The reigning Olympic gold medalist, Team USA, will be flying to Manila next year to compete in the FIBA World Cup. This gives thousands of Filipinos the chance to see some of the biggest NBA stars live in a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
The co-hosts of the 2023 FIBA World Cup, the Philippines, Japan, and Indonesia, have all picked their “preferred” teams to play in the Group Stage of the tournament in their respective countries.
“Each host could select a preferred team based on commercial reasons, as their choice will have no impact on the integrity of the event or the draw process,” FIBA said in a statement.
From this, FIBA confirmed that the USA will be playing in the Philippines for the Group Stage. On the other hand, Slovenia will be playing in Japan, while Canada will compete in Indonesia.
In addition, given that the Philippines is the host nation for both the group and final stage of the entire tournament, the Philippine team will be part of Pot 1 for the World Cup draw along with the other top teams who have qualified.
Witnessing Team USA
The announcement that Team USA will be playing in the Philippines comes as good news to the countless basketball fans in the country, especially given that this gives them all the opportunity to watch some of the NBA’s top stars in action.
In 2019, USA sent some big names to the FIBA World Cup. Their roster for the tournament included Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Donovan Mitchell, and Marcus Smart.
On the other hand, Japan picked Slovenia to play in their country for the Group Stage, a team who boasts NBA star Luka Doncic on their roster. As for Canada, who will be playing in Indonesia, they are expected to call up Andrew Wiggins to the lineup.
As co-hosts of one of the biggest basketball tournaments in the world, the Philippines is in a unique spot this time around, both for Gilas and Filipino basketball fans.
For the upcoming 2023 edition, which stars are you hoping to see on our local basketball courts?
Banner image from Taylor Snow on Twitter.