USA vs. Panama - Things To Know
Here are the things to know about Friday's USA-Panama FIBA World Cup Qualifying matchup in Greensboro, North Carolina.
The USA Basketball Men’s World Cup Qualifying Team carries a 8-2 record into its Feb. 22 second-round game versus 4-6 Panama. Scheduled to tip at 7 p.m. (EDT), the game will be broadcast on ESPN+.
FIBA Basketball World Cup Qualifying Update
Seven teams from FIBA Americas will qualify for the 2019 FIBA World Cup and four qualifying berths have been earned by Argentina, Canada, USA and Venezuela. Additionally, the third place finishing teams in second round Groups E and F will earn a qualifying spot, as will the best rated fourth place team from Groups E and F.
Coach Van Gundy On What He Likes About This USA Team:
"I like our guys. I think it’s a short period of time, they sacrificed their all-star break to come represent the country, so, I have great gratitude for their sacrifice. They’ve worked hard, I have no idea how we’ll play but I’m sure we’re going to play very, very hard and represent the country well.
"I know our guys are going to put out a great effort. I don’t know if we’re going to play great, you know we’ve been together just five or six days and this will be our first game together, so there will be some ebbs and flows, but hopefully we play really, really hard, and I think we will."
Coach Van Gundy's Overview of the USA-Panama Game:
"We played them in 2017 in the AmeriCup and then we played them in the fall in September, and the improvement they made with their roster, who they got to join them, was immense. So the roster is a lot better and the continuity of these teams because they’re playing in all these windows, they have improved every step of the way. They continue to get better and better and most of their players played here in the states and played very, very well.
"I think we know how we want to play, whether we can do that through the course of the 40 minutes tomorrow remains to be seen. But I think the biggest adaptation for our guys is the FIBA ball, the FIBA rules and the amount of contact that is allowed in a FBA game. Unless you’ve gone through it, this is 90s playoff basketball. This is going into the lane and risk getting your teeth knock out, it’s that physical."
Coach Van Gundy’s Keys to the USA-Panama Game:
"(Javier) Carter and (Trevor) Gaskins and (Michael) Hicks - I think those three guys are competitive, they’re skilled and they’re tough, so, we have to be ready for that. Then it always goes to rebounding. In these games, especially first games in windows, sometimes it can be a little raggedy from a shooting standpoint, so you’re going to have to rebound the ball."
Coach Van Gundy's on Coaching the USA World Cup Qualifying Teams:
"I said it’s one of the great honors of a lifetime to be able to coach a United States basketball team with that USA across their chest, hear the national anthem, know all the people who have gone before us have set the table for us and USA Basketball. And I’m so happy for these G League players get to participate in these events because they are excellent players and we’ve had some great, great people represent with us."
Panama dropped a hard-fought game to Puerto Rico in its last outing, falling 71-70 at home on Dec. 2. The loss left Panama with a 4-6 record and eliminated the nation from contention for a World Cup qualifying berth. Trevor Gaskins has led Panama, starting in all 10 games and averaging 12.4 points and 4.8 assists a game. Javier Carter is averaging 11.3 points and 6.0 rebounds in his 10 appearances, and Michael Hicks is adding 10.5 points a game in eight games.
Panama's Group A First Round Results
Uruguay 86, Panama 73
Argentina 68, Panama 59
Panama 82, Paraguay 62
Panama 86, Uruguay 75
Argentina 87, Panama 62
Panama 74, Paraguay 67
Panama's Group E Second Round Results
Puerto Rico 82, Panama 73
Panama 76, Mexico 65
USA 78, Panama 48
Puerto Rico 71, Panama 70
Panama @ USA
Panama @ Mexico
Last Time Around - USA 78, Panama 48
An outstanding smothering defensive effort and balanced scoring propelled the USA to an important 78-48 road victory over Panama on Sept.17, 2018, in Panama City, Panama. The win was the USA’s second in as many games in the September second-round window of FIBA World Cup Qualifying play. Reggie Hearn led the balanced U.S. scoring attack with 12 points, Dwayne Baconadded 10 points, while Travis Trice, Ben Moore and Jameel Warney each accounted for eight points. Controlling the glass with a 50-34 margin, Henry Ellenson grabbed 11 boards, Warney added eight and Derrick White added six rebounds. The USA finished the night shooting 42.6 percent from the field, including 9-of-27 from 3-point. Panama was held to a cold 31.1 percent from the field and made just 5-of-30 from 3-point. The U.S. forced 17 Panama turnovers and the USA committed just 12.
USA Basketball teams are 21-1 all-time versus Panama in international play at all levels. The United States posted a dominating 78-48 win over Panama on Sept. 17, 2018, in FIBA Americas World Cup Qualifying play. The U.S., under Van Gundy's direction, also defeated Panama 97-56 in the 2017 AmeriCup during preliminary round play in Uruguay. Panama’s lone victory over the United States came in the 2007 Pan America Games by a 75-67 margin.
The U.S. is 1-0 against Panama in Olympic games; 1-0 in World Cup games; and 5-0 in FIBA Americas Championships contests.
Next Up - USA to face Argentina on Feb. 25 In Final Second Round Road Game
Following the USA-Panama game Friday, the USA will conclude FIBA World Cup Qualifying with its final second-round game versus Argentina on Feb. 25 (7 p.m. EST) in Greensboro. The USA fell to Argentina 80-73 in La Rioja, Argentina, on Nov. 29, 2018.
FIBA World Cup Qualifying Results
Check out the scores and standings for the FIBA Americas World Cup Qualifying. 2017-19 Americas World Cup Qualifiers Schedule/Results
Following conclusion of the final window of World Cup Qualifying games that take place Feb. 22-26, who will qualify for the 2019 FIBA World Cup will be finalized.
Currently, 18 teams are already officially assured of a berth in the 2019 World Cup, including Angola, Argentina, Australia, Canada, China, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Lithuania, New Zealand, Nigeria, South Korea, Tunisia, USA and Venezuela. China has also qualified as the host country.
Below are the current second round standings:
Africa (top 2 from each group and best 3rd place team – 5 teams total)
Central African Rep. 4-5
Cote d'Ivoire 4-5
Americas (top 3 from each group and best 4th place team – 7 teams total)
Puerto Rico 6-4
Dominican Rep. 6-4
Asia (top 3 from each group and best 4th place team – 7 teams total)
*New Zealand 9-1
*South Korea 8-2
EUROPE (Top 3 from each group – 12 teams total)
*Czech Rep. 7-3
Bosnia and Herz. 2-8
* According to FIBA, team has officially qualified for 2019 FIBA World Cup
# Team has officially qualified as the host country
The New World-Wide Qualifying Process
Under FIBA’s new competition system, a total of 80 national teams from FIBA’s four regions of Africa, Americas, Asia and Europe initially competed in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Qualifying first round looking to earn a qualifying berth into the 32-team 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup competition that will be held Aug. 31-Sept. 15 in China.
The FIBA World Cup Qualifying games are being used to qualify 31 of the 32 nations that will compete in the 2019 FIBA World Cup. China automatically qualified as the host nation of the 2019 FIBA World Cup.
Five teams will qualify from Africa, seven teams from the Americas, seven teams from Asia and 12 teams from Europe.
The current two-time defending World Cup champion USA men have participated in 17 FIBA World Cups and have collected 12 medals - five gold medals (1954, 1986, 1994, 2010 and 2014), three silver medals (1950, 1959 and 1982) and four bronze medals (1974, 1990, 1998 and 2006). USA teams own an overall record of 123-27.
Results from the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 will qualify seven teams for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Additionally, Olympic host, Japan, automatically qualified, and the final four nations will qualify through four FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments that will be held in 2020 in advance of the Olympics.
For more information on the new World Cup Qualifying process, check out our crash course here: WCQ Crash Course
USA - Panama Game Information
The game is available via ESPN+
LiveStats: USA vs. Panama Live Stats