Why a brilliant generation has suffered its biggest disappointment in four decades

Why a brilliant generation has suffered its biggest disappointment in four decades

Patrick Bowman, General Secretary of FIBA, passed away in 2018. He was here, in Argentina. During the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires. He suffered a heart attack while watching a 3×3 tournament. The Swiss leader had revolutionized basketball. He always knew that in order to keep the business going strong, he couldn’t stop having the NBA as an ally. “If we keep beating them, they won’t play anymore,” he commented in an interview with LA NACION in 2014. Their loss would go back to the 1980s, the last time a major tournament was played without them..

Today what Argentina just got out of the World Cup finals for the first time since the 1980s (1982, at Columbia, to be more precise), spot analysis tends to point to feelings that are overflowing Anger and pain. How do we explain this? Momentum can choose last-minute paths: the free ones missed by the player, the refereeing rather lenient with the physical game of the Dominicans, the choice of the coaching staff or the decision of the leadership. But the truth is, neither of them is entirely to blame. It is often said that no team is relegated in the last game. This is something similar. It is necessary that we explore a little more Baumann’s phrase, We move beyond this cruel defeat at the Mar del Plata Sports Center, to understand itThe system betrayed them.

Facundo Campazzo, the wonderful captain of the team, who found himself in a trap leaving him out of the World CupVicente Robles – AFP

The Swiss leader has made a complex change to the international calendar. Continental Championships are held in Europe and America every two years and were qualifiers for the World Cup and Olympic Games. They started playing all four and now they only have title value. In this format, countries with numbers in the NBA or Euroleague can claim them each year to play for their national team. Now, they can only do it once every four years (or two, if they qualify for the Olympics).

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Indeed, Argentina Current world runner-up, Olympic quarter-finalist, No. 4 ranking (behind only Spain, USA and Australia), continent champion and Pan American Games gold medalist. He’s one of the best picks on the planet…but he won’t play maximum history. This huge contradiction is justified only in changing the qualification formula. It is nothing new, it has always been known that something like this can happen.

The advantages of the new method are that countries that do not have much development can now see their teams at home every three or four months. negativity? This format prevents players who participate in the two major world championships (NBA and Euroleague) from being in 50% (or more) of the pre-World Cup stage.

The Dominican Republic managed the pressure better at the end of the last match and achieved a deserved qualification for the 2023 World Cup.Vicente Robles – AFP

Countries like Venezuela or the Dominican Republic, which have their main players in the domestic leagues and second division teams in Europe, are not suffering. And others feel it, like Argentina, Slovenia, and Spain, to name a few. That may sound like an excuse, but it isn’t. There are those who benefit and those who are harmed by this type of competition..

Not even Gabriel Deck and Nicholas Laprovittola’s gesture to cross the Atlantic to reach the field a few hours after landing wasn’t enough.. For various technical reasons that particularly affect the Argentine style of play, this was detrimental. Argentinians, by biotype, usually have physical damage with most of their competitors. It equates everything to science, game automation, and competitor study. This requires a job that cannot be done without an internship.

And it cannot be denied that, behind the current stars, those rubbish who took second place in China, there is no rule with the international hierarchy. In the era of the golden generation, this was not the case. The second and third team can still be competitive.

There was also some bad luck. This is not the first time this system has been used. In 2019, in which Argentina was not affected by the deadline, but with players playing in the National League, they won two or three games with a very few points difference. If she had been lost, they would have put her in a similar position. next to, The combination of results at the time saw the Dominican Republic reach the World Cup as the fourth best out of the two groups, with only seven wins. Today, Pablo Prigioni’s team had eight wins and that wasn’t enough. A fortuitous combination of results with teams he couldn’t match also sidelined him.

Che’s revenge: he left the Argentine national team in the middle of a tie, went to the Dominican Republic and was the executioner of his players.Vicente Robles – AFP

Baumann protected the company with the NBA, which renewed his contract with the International Basketball Federation. On the other hand, the relationship with the Euroleague continued to be very bad. Someone asked the captain at the time if he was willing to lose a great team in the World Cup because they couldn’t make it through the qualifying stage. “I want the day to come when the players confront their clubs and tell them they want to play for their team, and force a change of calendars. If the Euroleague doesn’t want to help us, I don’t care. I have to prefer a $5,000 million company (what the MLS is estimated to cost) for professionals in 2014) and not one of the 250 million euros (the value of the European League at that time). In short, he agreed that he would never twist the NBA’s arm, but he believed that the European League, with a little good intentions, could adapt its schedule. That will was not there.

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It was said that Argentina had suffered four defeats in 12 matches, which kept them out of the tournament to be held in Japan, Indonesia and the Philippines. In three of those four matches he didn’t have his main characters (Campazzo, Laprovittola, Luca Vildoza, Gabriel Deck…).

Pablo Prigioni won the 2022 America’s title undefeated, but is now out of the World Cup; A fact that Argentina has not seen since 1982Vicente Robles – AFP

In China 2019, FIBA ​​deprived Luka Doncic because Slovenia (European Champion) could not advance without their stars. Now, they won’t have America’s champion Facundo Campazzo and Gabriel Deck, Euroleague stars, for the same reasons.

In the face of a tense situation, hit by blow, it is known that the pressure is usually greater on the candidates. that happened with Argentina that succumbed on a bad nightHe was paralyzed. Many selected Europeans have also suffered before.

There were strange situations that made everything more difficult to digest. how Departure of Nestor Garcia, the coach who managed the first half of the competition, who was later dismissed from the team to be in charge of the Dominican team. Revenge (perhaps due) to him, a cruel grimace for the fate of our players.

Whatever, The rules were known from the start. Today you just have to accept the fact: Canada, the Dominican Republic and Venezuela were better than the team Argentina was able to put up against them. In a few months, when the pain is over, we will have to think of a new strategy. A system that harms countries like ours will not change. We must enhance our selection in another way, and make it more competitive with fewer resources. What plan and how do we achieve it?

The first World Cup exit in 41 years weighs heavily on this generation of players. but They are still as bright as when they won the silver medal at the World Cup in China or when they lifted the America’s Cup In Brazil a few months ago. We’ll have to get creative and take on the problem in the most responsible way possible to try and prevent this from happening again. Although at first glance, it does not seem that there are many paths.

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Oliver Walton

"Pro alcohol addict. Bacon scholar. Award-winning beer fan. Gamer. Social media expert. Zombie guru."

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