Team US barely escaped with an overtime win in today's game against Turkey 93-92 at the FIBA World Cup. Turkey played an exceptional game for the majority of the time and had a win pretty much in their hands, however, they missed 4 free throws in a row at the end of the game which could have sealed the deal.
This game was probably the best on the FIBA World Cup so far and it had everything you would expect from a great basketball game. Even though Turkey has a couple of solid NBA players on their roster and a good core of supporting players, it was predicted before the game this would be another easy win for the USA.
At one point during the second quarter, the US even had a 15 point advantage but that didn't discourage the opposing team who's coaching staff made some brilliant changes on both ends of the floor that resulted in a comeback.
On defense, Turkey switched to a zone defense which obviously disrupted the entire flow of the game for the US. At some point, the Turkish team played a small-ball lineup, which resulted in getting outrebounded by the US quite a bit,however, the Turkish head coach decided to switch things up and introduced a much bigger lineup at the end of the second quarter.
The US had a tremendous amount of luck after Turkish players Cedi Osman and Dogus Balbay went 0-4 from the line with Turkey being up by one point in the finals seconds of overtime. Nevertheless, after the game, Gregg Popovich admitted it was a great game and that the US will accept the win.
“It was a heck of a game. As we all know, it was anybody’s game. We will accept the win.”
The US almost jeopardized their 54 game winning streak at major tournaments and it was once again evident they are beatable. There are several other teams even better than Turkey on this tournament so the US will definitely have to make some adjustments in order to win the FIBA World Cup.