In a very high level match, Slovenia made the difference in the money time, very badly managed by France, to win 88-82 and finish at the top of the group. Luka Doncic signs the second best performance in the history of Eurobasket with 47 points 15/23 including 6/11 from afar, 7 rebounds and 5 assists in 39 minutes, behind the 63 points of the Belgian Eddy Terrace in 1957. Goran Dragic was also valuable in hot moments with 14 points at 6/13.
France can blame themselves, with bad choices at the end of the game when they had come back 10 points behind in the last act, and no less than 18 lost balls. Rudy Gobert compiles 19 points at 9/10, 8 rebounds whileAmath M’Bayewhich replaced Guerschon Yabuseleinjured, in the 5, signs 13 points at 5/11. Evan Fournier adds 15 points at 6/14, furious after the bad refereeing (on both sides) at the end of the match. Thomas Heurtel delivers 10 assists.
France finished 3rd in the group and will play Turkey.
The thread of the game
France started the match perfectly with the very good relationship at 2 Evan Fournier – Rudy Gobert while opposite Slovenia struggled to score, awkward. After 5 minutes of play, the Slovenians had a 0/6 in shooting, contenting themselves with a free throw. Result, with 3-pts from Fournier and Terry Tarpey, the blues led 14-3. But with a big slump in attack, lost balls and clumsiness despite good positions, the game has completely changed. Luka Doncic warmed up and in his wake Slovenia responded with a blistering 17-4 to lead 20-19 after 10 minutes.
On fire, Doncic disgusted the blues early in the second quarter by lining up shots at 3-pts in all positions with also a 2 + 1, to allow Slovenia to settle in command 29-24 with 22 points of the Mav, also taking advantage of lost French balloons. Elie Okobo’s 2 3-point shots did good and even put France back in front. The two teams then responded tit for tat and in the end, but after an incomprehensible unsportsmanlike foul on an offensive rebound by Vincent Poirier above Doncic (who split his skull) Slovenia took the lead 44- 40.
At the start of the second half, the two teams continued not to let go with the unstoppable Doncic on one side and the Gobert – M’Baye duo on the other to fuel the score. If Slovenia took the lead, the blues stayed in the wake and finally on a 3-pt shot at the buzzer from Elie Okobo, it was with a score of parity 64-64 that the two nations started the last quarter.
Offensively, the start of the French quarter was very complicated, with the exception of a 3-point shot from Terry Tarpey. In the wake of Doncic and with a 3-point shot from Muric, the Slovenians went 13-3 to take a 10-point lead, taking advantage of defensive errors, 77-67. M’Baye ended the run with a prize-winning shot, and despite Doncic responding on a big 3-point shot, the blues finally made stops and under the impetus of the trio Gobert, Fournier and Heurtel, France went 9-0 to come back to just 1 point. Doncic added 2 more shots, but on a 2+1 Evan tied the two teams. France had the opportunity to pass in front on a stop sign, but Elie Okobo lost the ball in front of Dragic and behind Heurtel took a bad shot, resulting in Slovenia finding themselves with a 4-point lead in the last minute. Evan lost a new ball, folding the deal.