FIBA News: ”The Dragon” leads Slovenian comeback over Croatia

Slovenia completed its pre-competition exhibition run undefeated, with a 94-88 victory over Croatia in Cejje on Saturday.

Luka Dončić was off his usual game, shooting just 2/9 from the floor for 10 points, but adding 6 assists, 5 rebounds, and a steal in his 21 minutes of action. However recent Chicago Bulls signing Goran Dragić picked up the slack with his second consecutive strong performance, having put in 16 in his last game, with 19 points, 14 of which came in the second half. Vlatko Cancar came up big in the first half, where he scored 16 of his 21 points.

Dario Saric’s 18 points were not enough to stem the tide and keep Croatia in front in a game of which they largely held control. Also in losing efforts Bojan Bogdanović scored 15 points and Ivica Zubac added 13.

Prior to the contest, the Slovenian national team journey ended for Sasa Ciani, Gregor Glas, Robert Jurkovic, Jurij Macura, Bine Prepelic, and Luka Scuka, as coach Aleksander Sekulic cut those players. Next up for Slovenia is World Cup European Qualifying games against Estonia and Germany, followed by Group J play in 2022 EuroBasket in Cologne, along with Germany, Hungary, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Lithuania, France and host nation Germany.

As Croatia was eliminated from World Cup play, their next focus will be the 2025 World Cup Pre Qualifiers in Group E. They will hit the road to take on Poland and return home to face Switzerland. Following that in early September will be Group C in EuroBasket in Milan, where Croatia’s opponents will be Estonia, Greece, Great Britain, Ukraine and host country Italy.,

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