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Brazil – Czech Republic

Brazil Czech Republic FIBA World Cup preview

Brazil and Czech Republic will meet in the first match of the FIBA Basketball World Cup Group K.

The main groups consist of only two rounds, and results have been carried over from the preliminary groups. As such, Brazil has the chance to qualify for the quarterfinals with a win, as long as Greece loses to USA. If Czech Republic wins, the group becomes wide open and the Czechs will likely battle it out for qualification with Greece in the last round.

Brazil won all three games in the preliminary group and, while wins over New Zealand and Montenegro were expected, the one over Greece was not. The Brazilians pulled off a real shocker by beating one of the favorites for a medal, and they were remarkably successful at stopping the best player in the tournament and current NBA MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo. Brazil showed both talent and grit so far, and this match will be a huge chance to reach the quarterfinals. It might also be the only one they got, since the play USA in the last group game.

The Czech Republic was not expected to qualify from a preliminary group with USA, Turkey and Japan, but the Czech managed to pull off the upset by beating Turkey 91-76 in the last game. Although Turkey was dreadful, probably emotionally and physically drained after an overtime loss to USA, the Czech Republic was still excellent and played a magnificent game on both ends. Previously they lost by 21 points to USA and beat Japan by 13 points.

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This is pretty much a do or die game for both sides. If Brazil wins, they will probably qualify, throwing the Czech Republic out. If the Czech Republic wins, Brazil will probably be out and the Czechs will likely fight with Greece in the last round in a winner takes all match. That is unless Greece beats USA later in the day, in which case the maths becomes more complicated.

Brazill will certainly feel this is their big shot to reach the quarterfinals and they will be confident of doing so. They are high on morale after beating Greece earlier in the tournament, and they also have the talent advantage over the Czech Republic.

The Brazilians have a very deep team led by former NBA stars Barbosa and Varejao, with plenty of talent to surround them – including current NBA players Felicio and Caboclo, along with a few other competent guys from the Spanish and Brazilian leagues.

However, the Czechs will not be pushovers. They will have the best player on the court in Tomas Satoransky, who affirmed himself last season as a starting caliber point guard in the NBA and who (most importantly) is one of those guys which performs at his absolute best for the national team. He has always been a beast for the Czech Republic, and he has some decent help around him with Balvin (Gran Canaria), and a couple of guys from France. Most of the team plays in the Czech domestic league (particularly for ERA Nymburk, a strong team). They are no scrubs, and they can play.

With Satoransky in the driving seat this Czech team has proved more than capable, they are a well oiled machine and play great team basketball. They were so solid and composed in their 15 point win over Turkey in the last outing.

Brazil might be the better side but they are no world beaters, and they did not blow their opponents out in the preliminary group stage games – winning by 1, 8 and 11 points. Also, hopefully, maybe the 74 year old duo of Varejao and Barbosa will start feeling some tired legs.

All in all, my tip here will be Czech Republic to cover the +6,5 handicap in a close game. Prediction: Brazil – Czech Republic 77-76.

Pick: Czech Republic +6,5
Odds: 1.91 @ Sbobet
Stake: 8
Possible profit: 7.28
Event date: 7 September

About Rostick

Former bookie & water polo player. Rugby Union expert. - EDITOR INFO & STATS
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