01 - 18
September 2022
23 Sergio Llull (ESP), 14 Willy Hernangomez Geuer (ESP)
to read

Team Profile: Can Spain make it seven in a row?


MADRID (Spain) - Even though Spain has a long basketball history, it’s the national team's achievements in the 21st century that has set them apart from all other FIBA EuroBasket 2022 participants. Sergio Scariolo's team arrives in Tbilisi with six straight FIBA EuroBasket medals and the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 title under their belt.

Yet, on some level, this feels like a case where pre-COVID events come from a much different time. We’re only one summer removed from the Tokyo Olympics where a loss in the Quarter-Finals was followed by national team retirements from Pau Gasol, Marc Gasol and Sergio Rodriguez.

To make matters worse, Ricky Rubio, Alex Abrines and Victor Claver headline a group of veterans who weren’t able to make it to this year’s EuroBasket. Rubio, the MVP of the 2019 World Cup, has to be highlighted as one of the biggest stars missing EuroBasket due to an ACL tear.

Scariolo is left to work with a group of players from different generations. Do they have the skill and know-how to replicate the beautiful basketball which was Spain’s trademark for numerous years?

For one, Spain has been one of the most assist-heavy teams in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 European Qualifiers. Second, you have to imagine that Rudy Fernandez and Sergio Llull will try to help their teammates find that state of basketball magic. The two veterans are set to reach a combined 400 national team caps, which is more than the rest of the roster combined.

However, with Rubio and Rodriguez out of the picture, the starting point guard position is up for grabs. One  candidate for this vacancy is the 32-year-old American-born Lorenzo Brown. His travels in and out of the NBA include getting to know Scariolo while they were both at the Toronto Raptors. That's not to say that World Cup champion Quino Colom doesn't have experience driving and dishing for Spain.

Similar questions can be posed about the situation in the frontcourt. The Hernangomez brothers, Willy and Juancho, have long appeared as possible heirs to the Gasols. Both have settled in reserve roles in the NBA, yet now have the chance to usher Spain into a new era. That will be the case especially if ankle problems persist for Usman Garuba, who is this team's third NBA player. Garuba’s and Alberto Abalde’s health status has left Scariolo with an even bigger number of tough choices to make across the forward and center positions.

Overall, Spain has no shortage of players with credible experience in the ACB or in any of the last two Qualifiers campaigns. Players like Xavier Lopez-Arostegui have held down the fort with an admirable effort in regards to scoring the ball.

However, as Scariolo stressed before training camp started, the goal for La Roja is to maintain their values of generosity and sharing the ball. FIBA EuroBasket 2022 will tell whether this squad has the principles and talent to make that happen.


2021 Olympics    Tokyo (JPN) 6th
2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup Beijing (CHN) Gold
2017 FIBA EuroBasket  Istanbul (TUR) Bronze
2016 Olympics   Rio de Janeiro (BRA)  Bronze
2015 FIBA EuroBasket  Lille (FRA) Gold
2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup    Madrid (ESP) 5th
2013 FIBA EuroBasket  Ljubljana (SLO) Bronze
2012 Olympics   London (GBR) Silver
2011 FIBA EuroBasket  Kaunas (LTU) Gold
2010 FIBA Basketball World Cup   Istanbul (TUR) 6th



20/02/2020  Romania v Spain 71-84
23/02/2020 Spain v Poland 69-80
28/11/2020 Israel v Spain 95-87
30/11/2020  Spain v Romania 94-41
19/02/2021   Poland v Spain 88-89
21/02/2021  Spain v Israel 78-73