Italy vs USA Prediction & Picks: Ant and the Americans Aim to Advance
Despite a loss to Lithuania on Sunday, everything is still in play for the USA at the 2023 FIBA World Cup. Today, they will face off with Italy (8:40 am ET, ESPN2) with a place in Thursday’s semis on the line.
The 110-104 loss to Lithuania ended the USA’s perfect run in this year’s World Cup and dropped them to second in Group J. As a result, instead of being on the same side of the bracket as Canada, Serbia, and Slovenia, the Americans have to get through Italy and either Germany or Latvia to reach Sunday’s final.
On paper, losing puts the USA on a more favorable path to the final. But will they make the most of it?
Italy suffered an upset loss to Karl-Anthony Towns and the Dominican Republic in the preliminary round, but they showed that they aren’t to be taken lightly with a win over Serbia in the second round.
Italy vs USA Odds
Odds are via Bovada.
- Italy +16 (-110)
- USA -16 (-110)
- Over 177 (-115)
- Under 177 (-105)
- Italy +775
- USA -1400
Who Will Follow Edwards’ Lead to Help the USA Reach the Final Four?
If the USA had 48 minutes to work with like in an NBA game, they may have been able to finally catch up with and overtake Lithuania.
Alas, international games are only 40 minutes, and getting into a huge hole in the first 20 of those 40 minutes proved to be too much for the Americans to overcome on Sunday.
After one quarter, Lithuania led 31-12, as they offset making only 6 of 18 two-point shots by being a perfect 6 of 6 from three, not allowing a single made three, and holding the USA to just 33.3% (5 of 15) shooting from the field.
The USA woke up offensively in the second quarter, but they still trailed by 17 at the break. A 21-4 that spanned the end of the second quarter and part of the third quarter brought the deficit down to four, and at that point, it seemed like the eventual result was a certainty.
But try as they might, the Americans were never able to make it a one-possession game, and 35 points from Anthony Edwards proved to be in vain.
Results for the USA at the 2023 FIBA World Cup
- Saturday, August 26: USA 99-72 New Zealand
- Monday, August 28: USA 109-81 Greece
- Wednesday, August 30: USA 110-62 Jordan
- Friday, September 1: USA 85-73 Montenegro
- Sunday, September 3: Lithuania 110-104 USA
As mentioned in my Lithuania-Serbia prediction piece, Lithuania’s leading scorer, Vaidas Kariniauskas, scored only 15 points, less than half of Edwards’ total.
But Lithuania had nine players score nine or more points, whereas only Edwards, Mikal Bridges (14 points, three rebounds), Jalen Brunson (14 points, four rebounds, seven assists), and Brandon Ingram (10 points) were the only Americans who scored nine or more points.
A better performance by the supporting cast will be needed for the matchup with Italy, who put the clamps on defensively to book a spot in the quarter-finals.
Results for Italy at the 2023 FIBA World Cup
- Friday, August 25: Italy 81-67 Angola
- Sunday, August 27: Dominican Republic 87-82 Italy
- Tuesday, August 29: Italy 90-83 Philippines
- Friday, September 1: Italy 78-76 Serbia
- Sunday, September 3: Italy 73-57 Puerto Rico
After holding Serbia to just 36.2% shooting in a 78-76 win last Friday, Italy held Puerto Rico to 37% shooting in Sunday’s 73-57 win.
Also, other than the loss to the Dominican Republic, who made 16 of 39 from three in their 87-82 win on August 27, Italy has been very stingy with allowing made threes. Angola (4 of 30), the Philippines (10 of 29), Serbia (7 of 31), and Puerto Rico (6 of 26).
Edwards is likely going to get his again today, but who will step up with him? Mikal Bridges was 5 of 8 from the field and scored 14 points in the loss, and Ingram was 5 of 8 from the field as well.
Might this be perfect timing for Paolo Banchero to find his shot again?
Banchero backed off of a commitment to play for Italy to play for the USA instead, and he opened the tournament with 21 points against New Zealand. But in the other four games, Banchero has failed to reach double figures and averaged 7.5 PPG.
Italy vs USA Prediction and Picks
Prediction: USA to win
Picks: USA -16 (-110 at Bovada) & Anthony Edwards over 21.5 points (-125 at Bovada)
I thought that getting a stern challenge from Montenegro would help the USA avoid putting themselves up in a bad spot against Lithuania.
That didn’t happen, but with so much on the line today, I expect a stronger showing from the USA from the outset.
I also expect Edwards to continue his scoring exploits. He has been the USA’s leading scorer in each of the last three games, and while he may not take 26 shots like he did against Lithuania, he will take enough shots to get himself to 22+ points and carry his team to a semifinal showdown with either Germany or Latvia.
Where to Bet on Italy vs USA and the 2023 FIBA World Cup
The Italy vs USA betting odds mentioned in this article came from Bovada, but they aren’t the only sports betting site out there offering 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup odds.
In addition to odds for each game of the tournament, you can find FIBA World Cup futures odds at these books. We have reviewed each of the above books and highly recommend them all.
If you don’t have an account at any of those sites mentioned, check out our reviews to learn more about what they have to offer.
Eddie Griffin has been writing about and betting on sports for over a decade and has been with Betting News since 2021. For more of his thoughts on sports and sports betting, you can follow him on X, formerly known as Twitter.
This site contains commercial content. We may be compensated for the links provided on this page. The content on this page is for informational purposes only. Betting News makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the information given or the outcome of any game or event.
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