The top-ranked U.S. Olympic Men's Basketball Team faced very tough challenge in defending their Olympic gold with 107-100 win in Olympic Park Basketball Court in London. The Olympic classic rematch was staged first in 2008 Beijing with the U.S. 118-107 victory, pulling away after Spain was within four points in the final 2½ minutes.
Guess what, USA vs Spain rematch this time the Spanish even leads 2 points in 3rd, then with just 2-point with 2:24 minutes left in the 4th, but Lebron answers back with a quick 3-pointer whileclears once more with 3 point play and Harden's free throw to cap the 7-0 rally in closing the game. Moments later James and Bryant began an NBA celebrations on the bench with Miami Heat-jumping-kids style.
Kevin Durant leads the Americans with 30 points but it was Lebron James clutch plays that close out the game together withand Chris Paul. James finished 19 points while Bryant has 17.
Pual Gasol leads the scoring for Spain with 24 points, Juan Navarro added 21, Rudy Fernandez with 14 while Ibaka and Sada added 17 and 12 respectively.
The U.S. Men's Basketball finished the tournament with a 8-0 record in 2012, its successfully defending its 2008 Olympic Games title in a gold-medal rematch with the Spaniards. Spain, which suffered two successive defeat of Russia and Argentina was on the verge of not qualifying for the quarterfinals heading into the final pool day, finished with a 5-3 record.
Then Spain faced an 11-point halftime deficit against Russia in the semifinals after managing just 20 points as they rallied for a 67-59 victory. Lebron, a member of Beijing Olypics is not buying that Spain is weaker than 2008, "Spain is a better team than ’08," James said before the game, "We understand that they’re a better team, so it’s going to be a good game. So we look forward to it."
Actually its a hard grind for the team USA as 7-feet tall Pau and Marc Gasol pounds the paint with pick 'n roll play and 6-10 Serge Ibaka blocking skills gave the U.S. trouble with Spain's guards came to play. USA out-scores 35-27 Spain in the first quarter but bounches back in the second ending the half with 59-58 USA lead. Both team scored 24 points at the end of the third quarter resulting narrow 83-82 USA lead. Lebron James, Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul ensured the U.S. is still the best barely keeping the Spanish team at bay.
"To do it twice is a special moment," 2008 gold medalistsaid. "As the U.S. men's team, we go through a lot. For us to persevere the way we did is just a special moment for myself, and for the guys who are on this team."
Kobe Bryant's last Olympic moment, a member of the 2008 squad along with Lebron, Anthony and Williams, "This is it for me," said Bryant, who now has a second gold medal to go with his five NBA championships. "The other guys are good to go."
The Americans reached the title match in dominating fashion by advanced through Pool B with wins over France (98-71), Tunisia (110-63), Nigeria (156-73), Lithuania (99-94), Argentina (126-97). The U.S. advanced to the semifinals Australia 119-86 in quarterfinal round, then claimed a 109-83 win over Argentina to reach the title match.
Earlier today Russia won the bronze medal with a 81-77 victory over Argentina.
CHANDLER 2, DURANT 30, JAMES 19, WESTBROOK 3, WILLIAMS 6, IGUODALA 0, BRYANT 17, LOVE 9, HARDEN 2, PAUL 11, DAVIS 0, ANTHONY 8
GASOL Pau 24, FERNANDEZ 14, RODRIGUEZ 7, NAVARRO 21, CALDERON 0, REYES 0, CLAVER 0, SAN EMETERIO 0, LLULL 5, GASOL Marc 17, IBAKA 12, SADA 0
Group A Standings
1. United States (5-0, points)
2. France (4-1, 9 points)
3. Argentina (3-2, 8 points)
4. Lithuania (2-3, 7 points)
5. Nigeria (1-4, 6 points)
6. Tunisia (5-0, 5 points)
Group Stage: USA 5-0
July 29: United States def. France 98-71
July 31: United States def. Tunisia 110-63
Aug 2: United States def. Nigeria 156-73
Aug 4: United States def. Lithuania 99-94
Aug. 6 United States def. Argentina 126-97
Group B Standings
1. Russia (4-1, 9 points)
2. Brazil (4-1, 9 Points)
3. Spain (3-2, 8 points)
4. Australia (3-2, 8 points)
5. Great Britain (1-4, 6 points)
6. China (0-5, 5 points)
Group Stage: Spain 3-2
July 29: Spain def. China 97-81
July 31: Spain def. Australia 82-70
Aug 2: Spain def. Great Britain 79-78
Aug 4: Russia def. Spain 77-74
Aug 6: Brazil def. Spain 88-82