The Toronto Raptors were all over Steph Curry on Sunday night in Game 2 of the NBA Finals. They bothered Curry so much he was hardly a factor in the first quarter.
Then Warriors coach Steve Kerr called a play he took from Fred Hoiberg, and the dam broke, leading to an 18-0 run and a win to tie the series 1-1.
Because the Raptors were playing so tight on Curry, Kerr made his star shooter a screener. And up two points in the third quarter, Kerr signaled the play the Warriors call "Cyclone" to get Draymond Green an open look.
Here's that play.
Simple enough. Curry sets a backscreen on Green's man, and the help isn't there because the Raptors are worried about giving Curry even an inch. Easy layup.
If you watched Hoiberg's Iowa State teams, you've seen this before.
Here's the exact same play from an Iowa State game during the 2014-15 season, then called "under rip."
The exact same action.
Yet again, simple enough. The screener there is Naz Long, a 38% 3-point shooter. That's 6-foot-8 Georges Niang wide open below the bucket, an Iowa State version of Green back in the day.
Kerr, along with many head coaches at both the college and NBA level, have hailed Hoiberg as one of the great offensive minds in basketball today. With Niang and Royce White, Iowa State spread out Big 12 teams and attacked. Hoiberg was ahead of the curve in maximizing 3-point shots.
Sunday's Warriors play shows Hoiberg, fired from the Bulls in December 2018, left an imprint during his stint in the NBA.
The origin of "Cyclone" is actually sort of up in the air. The Wall Street Journal wrote in 2018 Kerr took the play from a coach in Montana. But the play is such a staple in the Hoiberg offense, and now in the Kerr offense, the two have acknowledged the exchanging of goods.
In a game in 2017 between the Warriors and Hoiberg's Bulls, Kerr called "Cyclone" late in the second quarter. Curry screened for a backdoor and the Warriors got an easy dunk. Kerr and Hoiberg made eye contact from opposing benches, and laughed.