Canada FIBA World Cup 2023
Canada FIBA World Cup, with a victory against Venezuela, Canada secures a berth in the FIBA World Cup in 2023. In the FIBA Basketball World Cup Americas Qualifiers, the Canadian Senior Men’s National Team defeated Venezuela 94-56 to secure a spot in the 2023 Canada FIBA World Cup.
Canada FIBA World Cup was dominating in the match, which improved the team’s qualification record to a perfect 9-0, and they remain the only unbeaten team in the Americas. “We were here for the qualifying,” Team Canada Associate Head Coach Nate Bjorkgren remarked. “We’ve approached each game one at a time.” For the previous several months, our whole attention has been on Venezuela, and our players came up and performed accordingly.”
Kassius Robertson scored 16 points in 18 minutes, going 6-for-6 from the field, to lead six Canadians in double digits. In the win, Owen Klassen had an 11-point, 10-rebound double-double, Kenny Chery had 12 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and two steals, while Conor Morgan and Thomas Scrubb each scored 12 points.
“It means a lot,” Robertson said of Canada FIBA World Cup qualification. “Many of us go long distances to participate in these games.” This is almost like a vacation for me, and I can speak for many of the men on the squad. It’s intense, of course, but being alongside our countrymen, particularly on Canadian soil, is incredible for us. It’s a lot of joy to be able to play for our nation.
“It’s been a long time coming for our nation, and we’ve been working on these windows for over a year,” Robertson stated.
The Canadians shot 51% from the field and hit 14-of-31 three-pointers (45%) while keeping Venezuela to 34% shooting from the field, including 6-for-21 from beyond the arc (29 per cent). Canada dominated the rebounding battle 54-36, including a 20-10 lead on the offensive boards, and maintained a 54-28 advantage in bench points scored.
Canada jumped up to an early lead and never looked back. After taking a 7-0 lead before Venezuela scored its first basket of the game, Canada extended its lead to 12-3 with a three from T. Scrubb. With 4:28 left in the first, another three-pointer, this time from Aaron Best, increased the margin to double digits. After a fast five-point burst by Robertson, Canada FIBA World Cup led 25-10 after the first ten minutes.
“We indicated we wanted to come out and hit first, and they did,” Bjorkgren said. “I like coaching this squad.” I really believe it. They simply kept on coming. It’s a privilege to coach for this nation and this squad, and it’s a joy to witness.”
Venezuela started the second quarter well, keeping pace with Canada FIBA World Cup until Kenny Chery’s three-pointer pushed Canada’s advantage back to 13 points with 2:42 left in the half. After a jumper by Venezuela’s Windi Graterol, Klassen scored on an offensive putback, and then Phil Scrubb nailed a three to force Venezuela into a timeout with 1:06 left in the half, trailing by 16.
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The Canadians led by 15 points at halftime, 46-31, owing to T. Scrubb’s 10-point first half and Kenny Chery’s six assists to zero turnovers. Canada was much better in the second half, on both ends of the floor, than it was in the first. P. Scrubb’s basket began the second-half scoring, increasing Canada’s advantage to 17, but Venezuela’s Yohanner Sifontes responded with a layup of his own.
With 7:21 left in the third for Canada FIBA World Cup, Chery’s second three-pointer of the game made it 51-33 Canada. Chery hit his third three-pointer of the game a minute later, increasing the margin to 54-33. Robertson then made a pull-up jumper before shooting a three while getting fouled eight seconds later. After completing the four-point play, Klassen’s layup put Canada up 64-38 as Venezuela called timeout with 4:01 left in the third.
“One of the major topics we discuss is the shooting contest,” Bjorkgren added. “We aim to fight every shot with all we have.” I liked how we disturbed the stuff they were attempting to get in, the setups they were attempting to perform. I can’t say enough good things about Kassius, including his defensive commitment, physicality, and speed. He’s really difficult to defend, and he understands how to guard other shooters.”
Following a three-pointer by Conor Morgan and a three-point play by Trae Bell-Haynes, Canada led 70-42 entering the fourth quarter. Klassen began the fourth quarter with a three-point play as Canada proceeded to march to victory. “Our defense as a whole was very focused in there,” Bjorkgren said. “We gave up  points in the second half, 11 in the third, and 14 in the fourth, but that doesn’t happen until you start the game like that.”
The Canadians’ next game will be against Panama on Sunday, again at the Expo Centre in Edmonton. “The audience was fantastic tonight for the Canada FIBA World Cup,” stated Robertson. “We were thrilled with the attendance. Edmonton came out, which we really appreciate.” With its World Cup qualification objective achieved, the Senior Men’s National Team has no intention of slowing down in its final three games in the Americas World Cup qualifiers.
“As Coach indicated before the game, we have to prove and reprove,” Robertson said. “Whether we qualified or have a few more games left at the Canada FIBA World Cup, we’re still out for blood.” We’re not going anywhere.” Bjorkren and his team have already moved on from Venezuela and will begin preparing for the game against Panama on Sunday. “We qualified,” remarked Bjorkgren. “We’ll enjoy that one here tonight, and then get ready for Panama in a couple of days.” “The games just keep coming for the Canada FIBA World Cup.”