Team USA will take on Spain in Tokyo Olympics quarterfinals

Zack Geogheganabout 2 months


Aritcle written by:Zack GeogheganZack Geoghegan


(Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)
[caption id="attachment_360899" align="aligncenter" width="1200"] (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)[/caption] The rough road to an Olympic gold medal for Team USA just got even tougher. After finishing the group stage with a record of 2-1, it was recently announced that the Americans are set to face off against one of the world's top teams, Spain, in Tuesday's quarterfinals matchup. Spain also posted a 2-1 record in the group stage, losing to Luka Doncic and Slovenia on Sunday, which forced them into a head-to-head against Team USA. Team USA and Spain are ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the world, respectively, according to FIBA. They will tip-off early Tuesday morning at 12:40 a.m. EST. Despite dropping the group stage opener to France, 83-76, Team USA bounced back in impressive fashion, easily taking care of Iran by a final score of 120-66 and then the Czech Republic by a count of 119-84. Those two wins were more than enough to help the Americans advance into the quarterfinals. Team USA actually beat Spain in what was the American's final exhibition game back in Las Vegas. It was Keldon Johnson who provided the spark in the first meeting, as his 15 points were combined with 19 from Damian Lillard, pushing the United States ahead. During group play, all three former Kentucky Wildcats were in action. Devin Booker has been solid in his new role as a starter despite having very little rest in between his NBA Finals loss. He's averaging 8.3 points per outing on 44 percent shooting, starting two of three games in group action. Bam Adebayo is the team's full-time starting center and he's putting up 8.0 points and 4.3 rebounds per game on 61 percent overall shooting. Johnson, meanwhile, hasn't been as important as he was in the exhibitions, averaging just 1.3 points in under seven minutes per game. Spain features several current and former NBA players, including the Gasol brothers, Ricky Rubio, Willy Hernangomez, Sergio Rodriguez, Rudy Fernandez, Sergio Llull, and recent 2021 first-round NBA Draft pick, Usman Garuba. They are the No. 2 ranked team in the world for a reason. And even though Team USA holds an all-time record of 16-2 against Spain, recent results have been incredibly close. Team USA beat Spain 118-107 for a gold medal in the 2008 Beijing Olympics, 107-100 during a gold-medal win in the 2012 London Olympics, and recently in the 2016 Rio Olympic semifinals by a score of 82-76. 2020's edition should be another wire-to-wire meeting. The winner of Team USA-Spain will play in the semifinals on Thursday morning. The gold medal game is scheduled for Friday night with the bronze medal matchup planned for Saturday morning.

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