2023 FIBA World Cup Preview: Who will win the gold medal?

How the FIBA World Cup tournament works, who could win, who we think is going to win, and other storylines to watch. Read all that and more in Fansided’s 2023 FIBA World Cup preview.

2023 FIBA World Cup - USA Men's National Team v Puerto Rico
2023 FIBA World Cup - USA Men's National Team v Puerto Rico / Ethan Miller/GettyImages
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Franz Wagner
Apr 2, 2023; Orlando, Florida, USA; Orlando Magic forward Franz Wagner (22) passes the ball against / Rich Storry-USA TODAY Sports

Group E: Josh Giddey, Lauri Markannen, Franz Wagner, and Yuta Watanabe will be trying to lead their countries to the next phase of play

Australia

Head Coach: Brian Goorjian

NBA Players: Jack White, Mattise Thybulle, Patty Mills, Joe Ingles, Josh Green, Josh Giddey, Dante Exum, Dyson Daniels, Xavier Cooks

Other Notable Players: Whoever else makes the final roster. Australia is deep.

Do we expect them to advance? Yes

Why or why not? This is a competitive group but Australia should still prevail. The opening game against Finland will be decisive. Their biggest weakness is lack of size, Jock Landale is out to rest his injured ankle. They could get obliterated on the backboards. 

Finland

Head Coach: Lassi Tuovi

NBA Players: Lauri Markannen

Other Notable Players: Federiko Federiko, Miro Little, Olivier Nkamhoua, Sasu Salin, Elias Valtonen

Do we expect them to advance? Probably not. 

Why or why not? Markannen is awesome in FIBA play but he’s going to have to find a way to will this team to victory against Australia or Germany, two of the best teams in the tournament. That will be a very difficult challenge.

Germany

Head Coach: Gordon Herbert

NBA Players: Dennis Schroder, Franz Wagner, Mo Wagner, Daniel Theis

Other Notable Players: Johannes Voigtmann, Isaac Bonga, Niels Giffey, Maodo Lo, Andreas Obst

Do we expect them to advance? Yes.

Why or why not? Australia has much more NBA talent but the Germans have two players who apply a lot of rim pressure - Schroder and Franz Wagner - who open up the floor for their shooters. Their connectivity is stronger, but just like Australia, they can’t have a bad game against Finland. 

Japan

Head Coach: Tom Hovasse

NBA Players: Yuta Watanabe

Other Notable Players: Keisei Tominaga, Yudai Baba, Yuki Kawamura

Do we expect them to advance? No.

Why or why not? If Japan had Hachmiure and Watanabe you might be able to talk yourself into a potential upset over one of the teams in this group that could make things interesting, but without Hachimura it’s hard to see them even beating Finland.