The FIBA Basketball World Cup officially tipped-off last week with a couple countries featuring members of the Phoenix Suns. With players like Ricky Rubio headlining Spain and Aron Baynes manning the paint for Australia, the games have been providing Suns fans a preview of some of the newest players on the roster. Rubio and Baynes have helped lead their undefeated squads to dominating victories as both teams look to be in prime positions to advance out of the group stage.
RICKY RUBIO – SPAIN
Aug. 31: Spain defeated Tunisia 101-62.
Rubio shined for Spain in their first official matchup of the FIBA World Cup. He notched a game-high 17 points to go along with his game-high nine assists and two steals in the win.
Sept. 2: Spain defeated Puerto Rico 73-63.
Rubio once again scored 17 points in Spain’s second game of the group phase. He showed off his work on the glass grabbing a game-high eight rebounds to go along with his four assists and one steal against Puerto Rico.
Sept. 4: Spain defeated Iran 73-65.
Rubio did what he does best in Spain’s matchup against Iran, finding his teammates. The point guard dished out a team-high five assists with five points, two rebounds and a steal.
Sept. 6: Sept. 4: Spain defeated Italy 67-60.
Rubio finished second on the team in scoring with 15 points, just one shy of teammate’s Juancho Hernangomez’s 16. He also tallied two rebounds, two assists and two steals in the win.
Sept. 8: Spain defeated Serbia 81-69.
Rubio scored a team-high 19 points in-route to the victory over Serbia. He also grabbed five rebounds with four assists and a steal.
Sept. 10 Spain defeated Poland 90-78
Rubio’s offensive showcase was key in Spain’s win over Poland. He scored a game-high 19 points on 7-of-11 (63.6%.) from the field with nine assists, five rebounds and a steal. Rubio dished out his 107th assists in his 22nd World Cup game to become the all-time assist leader in FIBA history.
NEXT GAME: Spain will face either Australia or Czech Republic in the semi-finals on Friday.
ARON BAYNES – AUSTRALIA
Sept. 1: Australia defeated Canada 108-92.
Baynes notched 10 points on an impressive 57.1 percent shooting to go along with his four rebounds in Australia’s first matchup of the FIBA World Cup.
Sept. 3: Australia defeated Senegal 81-68.
Baynes scored in double-digits yet again for Australia as he fought strong the paint for The Boomers. He scored 12 points of 55.6 percent shooting with three rebounds, three assists and a block in the victory.
Sept. 5: Australia defeated Lithuania 87-82.
Baynes dominated for the Boomers against Lithuania with a game-high 21 points on 8-of-15 (53.3%) shooting as well as three-of-five from deep. He also grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds with a block.
Sept. 7: Australia defeated Dominican Republic 82-76.
Baynes scored a highly-efficient 10 points on five-of-eight (62.5%) shooting with five rebounds, two assists and a block in the win over the Dominican Republic.
Sept. 9: Australia defeated France 100-98.
Baynes continued his scoring tear against France as he notched 21 points on seven-of-nine (77.8%) shooting, including five-of-six from deep. He also tallied five rebounds and two assists in the victory.
NEXT GAME: Baynes and Australia will tip-off against the Czech Republic for a chance to go head-to-head against his new Suns teammate in Rubio in the semifinals.