Chet Holmgren takes home TISSOT MVP award after helping USA to U19 World Cup title
RIGA / DAUGAVPILS (Latvia) - Chet Holmgren stepped up when it counted most and in the end his efforts helped United States claim the FIBA U19 Basketball World Cup 2021 crown. Fittingly, the rising college freshman earned the TISSOT MVP award.
Holmgren scored five of his 10 points in the critical 11-0 run as United States defeated France 83-81 in the Final to claim their eighth U19 World Cup title. Holmgren also added 2 rebounds and 5 assists in the showdown with France.
Holmgren finished the tournament averaging 11.9 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.7 blocks while hitting 62.0% from the field including 53.8% on three-pointers. And all of that production came in just 21 minutes a game. It was his all-around game both offensively and defensively that gave United States a lot of options in their game.
"It feels great. I don’t think I can say I have felt anything as big as this. I’m really happy for our whole team, the coaching staff and everybody that went through all the things we went through in the last couple of weeks," said Holmgren, who was playing in a FIBA competition for the first time in his career.
USA head coach Jamie Dixon was full of praise for Holmgren, saying: "His leadership was huge all the way through. He was a great teammate, good understanding of the game. He is really a special kid. He’s unselfish. He loves passing and he plays defense. And he plays hard all the time. He practices hard and he plays hard. He’s good for a lot of reasons."
Another reason the Americans won the title was guard Jaden Ivey, who joined Holmgren on the All-Star Five along with Victor Wembanyama of France, Canada's Zach Edey and Nikola Jovic of Serbia.
USA teammate Jaden Ivey also earned all-tournament honors for his Latvian performance
Ivey collected 16 points, 4 rebounds and 3 steals in the Final and averaged 12.3 points, 3.0 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.6 steals for the tournament. Wembanyama tallied 22 points, 8 rebounds and 8 blocks against the Americans before fouling out. For the tournament, he averaged 14.0 points, 7.4 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 4.7 blocks.
Edey averaged a double-double for the third-placed finishers Canada, tallying 15.1 points and 14.1 rebounds to go with 2.3 blocks. And Jovic, who lost to Edey and Canada in the 3rd Place Game, finished with 18.1 points, 8.3 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.7 blocks.