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Canada's Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (C) makes a shot during the FIBA Basketball World Cup  as we look at the best Canada vs. Serbia prediction
Canada's Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (C) makes a shot during the FIBA Basketball World Cup group H match between Canada and France at Indonesia Arena in Jakarta on August 25, 2023. Photo by Yasuyoshi Chiba via AFP.

Our top Canada-Serbia prediction based on the leading FIBA World Cup odds looks at whether Canada or Serbia will advance to Sunday's championship against Team USA or Germany.

Serbia and Canada both felt a sense of relief when they qualified for the 2024 Paris Olympics by making it to the semifinals of the FIBA World Cup. Canada had already qualified for the Olympics following its victory over Spain in the second phase of the tournament, and there were questions about whether the Canadians would experience a letdown in their quarterfinal matchup with Slovenia. That wasn't the case, as they eliminated Luka Doncic and Co. by a commanding 100-89 scoreline.

Canada wasn't the only team that won its quarterfinal matchup in blowout fashion, as Serbia took out Lithuania by a score of 87-68, just one game after the latter beat the USA in the second phase of the tournament.

In terms of efficiency, the top two players remaining in this tournament will be featured in this semifinal matchup: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander of Canada and Bogdan Bogdanovic of Serbia.

Are we rolling with SGA and Canada, or are we taking the points with Bogdanovic and Serbia? Our USA vs. Germany prediction breaks down the second of the two semifinals.

Here is our best Canada vs. Serbia prediction for Friday's FIBA World Cup matchup (odds via our best NBA betting sites; pick confidence based on a 1-to-5-star scale).

Canada vs. Serbia prediction: FIBA World Cup

Serbia +5.5 (-105 via BetMGM) ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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The hype train for Canada at the FIBA World Cup is very real, and it isn't slowing down after its quarterfinal win over Slovenia. As someone with a +2000 futures bet on Canada winning the FIBA World Cup, I'd love to say 'smash Canada on the spread in this spot,' but with Serbia available at +5.5 (-105) via BetMGM, I think Serbia is the better side in this game.

Serbia, similar to Canada's previous opponent Spain, is a disciplined FIBA team known for their efficient execution of offensive plays, emphasizing team basketball. With an extra day of preparation, they pose a formidable challenge. To secure success, Canada must prioritize strong defensive communication and vigilant coverage of cutters in the lane, as Serbia possesses the ability to exploit defensive weaknesses and turn them into scoring opportunities.

Despite the absence of Nikola Jokic, Serbia boasts a talented roster with NBA players like Bogdan Bogdanovic and Nikola Jovic on the wings. However, it's point guard Stefan Jovic and big man Nikola Milutinov who could pose significant challenges for Canada in the upcoming game, adding depth and versatility to Serbia's lineup.

Both Stefan Jovic and Milutinov are veterans who have played a lot of FIBA basketball, and these are always the types of players that cause problems for NBA players at this stage of an international competition. Milutinov is a true post player on offense, who is going to make Dwight Powell or Kelly Olynyk defend him on the low block.

Canada has the much stronger NBA talent in this matchup with Gilgeous-Alexander and RJ Barrett, but I just think 5.5 points is too much for Canada to be giving Serbia.

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Canada vs. Serbia best odds

BetMGM (-105)

Serbia +5.5Serbia +4.5Serbia +4.5Serbia +4.5Serbia +4.5

The best odds for betting on Serbia on the spread can be found at BetMGM, which is the only one of our best sportsbooks offering Serbia at +5.5. We would need to find Serbia at +114 or longer on the spread of +4.5 in order to consider betting on the +4.5. You can see this isn't even close to happening, as BetRivers and DraftKings both have Serbia trading at one less point with more juice.

Make sure you're getting the best Canada vs. Serbia odds with our BetMGM bonus code!

Canada vs. Serbia odds analysis

All of our best sports betting apps opened Canada as a 4.5-point favorite, except for BetMGM, which opened Canada as a 5.5-point favorite. I think we will see BetMGM and all of our other best sports betting sites meet in the middle here at Canada -5.

The total for this semifinal matchup between Canada and Serbia opened at 174.5, a couple of points lower than where we saw Canada's total trade against Slovenia at 176.5.

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Canada vs. Serbia game info

  • When: Friday, Sep. 8, 4:45 a.m. ET.
  • Where: Mall of Asia Arena, Manilla, Philippines
  • How to watch: Sportsnet

Canada-Serbia pick made 09/06/2023 at 11:30 a.m. ET.

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