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2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup Semifinal Teams

By Jeff Stinger

Two teams lay claim to two semifinal spots at the 2023 FIBA World Cup. Team USA obliterated Italy, 100-63, in Manila on Tuesday. This puts the Americans two wins away from their first World Cup gold medal since 2014. The other team to book its spot in the next round is Serbia, who recovered from trailing at the end of the first quarter to overcome Lithuania, 87-68. There’s no question that the two sides are a joy to watch on the floor, not to mention the offensive competency both lineups offer. With that, let’s go over the 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup semifinal teams.

First Two Teams in the 2023 FIBA World Cup Semifinals

Team USA

Mikal Bridges headlined the team with 24 points while Tyrese Haliburton added 18 points off the bench as they pulled away from Italy to reach the semifinals. This was a much-needed win for the Americans after coming off an upset defeat to Lithuania. Even though the loss had no bearing on their qualification for the 2024 Paris Olympics, coach Steve Kerr’s team undoubtedly took out some of that frustration on their previous opponents.

The Americans started strong and formed a ten-point lead by the end of the opening quarter against Italy. They never looked back since. It was the kind of recovery Team USA needed after dropping its final second-round game on Sunday. More than that, the squad already secured a better finish at this competition compared to their 2019 campaign when the team finished seventh.

Perimeter shooting made a huge difference for this team. They claimed their second-largest margin of victory in this tournament by outshooting the Italians. Team USA hit 17 of their 36 looks beyond the arc and put more pressure on their next challengers.

However, it’s clear that the favorites need more consistent big men. Lack of post presence heavily affected their loss to Lithuania, and it remains a glaring weakness for the Americans. Bigger teams could take advantage of this group, which means the power forward rotation of Bobby Portis, Jaren Jackson Jr., and Paolo Banchero should impose their presence more against their semifinal opponents.

Team USA takes on the winner of the Germany vs. Latvia game.


The Serbians executed flawless tactics in opposition to the persistent Lithuanians. Some might say this was a one-off performance or makes them favorites to advance to the next round, especially after their shocking loss to Germany. Nevertheless, the Serbians are playing at a high level while they capitalized on a poor performance by The Other Dream Team.

Bogdan Bogdanovic took the helm for his nation and documented another 20-point effort. Working next to him on the floor was Filip Petrusev, who put up his best outing of the 2023 FIBA World Cup to get Serbia to the semis. The Detroit Pistons forward recorded 21 points, four rebounds, three assists, and two steals. This was his third 20-point game of the tournament.

Petrusev had 17 points, six rebounds, and two assists, while Stefan Jovic had 11 points to stretch their lead. The 17-point effort from Petrusev also marks a tournament-high in scoring and marks his second consecutive game in double figures.

The win places Serbia either against Canada or Slovenia in the semifinals. Serbia is one of two teams punching a ticket to the next round. Furthermore, Serbia is one of four European sides gunning for the gold medal. With two Olympic berths going to the region, Serbia could land a spot in the Games for the first time since 2016 given the outcome of the last two quarterfinal games.

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