2010 FIBA World Championship: Rudy Fernandez, Spain Survive Greece, Humiliation

September 4th, 2010 by Robert Kleeman Leave a reply »
Juan Carlos Navarro pumped his fists in exultation and looked to the rafters for the roaring approval the basketball gods now owed. His second three-pointer did more than seal Spain's 80-72 victory over Greece. One final long-distance grenade allowed the reigning tournament champs to escape a minefield of degradation and advance to the quarterfinals with another shot to exude world dominance.

La Bomba's 22-point outing served as another sterling, explosive addition to his big-game curriculum vitae. Rudy Fernandez needed the moment, and the triumph, more. Greece and Spain reprised the testy 2006 gold medal game in a manner any semifinalist foes will struggle to top.

The Greeks struck early, with Vassilis Spanoulis and Niko Zisis demolishing the Spaniards inside. A pair of Navarro floaters--you know, the rainbow shot that could lull a caffeinated and intoxicated Snooki from Jersey Shore to sleep--closed the first-quarter gap. Spain snatched the lead back thanks to timely scores from reserves Fran Vasquez and Alex Mumbru.

Jonas Kazlauskas' squad appeared better prepared for this unexpe ...

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