Team USA guard Tyrese Haliburton isn’t taking Canada lightly ahead of Sunday’s bronze-medal showdown at the FIBA World Cup.
“They haven’t won a medal since the 1930s, so they’re coming for us,” Haliburton told reporters, according to ESPN’s Brian Windhorst. “I think both of our countries will expect to see each other for the coming years. So it seems like this is kind of the start.”
The U.S. has won all seven World Cup meetings against Canada. However, their last matchup was 37 years ago.
That run should eventually end with the 11th-ranked nation’s continued growth as a basketball power.
The NBA talent north of the border has been building for years, but Canada doesn’t have anything to show for it on the international stage.
Canada’s second-place showing at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin remains its only podium finish. Its previous best result at the World Cup was sixth at the 1978 and 1982 editions.
With a bevy of NBA talent committing to play this summer – including All-NBA guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander – Canada qualified for next year’s Olympics in Paris.
The team could write another chapter in the country’s basketball history by finally adding a World Cup medal.
“I’m excited for our future,” said Team Canada head coach Jordi Fernandez. “What we need to do now is bounce back and be excited about this next game, which, me personally, I’m already extremely excited about.”
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