Examining Canada’s Futures Markets Ahead Of FIBA Basketball World Cup

Basketball bettors are in a for a special treat this summer as the FIBA Basketball World Cup gets underway on Friday from the Philippines, Japan, and Indonesia.

Leading up to the tournament, Canada had the second-shortest outright winner odds (+400 at bet365) behind the United States (+100). But last week’s announcement that point guard Jamal Murray would miss the event because he requires additional recovery time prior to the start of the NBA season prompted oddsmakers to lengthen Canada’s odds to +1000. Murray helped the Denver Nuggets win their first NBA title in June, and he’s still not that far removed from surgery for a torn ACL. Playing it safe makes sense, and perhaps he could rejoin the national program for the Olympics next summer.

Canada to win FIBA World Cup


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As of Monday, the USA (-125), France (+800), and Australia (+900) now have shorter odds than Canada to win the event. Canada’s title hopes now rest on the shoulders of other NBAers like Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, RJ Barrett, Dillon Brooks, Dwight Powell, Luguentz Dort, Nickeil-Alexander Walker, Kelly Olynyk and college basketball standout Zach Edey, as well as a few other Canadians that have been playing overseas.

Even at +1000 and without Murray, Canada still has a realistic shot at winning this thing. History isn’t on Canada’s side, though. Canada was 13th out of 16 teams in 2002, didn’t qualify in 2006, finished 22nd among 24 teams in 2010, didn’t qualify for 2014, and was 21st out of 32 in 2019. But the squad can qualify for the next Summer Olympics by finishing in the top two out of seven teams in the FIBA Americas region. And Canada has never assembled a roster with so much NBA talent and depth.

Other futures bets to consider

Tournament MVP – Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (+1000)

Canada will only go as far as Gilgeous-Alexander takes it. He enjoyed a breakout 2022-23 season with the Oklahoma City Thunder, earning him First-Team All-NBA honours for averaging more than 31 points per game, while adding nearly five rebounds and five assists per game. With Murray out, he’ll be counted on even more for offensive production throughout the tournament. If Canada can make a deep run, SGA is a great long shot to win tournament MVP, and he has the shortest odds of any non-USA player.

He may also be worth a look in the top points scorer category. With +350 odds, SGA is the co-favourite with Slovenia’s Luka Doncic.

Tournament MVPTop Scorer
Anthony Edwards (USA)+350+600
Jalen Brunson (USA)+500+1200
Brandon Ingram (USA)+650+1400
Tyrese Haliburton (USA)+700+2800
Mikal Bridges (USA)+1000+3300
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (Canada)+1000+350
Jaren Jackson Jr. (USA)+1400N/A
Evan Fournier (France)+1600+1600
Bogdan Bogdanovic (Serbia)+1600+900
Luka Doncic (Slovenia)+1600+350

To win Group H – Canada -110

Canada will play in Group H, which includes France (-125), Latvia (+1600), and Lebanon (+15000). The Canadians will start the tournament with a bang on Friday, immediately squaring off with France in the first game of the event for both teams. France, which boasts NBA talent like Rudy Gobert, Evan Fournier, and Nicolas Batum, is just a 1.5-point favourite in that matchup and it’s a very winnable game for the Canadians (+105 on the moneyline). Whoever wins this opener will very likely win the group, barring a major upset. Both nations are -5000 to qualify from the group as the two top teams.

Canada’s Group H ScheduleDate
Canada vs. FranceAug. 25 (9:30 a.m. ET)
Canada vs. LebanonAug. 27 (5:45 a.m. ET)
Canada vs. LatviaAug. 29 (9:30 a.m. ET)
All of Canada’s games will be broadcast on Sportsnet.


Due to the unique format of the event, Canada’s road to the final will be difficult. The Canadians will have to deal with powerhouse France in the initial group stage, and then potentially Spain and Brazil in the second round. In a potential quarter-final matchup, Canada could draw Australia, Germany, or Slovenia before having a chance to meet the USA in the semi-finals or finals.

By contrast, the Americans have a much easier group (Greece, New Zealand, and Jordan) and potential road to the final. Giannis Antetokounmpo won’t play for Greece in the tournament, which really gives the American three tune-up games in Group C before hitting the second round and a likely underwhelming showdown with either Lithuania or Montenegro. Either of those foes don’t pose much of a risk to the talented Americans. Italy, Dominican Republic, Serbia, or Puerto Rico could draw the USA in the quarter-finals.

Regardless of the outcome, this could be a major milestone event for Canada Basketball. The future is bright for the program heading into an Olympic year in 2024.