USA survives Germany, claws back from a 16-point deficit to grab FIBA exhibition win

Anthony Edwards leads USA’s comeback against Germany (NBAE via Getty Images)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

After a serious threat brought by Spain during their previous exhibition match, the USA national men’s basketball team received another tough challenge from Germany during another FIBA World Cup exhibition game last August 21, 2023.

Trailing by as much as 16 points, Team USA once again showed resiliency and weathered the storm to complete the stunning comeback victory, 99-91, and maintained their perfect tune-up record to five wins without losses.

Minnesota Timberwolves superstar shooting guard Anthony Edwards spearheaded USA’s impressive come-from-behind win after dropping 34 big points with 14 all scored in the final frame.

The Americans thought they already had the grip on the game after erasing Germany’s 16-point lead at the end of the third quarter to come close by just a point, 73-74.

However, the Germans showed they still got enough artillery left and widened their gap back to nine points, 77-86, midway through the fourth quarter.

Sensing blood and urgency, Edward put USA behind his back after going into a massive scoring frenzy in the next five minutes of the game.

Edwards hit back-to-back three-pointers in just a minute to single-handedly tie the game at 86-all. After a miss by the Germans, Mikal Bridges officially completed USA’s comeback after giving them the 89-86 advantage off a trifecta from the left elbow.

With a minute only remaining in the nip-and-tuck game and the USA trying to protect a five-point lead, Edwards put the nail in the coffin after cashing in a tough fade-away jump shot from the left perimeter corner to give the Americans a 93-86 lead.

Germany attempted to trim USA’s lead but Austin Reaves made a huge defensive stop and fed the wide-open Tyrese Haliburton for the open slam dunk.

Haliburton backstopped Edwards’ scoring with 18 markers while Los Angeles Lakers rising star Reaves chipped in 16 points.

“We still go to Manila feeling like we have a lot of room for growth; we also go there with a lot of confidence in ourselves. The group has a connection. They really like each other. They play well together and they fight. So that’s a huge step,” said Team USA’s head coach Steve Kerr after the win.