Olympic Basketball Tournament – Semifinals preview

Final before the final will play USA and Spain 

Olympic Basketball Tournament this year is extremely interesting, because some of the favorites were already stopped in the quarterfinals, such as France and Lithuania, and the finish is in front of us and today follows the semifinals preview. Placement in the semifinals expectedly won United States and Spain, as well as Australia and Serbia.

Final before the final will play the USA and Spain, which form the first semifinal couple. US have routinely won first place in Group A, and on the way to the semi-finals convincingly beat Argentina with 105:78. It was a game of cat and mouse, but in the end it seemed that the Argentines could hardly wait for the end of the match. However, troop of Mike Krzyzewski does not shine at the Olympic tournament and seem that in some matches triumphed solely on the basis of a great quality. In the course of the competition, it’s always one player take over responsibility and shoot in high percentages, while the rest of the team shot catastrophically. Experienced Carmelo Anthony is currently the most consistent player, and solid plays and Kevin Durant. Klay Thompson, who is objectively the best shooter of the team, at some games was only a pale shadow of the fatal NBA scorer. With a lot of reserves plays and the center DeMarcus Cousins, who has not yet shown all that can and at times gives the impression of lack of interest. They are athletic and physically dominant in relation to every opponent, but in the semifinals expects rival ready to finally thwart them and left them without a gold medal.

Although they very bad started the tournament, Spain has begun to play an extraordinary when it was most needed. First, in the fight for the continuation of the competition they overran Lithuania, and in the quarter surprisingly easily eliminated France with the score of 92:67. The team was selected extraordinary and almost all of the Spanish stars are here, with the exception of the injured Marc Gasol. National coach Sergio Scariolo has very well prepared team and timed form for the most important matches. In the team there is a clear hierarchy that players respect, and the veteran Pau Gasol always fantastically plays in the jersey of Spain. Spaniards were twice defeated by Kobe Bryant and LeBron James, two times were defeated in a close game, and it seems that the Spaniards are ready to come out on the floor and revenge for those defeats. They play very fast; almost all are good shooters; have a good flow of ball and always know what they want and definitely are not without chances in the match with the USA. This will certainly be the most interesting match of the tournament as the two best teams are meeting, and both have the same goal – gold medal at the Olympic Games.

In the second semifinal will meet Australia and Serbia. Australia is absolutely the most pleasant surprise of the tournament, because despite several NBA players nobody expected that they will be able to play on such a high level. The only defeat in the tournament have experienced in the match against the USA, when they also were not without chances to win. Australia has reached the semifinals thanks to perfect games in all previous matches and in the quarterfinal easily mastered indisposed Lithuania with 90:64. Andrew Bogut plays outstanding throughout the tournament, and the Boomers are in him get a team leader. All players have their contribution and are completely in the function of the team. They often play with two centers on the court, but in this situation Aron Baynes forcibly play at the power forward. They play very good defense and are very dangerous in transition. Matthew Dellavedova excellently plays on both sides of the court, while Bogut is an outstanding defensive player and for the NBA standards. Patty Mills is the leading scorer of the team and is expected that in the semifinals take responsibility when it is expected of him. What can be a problem for Australia is the lack of experience in major competitions, despite the few veterans on the team. Boomers are playing on the objective maximum and can hardly do better than so far displayed. In the group stage they had already met with Serbia and then triumphed, but this match will be totally different because is at stake great final and fight for the gold medal.

Serbia did not play well in the course of the tournament, but managed to reach the semifinals. They played a very close quarterfinal match against Croatia, in which only one quarter have played at a high level, which turned out to be enough for a triumph 86:83. It seems that Serbia has not demonstrated everything that can – primarily Milos Teodosic and Bogdan Bogdanovic, while Miroslav Raduljica plays standardly well. Versatile young center Nikola Jokic may be a man of decision in this game and the element of surprise. Serbia plays solid defense, at times have very good flow of the ball and one player always pops up to the forefront. However, the undisputed leader of the team is a lucid point guard Milos Teodosic, which in tandem with Bogdan Bogdanovic can create big problems to each backcourt. National coach Aleksandar Djordjevic is a great motivator, and there is no doubt that Serbia will provide the most in the finish. Big handicap is the absence of power forward Nemanja Bjelica, and as Australians often playing with two centers on the floor, when Nikola Jokic plays the power forward position. Despite a convincing defeat by Australia in the group stage, Serbia is not an outsider in this semifinal, and if they shoot in good percentage it is not impossible to find in the final.

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