Mirza Teletovic had been hitting deep three's all game for Bosnia Monday. His national team needed not only a win but a win by double digits to get into the second round. Six times, he rose from spots far beyond the arc and found net. Really deep, like here and here.
Then, with three seconds left, he launched one of his deepest, a 30-footer .. and missed. The game was won, but for Bosnia to advance, they had to win by 10. They were up by seven when he took the shot and after a late free throw by Lithuania, they lost by six. Tough way to go out.
After the game, fans debated whether he should have fired from so far away. Did he have time to get closer? But as his coach, Aco Petrovic, said post-game, "I cannot blame anybody because of one missed ball or one shot, because those same shots got us to plus 16." or as a fan tweeted, "you live by Mirza, you die by Mirza."
Indeed, it was Bosnia's lack of depth and defense that spelled their fate. Teletovic did his best, finishing with 31 points, shooting 10-of-20, 6-of-15 from deep. That was enough to finish second in scoring behind only Jeffery Taylor of Sweden and the Bobcats, who finished at 21.2, just ahead of Teletovic's 21.0.
Also headed back to Brooklyn: Joe Prunty, the Nets assistant coach and Great Britain's head coach. GB lost to Ukraine, coached by YES Network analyst Mike Fratello, 87-68. Prunty received praise for his team's gritty performance, upsetting both Israel and Germany. Fratello's team will head to the secodn round.
Bojan Bogdanovic and Croatia played well enough to defeat Czech Republic and advance to the second round. Bogdanovic finished with 11 points on 3-of-8 shooting, including 1-of-4 from deep.
- Game Report: Bosnia 78, Lithuania 72 - FIBA Europe
- Game Report: Ukraine 87, Great Britain 68 - FIBA Europe
- Game Report: Croatia 70, Czech Republic 53 - FIBA Europe