Spellman makes his debut for Lebanon.
The Lebanese national basketball team lost 67-77 to Côte d’Ivoire in an exhibition game at the Noufal Stadium in Nohad, Lebanon, on Saturday.안전놀이터
Lebanon is seeded in Group H at the FIBA World Cup in late August. Playing in Jakarta, Indonesia, the Lebanese will face tough opponents in Canada, France, and Latvia.
In response, Lebanon finalized the naturalization process for its players in late April to bolster its roster. Omari Spellman (KGC) is a familiar face to Korean basketball fans. Lebanon had already naturalized Jonathan Aledge, who played for Samsung and Day One. The preliminary roster announced ahead of the World Cup omitted Aledji’s name and included Spellman.
Spellman, who has played for Golden State and Atlanta in the NBA, made the jump to the KBL and helped KGC to the title and the top spot in the East Asian Super League (EASL) last season. If Spellman can work well with specialist guard Wael Araji, Lebanon’s lineup could be even better.
The highly anticipated Spellman made his debut in a friendly against the Ivory Coast earlier in the day. The fans erupted in cheers when he nailed a pinpoint three-pointer from an open look early in the first quarter, showing just how much was expected of him.
However, with the offseason in full swing, Spellman wasn’t at his best.
After finishing his debut with eight points, two rebounds, and one assist, Spellman appeared to have gained some weight from the season and wasn’t as active as he should have been. The local media was also concerned about Spellman’s lackluster debut. He will need to work on his chemistry with his teammates to improve his game. However, his jumper was still very good.
In the other game, African powerhouse Ivory Coast defeated Lebanon. It was a close first half, but the Ivory Coast pulled away in the third quarter and Lebanon couldn’t overturn it.
The Lebanese continue their World Cup tune-up with exhibition games against Egypt and Mexico before traveling to Jakarta for Group H action.