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Group G, competing at Indonesia Arena in Jakarta, features the reigning World Cup champion Spain. Despite an average pre-tournament tour, the Spaniards are the favorite to top the group.
Longtime competitor Brazil is challenging Spain for the top spot at the FIBA Basketball World Cup. The 2022 FIBA Americup runners-up aren't sporting their most talented basketball generation, but they maintain an impressive mix of rising stars and veterans to spur them on.
Rounding out the group are Iran and Cote d'Ivoire. Iran makes the World Cup for the fourth time in their history and for the fourth consecutive time. Cote d'Ivoire return to the World Cup after finishing 31st in 2019.
Odds taken from FanDuel Sportsbook on August 21, 2023.
26 August 2023: Iran vs Brazil (5:45 AM EST)
26 August 2023: Spain vs Cote d'Ivoire (9:30 AM EST)
28 August 2023: Cote d'Ivoire vs Iran (5:45 AM EST)
28 August 2023: Brazil vs Spain (9:30 AM EST)
30 August 2023: Cote d'Ivoire vs Brazil (5:45 AM EST)
30 August 2023: Iran vs Spain (9:30 AM EST)
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FIBA World Ranking: 1
Odds to win the World Cup: +1600 BET HERE
Odds to win Group G: -310 BET HERE
FIBA World Cup Appearances: 13
FIBA World Cup All-Time Record: 71-29 (.710)
Best World Cup Finish: 1 (2006, 2019)
Head Coach: Sergio Scariolo
Key Players: Willy Hernangomez, Juancho Hernangomez, Rudy Fernandez
NBA Players: Santi Aldama (MEM), Usman Garuba (ATL)
While they are the reigning FIBA World Cup champions, Spain secured qualification through the second round of the European Qualifying phase. They were brilliant through that run, winning 10 of 12 games. Led by longtime head coach Sergio Scariolo, Spain has maintained its quality despite having fewer NBA-level talents than in years past.
Leading the way for Spain are the Hernangomez brothers Willy and Juancho. Willy is coming from an MVP-winning Eurobasket campaign, while Juancho, who now plays in Greece, was the MVP of the Eurobasket Final. They'll also be supported by Spain's talisman guard Rudy Fernandez, at 38 years old, is still one of the world's more threatening players from range.
Spain is rightly expected to top Group G. While Brazil may trouble them, they should be comfortable with their inside-outside play. Brazil is the likeliest team to challenge them, but Spain's overall quality should be able to top Group G.
FIBA World Ranking: 13
Odds to win the World Cup: +12000
Odds to win Group G: +230 BET HERE
FIBA World Cup Appearances: 19
FIBA World Cup All-Time Record: 87-57 (.604)
Best World Cup Finish: 1 (1959, 1963)
Head Coach: Gustavo de Conti
Key Players: Raul Neto, Marcelo Huertas, Bruno Caboclo
NBA Players: Raul Neto (CLE)
Brazil is one of two nations in FIBA World Cup history to qualify for every iteration of the World Cup. Despite missing out on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, a change in coaching vaulted Brazil back into the world basketball picture and the FIBA World Cup.
Leading the way for Brazil this tournament is the backcourt duo of Raul Neto and Marcelo Huertas. The combined playmaking ability of Neto and Huertas makes Brazil one of the more dangerous offensive teams. The inside-outside threat of Bruno Caboclo'll support them.
Brazil's talent doesn't match the likes of Spain in Group G, particularly in the paint. They're the next-best team in Group G, but it'd take an unprecedented jump in defense and perimeter shooting to overtake the reigning champions.
FIBA World Ranking: 22
Odds to win the World Cup: +50000 BET HERE
Odds to win Group G: +5500 BET HERE
FIBA World Cup Appearances: 4
FIBA World Cup All-Time Record: 4-11 (.267)
Best World Cup Finish: 19 (2010)
Head Coach: Hakan Demir
Key Players: Hamed Haddadi, Behnam Yakhchali, Arsalan Kazemi
NBA Players: n/a
Iran returns to the FIBA Basketball World Cup, hoping to improve their winless showing at the Tokyo Olympics. It may have taken until the final day of the qualification window, but Iran booked their ticket to Indonesia behind the efforts of some regular contributors.
Leading the way for Iran is a national legend in Hamed Haddadi, the 7'2 center who has appeared at every World Cup for Iran. He'll be supported by Arsalan Kazemi and Behnam Yakhchali, who combine for a capable inside-outside threat. There are questions about how Iran will play without star guard Mohammad Jamshidi, who was left out of the squad.
Iran is an organized team that plays through their legendary center Hamed Haddadi. However, their lack of depth and inconsistent perimeter play will cause them issues with the top contenders in the group.
FIBA World Ranking: 42
Odds to win the World Cup: +50000 BET HERE
Odds to win Group G: +10000 BET HERE
FIBA World Cup Appearances: 5
FIBA World Cup All-Time Record: 1-21 (.045)
Best World Cup Finish: 13 (1982, 1986)
Head Coach: Dejan Prokic
Key Players: Vafessa Fofana, Solo Diabate, Maxence Diadet
NBA Players: n/a
Cote d'Ivoire join the FIBA Basketball World Cup for the fifth time in their country's history. They worked through the FIBA Africa Qualifiers, going 6-0 in Group C against Angola, Guinea, and Central African Republic and 8-2 in the final round against Angola, Cape Verde, Guinea, and Uganda.
Leading the team will be Vafessa Fofana, who previously ed Les Elephants a the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup. Most recently, Fofana led Cote d'Ivoire to silver at Afrobasket 2021, averaging 12.0 points and 10.7 rebounds per game. He'll be supported by guards Solo Diabate and Maxence Diadet, who will be Les Elephants' main threats from outside.
Ivory Coast looks like a rising squad out of Africa, but they're missing the quality to challenge for a place in the next round. Lacking a competitive frontcourt, Cote d'Ivoire doesn't have the interior presence to make an impact in Group G.
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Spain is the highest-ranked team in Group G, sitting first overall in the FIBA Rankings.
Group G will play games in Indonesia, specifically in Indonesia Arena in Jakarta.
Spain and Brazil are tied for the highest finish of any team in Group G at the FIBA Basketball World Cup. Both countries finished first twice at the World Cup, with Brazil winning in 1959 and 1963 and Spain winning in 2006 and 2019.
There are potentially three NBA players competing in Group G of the FIBA World Cup: Raul Neto (CLE), Santi Aldama (MEM), and Usman Garuba (ATL).
Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.
Email: [email protected]More info on Christian Jope
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