Team USA Starts Slow But Beats Australia in Men's Quarterfinal
Hoopsvibe's Quick Call: Even though Team USA pulled away at the end, they did not look like a gold medal squad for the majority of the game.
With about eight minutes left in the 4th quarter, USA was only beating the Australians by 12. The score was 87-75 and the Aussies seemed like they were still in the game. But...
Team USA then went on a 32-11 run to finish the game strong and eliminate Australia.
Those who watched the game, however, know that it was much closer than the final score reflected. I would imagine some people may have even thought for a moment that they were going to witness one of the greatest upsets in Olympic basketball history.
Both teams shot roughly 45% from the field - Team USA 45.3 percent and Australia 45.1 percent.
One of the main difference was turnovers. Team USA had 10 to Australia's 18. Lebron James finished the game with a triple-double (11-14-11) and did not turn the ball over once. Kobe Bryant finished the game with 20 points, after a terrible start that included him missing his first four shots. He turned it on in the second half, making six of seven three-point attempts. At one point in the 4th quarter, he made four threes in four straight possessions and had the bench going nuts. It was pretty cool.
San Antonio Spurs guard, Patty Mills, led the Australians with 26 points. Mills is Australia's only current NBA player.
Even though Team USA finished strong, they are going to have to play better going forward. They will face a talented Argentina team in the semi-finals on Friday.
And Argentina is a team that could crush their gold medal dreams if the Americans don't play hard for the entire 48 minutes.
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Image source: WENN Images