All we learned from FIBA 3x3 World Tour Jeddah Final 2023

JEDDAH (Saudi Arabia) - An epic FIBA 3x3 World Tour season ended with a bang at the Jeddah Final on December 8-9 with top-ranked Ub Huishan NE (SRB) defending their crown in style. 

Before we depart into the off-season and have to find something else to do with our time, let's recap 3x3's showpiece event. 

Ub Huishan NE are the GOAT

Did anyone really write them off? After going cold in the back half of the season, the spectacular Serbs entered the World Tour Final with some question marks.

But, of course, they found their best form when it mattered most during an unbeaten campaign. 

It wasn't easy with Ub surviving close calls against Beijing (CHN) and Antwerp TOPdesk (BEL) in the semis before producing a brilliant performance in the final against Amsterdam HiPRO (NED) to repeat as World Tour Final champs.

With six Masters titles in a row to start 2023 punctuated by the World Tour Final triumph, Ub have also settled another debate. They've produced the greatest ever season - again apologies to Novi Sad who went 32-0 in 2018. 

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It's 'Doctor Strange's' Multiverse

Fittingly, with his crown under threat, Strahinja Stojacic made a statement loud and clear. The half-court is 'Doctor Strange's' multiverse.

Stojacic capped the greatest all-round season with MVP honors on the biggest stage of them all in Jeddah.

After winning the World Tour's regular season MVP for the second straight season, having led almost all of the major stats, Stojacic was at another level in Jeddah to lead Ub in points (32) and player value (38.3).

It added to his trio of MVPs in the regular season as the 31-year-old proved why he has been ranked No.1 for an eternity.

There were legitimate challengers to his crown - Jimmer Fredette and Worthy de Jong were strong candidates - but Stojacic's overall brilliance and command of the game means he sits on the throne until at least the start of next season. 

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Worthy de Jong was in heat-check mode all season

With an insane 50 points in Jeddah to lead Amsterdam to the final, scoring machine Worthy de Jong finished the season with a ridiculous average of 9.3 ppg! That's Wilt Chamberlain type numbers that might never be broken and underlines his season-long heater. 

The Dutch hoops legend finished the season in typical trademark spectacular fashion as he willed Amsterdam to a deep run. His masterpiece was a crazy 18 points - 18 points! - against Liman Huishan NE (SRB) on Day One in the greatest offensive showing in World Tour Final history. 

He may not have quite seized Stojacic's crown, but no one was more entertaining than the high-flying Dutchman who continually melted social media. 

This man deserves a long breather in the off-season, but we're going to miss his weekly dose of entertainment. 

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Partizan are a legit 3x3 force

Name the absolute top tier of the World Tour and Partizan (SRB) just have to be on your list. They were awesome late in the season, highlighted by winning in Manama, and they finished on a high with a semi-finish in Jeddah. 

They beat highly-fancied Miami (USA) and Ulaanbaatar MMC Energy (MGL) on Day One then outlasted confident San Juan in the quarters. They couldn't slow down Worthy de Jong - no one can - as their run ended against Amsterdam HiPRO in the semis. 

But Partizan cemented their standing as a 3x3 powerhouse and sniper Stefan Milivojevic proved he was one of the game's best players with another lights-out shooting display to finish second in scoring with 33 points. He also exploded to the rim to live up to his dope nickname of 'The Gladiator'.

After such a powerful surge late in 2023, Partizan will start next season as absolutely one of the main contenders. 

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Jeddah was an amazing World Tour Final location

This beautiful port city hosted the World Tour Final 2020, but there were no fans allowed back then due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

This time around the atmosphere was absolutely electric with this glitzy event played along the famous Red Sea in a stunning backdrop. 

There was non-stop entertainment to go along with the action on the half-court as Jeddah submitted an unforgettable World Tour Final. 

What a way for this epic World Tour season to end on and we just can't wait to return to Jeddah, a city fast becoming an all-time 3x3 destination. 

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