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Spain’s Struggles In Rio Continue Against Olympic Host

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All this basketball out of season. We must be dreaming. Right now between your T.V., tablet and smartphone you need more screens than ‘Minority Report’ to keep up with all this Olympic Games action.

And as expected Team USA (men and women) are making South America their own in Rio 2016. Even if nations like the Peoples Republic of China and Venezeula are looking competitive, like playing NBA 2K for the first time they just can’t keep it close. It’s like all the sliders are set to 100, even without champion LeBron and MVP Curry. In the first day of the five rings games the U.S. beat China by their biggest margin ever since the M.J. Dream Team of Barcelona ’92 and in their first week, veteran leader and multiple, consecutive Olympian statesman Carmelo Anthony just passed his Jordan Brand boss Michael in total points during these four yearly contests.

Many people believe the only country in this worldwide NBA heavy games that could possibly stop the U.S. charge is the big name laden Spain. But so far the European nation is 2 and nothing…and not in the way they’d like. Maybe it’s the absence of Memphis Grizzlies All-Star Marc Gasol upfront. Maybe the fact that his paint brother and newly acquired San Antonio Spur Pau is still a bag of nerves after freezing his sperm before travelling to Rio De Janerio…a place many sports stars like golfers Jordan Speith and Rory MclRoy refuse to travel to because of the deadly Zika virus. Or maybe it’s the fact that the Spanish teams coaches play writing dry erase looked more like a kids Etch a Sketch. Maybe that’s what shook them up.

Despite starting the game and last nights shooting with an airball, Pau Gasol was almost perfect in the post (13 points) with his inside post play. But on a DeAndre Jordan night from the line (5-12) he missed two clutch freebies from the line, leading Brazil to take a 65-64 lead with just a shot clock remaining in the game…and that was all the Olympian Basketball Gods wrote in stone.

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Spain may have the likes of Pau, his former Spanish Bull teammate Nikola Mirotic, Minnesota Timberwolf Ricky Rubio, Rudy Fernandez and Roudriguez but so far they have made little splash in the beaches of Rio like the Golden State Warrior brother who has been more “Clay” Thompson going 1 for 11 from the field so far on the floor. It’s still early days however and until these guys see red they are still one of the favourites in fanfare and how they should fare.

Recently re-signed Los Angeles Laker-who used to play for Barcelona’s basketball club like Laker legend Pau-Marcelo Huertas lead Brazil’s court carnival with a parade of 11 points, 7 assists and 4 rebounds. Dominant in a game which saw him match-up with Spains new fellow Laker reserve Jose Calderon. To think these guys have to play behind last years rookie and sophompre D’Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson in Hollywood. It looks like the post-Kobe changing of the guard in California is in safe hands.

Huertas put the hurt on Spain alongside the NBA muscle of Nene and the underrated, quick-jabbing, euro-step pace setter Leonardo Barbosa. So much so that the flash of Ricky Rubio was reduced to just 3 points and one hell of a De Janeiro tan. If Spain want to even make it to next weeks quarters than they have to pull something out the cape against Nigeria. Whereas host nation Brazil who now own more than just the tournaments hottest, lime neon highlighting jerseys look to continue this streak against Croatia.

Holding the torch its time for them to keep the flame lit.

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.

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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, QCFree Agent
Anthony Bennett

Forward

6’8″

Toronto, ONNorthern Arizona Suns (G-League)
Grandy Glaze

Centre

6’7″

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

Guard

6’4″

Aylmer, QCAustin Spurs (G-League)
Brady Heslip

Guard

6’2″

Burlington, ONTrabzonspor (Turkey)
Kaza Kajami-Keane

Guard

6’1″

Ajax, ONRaptors 905 (G-League)
Owen Klassen

Centre

6’10”

Kingston, ONPAOK (Greece)
Dyshawn Pierre

Forward

6’6″

Whitby, ONBanco di Srd (Italy)
Xavier Rathan-Mayes

Guard

6’4″

Scarborough, ONWestchester 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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FIBA

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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