FIBA: U.S. Team Playing Schedules Released for Women’s World Cup Qualifiers
The FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup 2022 Qualifiers will take place February 10-13 in three locations around the world, including right here in Washington, D.C. The United States Women’s National Basketball Team is in Group D, where it will host Belgium, Russia and Puerto Rico where three of those teams, including the United States, will earn places for this summer’s World Cup in Australia.
Here are the game times, according to the USA Basketball website.
Thursday, February 10, 2022
- Belgium vs. Russia, 4:30 p.m. ET
- United States vs. Puerto Rico, 7:30 p.m. ET
Friday, February 11, 2022
- Russia vs. Puerto Rico, 4:30 p.m. ET
- United States vs. Belgium, 7:30 p.m. ET
Sunday, February 13, 2022
- Belgium vs. Puerto Rico, 11:30 a.m. ET
- United States vs. Russia, 2:30 p.m. ET
FIBA and USA Basketball have said Group D will hold events in Washington, but USAB has yet to announce exactly where. That said, Capital One Arena will not be hosting the event as the arena will be booked on February 10 for the Washington Wizards game against the Brooklyn Nets, followed by a concert by Chris Tomlin and United on February 11, both events starting at 7 p.m. AND.
Of the remaining venues that could host four national teams, the Entertainment and Sports Arena seems like the most logical location, as it’s the home of the Washington Mystics and adjacent to the MedStar Health Performance Center, where national teams can train. in a state of the art installation. We’ve reached out to USA Basketball to find out when they’ll make an official announcement regarding a venue and ticket sales. Their response was that they hope to make this announcement next week.
Who will play for Team USA? And what should you watch out for in qualifying?
We do not know. The Americans technically have nothing to play for in qualifying as they have already qualified for the World Cup by winning the Olympics last year. However, due to new FIBA rules, the Americans must still field a team and participate in these events.
Americans are in the midst of an important period of transition. Six players from the 2020 Olympic team, including Washington Mystics goaltender Ariel Atkins, were competing at the Games for the first time. The World Cup qualifiers will therefore give them more experience playing against some of the best teams in the world. Atkins has played sparingly in Tokyo and can benefit greatly from that extra experience in international play, as well as playing in front of his home team’s fans.
Some of Team USA’s other more experienced players, like Mystics center Tina Charles, could also play. Of the remaining players on the Mystics 2021 roster, Elena Delle Donne is the only other player with experience with Team USA. However, it’s hard to see her playing in a tournament without a medal or an Olympic spot on the line given her lingering back injury.
In addition to the team’s recent turnover, Minnesota Lynx head coach Cheryl Reeve is now the head coach of Team USA for the upcoming Olympic cycle. She was an assistant for the 2020 games.