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Michael shakes, fakes, takes, and drains.What is a fade-away

People change from calling it the "fall-away" in the last era to calling it the "fade-away."  Whatever it is called, it is indisputably the deadliest perimeter basketball move that many NBA basketball players use and abuse.  Essentially, it is a jump shot done while you jump or step backward.  It seems simple but it deems tough.   See how Jordan fades away while his defender got chopped away in the photo?

What does it take to make a good fade-away

We will have to keep going back to basics and embark on strengthening your wrist because the fade-away develops from the jump shot.  There are tools that increase your wrist power.  For fade-aways, not only does a strong wrist allow you to better control the ball when shooting in the air, but it also increases the range of your fade-away because the wrist is the only thing you can depend on for power when you are doing a fade-way with almost all your leg power going backwards.  Unlike the jump shot and the leaner, you must boost your vertical jump even more than your jump shot as well as increase your hangtime  because it takes you longer to reach your maximum height while jumping backwards.  In other words, very strong legs is a must for an effective fade-away.  Also, you must get acquainted with squaring up with the basketball hoop in the air. Hence, it is vital to work on your body's flexibility if you want an excellent fade-away shot.  Most importantly, because fade away is a shot in motion and the motion is away from the basketball hoop, you must have great wrist-eye coordination.

When do I use a fade-away

Michael never fears getting slammed by the defender

Unlike the leaner, the fade-away can be used by all types of players provided that you have the skills it takes to perform the fade-away.  Yet, typically, players use the fade-away when they are facing a defender that is taller or stronger than they are.  The fade-away should be unleashed when your defender is clinging close to you and the paint is too populated for a driving move.  You should have stabilized in your post with no other defenders around you.

Another critical factor that determines when you use a fade away is a psychological one.  When you are shooting a fade-away basketball shot, you must psych yourself into thinking that no matter how far the defender jumps forward, he cannot block or even touch my basketball and you must stay focus on the basketball shot no matter how close the defender seems to be. Players often miss fade-aways because of their own fear: the fear of getting crashed onto by defenders after shot and the fear of an awkward landing.  Once you have overcome those fear and be able to concentrate on your shot, you are always ready for pulling up a fade-away.

Pros-n-cons about doing a fade-away



  • Create your own vertical and horizontal space by leaning backwards
  • The position and body posture makes the shot almost unblockable.
  • Very easy to draw fouls when the defenders have to jump forward to contest your shot
  • Gets defenders to come in close, giving you more space to drive
  • A clear look to the basketball hoop
  • Requires extremely good wrist-eye coordination
  • Strong legs that give rise to ample hangtime
  • Limited shooting range because of the high level difficulty
  • high risk of injury if your defender overexert himself to contest your shot
  • Impossible to get follow-up rebounds

General step-by-step guide to shooting a fade-away

As mentioned before, the fade-away is deadly and it can be used by all types of players.  Yet, it is also universally acknowledged as one of the toughest basketball shot. If you are stronger and taller than your defender,  why make a tough shot when there is an easier, more promising option? You should use your physique to your advantage and use the leaner, the mirror image of a fade-away.

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