Canada drawn into tough World Cup group with Lithuania, Australia and Senegal

Canada drawn into tough World Cup group with Lithuania, Australia and Senegal

Talented as the 1992 United States men's Olympic basketball team was, Johnson and Jordan stood out among the giants.

Although that set the standard for USA Basketball, the program began to fall behind other countries.

Canada was drawn into a tough Group H for the 2019 FIBA World Cup alongside Lithuania, Australia and Senegal.

USA Basketball, who are on a quest for an unprecedented third consecutive FIBA World Cup championship, still doesn't know which players will be wearing the red, white and blue this summer in China.

"I think you're gonna have to play, I think the mindset is that you're thinking that we have to be ready to play whoever comes through that door", general manager Rowan Barrett told The Athletic earlier this month. It was known Friday, a day before the draw, that Turkey had to be in the same group as the Americans because of the way that other teams from the Americas were placed into pods.

Each team plays against the other three teams in their group once. The group will be played in Dongguan.

The tournament format is cut throat, with the top two from each Group advancing to the round of 16 and a shot at the medals, while those finishing third and fourth will play in classification 17 to 32 matches.

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The U.S. won the World Cup in 2010 and 2014.

Second-ranked Spain will meet Puerto Rico, Iran and Tunisia in the group stage. Bryant said he expects competition to be stiff.

For the first time, the FIBA Basketball World Cup will qualify seven teams directly for the following year's Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

"It's a greater sense of honor to be playing for your country", Bryant said.

"At the start of the game you hear your national anthem being played, you see everyone in the arena with their flags, representing their country and colour".

Host China is in Group A along with Ivory Coast, Poland and Venezuela while Russia, Argentina, South Korea and Nigeria compose Group B.

On August 31 they play Australia in the opening game of Group H. Lithuania will be their next opponents on September 2nd and they'll round out their first three games with Senegal on September 4th.

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