Credit: FIBA Media
Credit FIBA Media

Canada (1-0) started their FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament group games with a win over Greece (0-1).

Player of the Game
R.J.  Barrett
EFF
17
R.J. Barrett
Points 22
Accuracy 8-14
Rebounds 5
Assists 3

The game was competitive for the most part, but in the end, Nick Nurse's team won 97-91 (19-23, 27-27, 28-21, 23-20).

Andrew Wiggins (23 points, 6 rebounds), RJ Barrett (22 points, 8 rebounds), and Alexander-Walker (18 points) paved the way for the tournament hosts, who overcame 17 turnovers.

Mitoglou had 14 points and 10 rebounds for Greece, while Papagiannis added 11. Calathes and Sloukas put up 24 points with 17 assists altogether, but there was no help from the supporting cast from the moment Canada took the lead.

Rick Pitino paired Calathes with Sloukas, with Greece going for early offense and shots in transition. Canada managed to issue a response near the basket, where they had a clear advantage. Despite the high rhythm of the game, the scoreline was kept low. A Sloukas three made it 23-19 for Greece at the end of the first quarter.

Pitino's men got the best out of Sloukas's passing skills to reach a 7-point advantage (28-21). However, the hosts had no difficulty in keeping up and quickly evened the score (35-35).

Alexander-Walker's shots were a constant threat, but Canada's turnovers, combined with Kavvadas's presence in the paint, brought Greece back up by eight (48-40). Despite three airball shots by Harris Giannopoulos, Mitoglou was solid on both ends. By the end of the first half, all Greece players had scored.

Papagiannis exited the floor with his third personal foul, and Canada happily obliged, crushing the boards and coming within one (61-60). Andrew Wiggins hit a big three to give Canada their first lead (65:67), which they were able to hold on to until the end of the third quarter (71-74).

The final chapter was written entirely by the hosts. While Greece went 0 for 7 from beyond the arc in 12 minutes in the second half, Dwight Powell and RJ Barrett gave their team a double-digit margin (71-81).

Nevertheless, the Greeks were not ready to go down since Calathes whistled a comeback. Papagiannis dunked, Giannopoulos made a long-distance three, and Greece cut down the deficit to 4 (91-95) with 53 seconds to go. Nick Nurse's squad only needed two free throws from RJ Barrett to seal the victory.

Canada: Andrew Wiggins 23 (6 TO), R.J. Barrett 22, Nickeil Alexander-Walker 18, Dwight Powell 12 (7 REB).

Greece: Konstantinos Mitoglou 14 (10 REB), Nick Calathes 12 (9 AST), Kostas Sloukas 12 (8 AST), Georgios Papagiannis 11, Leonidas Kaselakis 10.

Highlights:

UP NEXT

Canada: will play China on Wednesday.

Greece: will play China on July 1.

Show comments
Thank you for reporting a comment

Add comment
Nickname:      
  Symbols left:     Total comments: 0

We have the right to remove comments which are offensive, contains abusive language, or violates other rules of the website
Graikijos rinktinÄ—
Kanados rinktinÄ—
49%
34/70
Field goals
55%
36/65
31
Rebounds
35
24
Assists
19
11
Steals
6
84
Efficiency
91
14
Turnovers
17

Best players

Konstantinos  Mitoglou
14 PTS
6/13 FG
0/0 FT
Andrew  Wiggins
23 PTS
9/16 FG
2/2 FT
Konstantinos  Mitoglou
10 REB
10 DREB
0 OREB
Dwight  Powell
7 REB
2 DREB
5 OREB
Nick  Calathes
9 As
5 TO
28 MIN
Cory  Joseph
6 As
2 TO
28 MIN
Konstantinos  Mitoglou
19 EFF
50% 2P%
40% 3P%
R.J.  Barrett
17 EFF
88% 2P%
17% 3P%