In a glorious culmination of a historic 2019 FIBA World Cup, Spain defeated Argentina 95-75 in the Finals to claim the gold, in Beijing, China on Sunday.
Spain led from start to finish. Their balance of offense and defense was enough to lift them over Argentina and into the history books, regaining the top spot on the podium once again.
Ricky Rubio was amazing for Spain once again this game, leading the way with 20 points, seven rebounds and three assists. Rubio was also named the FIBA World Cup MVP, a well-deserved honor considering how he consistently quarterbacked his team’s offense throughout the competition.
Marc Gasol was excellent as he posted a 14-7-7 line with two steals and three blocks, anchoring Spain’s efforts on the defensive end.
The veteran guard duo of Sergio Llull and Rudy Fernandez delivered with 15 and 11 points, respectively.
Argentina put up a fight but it was just not enough to overcome Spain in the final. Spain’s defense was just too stifling for them to get their offense humming.
Case in point, Luis Scola, who has been one of the team’s most reliable producers in the tournament was limited to scoring just eight points on 1-of-10 shooting from the field. He did add eight rebounds to the box score but this was by far his worst performance yet.
Gabriel Deck was the top scorer for Argentina with 24 points. Nicolas Laprovittola quietly put up 17 points and swiped three steals.
Overall, this was a masterful execution of coach Sergio Scariolo’s vision for the Spanish squad. They blended solid veteran experience and a clear chemistry on the court that was visible throughout the competition.
France bagged the bronze medal after emerging triumphant over Australia, 67-59.