21 - 24
September 2023
to read

Day 1 preview: Europe takes on Asia, North America goes up against Africa in premiere

SINGAPORE (Singapore) - The FIBA Intercontinental Cup Singapore 2023 tips off on Thursday with a two-game slate. The four teams that will be in action in Singapore Indoor Stadium represent four different continents .

Telekom Baskets Bonn v Al Manamaย (Group B)

Key matchup: Brian Fobbs has been a high-scoring machine throughout his career with the Towson Tigers, Salon Vilpas and Kangoeroes Mechelen, exploding for 20.1 points and 5.6 rebounds per game in the BNXT League in Belgium and the Netherlands last season.

He's destined for the next step in his career, taking on the role of the primary scorer for Basketball Champions League title holders Telekom Baskets Bonn in the upcoming season, and this is set to be his first official game with the team.

How to stop the 196cm/6'5'' tall 25-year-old guard? With a 31-year-old Sir' Dominic Pointer, Al Manama's 198cm/6'6'' defensive specialist, who averaged 2.5 steals and 1.5 blocks per game en route to the FIBA West Asia Super League title with the Bahrain club.

Pointer can do a lot of scoring, too, putting up 16.5 points and 9.0 rebounds in that title run back in June. Al Manama will turn to him and his extensive international experience whenever they need a stop or a score.

X factors: Mustafa Rashed is one of the best when it comes to just straight up pulling up from beyond the arc in transition, and if the 21-year-old can knock down threes on consecutive possessions, he could change any game and make it an Al Manama party.

Meanwhile, Telekom Baskets Bonn have a man who can do something similar for them. Harald Frey is a lefty guard who reads the game perfectly and if he gets any separation from the defense, he could make them pay by drillingย  threes or dishing out assists.

How to watch: The game tips off at 15:00 local time in the Singapore Indoor Stadium, which is 09:00 in Germany and 10:00 in Bahrain. Fans in Germany can watch the game on Magenta Sport, while the ones from Bahrain can turn to Courtside 1891 or YouTube.

Meet the teams:

-Telekom Baskets Bonn out to defend Europe's honor

-Treble-winning Al Manama chasing a fourth trophy

NBA G League Ignite v Al Ahly (Group A)

Key matchup: With so much youth and heaven-is-the-limit potential on their roster, NBA G League Ignite need somebody with experience to come up big in an all-new environment such as the FIBA Intercontinental Cup. That's where John Jenkins steps up.

The 32-year-old guard was a first round NBA Draft pick back in 2012, and has almost 200 games of NBA experience under his belt. But he has also been around the world, playing in Spain, China, Israel and France to learn all the secrets that professional basketball has to offer.

His defensive prowess will be put to the test as he faces Ehab Amin. Al Ahly's point guard is four years younger, and spent his NCAA career between Texas A&M-CC and Oregon, before going back home to Egypt and putting on Al Ahly's jersey for the first time in 2019.

Amin is full of confidence after a successful FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 showing, where he showed that he is not afraid of big moments or big opponents. Even if Jenkins knows a lot of the secrets, Ehab's game is full of surprises, not just offensively, but defensively as well.

X factors: Having a two-time NBA champ on your roster is always a good thing. Norris Cole hasn't lost his clutch touch, and if this one goes down to the wire, expect Al Ahly to put the ball in his hands in the hope of producing a game winner.

NBA G League Ignite know they should expect big games from their two projected top picks of the 2024 NBA Draft in Ron Holland and Matas Buzelis, but their X factor could be Izan Almansa. The 18-year-old from Spain can do a bit of everything, and his energy could be what separates the two teams in the end.

How to watch: The game tips off at 19:00 local time in the Singapore Indoor Stadium, which is 14:00 in Egypt, and 07:00 Eastern time, 04:00 Pacific time in the United States. Fans in Egypt can watch the game on OnTime Sports, while the game will be broadcasted live on NBA TV for those living in the United States and Canada.

The rest of the world can look for their respective rights holders or switch to Courtside 1891 and YouTube for streaming.

Meet the teams:

-NBA G League Ignite arrive with top NBA Draft prospects

-Al Ahly bring in World Cup hero and two-time NBA champ