Photo: FIBA

It appears that Dillon Brooks is cherishing with all his heart the ongoing FIBA World Cup run he has with Canada up to the point that he’s been able to slowly move on from his embattled year with the Memphis Grizzlies.

As his pivotal performance helped Canada to punch its ticket to the World Cup quarterfinals over defending champions in Spain, Brooks aired cryptic words about how his play for the Road Warriors has been instrumental for him to follow up his controversial stint with the Grizzlies from the last 2022-23 season.

“Coming off a tough year with my old squad, it was great having a refresh with Canadian blood — guys who believe in me, guys who have trust in me,” Brooks said after hitting 22 points in Canada’s knockout game dub to oust Spain’s title defense. “We figured how to win this game in a great fashion.”

Brooks notoriously ended his Memphis tenure last year filled with plenty of on-court antics, harnessing as much as 18 technical fouls through the course of the regular season. As the Grizzlies’ year came to a bitter end in the hands of the Los Angeles Lakers at the first round of the playoffs, it was then reported that the franchise won’t look to regain his service “under any circumstances.”

Still, the 27-year-old wing was able to secure his bag from the Houston Rockets by inking a four-year, $86MM deal this NBA offseason.

Not only a spot to the World Cup’s Final Round in Manila has been a gratifying reward for the rising Canadian hoops this year.

Canada’s impressive World Cup activities also allowed them to land as one of two of the best teams in the American region alongside the United States – officially punching their seat in next year’s Olympic Games in Paris.

For Brooks, it has been a dream come true to represent and guide his nation as high as the prestige of the Olympics. The Canadian basketball team hasn’t been featured in the grandest sporting event since 2000 in Sydney.

“It’s been my dream making the Olympics, ever since I touched Team Canada [jersey] since U16,” he said.

“I figured it out and I know from now that we made a lot of Canadians proud. I know when we get back after figuring out how to win this gold [in World Cup], it’s going to be a great welcome.