22 November, 2021
28 February, 2023
WCQ Rankings II
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Power Rankings: This is how teams in the Americas rank after the First Round

MIAMI (United States) – The first round of the 2023 FIBA World Cup Americas Qualifies is over and the 12 best teams advanced to the next stage, where they will compete in two groups of six countries each.

The countries from Groups A and C will now compete in Group E, while those from B and D will match up in F. The best three teams from each zone and the best of the fourth-place teams will take the seven spots in the upcoming World Cup.

Take a look at the groups in the second round here.

Based on the performance of each of the teams in the third window, this is where they are ranked:

NOTE: The movement in relation to the previous ranking during the month of June is shown in parenthesis.

1. Canada (0)

Record: 6-0

Nick Nurse’s is the only undefeated team still standing. The Canadians imposed their supremacy with authority again with comfortable victories over Dominican Republic (95-75) and Virgin Islands (113-67), leaning on their offense to overpower their opponents. The road looks clear for the North Americans to book their ticket to the tournament that will be played in the Philippines, Japan and Indonesia in 2023.

2. United States (+2)

Record: 5-1

Jim Boylen’s squad seemed to find consistency toward the end of the first round, finishing with four straight victories. The last two of them came on the road against Puerto Rico and Cuba. Their defense stabilized due to the presence of Jordan Bell and offensively, they showed evolution in comparison to their earlier games. Team USA finished the first round with the second highest scoring output (89.2 points per game), trailing only their Canadian neighbors (102.5).

3. Brazil (-1)

Record: 5-1

Brazil stayed solid despite a shocking loss to Colombia in their last game. During the last window, head coach Gustavo Conti was able to integrate veterans like Marcelinho Huertas and Rafa Luz, while also introducing new players to the lineup – highlighting the depth of his squad. And with their strengths both in the painted area and on the perimeter, on top of their superior size (they led the competition with 48.5 rebounds per game), they should continue their successful campaign in the second round.

4. Venezuela (-1)

Record: 5-1

The defense remained the most potent weapon for the Venezuelans (who are allowing just 57.2 points per game) and despite losing to Argentina, they only gave up 69 points. However, they need to improve their shooting accuracy (just 32% from three-point territory in the third window) to increase their options in the next stage against tougher competition. If they’re able to up their percentages, they’ll be an extremely dangerous contender.

5. Argentina (+1)

Record: 5-1

Argentina closed the first round with a bang after a pair of road wins, including a key victory against Venezuela where they erased a 14-point deficit. But that victory wasn’t enough to win the matchup against the Venezuelans, which is why they’re below them in these rankings. The silver lining for them is that they’ll head into the August window with sky-high confidence and morale.

6. Dominican Republic (-1)

Record: 4-2

The Dominicans looked strong on both ends of the court and will be a tough opponent in the second round. The reason why they aren’t ranked higher is because they faced Canada twice – a team vastly superior to every other squad – and lost both. Even though they won’t have much margin for error, this team looks capable of having a positive record in the next phase.

7. Uruguay (+1)

Record: 4-2

Uruguay couldn’t steal a victory against Brazil and now they’ll have to show more in the upcoming phase. The charrúas need to be more determined in attacking the basket, since against Brazil they scored more from beyond the arc than in 2-pointers. The reason why they’re placed above Mexico in this ranking is that they had a better point differential.

8. Mexico (-1)

Record: 4-2

Mexico could’ve easily stayed in the seventh spot they held in June, but with Uruguay having a larger point differential (+10 vs. 0) they dropped to eight, despite having tougher opponents than the Uruguayans. What’s more important is that a duel between Uruguay and Mexico in the second round is likely to determine which one of them ends up qualifying to the World Cup.

9. Puerto Rico (0)

Record: 3-3

The boricuas keep trying to find their bearings in this process led by head coach Nelson Colón. In the last window they had a couple of home games and the addition of excellent players like José Alvarado, Gian Clavell, George Conditt and Phillip Wheeler, but they still lacked consistency. First, they lost to Team USA and then they recovered to win in overtime against Mexico after blowing a 12-point lead. They have their work cut out for them in the next phase, but history and tradition are on their side.

10. Panama (0)

Record: 2-4

Panama met expectations in defeating Paraguay and advancing to the next round, but now they’ll have to show more to truly aspire to finish in the Top 7. They were the second-best of the third-place teams, behind Puerto Rico, among the teams that got through the first round.

11. Colombia (-)

Record: 2-4

Just when it looked like it wouldn’t be enough, Colombia showed character and resiliency to earn their 2 victories in the last window and advance to the second round. First, they defeated Chile in a back-and-forth affair and then they shocked everyone by downing the formerly undefeated Brazil – in what many at home are calling the most important triumph in the history of the national team. After such performances, opponents won’t be able to overlook Guillermo Moreno’s squad.

12. Bahamas (-)

Record: 2-4

With Buddy Hield leading the way, Bahamas took care of business by defeating Virgin Islands and clinching their spot, but much of what they could potentially accomplish will depend on whether the Indiana Pacers’ sharpshooter will be available again in future windows.