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Ricky Rubio’s Return to Basketball Overshadowed by Spain’s Loss to Latvia

Behind Spain-Latvia played in Zaragoza there was a match for the qualifying phase of Eurobasket 2025. More hidden was the revenge for the defeat in the World Cup, but several players remembered it and accepted it. However, everything was overshadowed by the presence of Ricky Rubio and his return to basketball. He did it in the run-up and also just before the game and during the clash that Spain ended up losing to Latvia, 75-79.

If anyone expected Scariolo to give him inconsequential minutes during the game, they were wrong. The coach made him re-debut in basketball as a starter for the national team and play the decisive minutes. He had seen him train very well and rewarded him. But as the Italian said about his player, he is far from his best form and that was noticeable during the match, although his final was spectacular.

Ricky finished with 11 points, 1 rebound and 5 assists in the 20 minutes he was on the court, missing the first 7 shots he attempted. Of course, his second appearance on the field coincided with the Spanish team’s comeback. With him in charge it was easier and two of his assists led to two dunks by Jaime Pradilla, the best of the team until then, especially fueled by the Barça player.

Latvia was not for parties

The fifth in the world did not want to be a guest at the party and began to be the protagonist very soon. With that fast game, accurate ball movement and outside shooting, the Latvians made a difference at the beginning, with a 14-23 lead at the end of the first quarter, or a 22-34 lead when they hit three consecutive triples midway through the second quarter. It was then that Ricky’s departure and the defensive improvement brought Spain closer right at halftime, 37-40.

After the restart, Latvia stretched again, especially due to the success of Grazulis and Lomazs, 37-46. Spain had to row again and they did so by increasing their defense by one or even two points, something that Scariolo asked for. This time with Alberto Díaz on the court, and Sáiz, Claver and Brizuela – a great game for the culé – the team reduced the score to 57-57 at the end of the third quarter with a basket by Brizuela. Spain fueled better with Alberto Díaz at the controls and with Brizuela at his side. True experts of what Windows are.

A free throw from Sáiz returned control of the game to Spain (60-59), which led from 7-5, with 7 minutes remaining. Scariolo trusted Ricky again with 4:44 left. Also in Pradilla, which was a nightmare for the Latvians.

Latvia held the result. At 2:18 they won 66-70 after Ricky’s first basket in the game and two more of his free throws made it 68-70. A loss by the El Masnou point guard led to Timma’s triple at 1:08 and Scariolo’s timeout. Latvia escaped again, 68-73.

The protagonist of the day and the week nailed a triple from the corner with 50 seconds, 71-73, to which Lomasz responded with another, 71-76, making the game uphill for the team. Ricky scored two of the three free kicks he had, 73-76. Zoriks missed two free throws and on the next possession he fouled Ricky. The Catalan missed both shots and Bertans did take advantage of one of the two shots he had, 73-77. An absurd foul by Rodions Kurucs gave Lopez-Aróstegui three shots. He scored two and missed the third. Timma ended up securing the victory for Latvia from 4.60.

2024-02-22 21:05:27
#Latvia #ruins #Ricky #Rubios #return #basketball

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