. 

Now if you take that fake step, and the defender stays stationary, drive straight to the basket. If you get shoulder to shoulder with the defender and have the lane, take it. You don’t want to crossover back into the defense, so just go right to the hoop. 

You have to remember not to force the issue. If you take your fake step and the defender does not bite, do not do the crossover just to do it. The crossover move has to be available. You have to shift the defender enough, so you see the DAYLIGHT. 

  1. You Need to Make Your Crossover

If the defender BITES, and slides in the opposite direction you want to go, it is now time to make that crossover move. 

When making the crossover move, don’t have the ball too wide. It may take way too long to get into your crossover. Also, don’t have the ball under your palm. You could easily be called for a travel or carrying the ball. Get your hand on the side or the top of the ball. Anything below the midline of the basketball can give the referee a reason to call that a carry or a travel. Keep the ball close and tight. When you bring the ball back in the other direction to complete the crossover, immediately put the ball on the floor with a hard pound and get straight into what you want to do. 

It’s only three steps, but it takes practice so you can use it EFFECTIVELY. You have to get the defender moving with your gather dribbles. You have to take a hard step to convince the defender you are going in a certain direction. Then you finish of the move by using the crossover dribble quickly. By executing these three steps proficiently, you can blow by your defender as you attack the basket. 

Why Use the Iverson Crossover?

The purpose of the move is to get you away from the defender and closer to the basket to score. The PURPOSE of this move is to create offense. You want to become UNGUARDABLE and put your defender on skates. By using this move, you can shoot, drive, or pass to a teammate. You could even use it with a ball screen. When you make the move, you need to read the court to see what is available. 

5 Minute per Day Drills You Can Use to Become Better

#1 ISO Gather Dribble Drill

  1. Start at the top of the key with a chair in front of you as a defender. 
  2. Working on going right, start with the ball in your left hand. 
  3. Pound the ball once and crossover dribble to your right hand. 
  4. After you get the ball in your right hand, take your fake step to the right. 
  5. Immediately pull the ball back into a crossover dribble to your left hand like you were going to now drive to the left. 
  6. Do 10 reps going to the right and 10 reps going to the left.

#2 Alternating Gather Dribble Drill

In this drill, you are focusing on the last gather dribble and the fake step. 

  1. Start at the top of the key with a chair in front of you as a defender. 
  2. Start with the ball in your left hand. 
  3. Pound the ball once and crossover dribble to your right hand. 
  4. After you get the ball in your right hand, take your fake step to the right. 
  5. Immediately pull the ball back into a crossover dribble to your left hand.
  6. Take your fake step going to the left.
  7. Immediately pull the ball back into a crossover dribble to your right hand.
  8. Do 10 reps going to the right and 10 reps going to the left.

Make sure on these drills you are not just focusing on the ball. Make sure you are selling your fake step with your shoulder, head, and eyes. Also, stay low! Try to have your shoulders at the same height as the chair and make these moves HARD. 

Keep your eyes up, so you can read the defense. You want to visualize your defender biting, so you can attack. You are seeing what move you will make after the crossover. Is it going to be a drive, a pull-up jumper, or a pass? 

You want to see your teammates and how the offense is running. This will dictate how you will attack as well. 

#3 Gather Dribble between the Legs Drill

  1. Start at the top of the key with a chair in front of you as a defender. 
  2. Start with the ball in your right hand. 
  3. Pound the ball once and dribble through your legs. 
  4. After you get the ball in your left hand, take your fake step to the left. 
  5. Immediately pull the ball back into a crossover dribble to your right hand.
  6. Pound the ball once and continue the pattern. 
  7. Do 10 reps going to the right and 10 reps going to the left.

An easy way to remember the steps is to say, “One dribble, gather dribble, cross.” Your one dribble is a pound dribble. The gather dribble is the through the legs dribble while taking your fake step, and the cross is your quick crossover dribble. 

#4 Freestyle Moves Drill (1 Minute)

Here is your opportunity to be more creative. You can use different dribbles for your gather dribbles. You can use more than one gather dribble before you take your fake step. 

  1. Start a little bit farther away from the chair. 
  2. Dribble up to the chair. 
  3. Now begin using various gather dribbles. 
    1. Crossover
    2. Behind the back
    3. Through the legs
    4. In/out 
  4. After any amount of gather dribbles, take your fake step and execute your killer crossover dribble. 
  5. Go right into your next gather dribble and continue for 1 minute.

The key is to be creative in using varying dribbles and varying amounts of dribbles before using the fake step and crossover. Use combo moves as well. 

EXAMPLE MOVES

  1. Start with through the legs dribble to the left.
  2. Bring the ball back going being the back. 
  3. Take a fake step and execute your killer crossover

              OR

  1. Dribble through the legs twice.
  2. Use and in/out dribble.
  3. Take a fake step and execute your killer crossover. 

Just remember to be creative and get out of your comfort zone. Become comfortable with being comfortable. The more you push, the easier the move will become. 

#5 On the Move Drill

Now you will use the move in more of a game-like situation. 

  1. Start at around half court. 
  2. Dribble up to the chair at the top of the key. 
  3. Begin your gather dribbles varying the kind and amount. 
  4. When you are ready, take your fake step and execute your killer crossover. 
  5. Now attack! Take a few dribbles and pull up for a jump shot or continue on for a layup. 
  6. Rebound your ball and go back to half court and repeat. 
  7. Do 10 reps going to the right and 10 reps going to the left.

When you make your killer crossover move, make sure you follow up with your second step to get your shoulder at your defender’s hip as you attack the basket for a layup. The second step must be quick and HARD!

If you are going in for a layup, RIP the ball to your ear to protect it from the defender. Make sure to finish your layup high off of the glass. 

#6 At Home Variation

You don’t have a gym. That can’t stop you. You don’t even have a basket at home to practice finishing your Allen Iverson crossover move. That can’t stop you either. All you need is a little space in your basement, backyard, or wherever you are. This drill can be done with as little as 10 feet of space. 

  1. Place a chair on the floor or concrete. 
  2. Start five feet back from the chair. 
  3. Dribble up to the chair with your right hand and begin your gather dribbles. 
  4. Take your fake step and execute your Allen Iverson crossover going to the right. 
  5. After you get by the chair, take one dribble. 
  6. Plant with your left foot and retreat dribble back to your starting point. 
  7. Now repeat the sequence using your left hand. 
  8. When you get by the chair this time, you will be planting with your right foot and retreat dribbling with your left hand. 
  9. Do 10 reps going to the right and 10 reps going to the left.

Always keep your eyes up, so you can see both the defense and your teammates. 

Practice Every Day

So that’s it. Just 5 minutes a day. 5 minutes isn’t a long time. You can perfect the Allen Iverson crossover move using these drills, and it only takes 5 minutes each day. You can take a day off. Make sure you are using max effort when you are completing these drills though if you want to become better. 

Allen Iverson used this move. Allen Iverson was a scoring machine. Use these drills, and pretty soon you will be breaking ankles and scoring records just like Allen Iverson. 

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