Another slow start has left the Tall Blacks without a medal in their maiden appearance at the Asia Cup in Beirut.
New Zealand were beaten 80-71 by South Korea in the bronze medal game, having given up a 44-31 halftime deficit.
A sluggish opening cost the young Tall Blacks side in their 106-79 semi-final loss to Australia a day earlier, something coach Paul Henare attributed to a lack of experience.
New Zealand dominated on the inside on Sunday, winning the rebounding battle 51-31.
However, they were beaten for speed, with South Korea pulling off 13 steals and scoring 18 points on the fast break.
Two players who had reduced minutes against Australia because of illness were stand-out figures.
NZ Breakers small forward Finn Delany scored 22 points while centre Sam Timmins pulled down 17 rebounds.
New Zealand finished the tournament with three wins and three losses.
They lodged comfortable wins over Kazakhstan, Lebanon and Jordan but went down 76-75 to South Korea in pool play.