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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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FIBA

Canada Golden at 2017 FIBA U19 World Cup

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Canada 2017 FIBA U19 Worl Cup Champions

The 81 year-old hunt for International basketball Gold at a Olympics and FIBA World Cups is over for Canada!

Canada’s U19 Junior Men’s basketball team became the first Canadian basketball team to play for and win Gold at an Olympics and/or FIBA World Cup event since Canada lost 19-8 at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin.  Marking the sports’ first official medal event, a ceremony which surely made Dr. James Naismith proud as he awarded both teams the medals.

Canada unleashed a potent, versatile and balanced team effort, leaving the Italians without any hopes of denying the Canadians their historic and hard earned Golden generation podium moment. A moment that Canadian basketball advocates have rightfully known it was coming, but patiently awaited for this historic day.

Making it remarkably sweeter was the fact that Canada’s run to World Champions glory was crafted and architected by prodigy child and 17-year-old phenom Rowan Barrett Jr. The tournament’s Most Value Player. Barrett’s 18 points, 12 rebounds, four assists paced four Canadians in double-digits in the 79-60 defeat of Italy to capture the 2017 FIBA U19 Word Cup in Egypt Cairo.

Canadian Rowan Barrett MVP 2017 FIBA U19 World Cup

Canadian Rowan Barrett MVP 2017 FIBA U19 World Cup – FIBA

Barrett Jr. finished as the tournaments top scorer averaging a mind-boggling 21.6 points per game (1st), 8.3 rebounds (11th overall), 4.6 assists (8th overall), shooting 45.9% (50/109) on 7-of-15 shots per game. He also led the seven game 2017 FIBA U19 World Cup in free-throws mades (46) and attempts (61) connecting on 75.4% from the line.

Tournament All-Star Abu Kigab concluded Canada’s championship run with his fourth double-double in seven games with 12 points and and 10 rebounds and finished in the top five in rebounds per game at 10.5. Nate Darling added 12 points and four rebounds and Lindell Wigginton returned to the line-up after missing the past two game with concussion like symptoms contributing 11 points, three rebounds and three assists.

Canada U19 Win Gold Medal 2017 FIBA Word Cup

Canada U19 Win Gold Medal 2017 FIBA Word Cup

Canada finished the tournament with a nearly perfect 6-1 record defeating Mali 91-42, Japan 100-75, and heavyweights Angola 87-65, France, 73-67, USA 99-87 and Italy to capture gold. Canada’s only blemish was a 78-73 loss to fourth place finisher Spain.

Must Read:  Burlington's Brady Heslip closes out NCAA career by claming 2014 NCAA 3-point championship (VIDEO)

Canada won a Gold Medal at the 1983 Summer Universiade games in Edmonton beating a star-studded USA (Karl Malone, Charles Barkley) team in the semi-finals. The Canadian Senior Women’s  National Team also won gold at the 2015 Pan American games in Toronto.

Final standings of the FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup 2017:
1. Canada
2. Italy
3. USA
4. Spain
5. Germany
6. Lithuania
7. France
8. Argentina
9. Puerto Rico
10. Japan
11. New Zealand
12. Egypt
13. Angola
14. Korea
15. Iran
16. Mali

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