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September 2022
14 Leonardo Meindl (BRA)
09/09/2022
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Four teams have eyes on hardware as AmeriCup Semi-Finals are set

RECIFE (Brazil) – After a hard fought Quarter-Finals knockout stage, Argentina, Brazil, Canada and United States remain in the competition to compete for the top spot in the most prestigious competition in the Americas region.

 

With Argentina taking on United State and host nation Brazil facing off against Canada, the Semi-Final games will continue the exhilarating basketball action that has been seen all week long in Recife.

ARG vs. USA

One of the most successful teams in AmeriCup history continues their fight to the podium once again as USA will take on Argentina, and USA has won 10 of their 12 games against Argentina in the AmeriCup.

They meet in the Semi-Final of the tournament for a third time, and Argentina are on a streak of winning eight of their last nine games in the AmeriCup – with their defeat coming at the hands of USA in the final of the 2017 edition of the competition.

Argentina leads the competition in points per game, averaging 90 points per game, with USA right behind them averaging 85.3 points. Argentina also leads the tournament in 3-point percentage at 38.4 percent.

As for USA, who won the title in 2017 against Argentina, they are coming off a group phase of the tournament where they scored a competition high of 101 points against Venezuela, and are in the top three teams of points, rebounds and assists per game averages.

The players to watch between these two teams are Facundo Campazzo, Norris Cole, Nicolas Laprovittola, Jeremy Pargo, Gabriel Deck and Stephen Zimmerman.

Campazzo, who leads the competition in assists averaging 9.5 per game, has also made 3 or more steals in each of his four games with Argentina, as the stealthy defender has the highest average of steals per game in the AmeriCup averaging 3.8.

Cole sits sixth in the whole competition in points per game averaging 15 and is the only player on USA to have scored 10 or more points in each of their four games. A sharpshooter from beyond the arc, Cole has scored multiple 3-pointers in each game shooting 59.1 percent from behind the arc, the highest percentage of all players in the 2022 AmeriCup.

BRA vs. CAN

Meeting in a Semi-Final game for just the second time, Canada is looking to take down not only the host team, but a Brazil team that has beaten them in 12 of their previous 17 meetings between the two teams.

After losing 10 of their previously 12 games on the national stage, Brazil have won their four games at the 2022 AmeriCup and are the only team to concede less than 70 points in a game, with their stellar defense averaging a points against of just 64.3.

Brazil are averaging almost 10 points per game more than Canada, scoring 82 to Canada’s 72.3, and are averaging 44.8 rebounds per game to Canada’s 36.

Canada are looking to get over the Semi-Finals hump of the AmeriCup, reaching this stage for the eighth time but only advancing to the Final one time in 1999.

Both Canada and Brazil have deep rotations with multiple players to watch including Dalano Banton, Yago Santos, Trae Bell-Haynes, Marcelinho Huertas, Jahvon Henry-Blair and Leonardo Meindl.

With Brazil having enough talent to go around, Santos is coming off the bench still averaging 12.5 points per game despite playing 20 or fewer minutes, and is the only Brazilian player to have scored 10 or more points in each of his four games this year.

As for Canada’s unsung hero, Banton has scored at least 16 points in each game of the AmeriCup 2022, while also recording at least 1 steal, and in his last three games has recorded at least 5 assists including Canada’s elimination comeback against Mexico recorded 16 points, 7 assists and 4 rebounds.

FIBA