It’s getting closer which means it’s time for BallinEurope to deliver, for the first time in far too long, it’s group by group previews of EuroBasket 2022 and, in a shock, B follows A and C follows B that can only mean one thing…it’s Group D time
Shockingly I’ve never been to the host city of this group. It’s genuinely odd that I haven’t. I’m not fixing it this time but I really ought to at some point.
O2 Arena, Prague, Czechia/Czech Republic
Need to know
The questions over Tomas Satoransky’s status remain unanswered at the time of publication but will surely dominate all discussions on this group until the host nation takes the court for the first time. It’s also where we get to see, in depth, what a Serbia without Milos Teodosic really looks like.
Poland vs Israel – 5 September
This is, by far, the toughest group to make a call on and the rationale why will become clear shortly. I’ve gone for one of the quietest in terms of the overall eyes of the competition but, given the fireworks in the Polish camp in the lead-up to all of this, I reckon this is the right call.
Serbia. I am confident on others but absolute bona fide lock status only goes to one team here, that’s how much chaos I think Group D can deliver. The bookies favourites to win it all, at the time of writing, I will be stunned if they come lower than second in this group and fully expect them to win all five games.
Once more, in alphabetical order, Czech Republic, Finland, Israel, and Poland. Even without the Satoransky injury drama, this one read like a hell of a fight. Finland have looked like a one man army but, to quote Salt N Pepa, whatta man. Lauri Markkanen, looks to have come into this tournament with everything in tune. The home court edge means I will naturally lean towards the Czechs getting a spot but not at the expense of Israel who seem to have it all together.
Poland seems the odd one out here but there’s enough room for chaos, and Israel know all about suffering from EuroBasket chaos from the last edition, to comfortably keep them in this tier albeit my pick to be the one to miss out.
Netherlands. Sorry, you’re a really likeable team but this is the end of the road.
I’ll be standing over the seedings in these picks for my overarching preview so that makes this group a true pain to call, more on finishing order than anything but here goes everything.
4. Czech Republic
All that’s left now are my picks for drinking and, oh yeah, the overarching tournament preview.