All we learned from FIBA 3x3 World Tour Edmonton Masters 2023

31 Jul 2023

EDMONTON (Canada) - The first-ever Edmonton Masters on July 28-29 delivered in style as the FIBA 3x3 World Tour went into overdrive on its fifth stop of the season.

Let's look back at the World Tour's return to North America.

Ub Huishan NE are a 3x3 dynasty

These dudes clearly don't get sick of winning! And they love to break their own records which they did in Edmonton with their fifth straight Masters title to start the season.

There was again no stopping Ub as they went on an unbeaten run and were too good at the business end on Day Two.

They didn't trip up at the fifth stop like last year when Ub fell to Antwerp at the Debrecen Masters final.

It doesn't seem to matter the changes they make to their line-up because Ub simply finds a way. They had Chinese big fella YuXuan Liu and legendary Dejan Majstorovic return in Edmonton and the results remained the same due to their system.

Ub has a special sauce no one else seems to have as they cement their status as a current day dynasty. The only debate now is whether Ub is the GOAT.

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'Doctor Strange' is No.1 for a reason

Strahinja Stojacic started with consecutive Masters MVPs and then top honors at the FIBA 3x3 World Cup 2023.

But in the midst of a hectic schedule, where Ub have crisscrossed the world playing events basically every week, the 31-year-old has been somewhat playing in second gear recently.

But Stojacic was in attack mode in Edmonton, especially against San Juan in the final where he poured in a game high 10 points including a huge two in the dying stages to end San Juan's charge.

'Doctor Strange' was a fitting MVP after leading most of the statistical categories and we right now have to shelve any potential Stojacic v de Jong arguments.

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San Juan are the real deal

The decision to focus on a youthful core is paying off for San Juan, who almost made history by becoming the first team to go all the way from the qualifying draw.

Having impressed on the pro circuit and the Manila Masters, where they made the semis, San Juan went one better after their dazzling run in Edmonton.

Having qualified into the main draw as expected, San Juan had an agonizing loss against in-form Ulaanbaatar MMC Energy (MGL) before luck went their way after an injury-hit Liman Huishan NE had to forfeit.

They ripped off a pair of huge wins over Amsterdam HIPRO (NED) and Washington DC (USA) but fell short against Ub in the final.

San Juan are just warming up though and have a couple of the best youngsters in the game.

Sniper Antonio Ralat is an absolute assassin as he again unleashed a Maurice Lacroix Buzzer Beater to down Washington DC, while Luis Cuascut is a force around the rim.

This young group's Masters breakthrough doesn't seem far away.

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Washington DC are 3x3 entertainers

There was more hype over Washington DC's World Tour season debut than Barbenheimer.

And the Americans didn't disappoint with impressive Ws against Riga (LAT), Lausanne (SUI) and Dusseldorf LFDY (GER) only to fall to Ralat's clutch gene in the semis.

But these dunking machines won the hearts of the fans by playing above the rim as they put on a show in trademark DC style.

Recent NBA player Charlie Brown Jr was out of this world as he finished equal second in scoring (34) in his World Tour debut, but it was new kid on the block Taze Moore who stole the show with several electrifying dunks.

We just can't wait to watch these dudes back on the half-court.

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All hail the new dunk champ!

There is a new dunk champ and his name is Dominic Gonzales.

This dude might be barely taller than Kevin Hart, but he can jump like he's bouncing on a trampoline as he put on an exhibition to win the City of Edmonton and Explore Edmonton dunk contest.

He threw in a one-handed 360 and an insane scorpion dunk, among other sick slams, to put his name on the dunking map.

Remember the name - Dominic Gonzales!

Edmonton is an amazing 3x3 destination

It's quite fitting for 3x3 to return to Canada, which has had strong World Tour teams over the years - including Team Edmonton.

The culturally rich capital of Alberta was a beautiful addition to the World Tour with the Fan Park the place to be in Edmonton.

Oh Canada!