While Canada Basketball has not officially announced the 12 man roster that will represent at the FIBA World U17 championships beginning 30 June 2018 in Argentina, multiple sources are confirming that the roster will include several of Canada’s top names (see list below that we compiled independently from these multiple sources).
Canada will be led by Manitoba Bisons Head Coach Kirby Schepp (who honored Canada Basketball’s wishes that the official roster be released by Canada Basketball – which is pending).
According to these multiple sources, this appears to be Canada’s 12 man roster:
5’11” Shemar Rathan-Mayes (Scarborough, ON/Orangeville Prep/CIA Bounce) a point guard who averaged 24 mpg and 13.4 ppg last summer as Canada captured silver at the FIBA Americas qualifier.
6’1″ Keyshawn Barthelemy (Montreal, PQ/Athlete Institute/Brookwood Elite) another point guard who is now playing in Toronto and is rated by NPH as the #11 player in the Class of 2020.
6’4″ Luka Sakota (Etobicoke, ON/King’s Christian College/Canada Elite) a shooting guard/wing who averaged 11.4 ppg last summer, shooting 42% from three in almost 20.0 mpg.
6’5″ Cashius McNeilly (Toronto, ON/St. Joseph’s Catholic Central/Canada Elite) who averaged a team-high 14.4 ppg and shot 48% from three as one of Canada’s main offensive weapons last summer. NPH has McNeilly as their #2 player overall in the Class of 2020.
6’6″ Addison Patterson (Milton, ON/Athlete Institute/CIA Bounce) who comes off a strong performance for our U-17 team that finished second at the FIBA Americas tournament in St. Catharines that concluded this past weekend. NPH ranks Patterson as the #1 player overall in the Class of 2020.
6’6″ Matthew-Alexander Moncrieffe (Lakeshore, ON/Orangeville Prep/CIA Bounce) a three-man with tremendous athleticism who was not part of Canada’s roster last summer.
6’7″ Ben Krikke (Edmonton, AL/Jasper Place H.S./Team Alberta) a tough forward who contributed 5.8 points and 6.0 rebounds per game last summer for Canada.
6’7″ Keon Ambrose-Hylton (Toronto, ON/Hamilton Heights/Nike UPlay Canada) who plays at Hamilton Heights Christian Academy in Chattanooga, TN. and is regarded as the #3 ranked player in the state of Tennessee and a 4-star guy by 247 Sports.
6’8″ Tre-Vaughn Minott (Montreal, PQ/St. Laurent Ecole/Team Quebec) a big, strong low post presence who plays high school basketball in the Montreal area.
6’8″ Josh Hemmings (Toronto, ON/Oak Hill Academy/Nike UPlay Canada), the #3 ranked player in the Class of 2020 by NPH who plays at storied Oak Hill Academy in Mouth-of-Wilson, Virginia, a perennial USA high school power.
6’8″? Caleb Houstan (Mississauga, ON/St. Marcellinus/CIA Bounce) a very promsing underage guard ranked #1 in the Class of 2022 by NPH making his first appearance for Canada.
6’11” Charles Bediako (Brampton, ON/Ridley College/Nike UPlay Canada) who played sparingly with Canada’s U17 FIBA Americas team this past week and was also a substitute last season with U15’s, averaging 15 minutes per game and 4 ppg.
If the above list is correct, Canada returns five players from last season’s FIBA Americas qualifier including McNeilly, Rathan-Mayes, Krikke, Sakota and Bediako, which amounts to about 100 minutes per game and about 50 points per game (Canada averaged 75 ppg).
Canada adds at least two impact new faces in Patterson who figures to log big minutes as well as Hemmings, who is likely to be a rotation regular as well. Hylton has experience playing in the U.S. A pair of Montreal-bred newcomers are Minott, who brings size and a physical presence inside and Barthelemy, who figures to get back-up minutes at the point. The underage Houstan and Moncrieffe apparently round out the roster.
Canada will compete in Group C of the preliminary round with New Zealand, Egypt and Montenegro, beginning the tournament on Saturday June 30th at 2:15 PM Eastern time against Montenegro in Rosario, Argentina. Montenegro features guard 6’4″ Stefan Vlahovic (Baloncesto Sevilla Spanish pro league) who led his club in scoring at 16.3 ppg helping his country reach the FIBA U16 European Championship game which they lost to France. The tournament championship was played in Podgorica, Montenegro in front of Vlahovic’s home fans. Montenegro also features the youngest player ever to play for his senior national team in 6’6″ Jovan Kljajic, a shooting guard who averaged 14.3 ppg in the qualifiers and plays professionally for CB Gran Canaria (one of Spain’s Canary Islands) while 6’7″ Marko Kljajevic plays for Mega Bemax in Belgrade, Serbia. Other important contributors last summer including 6’6′ Bojan Tomasevic (13.6 ppg/35 mpg) and 6’8″ Viktor Vujisic (10.6 ppg/28 mpg) as Montenegro rode their top 4-5 players for major minutes.
This will be a tough group for Canada with a difficult game right out of the box against the European finalists.
Canada will spend a few days at a Basketball without Borders event in Mexico this week before departing for Argentina to prepare for the U19 Worlds.