FIBA World Cup

Dillon Brooks clutch as Canada edges USA for breakthrough bronze in FIBA World Cup

Delfin Dioquino

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Dillon Brooks clutch as Canada edges USA for breakthrough bronze in FIBA World Cup

BREAKTHROUGH. Dillon Brooks in action for Canada against the USA in the 2023 FIBA World Cup.


Dillon Brooks and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander carry the fight as Canada beats the USA for the first time in the FIBA World Cup

MANILA, Philippines – There is always a first time for everything, especially for Canada.

Canada finally beat USA in the FIBA World Cup and scored a breakthrough bronze medal after eking out a heart-pumping 127-118 overtime win at the Mall of Asia Arena on Sunday, September 10.

Dillon Brooks and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander carried the fight for the medal-hungry Canadians, who got the proverbial monkey off their backs after they lost to the Americans in all of their seven previous World Cup duels.

The victory also marked the first time Canada finished higher than the United States in World Cup history.

“What these guys did today, obviously it’s not perfect, but it’s good to learn when you win,” said Canada coach Jordi Fernandez.

“We’re here to show that we can do great things.”

Gilgeous-Alexander scattered 7 of his 31 points in the extra period as Canada got the job done after the USA forced overtime off a miraculous four-point play by Mikal Bridges in the waning moments of regulation.

The Americans trailed 107-111 with four seconds left in the fourth quarter before Bridges split his free throws, picked up his own miss, and buried a fallaway three-pointer for the tie, 111-111.

Brooks turned in his best game of the tournament, churning out 39 points – the most for a player in a medal-winning game in World Cup history – on a scintillating 7-of-8 clip from three-point land.

“We didn’t defend well enough against Germany (in the semifinal) and Canada (in the battle for third), that’s the bottomline,” said USA coach Steve Kerr as the Americans failed to win a medal in consecutive World Cups for the first time in five decades.

The 127 points Canada scored were the most ever conceded by the USA in a World Cup game.

Kerr, though, credited his young wards for going all out despite the absence of key players Paolo Bachero, Brandon Ingram, and Jaren Jackson Jr. due to illness.

“Impressed with the way our guys fought, especially under these circumstances, and missing three key teammates,” said Kerr.

The last time the Americans failed to win a medal in consecutive World Cups was when they placed fourth in 1963, fourth in 1967, and fifth in 1970.

The Scores

Canada 127 – Brooks 39, Gilgeous-Alexander 31, Barrett 23, Olynyk 11, Dort 11, Alexander-Walker 5, Powell 4, Ejim 3, Edey 0, Scrubb 0.

USA 118 –Edwards 24, Reaves 23, Bridges 19, Portis 14, Brunson 13,  Hart 10, Haliburton 6, Kessler 6, Johnson 3.

Quarters: 34-25, 58-56, 91-82, 111-111 (reg), 127-118 (OT).


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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.