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FIBA World Cup 2019: Sunday Odds, Schedule, Live Stream and Predictions

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistAugust 31, 2019

United States' Kemba Walker, left, talks to  coach Gregg Popovich during the first half of the team's exhibition basketball game against Spain on Friday, Aug. 16, 2019, in Anaheim, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

The 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup continues Sunday with eight more group games in China, including the tournament debut of the favored United States.

Though Team USA experienced a mass exodus of superstars during the roster construction process, the country's depth of talent will be on display, led by the Boston Celtics' quartet of Kemba Walker, Jayson Tatum, Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown as well as the Utah Jazz's Donovan Mitchell.

Let's check out all the important information for Sunday's matchups. All contests can be live-streamed on ESPN+.

   

Sunday World Cup Schedule and Odds

3:30 a.m.: Canada vs. Australia (-6.5)

4 a.m.: New Zealand vs. Brazil (-9.5)

4:30 a.m.: Turkey (-12.5) vs. Japan

4:30 a.m.: Dominican Republic (-11.5) vs. Jordan

7:30 a.m.: Senegal vs. Lithuania (off)

8 a.m.: Greece (-13.5) vs. Montenegro

8:30 a.m.: Czech Republic vs. United States (-28.5)

8:30 a.m.: France (-7.5) vs. Germany

All times Eastern. Odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook.

   

Predictions

Australia 86, Canada 76

Brazil 82, New Zealand 70

Turkey 79, Japan 69

Dominican Republic 85, Jordan 78

Lithuania 90, Senegal 71

Greece 81, Montenegro 65

United States 98, Czech Republic 77

France 80, Germany 78

   

Top Storyline: How will Team USA look after shaky build up?

The United States' 98-94 defeat at the hands of Australia in a World Cup warm-up contest last Saturday marked the first time in almost 13 years the U.S. lost a game at the senior level while using NBA players. It ended a 78-game winning streak.

Though the Americans were favored—as will likely be the case in every World Cup game they play—the result wasn't a major shock.

The team could feature a starting lineup along the lines of Stephen Curry, James Harden, Kawhi Leonard, LeBron James and Anthony Davis but is instead featuring one quite a bit below that potential level of dominance.

Along with the loss to the Boomers, Team USA scored a 16-point win in a previous encounter with the Aussies and edged Spain by nine in its first exhibition contest.

The Americans are still the leading championship contender, but don't expect them to breeze past opponents like they usually did during the Mike Krzyzewski era.

That's not an indictment of new head coach Gregg Popovich of the San Antonio Spurs. He's entered an international environment wherein NBA players are focused more on "load management," the idea of increasing rest to maximize effectiveness, and less on national team appearances.

Popovich told ESPN's Brian Windhorst he's pleased with the chemistry the squad has developed.

"They've become close in a short period of time," he said. "The camaraderie has blossomed, and I think that will bode well for us."

The Czech Republic is making its first World Cup appearance since Czechoslovakia dissolved in 1993. It's never qualified for the Olympics and has finished no better than seventh in five EuroBasket tournament appearances.

So the Czechs, who feature the Chicago Bulls' Tomas Satoransky as their only NBA player, shouldn't provide much resistance to the U.S. If they do, the Americans' status as favorites could come into question.