Aug
1

FIBA World Cup Preview: Group D

goran-in-zoran-dragic
We’re going group by group with what you need to know to enjoy the 2014 FIBA World Cup of Basketball. Today we complete our look at the opening round with Group D.

The teams
Angola
Qualified: Won the 2013 FIBA Africa Championship, their 11th time to claim that title and their seventh time making it to the World Cup.

Australia
Qualified: Won FIBA Oceania Championship. Their participation was secured merely by being in Oceania but we won’t make any barbs because at least they won it.

Lithuania
Qualified: Silver medal winners at EuroBasket 2013 and they come to Spain having impressed in warm-up games.

Mexico
Qualified: The power didn’t really work at FIBA Americas 2013, that roughly bothered Mexico to the tune of…nothing. With MVP Gustavo Ayon leading the charge, Mexico claimed the title for the first time ever to qualify for the World Cup for the first time since 1974.

Slovenia
Qualified: The EuroBasket hosts took fifth place in front of their fans to book a third consecutive trip to the World Cup.

South Korea
Qualified: South Korea 75 Chinese Taipei 57. That result locked up third place in the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship and a return to the World Cup for the first time since 1998.
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Aug
0

Giannis Antetokounmpo with the big dunk against Lithuania


Το κάρφωμα του Γιάννη Αντετοκούνμπο με τη… by 22ios

The Greek Freak continues to bring his exciting style of play to the FIBA World Cup warm-up games. The Milwaukee Bucks man made this jams during today’s international between his native Greece and Lithuania. We’ll have more on this game later on BiE.

Aug
0

Highlights: Jonas Valanciunas scores 19 points against Australia

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It was a big night for Jonas Valanciunas as he scored 19 points and snagged 8 rebounds in Lithuania’s World Cup warm-up win over Australia. Here’s the Raptors’ big man doing his thing.
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Aug
0

Basketball World Cup of Beer: Round 2 – Part 1

BWCB Opening Ceremony
We’ve reached the knockout stages of the 2014 Basketball World Cup of Beer. The 24 nations from each of the nations in the FIBA World Cup of Basketball are each represented by a beer. Now only 16 remain. Today we’ll see 8 of those become 4 in our first set of second round match-ups. Here are the pairings.

Zajecarsko (Serbia) vs Ozujsko (Croatia)
Admiral Benson (France) vs Quilmes Cristal (Argentina)
8 Wired Superconductor DIPA (New Zealand) vs DOA IPA (Mexico)
Sierra Nevada Torpedo IPA (USA) vs Volfas Engleman Rinktinis (Lithuania)

Now to find our quarter finalists…
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Aug
0

Basketball World Cup of Beer – Group D

BWCB Opening Ceremony
We’ve reached the final day of the opening round of the 2014 Basketball World Cup of Beer. If you are somehow late to the party, you missed one mother of a battle in Group C yesterday. The rules are simple, every team in the 2014 FIBA World Cup of Basketball is represented by a beer. Most of those beers have been chosen by fans or journalists from the countries involved. We run the competition in line with the draw for Spain 2014, with 4 groups of 6 and 4 teams from each group making it through to the knockout stages.

So far we know 12 of the 16 teams that have made it to the next round. Now it’s time to learn who will progress from Group D…
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Aug
0

Highlights: Serbia overcome Greece 60-55, Ukraine promoted

Serbia outlasted a gritty Greek team in the first of Saturday’s FIBA Europe Under 18 men’s semi finals. Neither team did well from beyond the arc but Radovan Djokovic’s pair of treys gave Serbia some breathing room in the fourth before Greece rallied. The victory secured Serbia’s place in the final for the first time since 2011.
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Aug
0

Highlights: Serbia coast past Lithuania 83-67 at FIBA Europe U18s

Serbia were made to work for part of this game but eventually had too much for Lithuania to handle as they progressed to the semi-finals of the FIBA Europe Under 18 men’s championships. Serbia held an 11 point lead at the half but Lithuania cut the deficit to just 4 points entering the final frame. The Serbs, who had five scorers in double-digits, simply had too many options for Lithuania to cope and Vasilije Vucetic finished with 18 points and 11 rebounds as they booked their spot in the last four.

The Serbs opened the game with questionable ball-handling but this was rectified with authority as the stats showed.

Serbia will now face Greece for a place in the final.

Jun
1

Zalgiris beat Neptunas 90-70, take LKL title

ZalgirisChampions
Zalgiris Kaunas have been crowned champions of Lithuania with a 90-70 win in Game 6 of the finals against Neptunas. Zalgiris take the series 4-2.

After putting up a sterling fight through the opening five games of the series, Neptunas were out of gas by the time they took on reigning champions Zalgiris. The result was almost a formality from the off as the home side cruised past the underdogs. It was a brave but utterly outclassed effort from Neptunas that was reminiscent of many of their clashes in the VTB League this season. To their credit, Neptunas were never expected to force the series to six games but that should not outshine a sterling job by Zalgiris. The Kaunas side has endured a troubled season but still managed to take down Lietuvos Rytas in the semi finals before retaining their crown in this series.

Sep
0

EuroBasket: Huge Q3 lifts Lithuania past Croatia 77-62

It was a battle from the start but only one team could make Sunday’s final. A third quarter burst move Lithuania past Croatia and into the gold medal game of EuroBasket 2013.

Where did that come from? Linas Kleiza had 17 points and 7 boards in just the first half. The former Toronto Raptor delivered his best half of basketball in recent memory as Lithuania took the early advantage. The edge was slight however. Much of the first half was tit for tat. Lithuania pushed to a 9 point lead briefly but Croatia kept drawing them in. Lithuania had a 24-19 lead at the end of the first quarter, it was 40-37 at the half. This game had offence but neither side could pull away. For Croatia is was Bojan Bogdanovic, a man highlighted as a major threat before this game, who kept them competitive on the scoreboard.

For Jonas Maciulis the job was meant to be one of containment, limiting what Bogdanovic did at the other end but the guard didn’t read the script. Going hard from deep, Maciulis start 4 of 5 from three-point range. The fourth three put Lithuania 48-39 up with 7.01 left in the third. Time-out Croatia at a crucial point in the game. Maciulis was having none of it. In the lane, backs up, bucket and the foul. He made the and-one to push Lithuania into a 12 point lead. Draper missed a three on the next play, Maciulis recovered and Mantas Kalneitis delivered a lay-up at the other end. Croatia tried the press. Alley-oop to Robertas Javtokas. Luka Zoric missed a pair of free throws and Kalneitis nailed another from deep. In three minutes Lithuania had broken the game open to lead 58-40. Timeout Croatia with the gap having doubled in the interim.

And what of Jonas Valanciunas? If it’s possible to be quiet when you have 4 blocks in the first three quarters, the Raptors big man certainly was that. Fouls hindered him but Valanciunas was wise to defer on offensive to those around him. He added one more block in the final frame.

With seconds remaining the camera panned to Aryvdas Sabonis. The icon standing proud and tall, always very tall. After a 10 year absence Lithuania had returned to the final of EuroBasket. Kleiza finished with 22 points and 11 boards, Maciulis had 23 and 6, Kalneitis 18 and 4 assists. They get a day off now to recover for the gold medal game. No matter who they play on Sunday, Lithuania will be underdogs and they’ll be fine with that. No team is more than the sum of its parts than Lithuania. Spain and France have their stars. Lithuania will be happy with their multitude of options.

Sep
1

EuroBasket Power Rankings: Spain rise to the top

Just in time for today’s semi finals to prove us completely wrong, here’s our updated Power Rankings for EuroBasket 2013 after the quarter final round.

1. Spain. It’s a what have you done for me lately business and nobody has done more than Spain. They leap Croatia on the back of an utter rout of Serbia.

2. Croatia. A second quarter spurt against Ukraine gave the Croats a decisive lead that they never gave up. This team has now won 8 straight.

3. Lithuania. Total coin toss between Lithuania and France following the quarter finals, the Lithuanians greater consistency in round two means they stay ahead for now.
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