Author Topic: • FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010 • Mundial de Baloncesto FIBA en Turquia 2010  (Read 137289 times)


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FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010 • Mundial de Baloncesto FIBA en Turquia 2010

Talking Stats: Team USA improved after World Championships:
Year-by-year, Per-game Numbers of Six Team USA Members

With so much talk of the Big Three this season, fans may be overlooking the Super Six of Tyson Chandler, Rudy Gay, Kevin Love, Lamar Odom, Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook.

After winning gold in the 2010 FIBA World Championships, many members of Team USA returned home with more than glory. They came back with better skills. Just look at the year-by-year, per-game numbers of six Team USA members (career-highs in bold):

Tyson Chandler:
• 2009-2010: 6.5 Points, 6.3 Rebounds, 1.1 Blocks
• 2010-2011: 8.8 Points, 9.3 Rebounds, 1.4 Blocks

Rudy Gay:
• 2009-2010: 19.6 Points, 5.9 Rebounds, 1.9 Assists, 0.8 Blocks
• 2010-2011: 21.5 Points, 6.5 Rebounds, 2.6 Assists, 1.3 Blocks

Kevin Love:
• 2009-2010: 14.0 Points, 11.0 Rebounds, 0.4 Blocks
• 2010-2011: 20.0 Points, 15.3 Rebounds, 0.5 Blocks

Lamar Odom:
• 2009-2010: 10.8 Points, 9.8 Rebounds, 0.7 Blocks
• 2010-2011: 15.3 Points, 10.3 Rebounds, 1.0 Blocks

Derrick Rose:
• 2009-2010: 20.8 Points, 6.0 Assists, 0.7 Steals, 3.8 Rebounds
• 2010-2011: 24.9 Points, 8.2 Assists, 1.2 Steals, 4.3 Rebounds

Russell Westbrook:
• 2009-2010: 16.1 Points, 8.0 Assists, 1.3 Steals, 4.9 Rebounds
• 2010-2011: 23.7 Points, 8.6 Assists, 2.2 Steals, 5.5 Rebounds

Skeptics will point out that most players on this list are young and simply following the natural progression of developing and honing skills in the NBA. But Chandler is 28 and Odom is 31, ages when a player's abilities have stabilized and drastic year-to-year improvements are rare.

Thus, it looks like international competition has helped these players tremendously. Variations of this story circulated two years ago after the 2008 Summer Olympics. More than one NBA analyst has marveled at the improvement of LeBron James' play after he was inspired by just being around Kobe Bryant and gaining exposure to his work ethic. Progress via osmosis may not be the story here, but the added competition seems to be exactly the elixir that players need to improve.

NBA players are known for their off-season workouts. Many use the off-season to train harder than ever in order to improve endurance or develop a jump-shot. But much of this training is done on an individual basis and seems counter-intuitive when considering the fact that professional athletes thrive on competition.

It certainly makes sense that a bracket-style tournament — the format these players are accustomed to — and the opportunity to play with and against some of the world's best is a more effective method of bringing the best out of fierce competitors than individual time spent at the gym. What would fuel Derrick Rose more: going up against Rajon Rondo, Russell Westbrook and Chauncey Billups or running suicides and shooting free-throws in a lonely gymnasium?

By Stan Feldman is a staff writer from Washington Square News

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FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010 • Mundial de Baloncesto FIBA en Turquia 2010

FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010: ‘Gracias, obrigado’ Argentina and Brazil

It was 'el clasico'.

Everyone knew Brazil v Argentina would be one of the great games at the FIBA World Championship and so Tuesday night's clash proved to be.

It was a battle between South America's giants, a contest ultimately decided by heroes - one of them unheralded and another a superstar.

When Leandro Barbosa buried back-to-back three-pointers at the start of the fourth quarter to give Brazil a 72-66 lead, they were in the ascendancy.

This was a team coached by Ruben Magnano, a side with the NBA-bound Tiago Splitter, a Brazil with an in-form Marcelo Huertas who had drawn rave reviews by

Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski.

After a decade of Argentinian dominance at the top of South America, this was to be the first victory of many for Brazil, their fans thought.

I thought, too.

But Argentina are Argentina.

They are the number one team in the FIBA World Rankings.

They do not have Manu Ginobili or Andres Nocioni.

They do have Hernan Jasen.

They do have Luis Scola.

So when Barbosa's three-pointers ripped the nets in the first minute of the second half, Jasen, the most unheralded of the Argentinian starting five, the

player that for one reason or another hasn't been able to play for his country during their decade of excellence, made up for lost time.

He hit not one, but two three-pointers.

The captain of Estudiantes in Spain's rough-and-tough ACB finished with 15 points.

He fouled out, but Scola did not.

Scola, who never has to be asked if he is going to represent Argentina in the summer, put on one of the great performances in the history of the FIBA World


He scored 37 points, hitting shot after shot after shot.

Scola rarely missed, making 14 of 20 from the floor.

Forget the words 'international superstar' when it comes to Scola.

He is a superhero.

Lex Luther wouldn't have been able to stop him.

In the Sinan Erdem Dome, Scola carried Argentina to victory.

Huertas, who kept Brazil in the game until the very last second when he hit a running three-pointer, finished with 32 points.

He played a captain's role for the Brazilians.

The score said Argentina 93, Brazil 89.

At the end, Argentina's players ran to the corner of the floor to dance and sing with their fans and Brazil slowly walked off the floor.

Huertas had lived 40 minutes of ‘el clasico’ and broke into tears as he walked off the court.

Brazil's fans cried, too.

Everyone knew this game would be a thriller.

The neutral fan that loves both of these teams also knew there would be an empty feeling at the end because we didn't want either of these sides to lose.

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FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010 • Mundial de Baloncesto FIBA en Turquia 2010

Magnano con Brasil, Hernández con Argentina: ojalá nunca hubiese ocurrido !!!

El día que Rubén Magnano sorprendió a la Argentina al anunciar su fichaje como nuevo entrenador de la selección brasileña, lo primero que le preguntaron fue qué pasaría si le tocaba enfrentar a su país en el Mundial.

"No lo sé, creo que solamente podré saberlo el día que pase". Pues bien, el día llegó. Brasil le ganó a Croacia, quedó tercero en su grupo y será el rival de Argentina en el primer cruce a matar o morir en octavos de final. Será a las 21 hs de Estambul (15 de Argentina).

¿Es bueno, es malo? Depende, como todo. Dentro de lo bueno, está el hecho de que Argentina conoce a Brasil como a ningún rival (y viceversa), y que en los últimos tiempos, en los torneos importantes, la victoria ha quedado del lado nuestro.

Cuartos de final en Indianápolis 2002, semifinales en Las Vegas 2007 clasificatorio para Beijing. En ambas quedaron eliminados contra Argentina. Es un buen punto, aunque casi sólo estadístico, más allá de que la camiseta argentina pesa en serio, sobre todo para Brasil.

Lo malo podría ser que Rubén Magnano conoce muy bien en virtudes y defectos a los jugadores argentinos, sobre todo al más importante (Scola), al que tuvo desde muy joven en la mayor.

La sensación de especial, igualmente, es probable que se de más en la gente que en los propios jugadores y entrenadores, aunque es inevitable que tanto Magnano como Duró sientan de manera distinta cuando les toque escuchar el himno argentino estando ellos en la banca contraria, después de tantos torneos en los que lo vivieron con la piel de gallina.

En lo deportivo, Brasil no ha tenido un mal torneo, pero tampoco fue el cuco que algunos esperaban. Es cierto que a punto estuvo de dar el batacazo ante Estados Unidos, pero ante Eslovenia, que era verdaderamente el partido que tenía que ganar para ser segundo, falló. Por muy poquito (77-80), es cierto, pero falló.

Contra Croacia fue todo lo contrario. Clarísimo dominador durante todo el desarrollo. Duró un tiempo solamente.

Brasil tiene un juego muy dinámico, que a la Argentina va a complicar, porque los grandes también corren muy bien la cancha. Tiago está en un nivel altísimo, Anderson viene con problemas físicos (jugó sólo 2 partidos), Leandrinho y Marcelo Huertas también están muy bien y, como Argentina, el plantel no es muy largo: rotan básicamente 8 jugadores, con base en Tiago, Huertas, Leandrinho y Alex. Se supone que Anderson será la quinta pata.

De todos modos, Brasil no la tendrá simple para jugarle a Argentina. Tiago es casi un alumno de Scola (se hizo a su lado en el TAU Cerámica), y eso juega a favor del argentino, que conoce cada movimiento del rubio pivote. Hay más coindicencias. Marcelo Huertas reemplazó a Prigioni en el Caja Laboral cuando Pablo se fue al Madrid. Son bases muy distintos (Prigioni más organizador, Huertas más penetrador), pero de alto nivel ambos, los mejores de España junto con Ricky Rubio.

La paridad es enorme. Pero la clave estará en la mentalidad. Si Oberto se recupera al ochenta por ciento, como para estar en el partido bien, y el plantel entra con confianza, tendrá una ventaja que Brasil no podrá contrarrestar en ese rubro. Lo de Brasil pasará más por utilizar su juventud, velocidad y talento, siempre y cuando la cabeza no les juegue en contra.

También será importante saber cuánto pesa en los entrenadores, aunque lo nieguen, el hecho de la presión extra que significará este choque. Tiene más para perder Hernández, pero para Magnano no será sencillo tampoco. Y lo peor de todo es que no hay revancha, ni siquiera por puestos menores. El que pierda, a casa.

La historia en números

* Argentina y Brasil se enfrentaron oficialmente en 63 oportunidades en Sudamericanos, Preolímpicos, Premundiales y Juegos Olímpicos. Brasil ganó 33 veces y Argentina 30.

* En Mundiales, jugaron 4 veces y Argentina ganó 3. La única vez que ganó Brasil fue en 1967. En 1950, 1998 y 2002, ganó Argentina.

* Argentina estuvo 14 años sin ganarle a Brasil, entre 1979 y 1993.

* Rubén Magnano fue campeón olímpico y subcampeón mundial con Argentina.

* Brasil tiene 2 medallas de oro, 2 de plata y 2 de bronce en Mundiales. Argentina tiene 2, una de oro (1950) y una de plata (2002).

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FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010 • Mundial de Baloncesto FIBA en Turquia 2010[/b]

FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010:
Thrills and spills expected - It's time for the Eight-Finals !

Preliminary Round play at the FIBA World Championship is over.

If many of those games had buzzer-beaters and unexpected twists and turns, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

The FIBA World Championship has said good-bye to eight teams and what’s left are a sensational and very, very sweet 16.

Team USA, Turkey and Lithuania are undefeated while Serbia, Argentina, Slovenia and Russia each have just one setback.

However, no matter who is playing who, expect the unexpected.

Anything can happen in the Eight-Finals.

On Saturday, Spain and Greece, who met in the title game four years ago, will meet in one glamorous last 16 showdown while Balkans rivals Serbia and Croatia will play in another.

The following day will see Slovenia clash with Australia and hosts Turkey take on France, while on Monday Team USA go up against Angola and Russia face New Zealand.

“As a competitor right now, it gets really interesting,” said New Zealand’s Kirk Penney, the tournament’s second leading scorer at 25.4 points per game, to

“I’m looking forward to the Spain and Greek match-up and I think it’s the Serbian/Croatian match-up – there are some awesome games in this round and it’s not even the Quarter-Finals yet.”

Penney, who played on the Tall Blacks team eight years ago that made a stunning run to the Semi-Finals, added: “It’s very exciting and I’m very happy that New Zealand is still a part of it and still has a chance.”

The Eight-Finals end on Tuesday with Lithuania squaring off against China in a battle of surprise teams and South American heavyweights Argentina – the number one team in the FIBA World Rankings – playing Brazil.

Adding intrigue to the last game of the round is the fact that Ruben Magnano, who led Argentina to the Final of the 2002 FIBA World Championship and to gold two years later at the 2004 Olympics, is now the coach of Brazil.

"We know each other very well," Argentina’s Paolo Quinteros said on Monday to

"They also have an Argentinian coach.

“It's going to be a great game to watch and the one that will win will be the one that makes the least mistakes.

“One of us will have to go back home and let's hope it will be them."

You can catch all the exciting Eighth Final action live on FIBATV.Com

(TN: You can also watch the FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010 Games free from the
eBA Portal).


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FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010 • Mundial de Baloncesto FIBA en Turquia 2010

FIBA World Championship Turkey 2010: Picking a winner is anyones guess

Well the 2010 FIBA World Championship in Turkey is all but ready to roll.

With perhaps the most unpredictable tournament in its 60 year history coming up, I have perhaps foolishly attempted to predict what will happen, if for no other reason than good discussion! While I have predicted a winner, the reality is even the best teams in the tournament could go out in the Quarter Finals if things dont go their way.

Here is my top eight for the tournament, and a little bit about how I think they will get there:

Eighth: Australia (Group A, 3-2)
I see this spot going to the winner of the Eight Final match-up between Australia and Brazil. While the South Americans have a talented team and appear to be finally converting that to successful team play, the rock solid Australian defence which has allowed less than 65ppg in lead-up matches and the Boomers superior three point shooting (and perhaps a little downunder bias!) should see them narrowly into the top eight.

Having finished the Beijing Olympics in as good a form as anyone outside the USA and Spain, the Boomers have undergone a minor upheaval. Long time coach Brian Goorjian was replaced by San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Brett Brown, while the retirement of Chris Anstey and injuries to Andrew Bogut and CJ Bruton have left Australia without some of the key pieces from Beijing.

The Boomers do have some consistency in their lineup though, with seven players returning form Beijing, most notably the backcourt trio of Patrick Mills, Joe Ingles and Brad Newley, along with frontcourt stalwarts Matt Nielsen and Dave Andersen, who are a key to the Boomers' twin high post offence aimed at opening up driving lanes for Mills and Newley in particular.

Former Partizan superstar Aleks Maric comes into the team to help fill the hole left by Bogut and Anstey, although his preparation with the team has been limited to just three games. His ability to crash the boards and work the pick and roll could complement Mills and Newley extremely well.

The Australian offence was outstanding in Beijing, averaging 90.3ppg (at 49.5%), the best ever by a Boomers team in a major international championship, confounding opposition teams with slick ball movement.

Understandably, coach Brown has not been able to achieve anywhere near this level of efficiency so early in his tenure the Boomers execution and ball protection are major concerns - and that will leave Australia well short of the medals, comfortably defeated by Greece in the Quarter Finals.

Seventh: Lithuania (Group D, 3-2)
After their disastrous Eurobasket in 2010 the Lithuanians, fourth at the Beijing Olympics, were given a chance to immediately redeem themselves courtesy of a FIBA wildcard.

The team that comes to Turkey is a new one, with just six players returning from 2009 and only four from Beijing. No doubt they will rely on Linas Kleiza for scoring power, but coach Kestutis Kemzura has selected players who have been in top form in club competition.

While this leaves the team low on international experience, it creates a lineup that is hungry to prove themselves at this level, including Kleiza who averaged a mediocre 8.8ppg in Poland, taking less than nine shots per game and connecting on just 40%.

The Lithuanians will be able to rely on the money shooting of Jonas Maciulis and Simas Jasaitis, and the strength of Robertas Javtokas inside, but which if any of the new faces will be the X-factor remains to be seen.

Will Martynas Andriuskevicius finally come of age? And can this new team exhibit the precise execution in transition and off the pick and roll that Lithuania is so well known for, particularly without Sarunas?

There are too many unknowns for them to challenge for a medal, but a wide open Group D and a likely Eight Final match-up with Puerto Rico or Russia should see them into the top eight where Argentina will prove far too good in the Quarter Final.

Sixth: Turkey (Group C, 4-1)
While the host nation has had a number of close losses in the lead-up to the FIBA World Championship, they will grow another leg once the tournament proper begins and the Ankara crowd gets into full voice.

With his size, shooting, ball handling and passing abilities, Hedo Turkoglu can be an instant mismatch if used properly, but the key for Turkey is not to overuse him coming off ball screens too early in games, and for other players to create shots for Hedo.

Turkoglu is not a superstar who can carry a team by himself at this level, but if coach Tanjevics men can create enough shots elsewhere that the defence is no longer keyed to Hedo, that is when he becomes dangerous.

Ilyasova emerged as one heck of a player from inside and outside in Poland in 2009, while Kerem Tunceri, Ender Arslan and Sinan Guler provide a good perimeter punch, but they are not going to get good looks unless their team starts giving their bigs particularly Omar Asik - more touches.

Making the defence play from inside-out, particularly guarding cutters off the post player, will make the Turkish offence much less predictable to guard, and will help prevent the stagnant play that left them unable to execute late in key games in the Eurobasket.

Of course, even without adjustments this team has a line-up that knows each other and will breeze through Group C, only losing a thriller to Greece on the fourth day. They will have far too much for likely opponent Canada in the Eight Finals, before finally meeting their match in the impressive young US team in the Quarter Finals.

Fifth: Serbia (Group A, 4-1)
This Serbian team can be beautiful to watch when they stick to basketball. Their ball movement, inside-out play, curl cuts, Teodosics use of the on-ball and their bigs ability to pick and pop and nail the jumper, or seal and finish in the post make the offence something to behold when they are allowed to run it as they please.

When the defence gets disruptive the finer points of the Serbian offence go by the wayside, but this is a team that doesnt mind grinding out a low scoring win either.

Like Greece, the Serbians have great length in their guard positions with Teodosic, Tepic, Markovic and Rasic. This not only makes things difficult for opposition teams defensively, but also opens up passing lanes offensively and gives them a well-rounded rebounding team.

The suspensions of Krstic for three games and Teodosic for two will be a test for this still young team, and no doubt Germany are eyeing a golden opportunity to claim an unexpected win on day two. But I believe the Serbians only loss in group play will be against the vastly more experienced Argentines, and they will take care of Croatia in the Eight Finals after a battle fitting these two rivals.

Come the Quarter Finals though and the Spaniards are likely to be waiting if all goes to plan, and I dont think Serbia is at that level yet. Last years Eurobasket final was a lesson, and I think it will be too big an ask for the Serbians once again. They will regroup in the classifications though, as this team is the best unit outside the Big Four.

Fourth: Argentina (Group A, 4-1)
The loss of Andres Nocioni is a massive blow for Argentina. Up until that point they were a real threat to win it all, even given their lack of depth. But without Ginobili and Nocioni there isnt the perimeter weaponry or the late game shot-making to bring home a gold medal.

What I love most about Argentina is the way they can manipulate the defence. In an era where most of the better teams USA, Spain, Greece, Lithuania, Australia, Serbia have been playing with big men who can hit the three, Argentina have been consistently successful with traditional high-low, interior bigs, and even a point guard who isnt a great three point shooter.

How do they put enough points on the board? Its execution baby!

No team in world basketball uses the rub to create shots and driving lanes better than the Argentines, and no team has a better passing frontcourt. Just as importantly, no team has more self belief, and that will hold them in good stead now that they are so depleted.

Of course, the likes of Gonzalez, Kammerichs, Quinterez and Juan Gutierrez will step up and fill roles, just as they did so well in the medal rounds in Beijing. They should top Group A and move through the Eight Finals with a hard-fought win over the fourth quarter impaired Slovenians.

They should prove too good for Lithuania in the Quarter Finals, but eight games in eleven days will catch up with this experienced team with little on the bench, and I foresee the Greeks and Spaniards defeating them in consecutive days to consign the number one ranked team to fourth place.

Third: Spain (Group D, 5-0)
The Spaniards are a remarkably talented team, and I have written them off before and been proven wrong. In this tournament they will build slowly through Group D but will never be seriously challenged. They will have far too much firepower for Russia in the Eight Finals before fighting off a serious Serbian challenge in the Quarter Finals.

That is when the real fun will start USA vs Spain in the Semi Finals. For the fourth time, this Spanish team will back themselves to simply outplay the Americans, and for the fourth time they will fail. When it comes to speed, athleticism, playing in the open court and improvising, no one does it better than the USA, not even this great team.

I am by no means writing them off all the match-ups between the top teams of this tournament will be close calls but I feel to defeat the US and advance to the gold medal game, the Spaniards need to curtail some, but certainly not all of their attacking instincts.

US teams are far more comfortable in the open floor, and as Greece showed in the Semi Finals in Japan four years ago, they can struggle when forced to run half court set after half court set. While Spain will need to still attack and take the shots they get, they need to eliminate the speculative plays and also make sure their defensive transition is well structured when they do take early shots against the US.

Of course, this team has earned the right to challenge for the worlds best at this tournament, and I think they will back themselves to do it in style. I also think that confidence will be their downfall.

Second: USA (Group B, 5-0)
I am tipping the US to claim a silver medal - something they havent done since the 1989 FIBA Americas Championship - but it may just as certainly be a gold or bronze.

While much of the focus is on this teams inexperience and lack of grunt inside, their balance and versatility has been somewhat overlooked. Also overlooked is that before too long Derrick Rose and Kevin Durant will be talked about in the same breath as Bryant, James and Wade.

With four very different ball handling guards in Rose, Chauncey Billups, Steph Curry and Russel Westbrook, there will be no lack of shot creation on this team.

With the athleticism of Durant, Andre Iguodala and Rudy Gay, the US will once again be dominant from the wings, particularly at the defensive end, and able to play small ball with perimeter four men stretching the defences.

While it is true that they lack star power on the interior, neither Dwight Howard nor Chris Bosh played dominant roles in Japan or Beijing. While they probably could have, they superbly filled roles as rebounders, defenders, shot blockers and finishers around the basket.

While Lamar Odom and Tyson Chandler are nowhere near the level of Howard or Bosh, they can capably fill those roles. No question though, opposition teams will test them out at every opportunity, and this could become a factor deep in the tournament.

Given all the positives, why am I picking the USA for silver? As I touched on in an earlier column, I think they will get caught out backing up night after night against quality opponents. They have mistakenly spread out their lead-up games, and I think they will pay for this in the end.

After a physical and emotional Quarter Final against Turkey and a down-to-the-wire track meet against Spain in the Semi Finals, the US will not be able to outrun Greece in the final. The Greeks strength inside, length outside and methodical approach will nullify the Americans advantages, and when the big plays need to be made down the stretch, the most talented team in the tournament may not have the experience to get the job done.

First: Greece (Group C, 5-0)
There is no team in world basketball better at dismantling lesser opponents from the first whistle than Greece. Now retired Australian Boomer CJ Bruton described them as the most efficient team in world basketball, and it is hard to argue.

The Greeks are masters of controlling the boards and the tempo, and then excel at getting what they want offensively, usually as a result of the pick and roll. Dimitris Diamantidis and Vassilis Spanoulis excel in this area, able to score or create.

In Antonis Fotsis, Kostas Tsartsaris and even Ioannis Bourousis, the Greeks have bigs who can pick and pop to spread the defence, or roll to the hole to finish, where Sofoklis Schortsanitis is at his most dangerous.

Of course, it is on defence where the Greeks really excel, with the length of Diamantidis, Zizis, Vasileiadis and now Nic Calethas giving opposition guards nightmares and creating easy transition opportunities.

Their big men are expert at defending the post and the pick and roll, and control the boards on an almost nightly basis, making opposition teams play Greeces grinding, methodical, style of game. While the suspension of Fotsis and Schortsanitis for two games will test their metal, this team is disciplined and experienced enough to overcome that without dropping a game.

No question they will qualify from Group C, and I see them taking top spot courtesy of another thrilling win over Turkey. The Eight Finals will see them give Lebanon a lesson, leading to a win where they choke the Australians. In the Semi Finals they will get revenge for Beijing where they were defeated by Argentina, the Greeks depth this time too much for an injury depleted Argentine side.

Then, in the game that matters, two tough games on consecutive nights for the USA will allow Greece to claim gold, where they may well have been run off their fit by a fresh American team.

Of course, there is no surer way to get egg on your face than make predictions before an unpredictable event like the FIBA World Championship!

I also picked the Greeks for gold and the USA for silver in 2008, and while I did have nine of the 12 teams within two places of their actual finish, I didnt get the big prize correct. Similarly, in last years Eurobasket I tipped the six FIBA World Championship qualifiers no worries, but I wrote off Spain as looking tired and likely to get close without winning the whole thing and look what happened!

So my selection of Greece may well be the kiss of death or maybe this is the tournament I get the gold medallist right! Spain, Serbia, Argentina and the USA are all great chances to win, and the good news is that we only have to wait 17 days during which we can enjoy 63 games of world championship basketball to find out who the World Champion will be.

Paulo Kennedy from FIBA

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