US – Road to Redemption, or Countdown to Extinction?

2 08 2008

With the Olympic basketball only a little over a week away from kicking off, the big question at the moment is, are the US good enough to finally return to the top of the podium?

Recent injuries to Dwight Howard, LeBron James and alternate Tyson Chandler have to be at least a little cause for concern.  And there’s still the spectre of the lack of big men on the roster – a decision that still has many pundits baffled.  Additionally, how is Dwayne Wade?  Quite a few speculated that it was unlikely he’d be at 100% for the Olympic tournament…

The 120-84 win over European heavyweight Lithuania answered a lot of those questions – it was more evidence that they’re close to asserting themselves as ‘Best In World’ again.  There were some fantastic highlights within that victory.  Is Dwayne Wade ok?  Sheesh… Dwayne Wade looked like the Amazing Teflon Boy that we saw in the 2006 finals again.  Kobe renamed himself ‘The Doberman’, and was just downright vicious in his demolition of Sarunas Jasikevicius – the same Jasikevicius who destroyed the US at the Athens Olympics in the opening game.  It was reminiscent of Kobe’s blanketing of Leandro Barbosa at the Tournament of the Americas 12 months ago.  LeBron looked fine, and had a couple of whalloping dunks to emphasise that.

It was an all round excellent performance from the US team… and any questions that they are the clear favourites for the gold are quickly evaporating.

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2 responses

2 08 2008
Kyle

If Dwight Howard goes down, we will lose.

7 08 2008
nursedude

It’s hard to say about size. Back in 2004 we had decent size, but could not hit a 3 to save our souls. They are playing like a team with a mission, but in a one loss and out in the quarterfinals, all it takes is one bad game. Don’t forget in the semi finals in the last world champs, the Greeks smoked us-without a single NBA player on their roster.

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