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Team USA wins the gold

Facing the second-ranked team in FIBA Men’s basketball, Team USA extended their Olympic record over Spain to a flawless 11-0, taking the gold medal over the Spaniards for the second straight year. These two teams had last meet in a pre-Olympic exhibition in Barcelona a few weeks prior, one which USA knocked off España easily, 100-78. Now that hardware was on the line, it became a battle ‘til the end, neither team willing to back down.

USA needed a big game from its stars to win this one, and each had to contribute in different ways. Kevin Durant led all scorers with 30 points and guided the team through the first three quarters. LeBron James added 19 and showed dominance in the final quarter. Kevin Love was a factor off the bench, adding nine points and grabbing nine rebounds.

Pau Gasol paced Spain with 24 points and eight boards, but his effort wasn’t nearly enough. USA beat Spain by a score of 107-100.

Team USA saw its lead grow to as large as ten points in the final four minutes of the game, but a couple of careless plays from the U.S. without LeBron James in the game saw Spain close the gap where looked poised to make one last surge. Missed shots and turnovers changed that comfortable coast to the top of the podium into a bit of panic.

Just like that; enter LeBron, exit Spain’s chances.

“U-S-A” chants broke out in London as LeBron found a seam and threw down a wide open dunk, following it up on the next play with a dagger from three, right in the face of a defender. It was the stamp on his 2012 Olympic run, sealing the gold medal for America.

It was the final Olympic game for both Mike Krzyzewski and Kobe Bryant, and the benches cleared to a rousing ovation. Anthony Davis made an appearance in the final 30 seconds, getting his name down in the box score after picking up a foul and grabbing the final rebound of the game.

It’s back-to-back gold for Team USA, and Big Blue Nation was a part of it. Heck of a year for Davis, huh? That image of Davis standing between Carmelo Anthony and Chris Paul on the podium with a gold medal draped around his neck will look great on the wall in the Joe Craft Center. Andrew and Aaron Harrison, did you see that? Andrew Wiggins? You like what you see?

Article written by Stuart Hammer

B.S. Broadcast Journalism from the University of Kentucky. @StuartHammerKSR

14 Comments for Team USA wins the gold

  1. Voice of Reason
    1:27 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    While I too would love to spin AD’s Olympic journey into a UK recruiting pitch, let’s be real that at best we are splitting these accolades 50/50 with Duke because of Coach K. Besides, Wiggins is Canadian.

  2. well said
    1:42 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    voice of reason, EXACTLY…

    after 10 OTHER stars (who are already NBA all-stars) when down they asked him to come try out, then he DIDNT make the team, THEN another star went down, so they asked him to come back and warm the bench…

    lets not forget the LAST rookie to make the USA Olympic team, then what happened to him

  3. SuperTroy
    1:54 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    2. I think Davis has more than proven himself to be one of the all-time best Collegiate players and is as much of a “can’t-miss” prospect as any we have seen since Lebron. ANY success he has before he even steps on the court for his first NBA action will be seen as recruiting advantage for the Cats. Lots of people have been on Jimmy Kimmel too…but not many 19 year-olds that just spent an amazing year in Lexington, KY. He is proof that UK has an effect that not many schools could even dream of right now.

  4. PatPattersonISwalkingthruthatdoor
    1:54 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    (2) AD’s gold medal says you can shove it.

  5. WhatSheOrder?FishFilet?
    1:59 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    1) so is wiltjer..

  6. well said
    2:03 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    4…. well said… and its AMERICAS gold medal.

    3…. when will he make the all-star team??? because i feel this site has him as a starter already… but i think it will never happen, hes an NBA role player, a great role player, but nothing more

  7. Stuart Hammer
    2:04 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    1 – They have Tayshawn Prince on the wall in a Team USA jersey. Cal will absolutely use Davis and his ENTIRE year as a selling point. You’d be crazy to think otherwise.

  8. SuperTroy
    2:15 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    6. You, like ALL the naysayers, have the freedom to say whatever ridiculous prediction you want. Then, you can disappear when he surpasses that pathetic assumption.

  9. Cal's nuts
    2:18 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    I appreciate all my (and UK’s) haters, hate’n – and swing’n from my nuts. We just won the NATIONAL FRIGGIN CHAMPIONSHIP, so stick that in your pipe and smoke it. Don’t worry how I spin Anthony’s GOLD FRIGGIN METAL, cause high school kids are smart enough to know that I’m the guy to fast track them to the NBA – and THAT is all that really matters.

    Did I mention, we just won the NATIONAL FRIGGIN CHAMPIONSHIP? Hey haters, I drink your tears like some drink Gatoraide…

  10. Voice of Reason
    2:32 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    5 – Yes, Wiltjer sure is Canadian. Therefore, not sure “It’s back-to-back gold for Team USA, and Big Blue Nation was a part of it.” really has much selling power to Wiltjer, Wiggins, and other recruits that will never play for Team USA. I think National Championships and the NBA Draft would work much better since UK recruits the best regardless of country.

    7 – Stuart, the point was that the pitch isn’t the best one that CAN be used. I think National Championships and the NBA Draft would work much better. If you interpreted my statement as saying it WON’T be used, then be assured that wasn’t the intent.

  11. caveman2
    2:32 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    Its funny how UL and IU fans sit and wait for a new post on KSR. You guys are hilariuos…you don’t have anything else to do on a Sunday morning?

  12. Rae
    4:12 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    10. We are after more than Andrew Wiggins. I’m sure the prospect is mighty appealing to the Harrisons. And Young. And whoever in 2014 we like. A great recruiter tailors his pitch to the specific kid. For some, AD’s career so far will help. For others, it won’t. However, no harm in mentioning it along with the NBA and the NC to a nice American kid who can play for the team (I’m not sure how good a pitch Team Canada would be though.)

    6. How about we let him play his first pro game before we decide whether he is a star? He will be a star of the Hornets this year, probably. Austin Rivers will be a role player for them, but they didn’t get the #1 draft pick to leave him on the bench.

  13. Will
    5:24 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    UK player wins a gold, the UL haters come out of the wood works. Sit down, shut up, and be a good little brother you hear me.

  14. SuperTroy
    6:53 pm August 12, 2012 Permalink

    No matter how much influence AD’s success has on future recruits, (not too much, I’d imagine; I’d think the overall pro success of all UK alums would be more of a combined influence,) I really believe it had a MAJOR influence on Noel committing to the Cats. So…we’ve already seen the fruits of his labor. It’s just so good to see one of our own making his dreams come true. 🙂