Definition of Full Court Press

What does the term "full court press" mean? What is meant by the term "full court press"?

In basketball, a "full court press" occurs when the defending team pressures their opponents in the opponent's own end of the court.

In most cases, defenses will wait for their opponent to cross mid-point before starting to exert defensive pressure.

In photo: Gary Payton with the ball being defensively pressed.  The meaning of Full Court Press term is explained when it comes to the game of basketball and also life.With a "full court press", the defense exerts pressure right away in an attempt to force their opponent into a mistake.

The "full court press" is neutralized by putting a great dribbler on the ball or using quick passes to quickly move the ball up the court.


The term "full court press" is also used outside of the world of sports, and is used to indicate when somebody is putting a lot of pressure on something to happen.

For instance - let's say that you want to buy a house really badly. In order to secure the home, you and your real estate agent put on a "full court press" by immediately bidding for the property over asking price. You are putting pressure on the selling to immediately make the deal.

Another example - your neighbor has loud, barking dogs and you want the noise to stop. You put on a "full court press" to get it to stop, which including contacting the city and police department.

This is a "full court press".