The Spanish basketball team is just a week away from making its debut at the World Cup, which will be held in the Philippines, Japan, and Indonesia. Sergio Scariolo’s men will start defending their crown against Ivory Coast in an affordable game designed to eradicate the bitter taste left by the clashes against the United States and Canada, two friendly clashes that ended due to small details.
It’s true that these are two defeats that were to be expected, and there’s no need for dramatization either. Both teams are clear favorites to win the league (with France and Australia allowing), and on the positive side, Spain played them one-on-one. In addition, he has sometimes found a way to beat them, but the fact that he lost twice as close raises some doubts.
First, Scarioo’s team has suffered some casualties that will be difficult to replace. This is evidence that the team is somewhat inferior to the one that played at Eurobasket last year, especially at the point guard position. The absences of Lorenzo Brown due to injury and Ricky Rubio due to psychological problems leave a gap that is very difficult to fill in the founding phase.
That is therefore the first question left by La Familia, the nickname by which the Spanish basketball team is known. Juan Nez, Alberto Daz, Jaime Fernández, and Sergio Llull will be in charge of the starters, all great players but more goalscorers than referees. So it will be interesting to see who takes over this task, as they are currently alternating between Nez and Daz.
Spain’s main task in a squad without a great point guard is to take full advantage of the quality of the interiors they have, which they’re doing well at the moment, but if you want to fight, you need to do a little more of them to confirm the title won in China in 2019. For this reason, the Hernangómez, Garuba, or Aldama brothers must do their best.
Add to that the achievements of three of the experienced shooters Scariolo has called into his squad. Spain will depend heavily on the good work of men like Abrines, Llull, or Rudy Fernández, especially at times when preparation gets stuck and it’s not possible to find the inside players.
It should be noted that during the preparation for the World Cup, Spain was quite good in attack, had good odds in 3-point shooting, and scored quite easily. So it would be good if this continued through August 26th.
Instead, they desperately need to improve their defenses. In a side without any star players like Spain, the strength of the block is crucial; it was indeed the key to La Familia’s success in the 2022 European Cup. Without a defense capable of stopping the big names while other teams have succeeded, it will be very difficult to reach the finals.
The big name of the Spanish team will again be Sergio Scariolo, another champion. The Italy coach has already been the architect of previous successes and will once again look to guide a side of lesser quality than the favorites to glory. However, Spain has already surprised more than once and will try to do so again with the weapons at their disposal.
For the Italians, as he has pointed out in previous games, it’s important to be a cohesive team and be calm about possession to look ahead to much more physical sides like Canada or the United States. In other words, Spain must try to beat this type of team with brains and strategy, where Scariolo is practically infallible.