USA vs. Bahamas - Things To Know
The USA opens the third and final FIBA AmeriCup Qualifying window with games against Bahamas on Friday, 4:30 p.m. EST, and Mexico on Saturday at 5 p.m. EST. Both games will be broadcast live on ESPN+.
The 2020-21 FIBA AmeriCup qualifiers feature 16 teams from the Americas zone divided into four groups of four teams. The top three finishing teams in each Group will earn a qualifying berth in the FIBA AmeriCup 2022 (2020-21 AmeriCup Qualifying Schedule/Results).
FIBA AmeriCup qualifying consists of three windows, each window features teams playing two games.
The first AmeriCup qualifying window was held Feb. 20-24, 2020. The USA opened play with an 83-70 win over Puerto Rico in San Juan and followed that up with a 95-73 victory against Puerto Rico on Feb. 23 in Washington, D.C.
In window two, held November 29-30, 2020, in Indianapolis, Indiana, the USA improved its record to 4-0 after recording convincing wins over Bahamas (99-59) and Mexico (94-78).
Here are some things to know about Friday's USA-Bahamas FIBA AmeriCup qualifying game.
The 2021 February USA AmeriCup Qualifying Team (USA Roster):
Former NBA coach Joe Prunty is head coach of the February 2021 USA AmeriCup Qualifying Team, and assisting Prunty on the U.S. bench will be experienced USA Basketball coaches Othella Harrington and Yale University head coach James Jones.
“This is a tremendous honor and an exciting opportunity. It means a lot to me be a part of USA Basketball and represent our country. I’m looking forward to working with Sean Ford (USA Basketball men’s national team director), Othella Harrington, James Jones, and the entire USA Basketball staff,” said Prunty.
The USA roster includes Cat Barber (Free Agent/North Carolina State); Brandon Bass (Free Agent/LSU); Josh Boone (Free Agent/Connecticut); Chris Daniels (Free Agent/ Texas A&M Univ.–Corpus Christi); Will Davis II (Free Agent/UC Irvine); Treveon Graham (Free Agent/VCU); Ra’Shad James (Orasi Ravenna, Italy/Northwood); Joe Johnson (Free Agent/Arkansas); Dakota Mathias (Free Agent/Purdue); James Nunnally (Free Agent/UC Santa Barbara); Jordan Sibert (Free Agent/Dayton); Isaiah Thomas (Free Agent/Washington); and Tre’Shawn Thurman (Free Agent/Nevada).
Coach Prunty on what he expects from the Bahamas AmeriCup Qualifying Team:
"We’re excited to get on the floor and compete against an opponent as opposed to going against each other. This Bahamas team is a really talented group and it has a very good combination of players from the previous two windows so it will be a very different team than what we saw in November. We’re expecting they’ll have a lot of 3-point shooters so we’ve got to defend the 3-point line. We’ve got to be able to rebound the long rebounds and we have to do a great job or rebounding the ball. We feel like if we can get our stops, defend the 3 and rebound, then we can get out and get some easy baskets in transition."
Coach Prunty on what he has liked about the team during the training sessions prior to this Game:
"I’ve liked how well we as a team have played together, you can see them talking to each other constantly. We’ve done a really nice job as we changed lineups, guys are working well with one another so it’s not just this group and that group. We’ve had enough looks where we’ve had different combinations of guys being out there and they’ve connected really well. It a tribute to them, their skills, their ability to communicate and obviously practice is different from a game. We like what we’ve seen but it’s got to translate into the game as well."
The USA and Bahamas have a limited playing history but did meet during the November 2020 AmeriCup Qualifying Tournament for the first time ever in a FIBA or FIBA Americas senior level event. The USA Men’s AmeriCup Qualifying Team represented its country well with a dominant 99-59 victory over the Bahamas on Nov. 29 at the Convention Center in Indianapolis, Indiana. The USA shot 51.4% from the field (38-74 FGs) and 41.4% from 3-point (12-29 3pt FGs), dished out 22 assists, committed just seven turnovers and 11 players put points on the board. The USA was led by Amile Jefferson's 17 points and 11 rebounds; Tyler Hall was 4-of-6 from 3-point on his way to 12 points and four assists; John Jenkins finished with 12 points on 4-of-6 shooting from 3-point; Levi Randolph added 11 points and seven rebounds; and Travis Trice contributed 10 points and six assists. Bahamas was led by D’Shon Taylor's 12 points, four rebounds and two assists.
Overall, the U.S. is 1-0 against Bahamas in FIBA Americas U16 games (121- 52 in 2013), 1-0 against Bahamas in FIBA Americas U18 games (115-51 in 2008) and 2-0 versus the Bahamas in Pan American Games (116-58 in 1991 and 113-55 in 1975) and 1-0 in FIBA AmeriCup Qualifying games.
The Bahamas enters the third window of AmeriCup Qualifying with a 1-3 record. Falling 75-61 at Mexico on Feb. 20, 2020, the Bahamas bounced back three days later to take a 76-59 win at home in Nassau on Feb. 23, 2020. After falling 99-59 to the U.S., Puerto Rico edged Bahamas 91-85 to close out the second window.
Expected to lead Bahamas is D’Shon Taylor, a 6-5 forward who played two seasons at Norfolk State and has averaged 14.5 points game for the Bahamas. Travis Munnings comes into the game averaging 13.0 ppg., 6-6 Nashad Mackey is scoring 12.5 ppg. and 6-6 David Nesbitt is adding 11.0 ppg. Also powering Bahamas is 6-6 Mychel Thompson, a 32-year-old forward and the son of Mychal Thompson, a No. 1 overall pick in the 1978 NBA draft and a 14-year veteran who played for the Portland Trail Blazers, Los Angeles Lakers and San Antonio Spurs. Thompson is the older brother of Klay Thompson, the U.S. Olympic gold medalist who stars for the Golden State Warriors.
A Historic Meeting In San Juan:
The USA Basketball Men's National Team last played in San Juan on Feb. 20, 2020, in the first window of 2020-21 FIBA AmeriCup Qualifying.
The 2003 USA Basketball Men's National Team finished a perfect 10-0, won the gold medal at the FIBA Americas Olympic Qualifying Tournament in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and most importantly, qualified the USA men for the 2004 Olympics. The USA showing in San Juan was a team effort that saw six of the squad's 12 players finish averaging in double digits in scoring. The USA was led by center Tim Duncan, who averaged team highs of 15.6 ppg. and 8.0 rpg., Allen Iverson posted 14.3 ppg., while Vince Carter and Tracy McGrady each accounted for 12.6 ppg., Jermaine O'Neal added 11.2 ppg. and 6.2 rpg., and Ray Allen finished averaging 10.6 ppg. Jason Kidd and Michael Bibby led the USA in assists, averaging 5.0 apg. and 4.8 apg., respectively.
The USA also visited San Juan in 1999 for the FIBA Americas Olympic Qualifying Tournament. The 1999 USA Basketball Men's National Team was also successful in San Juan, finishing 10-0 and earning qualifying berth for the 2000 Olympics. In 1999 the USA defeated Puerto Rico 115-76. Gary Payton paced the high scoring USA offense averaging 16.0 ppg. and 4.6 assists, while Tim Duncan tossed in 12.7 ppg. and team highs of 9.1 rpg. and 2.4 blocked shots. Kevin Garnett averaged 11.9 ppg., 7.0 rpg. and 2.2 blocked shots a game, Tim Hardaway scored 11.9 ppg., Allan Houston added 10.4 ppg. Guard Jason Kidd scored 7.4 ppg. and led the U.S. in assists, handing out 6.8 a game.
Already qualified for the 1994 World Championship by virtue of winning the 1992 Olympic Games, USA Basketball sent a 12-member team of players from the Continental Basketball Association (CBA) to the 1993 Tournament of the Americas. Directing the USA team was Mike Thibault, head coach of the 1993 CBA champion Omaha Racers. Under Thibault’s hand, the USA squad rolled to a 6-1 overall record and claimed the tournament’s top finish and the accompanying gold medal by eliminating host Puerto Rico (109-95) in the gold medal game.
USA Team Notes:
Five of the 13 USA players boast of prior USA Basketball experience. Will Davis II was a finalist for the 2017 USA Basketball Men’s AmeriCup Team and participated in the team’s August 2017 training camp; Treveon Graham was a member of the 2013 USA World University Games Team; Ra’Shad James was a finalist for the 2017 USA Basketball Men’s AmeriCup Team and participated in the August 2017 training camp; Joe Johnson was a member of the 2006 USA National Team and the bronze medalist 2006 USA World Cup Team, 2006 USA National Team, 2000 USA World Championship For Young Men Qualifying Team and the 1999 USA Nike Hoop Summit Team; and Isaiah Thomas was a member of the 2018 USA Basketball Men’s National Team and attended the team’s minicamp.
Eight of the U.S. players have NBA regular season experience: Brandon Bass (758 NBA regular-season games); Josh Boone (256 NBA regular-season games); Treveon Graham (180 NBA regular-season games); Joe Johnson (1,276 NBA regular-season games); Dakota Mathias (8 NBA regular season games); James Nunnally (28 NBA regular season games); Jordan Sibert (1 NBA regular season game); and Isaiah Thomas (525 NBA regular-season games).
Nine of the USA players have played internationally – Cat Barber (Israel and Italy); Brandon Bass (China); Josh Boone (Australia, China, Estonia, Philippines, Russia and Turkey); Chris Daniels (Argentina, China, Korea, Lebanon and Philippines); Will Davis II (Canada, Cyprus, Greece and Romania); Ra’Shad James (Germany, Italy, Poland, Slovenia, South Korea and Turkey); Dakota Mathias (Spain); James Nunnally (China, Greece, Italy, Israel, Puerto Rico, Spain and Turkey); Jordan Sibert (Germany and Greece).
Nine players boast of NBA G League experience: Cat Barber (149 games); Josh Boone (9 games); Will Davis II (98 games); Treveon Graham (47 games); Ra’Shad James; (108 games); Dakota Mathias (42 games); James Nunnally (84 games); Jordan Sibert (126 games); and Tre’Shawn Thurman (38 games).
USA - Bahamas Information
The game is available via ESPN+
LiveStats: USA vs. Bahamas Live Stats