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Wednesday, September 1, 2010

USA shouldn’t count on to many lucky bounces

US moves to 4-0 and has one final practice with Tunisia before knockout round
The US took care of business against Iran, but probably got more quality work in their own Blue/White scrimmage. From here there is one more similar matchup before the knockout round where one bad quarter can cause a disaster that last a lifetime. If the US hope to avoid a disaster similar to the 04 Olympics then they had better work on eliminating the turnovers and get some quality play from the second team. It was great to see Granger, Love, and Chandler give some support off the bench but if they continue to average 4 turnovers per quarter they will get an early ticket home.

Team USA may be 3-0 but it sure doesn’t feel like it as it as one left the arena on Monday feeling more like Brazil lost the game rather than the US winning it, as three Brazilian shots went awry in the final moments to preserve a two-point win that was nothing to write home about. In fact the Brazilians only start 3 NBA players and one didn’t play (Anderson Varejao who only averages 8 & 7 anyway) so this is not a powerhouse by any stretch of the imagination but they sure pushed the US to the limit. A nine point fourth quarter as part of only a 22-point second half almost cost the US a top-seed in the knockout stage, as the US doesn’t seem to be learning from it’s mistakes. Remember it was a bad third-quarter against Greece in the 04’ Olympic games that resulted in the first loss in over 40 years in medal play and was the catalyst for USA Basketball to completely change the way they approached international competition. What was apparent is the lack of scoring punch of the second unit and perhaps coach K needs to shake things up a bit going into the final two games of the group stage in which anything less than 20+ point victories would be considered a federal offense. However come next week the time zone difference, funky ball, changes to how the refs call the game, etc. had better be behind them or it may be a congressional oversight committee waiting for them when they touch down, rather than a welcoming one. What do you think will be the outcome of the Worlds’? Let us know here and in any of the quick links.

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