The FIBA Olympics Qualifier tournament game between Turkey vs. Canada will be played Tuesday in Manila, Philippines. Both national teams are joined by Senegal in the group stage of the tournament. The top two teams in each group will advance to the semifinals to vie for the single slot at the Summer Games. It is a winner-takes-all affair.
Many thought Canada was going to claim gold in last year?s FIBA Americas. But after a shocking semi-final loss to Venezuela, the eventual champions, they were relegated and fallen a smidgen short of the Rio berth. Now, they are in a situation where it is all or nothing. This is their first time since 2000 to fight for their place in the Olympic Games.
The Turkey vs. Canada game will start at 6:30 a.m. ET. Check back here around that time for the streaming link.
Andrew Wiggins, Nik Stauskas, Jamal Murray and Kelly Olynyk will not be part of the Canadian line-up. This is according to Chicco Nacion of CBC Sports Canada. The final roster for the game though is bolstered by NBA Champion, Tristan Thompson.
Here is the speculated starting lineup for the Canadians. Cory Joseph is expected to play the point guard position, Brady Heslip for shooting guard, Anthony Bennett ?for small forward, Thompson as the power forward and Joel Anthony will play center.
Turkey?s projected starting lineup will have Ali Muhammed at the point, Sinan Guller as the shooting guard, Cedi Osman for the small forward position, Samet Geyik as the starting power forward and Omer Asik as the big man.
Asis is expected to play a big role for the Turkish team with a low-post and kick-out style based on him. He is expected to be a force to be reckoned with down low and can score for the team. He too is expected to draw multiple defenders because of that and can open up perimeter or even outside shots.
Canada though is expected to push a faster pace that can tire out or outflank the Turkish team. Heslip and Joseph can sure put the some pressure pace-wise.
But given the lack of scoring firepower from the absence of star players from the NBA, Canada might be in for a match with some odds stacked against them. Turkey looks as if it has the edge but the game can go either way.
Catch the press conference later here:
Canada is expected to face Senegal on Wednesday at 6:30 a.m. ET. Stay tuned in TheBitBag for the live streaming link.