Although the Canadian Men's National Team failed to advance to the Second Round of play at the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup, it still has important games to play in the Classification Round that seeds teams 17 through 32.
A finish of 23 or higher would keep Canada's Olympic hopes alive and the team's sense of urgency on Saturday reflected the game's importance.
With Jordan as its first opponent, Canada fired on all cylinders to earn an impressively dominant 126-71 victory. In the win, Canada knocked down 24 of its 44 3-point attempts (54.5%), breaking the World Cup record of 19 that was set twice by the United States National Team at the 1994 World Cup.
While 10 different Canadians knocked down at least one triple, it was Kyle Wiltjer that led the shooting clinic, knocking down seven of his nine attempts (77.8%) to finish with a game-high 29 points in just under 22 minutes of action. Wiltjer, who will play for Turkish club Turk Telecom this upcoming season, bounced back from a rough 1-for-7 3-point shooting performance in Canada's most recent win over Senegal.
For the tournament, Wiltjer is averaging 16.0 points per game and is now shooting 54.5% from deep thanks to his performance against Jordan.
Sacramento Kings guard Cory Joseph, sharpshooter Brady Heslip and former USPORTS standout Phil Scrubb each sank three triples apiece against Jordan to help contribute to Canada's record total in the win.
Canada had tied the previous record of 19 by the end of the third period and surpassed it convincingly in the final frame.
The proficient shooting display was the direct product of Canada's ball movement, as the team assisted on 37 of its 44 made field goals in the win. Canada's 37 assists also tie a World Cup single-game record that was set by Serbia this year.
Canada Basketball FACTS 👀- Canada Basketball (@CanBball) September 7, 2019
✔️ 126 Points
✔️44/75 = 59% Shooting
✔️ 37 Assists on 44 Baskets
✔️ 24 Three Pointers Made
✔️ All 12 Players Score #WeAreTeamCanada #CanadaBasketball #StandOnGuard #CanadaGotGame
Head coach Nick Nurse can't help but be pleased with the spacing and ball movement displayed by his team in a game with plenty of implications for the future.
Canada will take the floor again Monday for a Classification Round game against Dennis Schröder and the German National Team.
Coming off the momentum of a record-breaking performance, Canada will look to continue to lay down the foundation for the future of its National Team program at the World Cup.
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