Gilas Pilipinas will be playing in Pot 1 along with former World No. 1 Team USA in the 2023 FIBA World Cup group-stage matches set in the Philippines.
FIBA’s Central Board earlier confirmed that after consultation with the host nations, the USA will fly to the Philippines while Slovenia will go to Japan and Canada will land in Indonesia.
Each host, according to FIBA, could select a preferred team based on commercial reasons, as their choice will have no impact on the integrity of the event or the drawing process.
“As was the case at the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 with China, the Philippines, as tournament host for the Group Phase and Final phase, will be placed in Pot 1 for the draw,” said FIBA, which announced on December 12 the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) picked an all-star American team to play in the country for the global hoops spectacle slated in August next year.
The best-ranked teams in the FIBA World Ranking Men, presented by Nike, will also join them in Pot 1 after the last qualifying window set in February 2023.
Thus, the USA and the Philippines will be placed in two different groups of the four groups that the latter is hosting. The American team is expected to assemble NBA players in its bid to improve its seventh finish in the 2019 edition of the FIBA World Cup held in China.
Meanwhile, Japan has chosen the world No. 7 team, Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic-bannered Slovenia. Both teams will play in Okinawa, Japan where two groups will be seeing actions.
Third co-host Indonesia, for its part, picked the Canada team that is expected to parade the services of Andrew Wiggins and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who is aiming to earn his place in next year’s NBA All-Star Game. Joining them in the group stages to be held in Jakarta are two more top-eight squads.
While Slovenia and Canada have already booked their spots in the World Cup while the USA will likely secure its slot in the last window qualifier.
The FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 Draw Principles, which will be based on the FIBA World Ranking Men and on geographical principles, will be defined after the last qualifying window in February. By then, the final 32 FIBA World Cup qualifiers will be determined. This would mark the only second time that 32 squads will compete for the FIBA World Cup title.
The FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 Draw will be held in Manila on April 29.
The Americans, who will be coached by Steve Kerr, are expected to be the main attraction of the basketball showcase as Fil-Am coach Erik Spoelstra of the Miami Heat will be one of his assistants.
Filipino basketball fans will have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the world’s best basketball players in action at the Philippine Arena, Araneta Coliseum, and the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena.
The Smart Livestream App will stream live all the games.