More than a few people that have been following the Tokyo 2020 Olympics men’s basketball tournament believe that Australia has what it takes to send Team USA crashing and burning out of the bracket. There’s only one way to find that out.
Catch this game live on August 5 at 12:15 pm, Manila time.
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Matthew Dellavedova
- SG: Patty Mills
- SF: Joe Ingles
- PF: Nick Kay
- C: Jock Landale
The Boomers don’t back down and Team USA knows all about that. After all, it was not that long ago when Australia defeated the Americans in Las Vegas during an exhibition game before the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
The Australians have sustained that form, as they are now 4-0 in the tournament after crushing Argentina in the quarterfinals round, 97-59. Team USA is not looking like the overpowering squad of previous Olympic iterations. That should be boosting the confidence of the Boomers, who shot 49.3% from the field against Argentina and waxed hot from downtown, making 17 of 38 3-point attempts.
So far in the tournament, Australia is making 45% of their shots from the field and 37.9% from long range. Patty Mills is a very capable offensive threat. With his experience playing in the NBA, along with other players like Joe Ingles and Matthew Dellavedova, getting intimidated by the Americans isn’t really going to be a thing with this squad. Mills is leading the Boomers with 21.7 points per game while shooting 37.5 3FG%.
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Jrue Holiday
- SG: Damian Lillard
- SF: Devin Booker
- PF: Kevin Durant
- C: Bam Adebayo
The loss to France in the opener is clearly behind Team USA now. That was evident in the Americans’ past three games, where they steamrolled their opponents on their way to the semifinals. After roasting Iran (120-66), Team USA shut down the Czech Republic (119-84), before sinking the Spanish Armada (95-81) in the quarterfinals.
The game against Spain offered Team USA pretty much the kind of test it could expect in a gold medal match, and Kevin Durant and company passed that with flying colors. The Brooklyn Nets’ scoring machine dropped 29 points (including the dunk that gave Team USA the backdoor cover), while Jayson Tatum came off the bench and scored 13 points. It’s just too much luxury for Team USA to have guys like Tatum, Khris Middleton, and Zach LaVine on its second unit.
It’s Team USA’s bench that’s going to give them a huge advantage over Australia. The Americans are getting 46.8 points per game from their reserves, while Australia are only coaxing 19.3 points from its second unit.
Spread: People still find it hard to bet against Team USA’s spread. But this is a loaded Australian team with versatile wings and a true leader in Patty Mills. Take Australia to cover (+12).
This will play out faster than the Spain-Team USA game when it was only Ricky Rubio scoring consistently for the Spaniards. Plus, Australia’s got some big guns on offense, as well. Take the Over (179.5).