SportsNation Blog Archives Basketball
LeBron James netted the first triple-double in Olympic history with 11 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists in Team USA's 119-86 win over Australia. Some say LeBron is the best player on the U.S. men's basketball team, but is he the most vital part to their success?
Team USA started off slow but heated up in the second half as it defeated Argentina 126-97 in its final game of pool play. Led by Kevin Durant's 18.6 points per game and Carmelo Anthony's 17.4, the Americans have a perfect 5-0 record heading into the knockout stage. With a seemingly different leading scorer every game, who has been the MVP for Team USA thus far?
Coming off a close win against Argentina, Team USA will take on Spain on Tuesday (4:30 p.m. ET, ESPN2/ESPN3/WatchESPN.com). It won't be anything like an easy test for the American stars, as they'll be facing a Spanish team with mounds of NBA experience, not the least of which comes from players like Pau and Marc Gasol, Juan Carlos Navarro and Rudy Fernandez. Will Team USA be in another close fight today, or will it make it into a cakewalk?
Kobe Bryant says David Stern's idea to limit Team USA's roster to players 23 and under is "stupid." SportsNation generally is adamantly opposed to limiting Team USA in any way, but would the squad still be the team to beat? You'd still be able to keep some of the NBA's better players, and might be able to dip more into the ranks of college athletes.
We know that playing in front of an important person can add a lot of pressure to a situation, but for a while, it looked like Team USA was going to wilt with President Obama in attendance. Fortunately for the POTUS, he won't be blamed for a Team USA exhibition loss, as LeBron James led his squad to an 80-69 win over Brazil. We know that America is practically already penciled in to win the gold, but do you see their slow start against Brazil as something to worry about?
Sign of concern?
LeBron James and the rest of Team USA eventually had the game under control, but not every team is going to roll over like Brazil did.
Team USA is the prohibitive favorite, but it's no guarantee that the U.S. will take gold in the sport it invented.
Chances vs. Spain?
Spain is probably Team USA's top competitor at the Olympics, with players like Pau Gasol rounding out a solid squad.