Photo credit: Photo credit: Christian Bonin / TSGphoto.com
Canada Basketball announced its roster for FIBA qualifiers on Feb. 22 and 25 on Monday.
|Jermaine Anderson||Guard||6’2″||Toronto, ON||Free Agent|
|Joel Anthony||Centre||6’9″||Montreal, QC||Free Agent|
|Anthony Bennett||Forward||6’8″||Toronto, ON||Maine Red Claws (G-League)|
|Aaron Best||Guard||6’4″||Scarborough, ON||Raptors 905 (G-League)|
|Melvin Ejim||Forward||6’7″||Toronto, ON||Unics (Russia)|
|Brady Heslip||Guard||6’2″||Burlington, ON||Trabzonspor (Turkey)|
|Kaza Kajami-Keane||Guard||6’1″||Ajax, ON||Raptors 905 (G-League)|
|Kyle Landry||Centre||6’10”||Calgary, AB||Buducnost (Montenegro)|
|Adika Peter-McNeilly||Guard||6’3″||Toronto, ON||Ludwigsburg (Germany)|
|Dyshawn Pierre||Forward||6’6″||Whitby, ON||Banco di Srd (Italy)|
|Thomas Scrubb||Forward||6’6″||Richmond, B.C.||Scandone AV (Italy)|
|Jevohn Shepherd||Guard||6’5″||Toronto, ON||SLUC Nancy (France)|
The most notable change here is the addition of Melvin Ejim, who immediately becomes one of Canada’s best, most important, and most experienced players for the two-game set. Also added to the roster are Canadian basketball OG Jermaine Anderson, Raptors 905 guard Aaron Best, Kyle Landry, Adika Peter-McNeilly, and Jevohn Shepherd. That makes it to Raptors 905 players with Best joining Kaza Keane, as well as some serious CIS/USports representation.
Those names replace Grandy Glaze, Olivier Hanlan, Owen Klassen, Dyshawn Pierre, Xavier Rathan-Mayes, and Phil Scrubb, who’s been dealing with an injury. Rathan-Mayes stands as a pretty significant loss, as he’s turned in a strong G League season and was one of Canada’s best attackers and playmakers during the November games.
This round of games will be coached by Gordie Herbert.
Canada plays the U.S. Virgin Islands on Thursday at 4:30 pm ET and then the Bahamas on Sunday at 8 pm ET.Both games will take place in Bahamas due to the U.S. Virgin Islands still being in hurricane recovery. Both games will be streamed on DAZN.
Canada split their pair of games in November and sit second in Group D with a 1-1 record and a +12 point differential. They’ll play these two games, then games on June 29 and July 2 in Canada, then move on to the next round of qualification in September if they place top three in Group D. Placing higher in the group is important, as opening round results carry over into the second round.