The 2014 FIBA World Cup from Spain has ended. The USA has emerged victorious from the fourth straight major international tournament, including a streak of 63 wins in a row, according to USA Today’s Adi Joseph. For me, the tournament was somewhat disappointing because we didn’t get to see the heavy-weight fighters, Spain and USA, go toe-to-toe in the final.
Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on what way you look at it, as a Nic Batum fan I preferred to see France win, France knocked out Spain in the quarterfinals, which put a a damper on the competitiveness of the tournament after that point. There were plenty of fireworks still, though.
France scored 39 points in the fourth quarter and nearly pulled off an amazing comeback against Serbia in the quarterfinals. In the third-place game, France and Lithuania each shot a billion free throws in the last minute of the game. Each team was essentially fouling each other to close out the game, a strategy used often in European basketball. The losing team fouls to get the ball back and hope the winning team misses (normal strategy).
And, the winning team fouls to prevent the losing team from making a three-pointer. Crazy, I know, but it also makes sense. I could spend all day writing about my favorite moments of the FIBA World Cup, but instead I’ve compiled ten major takeaways from the world cup that will impact the NBA, the next international tournament, or you’re general view of the universe. It’s mostly about the NBA, but it gets a little philosophical toward the end. Enjoy!