Skip to main content

Basketball Canada beats Australia 90-70 in FIBA World Cup warm-up game

Thomas Scrubb of Canada Basketball drives to the basket during FIBA between Australian Boomers and Canada at RAC Arena on Aug. 16, 2019 in Perth, Aus.

Will Russell/Getty Images

Canada never trailed and outscored Australia 23-13 in the final quarter for a 90-70 upset win over the home side in a FIBA World Cup warm-up basketball game Friday.

The Canadians (2-1 in exhibition play this summer) led 51-36 early in the third quarter, but Australia rallied to draw level before the visitors dominated the final period for an easy win. The teams meet again on Saturday night at the same stadium in Perth.

“When we can come out and play that aggressive and knock down shots like that, it’s great against a tough team like Australia,” said Canadian guard Kevin Pangos, who led the team with 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting. “We’ve just to continue and keep growing as a team.”

Story continues below advertisement

Australia plays Canada in its first game of the World Cup on Sept. 1 in China.

Canada goes into the World Cup without most of its NBA stars. The Miami Heat’s Kelly Olynyk became the latest big-name player to pull out after sustaining a knee injury. He joined Andrew Wiggins, Jamal Murray, R.J. Barrett, Tristan Thompson, Dwight Powell, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Chris Boucher and Nickeil Alexander-Walker as other top Canadian NBA players to miss the World Cup.

Pangos, from Newmarket, Ont., added six assists and four steals for Canada. The team is being coached by Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse, who led the team to the NBA championship this season.

Coach Nick Nurse looks on during the match between Australian Boomers and Canada at RAC Arena.

Will Russell/Getty Images

“Within our locker room, we’re focused on who is here,” Pangos said. “I think that’s the most important thing. When you think about all the other stuff, that becomes unnecessary and a distraction. We’re excited with the group we have. We’re going to try to grow the best we can … and try to peak at the worlds.”

Andrew Nembhard of Aurora, Ont., and Kaza Kajami-Keane of Ajax, Ont., added 12 points apiece.

Nembhard, entering his second year at the University of Florida, added a team-high 10 rebounds and four assists.

“He gets places easy and I’m not quite sure how he does it,” Nurse said of Nembhard. “I’m trying to figure it out. He’s got this head fake, he’s in, he’s out, he’s over, he’s around, and all of a sudden he’s into some clear space. He’s got a funky game a little bit, for a 19-year-old kid, a pretty good game.”

Story continues below advertisement

Sacramento Kings point guard Cory Joseph of Toronto was not in the lineup for Canada.

Patty Mills led Australia with 20 points.

Canada stays in Australia to face New Zealand in a pair of exhibition games on Aug. 20-21 before wrapping up its pretournament schedule against the United States on Aug. 26

Canada split a two-game exhibition series against Nigeria in Toronto and Winnipeg last week before heading overseas.

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter