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Canada beats Puerto Rico wins first-ever Tuto Marchand Cup

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What a difference two years makes!

After failing to win a game at the 2013 Tuto Marchand Cup, Canada’s Senior Men’s National Team (SMNT) completed a clean sweep at the bi-annual FIBA Americas tune-up tournament. Canada finished a perfect 4-0 thanks to a hard-fought 78-72 win over hosts Puerto Rico to claim their first-ever Marchand Cup title since the event began back in 2007.

Behind a game-high 20 point, 5 rebound performance from Andrew Wiggins, capped by a late-four quarter dunk that set social media on fire, Canada was able to fight-off a Puerto Rico opponent which came into the game on a nine-game winning streak versus the Canadians. Andrew Nicholson found his shooting touch, knocking down 4-out-5 three-pointers on his way to a 16 point, four rebound outing.

Jay-Triano-Thumbs-up-Canada-Tuto-Marchand

Canadian Head Coach Jay Triano Thumbs Up as Canada Goes 4-0 at Tuto Marchand Cup

Unlike the three previous contests where Canada was able to pull away from their South American opponents early on, Puerto Rico played with Canada from start to finish, forcing Jay Triano and his staff to shorten the bench rotations to 8-9 players to pull out the win.

Melvin Ejim (Orlando Magic) continued to show his improved shooting stroke and the ability to defend multiple positions, the former NCAA BIG 12 player of the year (Iowa St./2013) racked-up a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds (6 offensive) on 4-of-5 shooting.

Canada’s starting point guard Cory Joseph, also played well and finished with 9 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals in the win. Philip Scrubb outstanding playing continued as the former 3-time CIS Most Valuable player chipped in with 7 points and 2 rebounds including a huge three-pointer late in the fourth quarter as Puerto Rico threatened to take lead.

Must Read:  Canada's Basketball Looking To Gain Respect This Summer

Anthony Bennett added 8 points and 5 rebounds in limited minutes.

Puerto Rico was lead J.J Barea with 17 points, 9 assists and 8 rebounds. Ramon Clemente added 14 points and 9 rebounds.

Canada shot 29/71 (41%) from the field and 10/27 (37%) from the outside with Nicholson (4) and Wiggins (2) combining six of those makes from behind the Arc.

For the four straight contest Canada out-muscled and out-scrapped their opponents on the boards with 45-36 advantage over Puerto Rico.

Despite Canada’s success at the Marchand Cup Jay Triano and his troops must address the foul-shooting woes, Canada once again left plenty of points off the board by going 10/18 (56%) from the charity stripe. Canada shot a low 63/95 (66%) in all four games. Turnovers will be an area of concern as Canada averaged over 16 giveaways per game versus 13 assists

The last time Canada beat Puerto Rico was in 2007 at the opening game of the Marchand Cup, a 65-63 win. Canada, Argentina, Cuba, Venezuela along with Puerto Rico round-out Group B at the 2015 FIBA Americas Championships. Both teams will meet at least once again, in less than a week, for their last group B game, a match-up which could, very well determine who advances out of the group stage as the SMNT continues their road to Rio De Janeiro.

Canada kicks off the group stage of the Olympic Qualifier against Argentina on Sept. 1.

FIBA

Young Canadian squad shapes FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Americas Qualifiers

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Xavier Rathan Mayes Canada Vs Argentina

For the past twenty-plus (20) years starving Canadian basketball fans across the country have asked for more International sanctioned games on home soil.

Finally, it looks like those requests are materializing.

With the upcoming kick-off to the newly formatted road to the FIBA Basketball World Cup, the 2019 Americas Qualifiers taking place in Halifax, Nova Scotia will satisfy and quench the thirst of long-time East coast supporters of the National game.

A young, 25th-ranked Canadian squad will take on 59th ranked Bahamas, in a important Group D qualify game at the Scotiabank Centre.

Led by former number one pick of the 2013 NBA Draft, Anthony Bennett (Northern Arizona, G-League), the roster features a strong young crop of former Usports All-Canadians and NCAA Division I standouts. Additionally, a further testimony to the growth of Canadian University Basketball, Ryerson Rams head coach Roy Rana, headlines the coaching staff alongside Carleton Ravens coach Dave Smart.

Point guard duties will be handled by Olivier Hanlan, Phil Scrubb and Kaza Kajami-Keane. The latter two having won multiple Usports basketball championships under the tutelage of Smart. Three-point specialist Brady Heslip and along side confident Xavier Rathan-Mayes will look to fill it up for the outside. The front court will anchored by 6’8″ Anthony Bennett, Thomas Scrubb, (another Ravens All-Canadian) and former Acadia Axemen 6’10” Owen Klassen (Kingston, ON).

Overall the roster looks solid, given the lack of availability of Canada’s top talent due to changes in the qualifying format, and the NBA’s willingness to move aside and grant FIBA the release of its players, regardless of nationality for the World Cup qualifying periods.

Must Read:  Canada outlasts Puerto Rico to claim Bronze medal at 2013 FIBA Americas U16 Championships

Placed in Group D alongside Virgin Islands, Bahamas and Dominican Republic. The young Canadians will play a home and away series against each team. After the Bahamas game, Canada will fly out to the Dominican Republic for a stern road test on November 28, 2017 to wrap up the opening qualifying window.  The second qualifier will take in late February with Canada once again hitting the road for games against the Virgin Islands and the Bahamas. The third qualifying window will see Canada host two more games on home soil on June 29 and July 2, 2018.

Canada is coming off a mediocre performance at the FIBA Americup dropping games to Virgin Islands 83-71, Argentina 92-86 with its only win against a tough Venezuela 75-66 team that denied the Canadians an Olympics appearance in Rio 2016.

Joel Anthony

Centre

6’9″

Montreal, QC Free Agent
Anthony Bennett

Forward

6’8″

Toronto, ON Northern Arizona Suns (G-League)
Grandy Glaze

Centre

6’7″

Toronto, ON St. John’s Edge (NBL Canada)
Olivier Hanlan

Guard

6’4″

Aylmer, QC Austin Spurs (G-League)
Brady Heslip

Guard

6’2″

Burlington, ON Trabzonspor (Turkey)
Kaza Kajami-Keane

Guard

6’1″

Ajax, ON Raptors 905 (G-League)
Owen Klassen

Centre

6’10”

Kingston, ON PAOK (Greece)
Dyshawn Pierre

Forward

6’6″

Whitby, ON Banco di Srd (Italy)
Xavier Rathan-Mayes

Guard

6’4″

Scarborough, ON Westchester Knicks (G-League)
Phil Scrubb

Guard

6’3″

Richmond, B.C. Fraport SKY (Germany)
Thomas Scrubb

Forward

6’6″

Richmond, B.C. Scandone AV (Italy)
Marc Trasolini

Centre

6’9″

Vancouver, B.C. Hokkaido L. (Japan)
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Canadian Rowan Barrett Jr. Insane 38 points versus USA

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Canadian Rowan Barrett Jr. 38 Points Versus USA

Canadian Guard Rowan Barrett Jr. goes off for an insane 38 points versus USA at the 2017 FIBA U19 World Cup in Cairo Egypt. Canada stunned the USA 99-87 to advance to Gold Medal game.

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FIBA

Angola’s Silvio de Sousa beastly 27 points, 21 rebounds against Korea

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Angola Silvio Sousa Dominates Korea 2017 FIBA U 19 World Cup
Photo: FIBA

Angola’s 18-year old Silvio de Sousa (6’9″, 240lbs) power forward is one of the rising stars of Angolan and African Basketball.

In his last FIBA U19 game in Cairo, De Sousa beasted Korea with 27 points and 21 rebounds as Angola closed-out the 2017 World Cup with a 55-53 win.

De Sousa, a bruising forward is the best polished Angolan Basketball player ever at this age and averaged a double-double at the 2017 FIBA U19 World Cup in Egypt, Cairo with 17.3 points per game (3rd), 13.1 rebounds (1st), 2.1 assists and 1.4 steals.

The 2018 IMG Academy (Bradenton, Florida) four star recruit holds NCAA Basketball Division I offers from Florida, Louisville, Maryland, LSU and many others and currently represents Angola’s best chance at a future first round and potential NBA pick.

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