For the first time since the FIBA Rankings began nearly 20 years ago, United States team is not at the top of the list for men. That honor now goes to Spain, who overtook the United States in Friday morning’s rankings update. Last summer, Spain beat France in EuroBasket final. Spain and Team USA hold a solid advantage over third-placed Australia, at least according to the points system. France, who are now runners-up in consecutive high-level tournaments, are fifth.
While they didn’t explicitly say the following tweet was a reply, someone with access to USA Basketball seems to think that putting someone else #1 is a little silly.
The FIBA Rankings are derived from a weighted system based on the results of international play over a six-year period. In recent years, Spain won the 2019 World Cup, lost in the Olympic quarter-finals to the United States team and clinched the above. EuroBasket crown. Comparatively, Team USA finished seventh at the 2019 World Cup, won the 2021 Olympics and placed third at the AmeriCup in September.
The next major tournament will take place this summer at the 2023 World Cup. The United States will travel to South America in February to qualify. A full explanation via The Athletic for America’s path to qualification can be found here. For now, however, the defending World Cup and EuroBasket champions are at the top of the men’s basketball circuit, with Team USA aiming to usurp them. If this tweet is any indication, it’s clearly a priority.