Friday the Spanish National team displayed why they’re one of the powerhouses in the 2014 FIBA World Cup, as Spain used its variety of weapons on both sides of the floor to hand Brazil its first loss in the tournament by the score of 82-63.
Behind 26 points, nine rebounds, and three blocks from Chicago Bulls’ Pau Gasol, Spain used a quick start in the first and third quarters, to blow the game open, and gain a comfortable lead. San Antonio Spurs center Tiago Splitter only played in three quarters for Brazil, since the game was already decided by the end of the third, and he finished with six points, four rebounds, one assist, and two fouls in 20 minutes.
After going down by 18 points early in the first quarter, Brazil relied on their defense to get them back into the game, as they clawed back to within eight points in the second quarter, and only trailed by 13 at halftime. Pau began with his damage early, as he scored 12 points in the opening quarter.
In the third quarter, Pau would once again use his dominance to change the direction of the game, as he knocked down three 3-pointers early in the second half, to help Spain build their lead up to 20 points. From there, Spain used its variety of weapons in Sergio Rodriguez (12 points), Juan Carlos Navarro (10 points), Memphis Grizzlies’ Marc Gasol (8 points), and Sergio Llull (7 points) on the offensive end, which Brazil just couldn’t match.
Brazil is now 2-1 in Group A play, as they’ll have Tuesday to rest before facing Serbia (2-1) on Wednesday, and Egypt (0-3) on Thursday, and from there they’ll see if they’ll qualify for the Round of 16.