For more than a decade, Spain has been the largest international competitor of the United States. The two teams played against each other in the 2008 and 2012 gold medal matches. After the U.S. team was eliminated in the 2019 FIBA World Cup, the Spanish team won the championship and won the world championship title. In this may be the last Olympic game between Spain’s key stars Paul and Marc Gasol, Spain gave their long-time rivals the last chance in the quarter-finals. They gave the American team everything they could handle. In the first half, Spain led by up to 11 points. But in the end, the American team’s shot was too strong for them to handle. Kevin Durant led the U.S. team with 29 points, and the U.S. team made up the gap with 95-81. Although Ricky Rubio scored 38 points in this loss, they did it. Spain has been eliminated from the game. After the Australian team easily dispatched the Argentina team, the US team faced the Australian team in the semifinals. If they win that game, they will face France, Slovenia, or Italy in the competition for the gold medal. The following are the three main points for the American team to win: 1.
The best Olympic matchup in history Ricky Rubio is mainly known for his shortcomings as an NBA scorer. He is not lazy. In his career, he averaged 11 points per game, but this is the only weakness in his excellent technical combination. If Rubio is a better shooter, he can become an NBA All-Star. In the FIBA competition, he certainly played a role. Rubio broke Butch Lee’s scoring record against the United States in the Olympics, scoring 38 points in this defeat. He often touches the rim and makes jump shots that he rarely tries in the NBA. This is a special performance. If his teammates stood up for him, this could have helped him complete this surprise. But Kevin Durant was almost as good. He contributed 29 points for the US team, and when they struggled to score in the first half, he was their only continuous offensive source. His teammate woke up in the second half. Jason Tatum scored 13 consecutive layups, and Jrue Holiday, Damian Lillard, and Zach LaVine also hit double digits. This is the difference. None of the three Spanish starters scored. Durant got the help he needed. Rubio didn’t, but it was an extraordinary performance on such a large stage.
Durant has played against many players of all time during high-risk periods. In the NBA, Rubio is not one of them. At the Olympics, it must be. He promoted the American team in this game, which may be the best he has played at any level. When Spain established their lead in the first half, they did it on the glass. They started the game with a 25-12 rebound advantage. The U.S. team got better from there but eventually led 42-32. Even if Spain missed the field goal percentage, they rebounded to score in the first half. The whole lead is built in.
One opponent after another has achieved the same inside success against this team. Bam Adebayor and Draymond Green, despite their other advantages, are not centers of traditional size. This makes it easy for opponents to get into the basket on breakthroughs and rebounds. Part of the reason Spain lost the game was that they could not use it to the extent needed. Several trays and rabbits inside are missing, which may reduce this profit. If the American team can enter the gold medal battle, it is likely to be against the French team.