In a stunning performance, Dillon Brooks, best known for his defensive prowess, erupted with a game-high 39 points, leading Canada to secure their first-ever FIBA World Cup medal in an overtime victory against Team USA (127-118).
The 27-year-old small forward for the Houston Rockets revealed the driving force behind his exceptional performance. Following Canada’s loss to Serbia in the semi-finals, Brooks and his teammates were determined to face the United States, who had fallen to Germany in the tournament.
“Just a tough loss to Serbia, and around the locker room, we really wanted to play the U.S. And we got our wish. Germany played a great game and found a way to beat them. I sent in the group chat that we got what we wanted; let’s be ready to play,” Brooks said.
Additionally, Brooks expressed his desire to compete against his former Memphis Grizzlies teammate, Jaren Jackson Jr., the NBA Defensive Player of the Year. Unfortunately, Jackson missed the bronze medal game due to illness.
“I was just feeling really good. I really wanted to play against Jaren Jackson, but I don’t know what happened to him. I hope he’s all right. But just having that edge every single game, remembering how I prepared for the game, how I was trying to be a leader out there for my teammates. I got to bring this back to Houston,” Brooks added.