Thursday, July 31, 2008

Olympic Preview

Next week marks the official start of the Beijing Olympics, but the USA men's basketball team is playing some exhibition games there right now. If the most recent game against Turkey is any indication, here's what hoops fans can expect from Team America:
  • A totally logical starting lineup of LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Dwight Howard, Kobe Bryant and. . . Jason Kidd. That's right. On a team that features Deron Williams AND Chris Paul, Coach K is starting Jason Kidd at point guard. Apparently Bob Cousy and Nate Archibald were unavailable for duty.
  • Improved shooting. FG% is a bit irrelevant in an exhibition game against the Turks, but Team USA did shoot 81% from the line and 43% from beyond the arc. Pretty solid numbers and definitely an improvement over past Olympic squads.
  • Somewhat limited minutes for our Jazz men. Deron played 20 minutes last night (I guess Coach K woke up halfway through the game and realized that Jason Kidd is 35 and terrible) and the Booze got 10. Carlos's minutes could improve if we don't hit the boards hard (no player had more than 8 last night).
  • Kobe Bryant whining about his minutes, lack of shots, and failure to get calls from the international refs. Actually, that didn't happen last night -- it's just a prediction of the future.


Orlando said...

I also noted that Deron is playing a lot of 2-guard. Maybe he's prepping for running the spot alongside Brevin Knight next year.

McCall said...

Deron's played quite a few minutes. He's a legitimate part of the rotation, and he's doing well. I watched this morning against Lithuania and he was a beast against the zone.

JC said...

I was up at 7 AM (on my day-off even) to watch the game. Booz only got garbage time in the 4th but DWill was awesome. He was driving into the zone and getting fouled, making shots and getting assists. The announcers were smart enough to mention that with Redd and DWill in the game, teams may think twice about going zone.

Orlando said...

I completely agree with Mallor, Mccall and Strum: Deron has looked good in the minutes he's been given. He's so unbelievably strong. Great addition to the squad. Also, Kirilenko had a nice game last night - solid defense, 17 points.

Pasty, who is that in the team USA jersey? Is that a Jon Koncak appearance on TCG?

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