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Canada defeats Luka Doncic and Slovenia, securing spot alongside U.S. in FIBA World Cup semifinals


Sep 6, 2023

Canada achieved a historic milestone by advancing to the FIBA World Cup semifinals for the first time. In a thrilling match, the Canadian men’s basketball team defeated Slovenia 100-89, securing their best-ever result in the tournament’s history. The victory was especially impressive considering Canada had just qualified for the Olympics, ending a drought since 2000. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, a standout player for the Oklahoma City Thunder, led the charge with 31 points, while R.J. Barrett of the New York Knicks contributed 24 points. Despite Luka Doncic’s 26-point effort for Slovenia, it was not enough to secure their place in the World Cup semifinals.

The game took a turn when Doncic was ejected for receiving a second technical foul. This came after he engaged in disputes with the referees over calls or non-calls. At the time of his ejection, Canada held a comfortable lead of 92-77 with 6 minutes and 37 seconds remaining. As a result of Slovenia’s defeat, Germany and Serbia secured their spots for the 2024 Olympics as the top two European finishers in the World Cup.

Moving forward, Canada will face Serbia, who will be without their prominent player Nikola Jokic, in the semifinals. On the other side of the bracket, the United States will compete against Germany, a team that secured their second World Cup semifinal appearance after 2002. Slovenia, despite an impressive fourth-place finish in their Olympic debut in Tokyo, will only have another chance to qualify for the Paris Games if they win a last-chance tournament scheduled for July next year. This method proved successful for Slovenia in their qualification for the Tokyo Olympics, where Doncic played a pivotal role in securing their spot after a win-or-go-home qualifier against Lithuania.

Currently, eight out of the 12 Olympic men’s basketball spots for 2024 have been filled by host country France, the United States, Canada, Germany, Serbia, Australia, South Sudan, and Japan. The remaining four spots will be determined through four last-chance tournaments to be held in July. This report was compiled with information contributed by The Associated Press.

By Editor

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