Through this tournament, the final three qualifying berths for the 2008 Olympics men's basketball competition were determined. A total of 12 teams competed in the 2008 FIBA World Olympic Qualifying Tournament from the five FIBA regions, and those 12 teams were based on finishes in each of FIBA’s five zone qualifying tournaments. The FIBA Africa Zone placed two teams (runner-up and third place), the FIBA Americas Zone placed three teams (third place, fourth place and fifth place), the FIBA Asia Zone placed two teams (runner-up and third place), the FIBA Europe Zone placed four teams (fourth place, fifth place, sixth place and seventh place), and FIBA Oceania Zone placed one team (runner-up).
The 12 teams were divided into four groups of three teams each and played a single round robin. The two best placed teams from each group qualified for the quarterfinals, semifinals, finals and consolation games which determined the first three places and thus the teams that qualified for the Olympics.
The twelve participating teams were: Brazil, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde, Croatia, Germany, Greece, Korea, Lebanon, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, and Slovenia. The three teams that qualified through this tournament—Croatia, Germany and Greece—joined Angola, Argentina, Australia, China, Iran, Lithuania, Russia, Spain and the USA in the Beijing Olympics, and had roughly a month to practice and prepare as the Olympic basketball tournament took place on August 9–24.