If any basketball fan had dreamed of a triangular selection, it is more than likely that they would not have aspired as high as the Spanish Basketball Federation has done to celebrate the centenary with a tournament that is dropping carats. Spain, the United States and Slovenia meet from this Friday at the Martín Carpenaas a preamble to the fireworks of the Fair, to continue in Malaga with the path of preparation for the World Cup, which starts on August 25.
Sergio Scariolo himself recognized it in the preview: “We approached the preparation matches in the correct way, without giving much emphasis to the result or a tactical preparation of the match in championship mode”. Because, in the end, they are still two friendly matches for three teams that seek to outline the 12 chosen with a view to fighting in Japan, the Philippines and Indonesia for continental gold.
However, it is a tournament between three of the most powerful teams that everyone wants to win and in which everyone also wants to scare their rival. They will open the triangular this Friday, from 9:30 p.m., Spain and Slovenia. The game, right from the start, will have it all with a spectacular atmosphere and two teams full of stars. Without also, it will be marked by the absences of this last week. While Aleksander Sekulic has lost Vlatko Cancer Due to a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee, Scariolo will not be able to count on Ricky Rubio.
And that is the first problem that the selector will have to solve. How do you replace the big team headlight? For now, Juan Núñez already occupies the place of the Catalan in the call. However, the unknowns arise in terms of the direction that there may be from the base position, the scoring ability or the game with the center offered by the ‘1’ of the Cleveland Cavaliers or the injured Lorenzo Brown.
With neither of them available, the pressure and spotlights fall on other players called to lead the course of the selection. One who wants to make up for his almost blank year in Juancho Hernangómez. The 27 points against Venezuela showed that he is called, with the regularity that such responsibility demands, to be one of the visible heads of this change of generation. His brother Willy, Sergio Llull, Rudy Fernándezthe newcomer Santi Aldama… gallons are not lacking to enjoy in Malaga.
However, if there is a name to highlight is Alberto Díaz. The man from Malaga returns home, in front of his fans, after living a magical year at the Martín Carpena. The Unicaja captain will be the great host of the event and will do so with many more gallons than those it had in the European past. Ricky’s loss requires one more plus because he will have to take a step forward on the track. It is possible that he is not enough to be an emblem in changing the games from the defense, but rather the team will need you in more facets. This course with Ibon Navarro has helped him evolve and he will have to prove it to be vital.
Doncic, the great FIBA danger
in front will be the great threat, par excellence, of FIBA basketball: Luke Doncic. Slovenia does not arrive with the best feelings after losing their two games against Greece and winning against Montenegro, but the truth is that, as always, they must be taken into account. With renewed airs and the objective of leaving behind the setback in the Eurobasket, the Slovenians are looking forward to this centenary to dispel doubts about their ability to compete for gold. A possibility that you always have to count on if that team has Doncic.
So with the United States waiting, everything is ready to witness the Spain-Slovenia, the match that will open an appointment for the history of basketball and with Málaga and the Martín Carpena as a backdrop.
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