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Basketball World Cup: How Germany Can Exploit America’s Weaknesses

Basketball World Cup: How Germany Can Exploit America’s Weaknesses

There could be no tougher task than facing the USA in basketball – but that’s what awaits Germany in the semi-finals. But the US is not without weaknesses – these could play into Germany’s hands.

DON’T ALLOW EASY THROWS: Brandon Ingram is fouled by Daniel Theis (right).
Image Alliance/dpa

“Every team has its weaknesses. In basketball, it’s important to find them and exploit them accordingly,” Serbia’s coaching legend Svetislav Pesic said recently. A wisdom that national coach Gordon Herbert certainly knows well. He now faces the task of familiarizing his players with America’s weaknesses before Friday’s semifinals (Live! from 2:40 p.m.) — and they exist.

The most notable weakness of the gold favorites can be seen under the board, as the US lacks much quality at center stage. Former national coach Dirk Bauerman has already mentioned this. With Jaren Jackson Jr. (Memphis Grizzlies), the Americans have a good big man on their team, but the 23-year-old is prone to mistakes — and can therefore be taken out of the game quickly.

When Jackson Jr. had a foul problem, Nationals coach Steve Kerr replaced Walker Kesler with Walker Kessler not yet in the game; Paulo Banchero came on regularly, so America was less under the basket later.

The Lithuanians showed they can make an impact in their thrilling 110:104 win in the group stage – the United States had no answer to Jonas Valanciunas’ post-up. With Moritz Wagner, Daniel Theis and Johannes Voigtmann, it’s also a chance for a German side that can offer plenty of quality.

The U.S. is generally much better than their opponents when it comes to physicality, but things could be different against Germany, as Herbert’s team also brings some power to the floor – and can at least hold its own against the North Americans in this category. .

America’s comfort zone

Glass and high tempo characterize America’s attack, whose greatest strength is the “transition game.” But if you calm down the game and take them out of their comfort zone, they will have problems – the Montenegrins showed that in the opening round. The Americans’ build-up play, especially in the half court, has been average. The DBB team must try to determine the rhythm and tempo – and sometimes slow down the game, even if that’s not necessary for Schröder’s style of play.

However, if you want to stand a chance against America’s strong shooters and speedy guards, you need to have a great day on defense against America. Because one thing is clear: if America is hot, there is no way to beat them. For this reason, Franz Wagner, Dennis Schroder & Co. What’s more important is what access opposing three-point shooters get. Isaac Bonga, who has already proven himself to be a formidable defender in the tournament, could also play a key role.

How are your nerves?

Last but not least, there is the issue of nerves. The U.S. team around up-and-coming superstar Anthony Edwards is relatively young and hasn’t had to play very close games at the World Cup yet. It was only against Lithuania – and they left the field as losers.

On the other hand, Germany proved that they can stay calm and make the right decisions in tricky moments in the group stage against Australia (85:82) and in the quarter-final against Latvia (81:79).

However, during the World Cup preparation there was also a Test match against the USA in which the German team lost a 16-point lead – no need to think about it, instead they played well for 26 minutes”, Herbert said at the time – 14 minutes before Germany’s first World Cup final. will be