Bogdanovic Keeps Olympic Hopes Alive With Win Over Tunisia

Jul 1, 2021, 2:41 PM | Updated: 3:00 pm
Utah Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic playing for the Croatian National Team (Photo by Jurij Kodrun/Ge...
Utah Jazz forward Bojan Bogdanovic playing for the Croatian National Team (Photo by Jurij Kodrun/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jurij Kodrun/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Bojan Bogdanovic helped keep his Olympic hopes alive as Croatia defeated Tunisia 75-70 to advance to the semifinals of the FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

The Utah Jazz forward’s team bounced back after a disappointing loss to Brazil Wednesday in their tournament debut in front of a 1,500 person home crowd.

With the victory, Bogdanovic avoided what would have been a surprising elimination before the tournament in Split narrowed to the final four.

Though Bogdanovic struggled for the second straight game, scoring just 14 points on 4-14 shooting, the Croatian National Team was carried by fellow NBA wing Mario Hezonja who scored 28 points on 11-21 shooting while adding eight rebounds.

Former Boston Celtics center Ante Zizic also scored 14 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for Croatia to help the team advance.

The loss eliminated Tunisia from Olympic contention propelled Croatia to a meeting with Germany on Saturday. Earlier Thursday, Germany defeated Russia in the tournament, ending their hopes of making it to Tokyo.

Croatia will have to right their shooting woes through the first two games of the tournament if they hope to advance to the Finals with a win over Germany on Saturday.

In their first two appearances, Croatia has connected on just 14-61 three-point attempts (23 percent) including a miserable 5-29 against Tunisia. Despite Bogdanovic being one of the best three-point shooters in the NBA, the Jazz forward has connected on just 5-18 attempts so far in the tournament.

Luckily for the Croatian team, Germany hasn’t shot much better. The German National Team has made just eight three-pointers on their first two games while shooting 28 percent from three.

While Bogdanovic and Croatia will face Germany for a chance to advance to the tournament final, Brazil will face Mexico on Saturday to keep their Olympic hopes alive.

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Bogdanovic Keeps Olympic Hopes Alive With Win Over Tunisia