Battle for Gold

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Americans, Australians, and Greece Headline List of FIBA Favourites

On September 1, the Basketball world collides in China for the 2019 FIBA World Cup.

This year’s tournament has the makings to be one of the most exciting ones yet as the reigning champion Americans come in depleted and off the heels of a heartbreaking tuneup loss to the Australians, marking their first loss in international play in over a decade. Nevertheless, Team USA remains an international powerhouse, but this time around, the competition is stronger than ever as the game of basketball continues to grow around the world at a rapid pace.

The Americans are entering the tournament as favourites and deservingly so, but the Australians present a deep and gritty challenge. Greece will be led by NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo, Serbia will feature Nikola Jokic and an assortment of versatile and talented NBA talent, while Spain and France, well, they’re still Spain and France – longstanding international powerhouses.

Of course, let’s not sleep on the big men of Lithuania and the athletic upstart Nigerian program.

A strong case can definitely be made that seven or eight teams can end up on top when all is said and done and that doesn’t even take into consideration all of the sneaky underdog nations that will be featured in this tournament.

The host country, China will boast home court advantage and will feature former NBA players Yi Jianlian and Zhou Qi while the Italians will be led by their two stars Marco Belinelli and Danilo Galinari. The well-coached Canadians will be without many of their big name players, but will still be led by Cory Joseph, Khem Birch and a couple of sneaky good shooters such as Brady Heslip and Kevin Pangos. Lastly, Dennis Schroder, Paul Zipser, Maxi Kleber and Daniel Theis will look to help Germany make some noise in Group G.

The point being, this tournament will be interesting and who really knows how it will end?

There will be blow outs and buzzer beating finishes. Iconic moments and upsets. And in just a few short weeks, a World Cup champion will be crowned.

With that being said, BallnRoll has put together it’s own power rankings list ahead of the highly anticipated tournament. Here are the top-10 rosters that have the biggest chance to leave China with FIBA gold!

10. Italy

9. Germany

8. Nigeria

7. Lithuania

6. France

5. Australia

Credit: FIBA

4. Spain

3. Serbia

Credit: FIBA

2. Greece

1. USA

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