FIBA Americas schedule 2013: 10-team tournament begins Friday

Christian Petersen

Argentina will begin its FIBA Americas title defense against Paraguay on Friday.

The FIBA Americas tournament kicks off Friday in Caracas, Venezuela. The 10-team field will narrow itself down over two weeks to crown an eventual champion, awarding the four semifinalists with automatic berths into next summer's FIBA World Cup.

The 10 teams are split into two five-team groups for preliminary round-robin play. The field will then be narrowed to eight teams dumped into one group for another four-game preliminary round and, after that, the top four teams advance to the semifinals.

The United States is not participating in the tournament, having already earned its World Cup berth by winning gold at the 2012 Olympics.

The first round opens with four games Friday, two from each group. The first game on the court is Jamaica vs. Canada, the latter of which features the most NBA talent in the field. Among the talent on the Canadian roster is Cory Joseph, Andrew Nicholson, Tristan Thompson and Joel Anthony. The team also includes two high-level college players: Marquette's Junior Cadougan and Baylor's Brady Heslip.

The only other NBA player in action Friday will be Minnesota Timberwolves guard J.J. Barea for Puerto Rico.

The only NBA player on host Venezuela's roster is Sacramento Kings guard Greivis Vasquez, but ESPN.com's Marc Stein reported Friday that Vazquez will not play in the tournament as he continues to recover from ankle surgery.

The full schedule for Friday's action is below. All games can be streamed live (for a small fee) at livebasketball.tv.

11:30 a.m. ET, Group A: Jamaica vs. Canada

2 p.m. ET, Group B: Argentina vs. Paraguay

5:30 p.m. ET, Group A: Puerto Rico vs. Brazil

8:30 p.m. ET, Group B: Venezuela vs. Mexico

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