Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

FIBA

Lithuania end Canada’s 2019 FIBA World Cup dream

Facing a must win situation Canada fell flat, losing 92-69 to Lithuania to drop to 0-2 at the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China.

Head Coach Nick Nurse started with a small three point-guard line-up against a much taller and physical Lithuania team that featured Jonas Valanciunas (Memphis Grizzlies) and Domantas Sabonis (Indiana Pacers) — opting to double team the low-post on every early possession.

The strategy worked with mild success putting the Canadians in scramble mode and early foul trouble, trying to locate and rotate — thus allowing Lithuania to shoot 8-of-14 in the first-quarter for a 25-14 lead.

Canada committed 8 fouls and turned the ball over seven times forcing starters Khem Birch and Pangos to the bench with two early fouls.

Team Canada limited the turnovers, but continued to pill-up fouls in the second-quarter as Lithuania executed at a efficient level — maintaining a comfortable double-digit and 46-36 half-time advantage.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Canada failed to cut into the deficit in the second-half as Lithuania limited the Team Canada to just 33 second-half points outscoring the Canadians 24-18 in the third-quarter and 22-15 in the final 10 minutes for a convincing 23-point victory.

Kyle Wiltjer Lithuania Ends Canada Fiba World Cup Dreams
Kyle Wiltjer drills jumper over Lithuania defender- Photo: FIBA

Kyle Wiltjer kept Canada in the game scoring 15 of his game-high 24 points in the first-half on 7-of-11 shooting and 3-of-3 from three-pointers.

“Obviously not the outcome that our team wanted, we have to learn from it, this not the end of the tournament. You have to give those two teams credit they are very seasoned, they play a lot of games together.” shared Wiltjer after the game.

“We just have to continue to be positive as a program and continue to work.”

Cory Joseph found the scoring touch late in the game, finishing 15 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists and Khem Birch added 12 points and 4 rebounds. Kevin Pangos struggled with foul-trouble and dished out 8 assists for the second-straight game.

Jonas Valanciunas Lithuania End Canadas 2019 Fiba World Cup Dreams
Lithuania’s Jonas Valanciunas bangs inside against Khem Birch – Photo: FIBA

Head Coach Nick Nurse seemed visible more upset after the loss and attributed the loss to the lack of size.

“It was a bit of size issue, we knew for us going in and it was pretty evident. There was a lot of baskets at the rim and there was a lot of second shots. I thought we came out pretty solid to start, we were doing some good double teaming on their bigs and had them rattled a little bit. The only problem we were turning it over a little bit too much early.” discussed Nick Nurse.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Lithuania dominated every aspect of the game shooting 36-of-71 (50.7%) and destroyed Canada on the glass with 47-26 edge including 19 offensive rebounds. The European powerhouse scored 52 paint points and outclassed Canada’s bench with a 43-35 advantage.

Must Read:
Canada Escapes US Virgin Islands 95-93 at FIBA AmeriCup 2022 Qualifiers
Team Canada Against Lithuania 2019 Fiba World Cup
Team Canada looking for answers at the 2019 FIBA World Cup – Photo: FIBA

For the second game in a row Team Canada has failed to generate any fast-break points, racking up only 7 against Lithuania and 9 in the 108-92 opening loss to Australia at the World Cup

Edgaras Ulanovas 15 points, 5 rebounds paced a strong Lithuania squad that saw all but one player hit the scoresheet. Jonas Valanciunas 13 points and 8 rebounds. Mantas Kalnietis 11 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds. Lukas Lekavicius 11 points, 2 rebounds. Domantas Sabonis 10 points, 8 rebounds.

Canada (0-2) will play Senegal (0-2) in the final game of Group H and will be placed in a newly created Group P in 17-32 classification bracket. The Canadians will be rejoined by Senegal, in addition to Jordan (0-2) and Germany (0-2) and will likely have to win all games with hopes of making a strong case for an Olympic Qualifying Tournament inclusion next summer.

Even then, if Canada does get an invitation to the one-of-four Qualifying Tournament euar they will have to win out the tournament for a chance at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

Lithuania (2-0) and Australia (2-0) will battle for first-place in Group H.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Advertisement

BUZZING

NCAA

John Calipari departs Kentucky, leaving behind a trailblazing 15-year legacy and history of unearthing Canadian talent and launching them onto the NBA stage.

FIBA

Canadian men and women's Olympic groups revealed for Paris 2024: Tough matchups await as they prepare for challenges ahead.

WNBA

Ogwumike, Canada and company may be gone, but LA can find its spark again thanks to Canadian Kia Nurse.

FIBA

Canada and the USA are set for a pre-Olympics clash in Las Vegas ahead of Paris 2024, rekindling their fierce basketball rivalry.

NBA

A record 28 Canadians are on 2023-24 NBA opening day rosters. Breakdown the complete list with interactive charts and cool facts.

FIBA

Canada's senior men's national basketball team has made a remarkable jump, rising nine spots to reach an all-time high, sixth place ranking in the...

FIBA

The 2023 FIBA World Cup in the Philippines, Japan and Indonesia welcomed the whole world on court. Next stop, Paris, for the 2024 Olympics.

FIBA

Dillon Brooks, with a record-breaking 39 points, led Canada to a thrilling 127-118 overtime victory over the USA, securing the bronze medal at the...

BasketballBuzz - Canada's Basketball Magazine