There was a time when beating the United States in basketball was a pipe dream. Now, the US team adds two consecutive defeats in his preparation for the Olympics and cites the usual reasons to justify his problems.
“These teams are experienced and have been together for a long time”, valued Damian Lillard about your team’s rivals. “We are still working to become a team”. The words come after the defeats against Nigeria and Australia in Las Vegas, where Team USA prepares its assault to the fourth consecutive Olympic gold in Tokyo 2020.
The last five US team games with NBA players on the roster have recorded an unprecedented negative record: just uone win and four losses, the same as in the previous 105 games (101-4).
The Americans had never lost two friendlies in a row since 1992, when the NBA professionals began to play with their sights set on the Barcelona Games (before they played with university players).
Gregg popovichCoach of the American team, he appreciated an ostensible improvement in his pupils and praised them for a good first half, especially in defense. He also advocated Lillard’s theory: “After a very short time together there are many things to cover.”
According to the technician, there were other factors that affected the team: “We have gotten tired, and that affects you mentally. We have not been the same there. Some players have to get their legs backBut in general we need more conditioning, which is totally understandable. “
Previous times when Team USA caused awe among their rivals are long gone, and so Lillard believes: “It’s different, now you go out to play and all the starting five are NBA players who are in rotation”.
Patty Mills and Joe Ingles, for example, they led the victory of the Aussies last night with a magnificent game, and in the press room they were not surprised by their triumph. “We have come to this game expecting to win”, valued the former blue and current member of the Utah Jazz. “They are a great team, they have a great squad and Pop in the band, but we have come to win and this is what we have done.”
“This is not the first time that Team USA has been put to the test”, settled Lillard, star of the Blazers and one of the leaders of the American team. Americans only have a few hours to learn from mistakes, regain their legs and face his next challenge, the Argentina of Campazzo, Bolmaro, Scola and company.