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Just The Sports: FIBA Women's World Championship Game Notes

Just The Sports

Friday, September 22, 2006

FIBA Women's World Championship Game Notes

I have been remiss for not giving the Women's World Championship the same sort of coverage I gave the men's, but with the semi-finals over and the final game scheduled for Saturday, here are a couple game notes to fulfill my quota for discussing women's sports.

That the US women had their fifty-game World and Olympic winning streak broken does come as a shock, but the team that finally managed to beat them should not come as a complete surprise before Russia had played the US competitively when they played in the preliminary rounds, only losing by ten points. In fact, Russia was the only one of the US's opponents to have an offensive efficiency over 98 points per 100 possessions and they did it twice. Only the second time the US was not able to better Russia's offensive efficiency because of worse shooting from the field and the free throw line.

Even though the US did lose, they still had the best overall defensive team among the semi-final teams, which ironically let them down when it counted second-most. Russia, as a team, has been a little better than their opponents, scoring 99.1 points per 100 possessions while allowing 94.9 points per 100 possessions, but good enough to make it to the finals to face off against Australia.

The Australians have the privilege of being the most efficient offensive semi-final team by far with an offensive rating of 109.9. They are also the best shooting team with a true shooting percentage of 59.1%. And if that was not enough, they have been the second-best defensive semi-final team behind the US. Since Australia has won their games pretty easily and has a +19.0 efficiency margin, there should be no problem with the Aussies dispatching Russia and taking gold medal in this tournament.

It is worth noting that no semi-final team has averaged more assists than turnovers, although Australia comes the closest with 14.9 assists per game to 15.7 turnovers even though Brazil has had fewer turnovers per possession.


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