Despite having their game delayed by eight hours due to a blackout, Canada played like a team possessed as they rolled over Uruguay 93-67 in their final opening-round game at the FIBA Americas tournament.
The game was originally scheduled to tip off at 2 p.m. ET but was forced to be pushed back when the lights went out earlier in the day. The power failure didn’t just effect the gym in Caracas but the entire country of Venezuela.
Canada opened the game with a 17-4 run fueled by five points and three assists from San Antonio Spurs point guard Cory Joseph. By the end of the first quarter, the Uruguayans trailed 29-11.
Things went from bad to worse for Uruguay in the second period when Orlando Magic forward Andrew Nicholson caught fire as he helped Canada push their lead to 51-25.
When Canada opened the third quarter with a thunderous dunk from Cleveland Cavaliers forward Tristan Thompson, it looked as though the scoreboard was going to get even more lopsided but the Uruguayans found some flow for a few minutes to keep things close. The South American side went on an 18-4 run led by the outside shooting of Bruno Fitipaldo to trim Canada’s lead to 18 but that was as close as they would get.
Canada immediately answered with an 8-0 run to push the lead back to 26 and effectively end the game early.
Canada was paced by 17 points and seven assists from Joseph, 14 points and seven rebounds from Thompson along with 18 points from Nicholson.
The Canadians finished second in Pool A with a record of 3-1 while Uruguay was third at 2-2.
Both teams advance to the second round out of Pool A along with pool winners, Puerto Rico, as well as Jamaica, who surprisingly eliminated Brazil from the tournament Tuesday.
All four teams will carry over their totals, minus what they earned against Brazil, into the next round where they will join a pool with Argentina, Venezuela, the Dominican Republic and Mexico.
The top four teams will qualify for the World Cup next summer in Madrid, Spain.
Canada will face the Mexicans in their next game at 2 p.m. ET Thursday.