Tristan Tallies Double-Double as Canada Bests Brazil
Notches 10 Points and 12 Boards in, 85-77, Victory
Tristan Thompson, the Cavaliers' Canadian big man, fulfilled his international duty on Thursday night by contributing a double-double en route to The Great White North's, 85-77, second round win over Brazil. With the victory, Canada now sits alongside Venezuela at the top of their group with 13 points apiece.
FIBA World Cup Qualifiers
Canada, who owns a star-studded NBA-caliber roster, led Brazil for most of the game, leading their South American opponent by as many as 13 points in the third frame. However, Brazil led by former-Cavalier Anderson Varejao, was able to narrow their defect to four points in the same quarter before Tristan threw down an alley-oop to halt an 8-0 Brazilian run. Late in the fourth, Brazil found themselves still down by six with less than two-minutes left, but the Canadians were determined to put the game away and hit two back-to-back treys to seal the win.
By the final whistle, T.T. finished with 12 boards and 10 points as a starter, while his teammate, Miami Heat center Kelly Olynyk, finished with 20 points and 19 rebounds, leading both teams in each category. Pacers guard Cory Joseph also snagged a double-double, tallying 16 points and 10 dimes while Kevin Pangos - the man that buried the two late-game daggers - finished with 10 points.
For Brazil, The Wild Thing was able to tally 10 points, four rebounds and two assists, but the Brazilians' leading scorer was Leandro Barbosa who posted 18. Marcelinho Huertas recorded 14 points to go along with 12 assists while Augusto Lima registered a double-double of his own with 10 points and 10 rebounds in their country's loss.
Canada's bench boss and Ryerson University (Toronto, Ontario) head coach, Roy Rana, was proud of the way his team meshed, even with all the NBA personalities on the roster.
"We talked about playing the right way, trying to play together all week long," Rana said. "Our guys were willing to make the pass, willing to share. It wasn’t about one particular person’s performance. It was about getting the win."
Canada will follow up their win with a road trip to Valdiva, Chile where they will square off against the bottom-dwelling Chilean national team on Monday night. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. (ET).