Chris Goulding became the headline act, putting on an incredible three-point show, hitting seven straight, contributing to his 21-point game. Duop Reath was influential moving the ball up court, intensifying his forward pressure as he added 17-points of his own.
While Patty Mills, Joe Ingles, Matthew Dellavedova, and Aron Baynes were all rested, Goulding along with Jock Landale (14pts, five rbs, two blks) and Nathan Sobey (15pts, four rbs, five ast) came out firing, leading from the front and effectively taking upon those leadership roles.
A youthful Boomers’ line up, granted up and comer Josh Giddey court time and he was instantly impressive both around the court and on the scoreboard, playing a 14-point, three assist and four rebound game. After a quiet start, Josh Green was also able to make an impact, highlighted by a super defensive intercept effort, resulting in a quick turnover goal.
The Boomers may hold their undefeated title in the Las Vegas series but Head Coach Brian Goorjian’s focus retains solely on gelling the younger talents with the experienced names and building the culture in the Australian basketball camp.
“Tonight was a step forward, but our respect for Nigeria and everyone in our pool, that hasn’t waned at all. This isn’t about results, not about winning, this is about the culture and playing for your country.”
“The future is bright, and the culture is strong, it’s exciting for down the road.”
The Boomers face a revitalized Team USA- who defeated Argentina today- on Saturday morning (AEST).
Australia: 26 49 84 108
Nigeria: 13 29 46 69