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Germany Ends USA’s FIBA World Cup Run In Semifinals


Team USA placed a wager when it put together its lineup and chose its strategy for this World Cup cycle. Although the Americans did their best to set the deck in their favor in an effort to win the wager, the truth is that they knew going in that they had left themselves vulnerable.

That bet—that the size discrepancy could be balanced out by other characteristics—has fallen through. In the global semifinals on Friday, Germany, another European team that towered over the Americans, took advantage of the situation and defeated Team USA 113-111.

It will deprive Americans of the gold in the competition for a second time in a row. They will be content to compete against Canada, which lost to Serbia in the second semifinal of the day, for bronze on Sunday (ESPN+, 4:45 a.m. ET).

The Americans engaged in a competitive and energetic contest. Just like it did against Lithuania last weekend in the previous loss, the team was simply too small and it constantly showed.

Germany simply had more opportunities to score since it frequently recovered the ball after a miss. Team USA scored eight second-chance points, but the Germans scored 25 thanks to 12 offensive rebounds they grabbed.

However, they didn’t frequently miss. As a point guard who can manage ball pressure from the United States, Dennis Schroder is a weapon when he’s in the mood to pass. It resulted in a stream of high-percentage looks when coupled with the German height advantage.

After Germany increased its lead to as much as 12, the U.S. trimmed it down to one in the final two minutes. But the American assault was stopped by Andreas Obst’s final 3-pointer, one of his 24 points and four 3-pointers.

When the United States turned on screen-and-rolls, certain inconsistencies were produced. The Germans got some decent looks from the outside as a result of the Americans trying to pack the paint defensively in an effort to address the size issue, and they really made the Americans pay by making 13 of 30 3-pointers.

As a result, Germany scored 50 points in the paint and shot a scorching 58% overall.

The German NBA big men feasted in addition to Schroder, who finished with 17 points. Daniel Theis scored 21 points, while Franz Wagner finished with 22.

All throughout the competition, Kerr began out modestly, starting Josh Hart at power forward and Jaren Jackson Jr. at center. Then, he continued to play small, as he had throughout the competition, starting Paolo Banchero as a reserve big man and benching Walker Kessler, the only real center chosen for the team.

With this alignment, Team USA can win and has won, in the appropriate situations. However, one of those elements must be a defensive strategy that generates speedy breaks.

But there was no realistic margin for mistake. There was simply too much size to counteract, even with a very fortunate draw that offered it travel and opponent advantages.

Brandon Ingram, who was unable to participate due to an upper respiratory infection, was replaced by Team USA. It was the team’s first game missed during the competition due to an illness or injury.

Anthony Edwards led Team USA, and Mikal Bridges scored 17 with 23 points.

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