FIBA Break: USA men’s basketball is just a win away from World Cup

FIBA Break: USA men’s basketball is just a win away from World Cup

David Stockton and Galloway’s 23 points each powers USA men’s basketball with a 88-81 victory over Colombia and just one game away for next year’s World Cup.

After an embarrassing defeat of the United States from the hands of the Brazilians on the first game of the fifth window of the FIBA Basketball World Cup Qualifiers with the score of 79-94, the team made a comeback against Colombia to secured their 8 win of the World Cup qualifiers as Langston Galloway and David Stockton scored 23 points each to seal the deal for the consistent olympic basketball gold medalist USA.

USA had only two games left — all to be played in the February window, the final phase of the World Cup qualifiers. The team had multiple ways to book a spot in the World cup, with the easiest of winning the match against Uruguay and a revenge against Brazil.

“This is really about the character of you guys,” USA Head Coach Jim Boylen said. “And we’ve got a high character group, guys that care.”

The 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup is a quadrennial basketball world cup which changes its format of qualifications to a longer phase. Next year’s World cup will be the first basketball world tournament co-hosted by three nations — Japan, Philippines, Indonesia with  the final events to be held in the Philippine Arena (Bulacan). The World Cup has become more competitive since the qualification Olympic will be based on the top performing region teams in the world cup instead of topping regional tournaments like Asia Cup, Eurobasket, Americup, and Afrobasket. 

Galloway stepped up big time for team USA to avoid a shocker from the Colombian side, and to avoid a scare of not qualifying in  the world stage and a chance for the 2024 Paris Olympic. He scored the next 10 points for the U.S., a couple of 3 points to slim the chance of Colombia for potential upset. Stockton sealed the deal when he made a 3-pointer with 4:09 left to extend the lead 80-67.

“I didn’t want to let my team lose,” Galloway expressed. “I didn’t want to let everybody down. I knew it was important, wearing this USA on the front [of] my chest and wearing my name on the back.”

Since the USA cannot send their NBA stars to play for the FIBA Window games, the national team used more than 40 different players across 10 FIBA window games, changing rosters every window, while Stockton and Galloway remained the consistent national team players on the roster. Michaell Jackson of Colombia scored 25 points while Romario Roque added 24 to challenge Team USA.

So far, 17 out of 32 teams have already qualified for the next year’s World Cup. In America, Canada is the first team to book a spot. While in Asia, Lebanon, Australia, New Zealand, China, Philippines, and Japan booked their spots. In Africa, Ivory Coast already clinched the first spot, with four left for other African teams. Lastly, in Europe, Latvia, Greece, Germany, Finland, Slovenia, France, Lithuania, Spain, and Italy are all booked their picnic in the 2023 World Cup.

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