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27 Rudy Gobert (FRA)
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The Top 10 moments of 2019

MIES (Switzerland) - There are countless games, plays and scenes around the basketball court to treasure from 2019. We present you with 10 key moments from this calendar year that are worth another rewind before we enter 2020.

World Cup Dunk Fest

Tournament: FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019
Game: China v Nigeria, Classification Round 17-32
Location: Guangzhou, China
Date: September 8, 2019

The Chinese and Nigerians took the art of World Cup dunking to new heights in front of a packed house in Guangzhou. Fans were treated to an amazing show of high-flying theatrics and powerful rim-rockers. The Classification Round contest was ultimately won by Nigeria, 86-73, a result that punched D'Tigers' ticket to a third straight Olympic Games.

Mali make history for Africa

Tournament: FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup 2019
Game: Mali v France, Semi-Final
Location: Heraklion, Greece
Date: July 6, 2019

No African team had ever been on the podium in a global FIBA event, but then came the memorable Mali run in the FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup organized in Crete, Greece. Led by Oumar Ballo and Siriman Kanoute, Mali made history as they beat France 76-73 in the Semi-Final not only to secure a historic medal but also book a date with USA in the Final. Both Ballo and Kanoute were All-Star Five selections.

Japan win fourth consecutive FIBA Women's Asia Cup

FIBA Asia Cup Women 2019
Game: Japan v China, Final
Location: Bengaluru, India
Date: September 29, 2019

Japan celebrated like there was no tomorrow after becoming the third country in history to win a FIBA Women's Asia Cup four consecutive times. By beating China in the title game, 71-68, the Japanese joined Korea (1978, 1980, 1982 and 1984) and China (1990, 1992, 1994, 1995) as nations to capture the Asian crown four times in a row.

Fans flock to see Basketball Champions League Final Four

Basketball Champions League, Final Four
Location: Antwerp, Belgium
Date: May 3-5, 2019

The Basketball Champions League Final Four was spectacular in Antwerp, with the huge number of fans walking into the arena on May 5 assuring it would be the best attended of the competition's showpiece in its three-year existence.  It had a 96.4 percent occupancy and a total of 67,452 spectators to watch hosts Telenet Giants Antwerp, Virtus Bologna, Brose Bamberg and Iberostar Tenerife.

China, USA reach 3x3 World Cup summit

 FIBA 3x3 World Cup
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Date: June 23, 2019

There were remarkable scenes on Museumplein in the heart of Amsterdam. With the iconic Rijskmuseum as an urban backdrop, the biggest-ever FIBA 3x3 temporary venue attracted a sell-out crowd of 2,561 fans on the last day of competition and saw China's women and the USA's men reach the top of the podium for the first time in the tournament's history.

Allez les Bleus!

FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019
Game: USA v France, Quarter-Final
Location: Dongguan, China
Date: September 11, 2019

France threw a scare into the USA when the teams met at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics with the Americans holding on for a 100-97 Preliminary Round triumph. This year it was Les Bleus who won a battle (89-79) that featured 17 players on the books of NBA teams. Evan Fournier poured in 22 points, making 4-of-8 from deep along the way, while Rudy Gobert (21 points, 16 rebounds and 3 blocks), former NBA man Nando de Colo (18 points) and rising star Frank Ntilikina (11 points) had big contributions to ensure the two-time defending champions USA would not reach the podium in 2019.

Novi Sad claim fourth World Tour title

FIBA 3x3 World Tour Utsunomiya Final 
Game: Novi Sad v Princeton, Final
Location: Utsunomiya, Japan
Date: November 3, 2019

Novi Sad have been 3x3 juggernauts over the years, winning the title in three of the first seven editions. The 2019 title looked like it might elude them when they went to overtime in a pool game against Zemun at the Utsunomiya Final. They survived, however, winning 19-17, and the team comprised of Dusan Bulut, Tamas Ivosev, Dejan Majstorovic and Marko Savic ended up claiming a fourth crown in team history. They signed off in the Final with a 21-17 triumph over Princeton.

Amazing opening ceremony at the FIBA Women's AfroBasket

Tournament: FIBA Women's AfroBasket 2019
Game: Senegal v Cote d'Ivoire, Group Phase
Location: Dakar, Senegal
Date: August 10, 2019

The basketball was superb at the FIBA Women's AfroBasket 2019 in Dakar but the tournament's opening ceremony might have been the biggest talking point of all as spectators sang and danced to the wonderful sound of Dip Doundou Guiss.


The show was so big, so glamorous, so important that Senegal President Macky Sall was in the house.

Spain edge double overtime Semi-Final thriller at World Cup

FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019
Game: Spain v Australia, Semi-Final
Location: Beijing, China
Date: September 13, 2019

Spain trailed by 11 points and were still behind late in regulation but found a way to beat Australia, 95-88, after two overtimes. They went on to win their second ever FIBA Basketball World Cup title a couple of days later in much more convincing fashion against Argentina, the surprise of the tournament.

Hearn at the buzzer!

FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Americas Qualifiers
Game: USA v Argentina, Second Round
Location: Greensboro, USA
Date: February 25, 2019

The USA's last game in the Americas Qualifiers for the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019  was against their great rivals, Argentina, and it had a humdinger of a finish. With the last seconds ticking off the clock, Reggie Hearn stroked a long jumper from just inside the arc for an 84-83 win.