Wuxi (China) - The first day of the 2023 FIBA 3x3 Wuxi Masters in Wuxi, China, was marked by Ub Huishan NE's captivating performance. Ub showcased incredible determination and a strong desire for championship glory on the opening day of this year's 15th World Tour Masters. Let's take a closer look at the highlights from day one of the tournament.
Ub swept Pool A, securing two wins in contrasting fashion to advance to the Quarter-Finals on Day Two. They opened their account with a hard-fought 22-19 win over Saitama. Ub followed that up with a dominant showing against Sansar, 22-13, to wrap their Day One unbeaten. That was thanks mainly to 8 points from Dejan "The Maestro" Majstorovic. It was the strong start to the tournament that Ub needed, especially since they looked a little shaky in their last few WT Masters events.
Hardly anyone expected them to do it, but Marijampole wielded some magic to sweep Pool B on Day One. They opened their account by pulling the rug from under compatriots Raudondvaris, 19-17, before they cruised past Wuhan, 22-12, to finish 2-0.
PARIS POWER THROUGH
Paris have struggled to make it to the Quarter-Finals of their last two World Tour Masters events, but they successfully did it here in Wuxi after powering through Pool C. Behind the brilliance of Franck Seguela, Paris defeated both Pirot (20-18) and Partizan (21-17) to clinch top spot in their pool. Check out Seguela's sublime OT game-winner over Pirot below.
NEW LOOK LAUSANNE
Another team that turned heads were fifth-seeded Lausanne. Fresh off their win in the Goa Challenger a couple of nights prior, Lausanne swept their Day One games en route to the Quarter-Finals. First, they upended Ulaanbaatar, 21-14, before cruising past WT debutantes Tubingen, 22-14, to end Day One action at the Wuxi Yueshang Outlets Center. They were among the crowd favorites, thanks mainly to the presence of 3x3 icon Dusan Bulut, who made his first WT Masters appearance this year.
Andreja Milutinovic (Partizan), Dejan Majstorovic (Ub), Dusan Filipovic (Pirot) and Marijus Uzupis (Raudondvaris) all advanced to the Final of the Little Swan Shootout Contest. Filipovic and Uzupis each made 7 buckets in the Qualification, while Majstorovic had 8. Milutinovic had the hottest hand, though, hitting all but one of his two-point attempts.
Ub (Stojacic) vs. Partizan (Stevanovic)
Lausanne (Molteni) vs. Raudondvaris (Uzupis)
Marijampole (Nausėdas) vs. Ulaanbaatar (Dugosija)
Paris (Seguela) vs. Saitama (Sucur)
* Marijampole's Evaldas Džiaugys scored an eye-popping 13 points in a single game to record the high of the day. He scored all but 6 of his team's points in a huge 19-17 win over higher-seeded Raudondvaris in Pool B action.
* Saitama's Ryo Ozawa and Marijampole's Evaldas Džiaugys led all players in scoring at the end of Day One with 18 points each. Ozawa also had the most two-pointers made with 7.
* Ozawa's teammate Tomoya Ochiai also impressed. He and Lausanne's Westher Molteni led all players in Key Assists with 7 each.
* Molteni wasn't done, though. He also topped the rebounding leaderboard with 18 after two games. That enabled the Swiss big man to lead all players in Player Value (21.8) after Day One. * Not to be outdone, Strahinja "Dr. Strange" Stojacic recorded 12 highlights by the day's end. Likewise, Dragan Bjelica of Pirot also recorded a dozen highlights.