R.J. Barrett led Canada to the FIBA U19 World Championships on Sunday with a 79-60 victory over Italy in the title game held in Cario, Egypt.
Barrett, rated as the top overall prospect in the Class of 2019 by Rivals, earned MVP honors for his performance, averaging a tournament-best 21.6 points to go along with 8.6 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game over the seven games.
Joining Barrett on the all-tournament team was teammate Abu Kigab, Payton Pritchard of the U.S., and the Italian duo of Lorenzo Bucarelli and Tommaso Oxilia. Kigab and Pritchard will be teammates this season at Oregon.
The 6-foot-7 Barrett, who plays his prep ball at powerhouse Montverde Academy in Florida, spent this spring playing for UPlay Canada in the Nike EYBL. In eight appearances, he averaged 28.0 points, 10.8 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game.
Top plays from FIBA U19 World Championships (VIDEO)
The FIBA U19 World Championships concluded on Sunday with Canada defeating Italy, 79-60, to claim gold in Egypt.
USA Basketball knocked off Spain, 96-72, to earn bronze. Canada had upset the United States in the semifinals, led by 38 points from R.J. Barrett, considered the top prospect in the Class of 2019.
Barrett, the 6-foot-7 Montverde Academy (Fla.) small forward, was the tournament’s breakout star, returning home with MVP honors. It’s not a surprise that when FIBA released it’s top 10 plays from the event that he made several appearances. Purdue’s Carsen Edwards also earned a spot in the top 10.
On Monday, the 2015 FIBA Americas Championship began with a matchup between Argentina and Puerto Rico in Group B play.
With the score tied 60-60 with 4:05 to play in the third quarter, Patricio Garino came up with a steal, passing ahead to Facundo Campazzo to start the fast break. Campazzo would dish back to the streaking Garino would rise up and finish over a defender for the slam and the foul.
Argentina would go on to win, 91-86.
Garino, the George Washington rising senior, finished with 19 points, off 6-of-7 shooting, with three boards and three steals in 33 minutes.
Before Michael Gbinije returns home to finish up his college career at Syracuse, he is trying to help the Nigerian National Team qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games.
On Sunday, in Group A Play against the host country, Tunisia, the 6-foot-6 Gbinije took the hand-off, went down the lane and threw down a monster one-handed dunk over a defender. The highlight served as a consolation for Nigeria, as Tunisia won, 70-59, handing Nigeria its first loss of the tournament.
Gbinije finished with 10 points and three assists in 22 minutes off the bench, his best game of the tournament.
Isaac Humphries, a four-star 2016 power forward, was also named to the All-Youth Tournaments Team. The 6-foot-10 Aussie averaged 18.9 points and 11.6 rebounds in the U17 World Championships in Dubai. Australia ended up reaching the gold medal game, though, Humphries was plagued with early foul trouble — then limited by the likes of Diamond Stone, Ivan Rabb and the rest of the U.S. front court — as USA Basketball held on for a 99-92 victory.
Malik Newman, the No. 3 overall recruit in the Class of 2015 by Rivals, was named to the honorable mention list. Newman led the U.S. to the U17 World Championship. The 6-foot-3 lead guard led the U.S. in scoring at 14.9 points, adding 4.3 assists per game. Dillon Brooks, the leading scorer in the FIBA U18 Americans Championships, also was a near-miss. The 6-foot-5 wing was part of a Canadian team that lost to USA Basketball in the gold medal game. Less than two months later, Brooks committed to Oregon and enrolled in school for this season.
Cedi Osman (Turkey), Dragan Bender (Croatia) and Stefan Peno (Serbia) rounded out the All-Summer Youth Tournaments Team.
In two seasons at the University of San Diego, 6-9 forward John Sinis averaged 4.1 points and 2.7 rebounds per game for a program that has the look of a team primed to make a move in the WCC this season. Sinis won’t be around to see if a team led by guard Christopher Anderson and Johnny Dee can make good on that promise however, as it was announced by the school on Wednesday that the native of Greece has signed a professional contract with Greek club AGO Rethimno.
“After long consideration I made the difficult decision to leave my studies and college basketball to pursue my life’s goal and start my professional career,” Sinis said in the release. “I would like to thank USD from the bottom of my heart for giving me the opportunity to fulfill one of my dreams to play basketball in the NCAA, develop as a player and to be part of such a prestigious university like USD.”
Obviously the timing isn’t great if you’re San Diego, and head coach Bill Grier pointed out as much in the release. With leading rebounder Chris Manresa having graduated it was likely that Sinis would have been asked to do more in his junior season, and the same goes for sophomore Jito Kok (3.2 ppg, 3.2 rpg) and senior Dennis Kramer (4.2, 2.7). However it should be noted that Sinis spent a large portion of his time offensively on the perimeter, with 70 of his 118 shot attempts last season coming from beyond the arc. In his two seasons at USD 57.5% of Sinis’ shot attempts were three-pointers.
Losing a player at this point in the school year, while not ideal, does give coach Grier and his staff some time to figure out how much their rotation will be impacted before practices begin. But with the likes of Anderson and Dee back on campus, San Diego will be fine in 2013-14.
“It was always a goal of John’s to play at the highest level professionally in his home country,” Grier said in the release. “Obviously the timing isn’t great but I don’t know if there ever is good timing when you lose a player. His departure doesn’t change the top 8-9 players in our rotation, nor our excitement for the upcoming season. We wish John well as he starts a new phase in his career.”