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Coaches taking it slow with Sergey Karasev and Bojan Bogdanovic in FIBA World Cup preps

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Russian Basketball Federation

In friendly games over the weekend, Sergey Karasev played sparingly for Russia and Bojan Bogdanovic not at all as the national team coaches from Russia and Croatia slowly work their stars back into the lineup following US travel.

After playing 14 minutes on Friday, Karasev played 20 on Saturday as Russia defeated Latvia, 73-64, in Bamberg, Germany.  The 6'7" shooting guard scored five points, taking only five shots and making two. He also had two rebounds, an assist, two steals and a block.

In the two games, totaling 35 minutes, Karasev had 11 points on 4-of-9 shooting (but only 1-of-5 from deep), four rebounds, three assists, four steals and a blocked shot.. Russia lost to host Germany on Sunday without Karasev who did not play. Team says he has a "slight injury" but "not to worry." No further details were available.

Bogdanovic, who was introduced to the media Monday in East Rutherford, returned to Croatia on Thursday and did not play in either of Croatia's wins in friendlies against Canada. Croatia will play next weekend in a friendly tournament in France with the host nation, Serbia and Greece participating along with Croatia.

Both Jorge Gutierrez and Mirza Teletovic are scheduled to play Sunday, Gutierrez in the FIBA Central America tournament and Teletovic in a friendly tournament hosted by Italy. Teams from Italy, Bosnia, Serbia and Canada are participating. .Mason Plumlee returned home for a brief break in Team USA training.  Team USA plays next in two weeks vs. Brazil in Chicago.