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FIBA World Cup Preview:

Australia shocked the basketball world this past Saturday by defeating Team USA for the first time ever in Boomer’s history. A Weekend of hoops we will never forget.

Melbourne once again turned it on, with over 100,000 people in attendance over the 2 games between the Boomers and Team USA. Yes, there were seating issues at Marvel, but the majority at Marvel could really only marvel at the display our boys put on in both contests.

Game 1 saw us compete at a high level in the first half, only for us to be run over by the brilliant display from Kemba Walker and sharp shooting from Kyle Kuzma to go down by 16.

Game 2 had a similar feel to the first game, with Team USA jumping out of the starting blocks with lights out shooting, but our boys hung around and weren’t letting the game getaway. Insert Patty Mills and Delly.

Yes, our starting guards are undersized, but there’s no one that plays harder when they put on that green and gold singlet than these two. Delly was once again tenacious on defence, rattling stars like Donovan Mitchell. Then there was Patty, who put on one of the all-time great performances down the stretch to win us the game, a moment Australian Basketball fans will never forget!

Some would say it’s just an exhibition, and the USA were missing so much talent. So were we, and this now gives us even more belief that we can compete with the best there is now a week out from the World Cup. 

Australia gets underway against Canada Sunday night 5.30pm. Given what we’ve seen from Canada, they won’t be pushovers, but you’d like to think we should have too much class for them and now know what to expect from them after the exhibition games.

The real test comes against Lithuania (after we dispose of Senegal…no disrespect), with the likes of Valanciunas and Sabonis to come up against our big boys, it’s sure to be a mouth-watering contest.

The cross over brings us to France or Germany, an extremely tough contest either way, both teams with NBA stars on their roster. But as long as our core stays healthy, we’ve shown we can beat anyone on our day.

Team USA is extremely vulnerable, and if there was ever a chance to knock them off at a major tournament than this one is it. That goes for all of the top dogs in this tournament.

Bold Prediction: USA will not medal. There’s a chance this team loses some motivation if they get rolled in the Semi-Final, and won’t have it in them to want to play that hard for Bronze with the NBA season around the corner.

Serbia is incredibly strong and believes they should be close enough to favourites going into this tournament. Australia, France, Greece and Spain are all at good enough level to compete for Gold in this tournament, and just like the upcoming NBA Season, this tournament has more than just the one runner going for itself.





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