Terrific new chess-themed ad for 2023 Basketball World Cup!!!

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  • Terrific new chess-themed ad for 2023 Basketball World Cup!!!

    In the past few days, a terrific new TV ad for the 2023 Basketball World Cup has been airing. The opening sequence features Slovenian superstar Luka Doncic playing a game of chess!

    I've seen it a couple of times now. The ad moves quickly, and I have not yet been able to determine Luka's chess opponent.

    The setting is an outdoor plaza, and the pieces are eastern European style on a vinyl board. Luka makes a move, cracks a big smile, then the action switches to him taking a shot on the basketball court!!! He might be the highest-profile person ever to do a chess-themed ad.

    The ad moves on to include Yuko Watanabe, Japanese team member and former Toronto Raptor, among other players.

    The tournament starts August 25 (tomorrow), with Canada facing France in its opener, 9 a.m. eastern time. It runs for the next couple of weeks, in Asia.

  • #2
    Canada won its first game by 30 points over France, after the first half was very close. Canada's best player, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, took over in the second half, and Canada shut down France's best player, Evan Fournier.
    Canada next plays Lebanon, 5:30 EDT Sunday morning (Canada should win easily); then will play Latvia in what could be a competitive game. That will wrap up group play. The format is eight groups of four teams, with the best achievers advancing, similar to the World Cup of Soccer.


    • #3
      Canada has continued its strong play, winning against Lebanon and Latvia with comfortable margins, although the Latvia game today was close well into the third quarter, with Canada down by ten points in the second quarter. Both teams had already qualified for the next round, but Canada, by winning, will hopefully draw a lower seed next. Latvia had scored a huge upset win over France, knocking them out.
      Once again, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander took over the game for Canada in the second half; Latvia had no way to defend him, whether he was shooting from outside, driving the lane, or dishing to open teammates. Canada was weak from the free-throw line, and they will have to clean that up if they hope to advance further.
      I've been very impressed with the way new Canadian coach Jordi Fernandez has made adjustments during games one and three.
      Opposition for Canada is about to get much tougher in the final 16.


      • #4
        Aren't we diverging into the non-chess domain for which there is a separate group?


        • #5
          Hugh, I see your point. I would be OK with this thread being moved, given the trend of the posts.

          Bad news for Canada today from Jakarta, at the FIBA World Cup. In game #4, Canada lost to Brazil 69-65. Or, more accurately, I should say, Canada lost to Brazil and the refs, 69-65.
          Things looked pretty good earlier, with Canada (3-0) up 37-27 at half over Brazil (2-1), after a slow start. Canada was leading and still in control for much of the 4th quarter.
          In the 2023 FIBA World Cup, advancing teams carry their record from earlier games with them into phase 2.
          A loss would have knocked out Brazil, since Spain had earlier defeated Latvia (knocking them out). Spain, Brazil, Latvia, and Canada make up the new group, with two teams advancing to the next stage, with games against earlier pool opponents NOT replayed.
          In the fourth quarter, the referees started favoring Brazil: uncalled fouls against Brazil, phantom calls against Canada, a disallowed 3-pointer for Canada (by Lu Dort with 50 seconds left and the score 62-60 Brazil) when the replay showed the ball already in the air when the 24-second clock went off (should count; it was reviewed and the original call stood); Canada having to use its challenge to reverse a clearly incorrect out-of-bounds call; etc. Canadian post Dwight Powell had earlier fouled out on a cheap call. This is how a team with no NBA players (Brazil) can defeat a team (Canada) with a bunch of NBA players (many starters on their NBA teams), in international basketball.
          I have seen this sort of thing before. Brazil was the only surviving South American team. Not only are teams playing for the World Cup, in the case of teams from the Americas, they are playing to qualify for the Paris 2024 Olympics, with only the top two teams advancing. I think the USA is a lock to qualify. France, which Canada crushed earlier in this event, gets in as host team. So had Canada won this game, they would have knocked Brazil out of Paris 2024, which would then have had NO South American teams.
          Unlike in the World Cup of Soccer, Canada is NOT out, yet. Canada (now 3-1) will play Spain (4-0) on Sunday, and if Canada wins, that would set up a very interesting situation for qualifying (tiebreaks).
          The Knicks' R.J. Barrett, #9 for Canada, had a very poor game, and should have been on the bench, but his father, Rowan Barrett, is the General Manager of the team. So that creates an interesting political situation, and an interesting decision for Sunday's game. It just looked like Brazil had R.J. figured out from the start of the game.
          Once again, guard Shai Gigeous-Alexander was great for Canada, as was captain, post Kelly Olynyk. Dort was sensational off the bench; he had missed the two previous games with injury, after a strong game #1.
          And fans wonder why many of Canada's top players refuse to take part in these international events.


          • #6
            First, I have to apologize for incorrectly writing that Latvia was knocked out after losing to Spain; Latvia actually won that game, and is now advancing to the final 8, after beating Brazil. I received wrong information, but should have checked it online before posting here.

            Canada came through to defeat Spain and advance to the final 8, and to the Paris Olympics 2024!!! Down 12 going into the 4th quarter, our team somehow found a way against a very talented Spanish team.

            Canada will face Slovenia tomorrow in the quarter-finals (8 a.m. EDT).


            • #7
              Canada defeated Slovenia Wednesday, lost to Serbia today in the semi-final. Canada got well behind early, and could not catch up. AND, Germany defeated the USA, in the other semi!!!

              Canada will play USA for bronze on Sunday. Best-ever previous result for Canada in this event was 6th, so a fantastic performance for Canada!!!


              • #8
                Extraordinary game brings bronze for Canada in overtime victory over the USA!!!! Canada's best international basketball finish since a silver medal at the Berlin 1936 Olympics, the first to feature basketball. Canada's Dillon Brooks, who scored 39 against the USA, played the best basketball of his life, and was selected as the Top Defensive Player!!

                And Germany defeats Serbia for the gold medal, in a very close game. FIBA World Cup 2023 Tournament MVP is German point guard Denis Schroder, who will play for the Toronto Raptors in the coming NBA season!!!

                Perhaps this helps to make up for poor performances by Germany in the World Cups for men's and women's soccer within the last year. Germany winning this World Cup is perhaps only slightly less surprising than BOTH the German soccer men and women failing to advance beyond the Group stages.

                I thought the FIBA tournament was brilliantly organized by hosts Indonesia, Japan, and Philippines.