Players to watch at FIBA 3x3 World Tour Riyadh Masters 2022
10 Nov 2022
RIYADH (Saudi Arabia) - Some of the very best players in the world are ready to fight for the crown as the FIBA 3x3 World Tour 2022 returns with the Riyadh Masters on November 11-12.
Let's take a look at those stars you just have to keep your eyes on.
Strahinja Stojacic (Ub Huishan NE)
He's ranked No.1 but Stojacic hasn't quite been as electric as the first half of the season when the dude was collecting MVPs like they were pokemon cards.
But he returned to those crazy heights at the recent Tainan City Challenger, where Stojacic was unstoppable to win another MVP after topping most of the main stat categories, including a ridiculous 37 highlights.
'Doctor Strange' returned to being 'Doctor Success' and he'll be determined to continue that momentum in Riyadh,
Karlis Lasmanis/Nauris Miezis (Riga)
Since the reunion of 'Batman' and 'Robin', Riga have been literally unbeatable. They've won 20 straight games and four titles with the superheroes proving they are still the most dangerous duo in 3x3.
It's a thing of beauty seeing them combine so perfectly on the half-court and each of them can take turns being an assassin in the clutch.
Just sit back and enjoy watching these Olympic gold medalists put their capes on because these dudes are 3x3 superheroes.
There might not be a player around who makes 3x3 look as easy as Thibaut Vervoort, who's the complete package on the half-court.
'Must See TV's jumper is wet but he can just as easily glide to the rack and deliver a nasty jam in your face.
The 24-year-old stuffs the stats sheet to be a walking triple-five threat and he'll arrive in Riyadh with a chip on his shoulder with Antwerp on a run of finishing second.
Back in prime time, Vervoort performs best under the bright lights and he'll be a sure fire ratings hit with the fans.
Stefan Stojacic (Vienna)
The reigning MVP on the World Tour after his heroics in Paris (50 points in 2 days, the third best scoring performance of all time) capped a truly remarkable comeback for the Serb great who has inspired Vienna in 2022.
Think he's satisfied? Think again because the ex-Liman superstar is making up for lost time after his last few years were derailed by a serious knee injury.
He's issued a reminder on why he's one of the best to ever do it and Stojacic is clearly having loads of fun along the way.
Nemanja Draskovic (Jeddah)
There was a lot of hype over new-look Jeddah heading into the season, but things haven't quite gone to plan. But they've had better results recently and playing in front of their fans might lift them up a level.
Their best hope of a deep run revolves around walking bucket Nemanja Draskovic, who can breathe fire when he's feeling it. The Serb is a former MVP on the World Tour so he clearly loves the big stage.
If he finds his range then Jeddah might finally taste a W.
Malik Hluchoweckyj (Omaha 3BALL)
The Americans are fast rising but looking for their breakout on the World Tour and it could happen in Riyadh if Malik Hluchoweckyj gets on a roll.
The 26-year-old is a natural born entertainer and can set up his teammates for easy baskets with dimes you won't believe.
He can also step up with big buckets and the 6ft. 1in (1.86m) dynamo might need to shoulder more of the scoring load if talisman Dylan Travis is a little tired after he just won gold at the FIBA 3x3 AmeriCup 2022.
Get out of the way and watch Hluchoweckyj cook on the half-court.
Worthy de Jong (Utrecht)
This Dutch Master hasn't been playing 3x3 for long but he's already one of the legit stars of the pro circuit.
Worthy de Jong has lit up the World Tour in recent months and cemented himself as a human highlight reel.
The lanky 6ft. 4in (1.94m) star had 3 triple-fives (at least 5 points, 5 rebounds and 5 highlights) in 5 games in Paris. Nobody had more and only 2 other players had more than 1... on the entire World Tour season
Is there anything this Filipino wizard can't do? Tallo can throw no-look dimes like he has eyes in the back of his head, while nailing insane circus shots is all in a day's work for him.
The 28-year-old is non-stop entertainment, you just know he'll get the crowd hyped after pulling off one of his ridiculous moves. Don't blink because something crazy might just happen when he has the Wilson in his magical hands.
Dejan Janjic (Doha QSC)
If you want a dark horse then it might just be Doha QSC who have had a taste of the World Tour recently and were highly competitive in Paris - mainly due to the hot shooting of Dejan Janjic.
When the Serb gets in heat check mode then look out! He made Paris wet with an insane 13 points against Princeton and he'll be looking to load up with both barrels in Riyadh.
Unique McLean (Riyadh)
If the locals are to go on a giant-killing run then this 25-year-old will need to catch fire.
The 6ft. 2in (1.88m) American is new to 3x3 but had a taste at the recent FIBA 3x3 NEOM Super Quest and wants more. Heads up - he's got sick handles and insane hops.
This dude can flat out embarrass defenders. Just as his name suggests, McLean is one unique baller.