Key Lessons from USA’s Victory Over Germany in the Pre FIBA World Cup

Key Lessons from USA's Victory Over Germany in the Pre FIBA World Cup

Anthony Edwards shines as the primary scorer, leading the U.S. to come back from a 16-point lag and secure victory in its last FIBA World Cup warm-up match.

The United States men’s basketball team concluded its five-game exhibition showcase in preparation for the FIBA World Cup with a remarkable 99-91 comeback triumph over Germany on Sunday in Abu Dhabi.

Leading the charge, Anthony Edwards scored an impressive 34 points, propelling Team USA to erase a 16-point deficit in the second half. They sealed the victory with a compelling 22-5 scoring spree, culminating in a perfect 5-0 record in their pre-tournament warm-up matches before their departure to Manila, Philippines, where they will commence the World Cup next weekend.

Here are five pivotal takeaways from the triumph on Sunday:

Edwards Takes Center Stage

Amidst the pre-exhibition queries about who would step up as the go-to scorer in clutch situations, Anthony Edwards emerged as the definitive answer. While the earlier blowouts lacked tense moments, the games against Spain and Germany provided the true litmus test. Edwards shone in the latter, delivering his most exceptional performance during the showcase.

Edwards showcased his prowess with 34 points, making 11-of-21 shots from the field, 3-of-7 from beyond the arc, and a perfect 8-of-8 from the free-throw line. In critical moments, it was unmistakable that Edwards was Team USA’s linchpin. He connected back-to-back 3-pointers to tie the game in the fourth quarter, and the team’s offense flowed through him during the decisive moments. As the clock ticked down, Edwards hit two free throws and a pivotal baseline jumper, sealing the win. Throughout the five matches, Edwards maintained an average of 18.8 points per game on 50% shooting, accompanied by 4.6 rebounds, 1.8 steals, 2 assists, and a block per game.

Haliburton and Reaves Excel off the Bench

When facing a 16-point deficit late in the third quarter, the USA rallied back, and a significant contribution came from backup guards Tyrese Haliburton and Austin Reaves.

Haliburton contributed 11 of the 18 points during the crucial rally, showcasing his accuracy from beyond the arc and in transition. Reaves chipped in with five points and a key steal leading to one of Halliburton’s triples. This display of depth underscores the team’s strength for the upcoming World Cup. Should the starters have an off day, Haliburton and Reaves are well-prepared to step up, as indicated in their performance against Germany.

JJJ Anchors the Defense

Jaren Jackson Jr., the reigning NBA Kia Defensive Player of the Year, had a standout defensive display, amassing six blocks, seven points, and eight rebounds. His impact was not solely reflected in blocked shots but in altering numerous attempts, forcing misses for Germany. He also exhibited his capability to hold his own on the perimeter during pick-and-roll switches.

Jackson’s defensive prowess was particularly evident in his back-to-back plays against Dennis Schroder, where he swatted away a scoop shot and effectively contested another, contributing to key moments during the game.

Resilience in the Face of Adversity

While Team USA enjoyed several wire-to-wire wins, their match against Germany presented a preview of the competition they will face in the FIBA World Cup. The German team executed well on both ends of the court, testing the Americans with a solid zone defense and effective offensive strategies.

Faced with a 16-point deficit in the latter stages, Team USA displayed resilience. They maintained composure, gradually chipping away at the lead, notably during an 18-6 run in the third quarter. This turnaround narrowed the gap to a manageable four-point margin entering the final quarter. The team’s ability to respond to adversity bodes well for the upcoming challenges of the World Cup.

Solid Team Chemistry Heading into the Tournament

Despite having less than three weeks to come together as a team, this year’s USA squad exhibited strong cohesion through practices, travel, and exhibition games. The bench reactions

during pivotal moments highlighted their camaraderie, emphasizing their unity despite the relatively short time they’ve spent together.

The remarkable chemistry among the players was evident in their on-court interactions and celebrations, even amid high-pressure scenarios. This sense of unity is an encouraging sign as they gear up for the upcoming tournament.


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