21/02/2024
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Top 10 ranked teams confirmed for FIBA 3x3 World Tour Utsunomiya Opener 2024

UTSUNOMIYA (Japan) - Defending champions Ub Huishan NE headline a loaded batch of teams confirmed for the much-anticipated FIBA 3x3 Utsunomiya Opener on April 27-28. 

The top 10 ranked teams will be aiming to make an early season statement having qualified for the traditional World Tour launch as hard seeds. There are still four spots to be confirmed for the 14-team showpiece event. 

Hard seeds: Ub Huishan NE, Miami, Riffa, Amsterdam, Vienna, Partizan, Raudondvaris,  Ulaanbaatar, Lausanne, San Juan 

Ub have kick-started their dominant last two seasons by claiming the Utsunomiya Opener and are set to unleash their awesome foursome, who return for the World Tour 2024. 

Top player Strahinja Stojacic will be excited about getting back to one of his favored half-courts having won the last two MVPs there, while legendary Dejan Majstorovic knows nothing but success in Utsunomiya. 

 

But Ub's quest for a historic three-peat will be under threat by hungry opponents who have used the off-season to devise ways to bridge the gap. 

Heading the list of contenders just has to be Miami, who are led by former NBA player and college phenom Jimmer Fredette. He'll be extra motivated  knowing that his childhood goal of playing in the Olympics is just merely months away. 

Ub had to get through Antwerp to win last year's crown, but those Belgians have had a makeover and are now known as Riffa. It might just freshen them up as they look to go one better in Utsunomiya. 

Amsterdam, Vienna, Partizan and Raudondvaris all made the knockouts at last season's tournament, but - as they showed as 2023 wore on - should be stronger this time around. 

Partizan, especially, look like they are poised to be a superpower with Stefan Milivojevic aka 'The Gladiator' ready to battle on the half-court. 

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Ulaanbaatar did not make it into Day Two last year but, having broken through and claimed Masters glory in Shanghai, you just know they'll have the confidence to go all the way.

Lausanne and San Juan will bring a fresh flavor having not played at the tournament last year and we can't wait for these showmen to take center stage after these entertaining teams lit up the half-court at various stages in 2023. 

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