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seelenjaeger
09-01-2006, 04:23 AM
36 seconds to go, USA down by six against Greece ... the end?

seelenjaeger
09-01-2006, 04:28 AM
101 - 95 Greece, USA out.

HexNBA
09-01-2006, 04:33 AM
Great game by Greece. Team USA should be embarrassed at their freethrow shooting and overall team defense. Plus I still dont think the US team really grasps (after all these failures) that there are teams that can hang with them, so look for a lot of "we didnt execute our gameplan" comments instead of praise for the opponent.

seelenjaeger
09-01-2006, 04:35 AM
Yeah, guess there will be a "there´s those days where the opponent just hit everything" song. Greece executed extremely well and played Team Ball along with Team Defense. Kudos.

digit
09-01-2006, 04:38 AM
What effin' great game...Greece schooled the US how to play effective team ball...Carmelo Anthony gets a lot of credits in my book for his passion and play, Dwayne Wade is THE PURE SUCK...

The US won't medal...Spain/Argentina > US

HELLAS!!!!!! HELLAS!!!!

alby
09-01-2006, 04:52 AM
i dont know any of the players on greece

but i smiled when the US lost

i hope the next generation of american basketball players will learn how to:
-make a freethrow before crossing someone over
-shoot a jumper before dunking
-defend a simple pick and roll at the top of the key

mqywaaah
09-01-2006, 05:31 AM
Wade missed two clutch dunks. Go Greeks!

mqywaaah
09-01-2006, 05:31 AM
I say the Greeks win the WCOB against... Spain! Rout!

HexNBA
09-01-2006, 06:10 AM
This Sergio Rodriguez guy on the Spanish team sure looks good. Then again, so do a lot of these players.

seelenjaeger
09-01-2006, 07:20 AM
Not sure the US can beat Argentina if it comes to that Bronze Medal game. Another failed misison for the GI Joes?

seelenjaeger
09-01-2006, 07:30 AM
That´s it ... thriller ending, but Spain beats Argentina by 1 ...

dude1394
09-01-2006, 07:54 AM
Great game by Greece. Team USA should be embarrassed at their freethrow shooting and overall team defense. Plus I still dont think the US team really grasps (after all these failures) that there are teams that can hang with them, so look for a lot of "we didnt execute our gameplan" comments instead of praise for the opponent.

http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/wbc2006/news/story?id=2568543

There was some of that in the espn write-up.
The U.S. seemed in control after Joe Johnson's 3-pointer gave the Americans a 33-21 lead with about 6˝ minutes left in the second quarter. It was around then that James told his teammates on the bench: "They don't know what to do."

One guy however said this:
""They played like a champion plays," U.S. forward Shane Battier said of Greece.".

I really respect and like that kid, the rockets are going to really like him.

Findelker
09-01-2006, 07:56 AM
"Mike Krzyzewski -- who was looking for gold after winning bronze with the 1990 team -- and a few American players walked to midcourt to congratulate the Greeks, while most of the U.S. roster quickly headed to the locker room."

Ouch - that is no good behaviour for getting nice reputation!

dude1394
09-01-2006, 08:25 AM
If the NBA wants to do more than compete, but dominate these games they may have to move their game even more internatioally. I for one would welcome that immensely. The one-on-one ego driven NBA really turns me off, it has for a long time. Ever since Barkley/Shaq just pounded on people until they got into the paint and dunked. Now the rules have changed more to allow for nothing much more than a foul-fest. I'm thinking a flat out zone will be what has to happen forcing teams to play more ball movement and outside shooting a lot less dunks and chest-puffery.

MavsX
09-01-2006, 08:29 AM
not a bad idea duuuude

capitalcity
09-01-2006, 08:29 AM
F' the thugs.

*happy dance*

Stranger
09-01-2006, 08:30 AM
Didn't we draft Vassilis Spanoulis and trade him to the Rockets? Are we going to regret it?

seelenjaeger
09-01-2006, 08:33 AM
Actually Teams like Turkey and Argentina are already suffering from the "NBA disease".

Guys like Okur, Turkoglu, but also guys like Ginobili openly stated "they have no motivation to play on international level" and they need to get the "I have it all" attitude out of their heads. While Ginobili managed to do it (to a certain degree), and was willing to take all the hits, shoving and competition on the WCC, some guys on the US team still seem to think they´ll win sooner or later anyways because of their superior abilities.

If Pau Gasol is out (he was seriously limping by the time the game was over), Spain will lose against Greece by like 20. And even if they win - both teams played GREAT ball over the tourney and deserve getting the title.

Oh - and the stars on the teams (Gasol, Spanoulis, Krygiakos, but also Nocioni, Oberto, and even Ginobili) are not guys to shine in every NBA games. But they are able to blend into a team, and carry it every now and then. It´s about plaiyng team ball and THEN utilizing strengths and weaknesses, even leaving superior talent at home for the perfect fit into the team. I doubt we´ll regret trading Spanoulis away.

mary
09-01-2006, 09:09 AM
The U.S. seemed in control after Joe Johnson's 3-pointer gave the Americans a 33-21 lead with about 6˝ minutes left in the second quarter. It was around then that James told his teammates on the bench: "They don't know what to do."

Mike Krzyzewski -- who was looking for gold after winning bronze with the 1990 team -- and a few American players walked to midcourt to congratulate the Greeks, while most of the U.S. roster quickly headed to the locker room."

Without shame, I raise my middle finger to our Men's Basketball team and giggle at their defeat. Bring back the amateurs and I'll proudly cheer for the red, white and blue.

Dirkenstien
09-01-2006, 09:09 AM
Great game by the Greeks. I'm glad the world can teach us something about this game.

TripleDipping
09-01-2006, 09:11 AM
At what point are we going to just sit these pros and just let college players represent this country?

Wiley_e
09-01-2006, 09:45 AM
They will have to get over it if they don't want to loose their face completely. USA being a dominating force in international Basketball is officialy over. If the players can accept that and follow the approach that was started before this WC, namely assembling a team that sticks together fore more than just a single event, they always will be in the international top 5 class and will still remain THE team to beat.
They have start to treat other teams as competitors collectively and stop being embarassed to death after a defeat. Everybody is down after a loss, but there's no real shame involved. They no longer HAVE to beat everybody else. Just compete with heart and learn the international way of playing the game - it's not so much less entertaining than NBA basketball if you ask anybody who watched the semis.

Hitman
09-01-2006, 09:51 AM
How are you going to send college players out to compete against the best professionals of the world?

A college team would get absolutely trampled by the best professionals in the world.

dude1394
09-01-2006, 09:59 AM
I just think it's a different game than is played in the US and the US players suffer for it. The college team won't be any better at it than the pros, I just don't believe it.

As far as keeping a team together I don't agree with that one either really. There are just too many NBA main players on the other teams that also don't play full time with their teams. However the rest of the team, the coach and they themselves have been schooled on international play.

The NBA will always be competitive but they won't be dominant unless they conform more to the international game imo.

mary
09-01-2006, 10:15 AM
Hitman, are you suggesting that the other international teams are made up of the "best professionals in the world?"

Let's dump the entire Greek team into NBA free agency today and see how they fare. I hear one of them is going to get the chance to back-up Rafer effing Alston this year.

International ball is about the team...its about building something that is greater than the sum of the individual parts...and those parts know how to shoot, how to defend, and how to shoot free throws.

Our parts know how to make the Sportscenter Top 10. Being athletic isn't quite as useful in a format where there are no illegal defenses, and its not as easy to play above the basket.

Give me a gritty college team any day of the week to put on the international stage. No, they wouldn't be guaranteed to win obviously or be dominant....and they would all know that, and I would expect that they would play as hard as they could because of it.

alby
09-01-2006, 10:53 AM
put an NBA team out there =]

alby
09-01-2006, 10:53 AM
i know.. the NBA Finals champion should represent the US

IMO, they have a better chance than the 12 all stars that we throw out everytime.
sure, we focused on getting "role players" and playing solid defense but comeon, those guys are all stars in the NBA. Even Shane Battier was considered a star in Memphis. Everyone else is their team's respective go-to guy.

dude1394
09-01-2006, 10:57 AM
Put the nba finals team out there and half the team might not play. Without shaq miami gets killed.

alby
09-01-2006, 11:00 AM
I guess a team more along the lines of a Phoenix Suns or Sacramento Kings of the past (of course, it only works if all the players were American) I'm just saying though, put a team who has been together for awhile, with a definite 1-12 roster full of players who know their roles and see how they fair.

jthig32
09-01-2006, 11:03 AM
I just think it's a different game than is played in the US and the US players suffer for it. The college team won't be any better at it than the pros, I just don't believe it.

As far as keeping a team together I don't agree with that one either really. There are just too many NBA main players on the other teams that also don't play full time with their teams. However the rest of the team, the coach and they themselves have been schooled on international play.

The NBA will always be competitive but they won't be dominant unless they conform more to the international game imo.

Dude, I think you're wrong on this. None of the international teams play fulltime. Every single player on those teams plays in a league SOMEWHERE. A few of them playing here is no different than the rest of the team playing in Euroleagues and whatnot.

The difference is, every summer, for years and years now, those international teams get the same 10-15 guys together, and play in a tournament, be it the Eurobasket, the WBC, the Olympics, whatever.

That's the difference. Familiarity.

jthig32
09-01-2006, 11:10 AM
Here's a great article on the issue of the U.S. team:

SAITAMA, Japan -- Carmelo Anthony (http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/players/profile?statsId=3706) was a picture of disbelief, standing all alone near center court and staring into the circle of Greek players who joined hands and danced in a circle.
Coach Mike Krzyzewski was stone-faced at the press conference afterward, his eyes glassy as he looked down at the table in front of him, the color drained from his face as he accepted responsibility for the loss.
Jerry Colangelo looked no better, the bags under his eyes appearing swelled and puffed up, his voice carrying a hushed and somber tone that I hadn't ever heard.

I asked Colangelo: "What do you think they're going to think of this back home?"
"Ultimately you're going to be judged by whether you win or lose, and obviously we didn't win tonight. So we can expect whatever," he replied.
Whatever.

What on earth did he mean by that? That's the question I'm pondering as I sit in the press room beneath the stands at Saitama SuperArena and listen to the sounds of the Spain-Argentina game being played on the other side of the wall. I've been waiting for two weeks to watch that game, looking to see which of those two powers would emerge as the standard we'd end up judging Team USA against. "Numero Uno" and "Numero Dos," I called them in a preview column I wrote upon my arrival in Japan, a column that generated so many dismissive, nasty and uncomprehending e-mails in my inbox that I almost got physically sick reading them over the course of this tournament.

A good 90 percent of my e-mailers thought I was out of my mind. Dozens upon dozens told me I should resign in disgrace once this thing is over and I had been proven wrong. I even caught a few dirty looks from the Team USA players who couldn't believe I was doubting them and occasionally picking them apart despite their perfect record.
Anybody believe me now?

I know the top two questions folks back home in the United States are going to be asking once I get back: How could this happen? Who is to blame?
To the first question, I'll answer this: It's been happening for more than four years now, folks, and it's been happening because Team USA keeps changing its roster, never developing the chemistry and familiarity that the best teams from other parts of the world have developed as their greatest strength. The Greeks had two or three plays that worked over and over and over again, just like Argentina's plays worked two years ago in Athens, and Team USA didn't have the cohesion a team needs to play the type of halfcourt defense required to win in these kinds of tournaments. The second and third quarters of Greece's 101-95 victory Friday were absolutely stunning to behold. I'd call it a layup drill, except for the fact that there were enough wide-open looks being converted that it broke up the monotony of the pick-and-roll exploitation the Greeks were pulling on the Americans.

The pick-and-roll is not a hard play to defend, but these guys simply couldn't. Anybody with two eyes could see that Greece guard Theodoros Papaloukas liked to drive to his left, but not once did any of the Americans force him right.
Greece was a team that came in averaging only 81.4 points in this tournament, yet the Americans surrendered 101 and allowed them to shoot an astonishing 63 percent from the field, 71 percent from 2-point range.
Want to know why? Mostly it's because the Greeks have been playing together long enough to have a repertoire of plays that they know will work, and once they saw they were working to perfection, they stuck with them time after time after time after time.

The Americans were helpless to stop them.
"They're pretty somber. They're really down in the locker room," Colangelo said. "They're as disappointed as Coach K and myself, and we're going to hurt for a while for sure."
If there's a bright side in this loss, it is this: The Americans needed a loss like this to realize where they stand in the world pecking order. Blame for the three losses in Athens was too easily laid on Larry Brown, just as the three losses in Indianapolis in 2002 were too easily pinned on George Karl.

The American federation hired a brilliant basketball mind in Krzyzewski, and Colangelo got the players who came to make three-year commitments, knowing that the process of re-establishing America's superiority in the sport was something that would take a number of years, not just one. So at least they won't be going back to the drawing board after this one -- they'll have to live with it and learn from it.

Team USA is going to emerge from this trip as the third- or fourth-best basketball-playing nation in the world, which is probably fitting. If you can't figure out a way to keep Kirk Hinrich (http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/players/profile?statsId=3710) from having to switch onto the massive Sofoklis Schortsianitis time after time after time, if you can't find a way to utilize the talents of Dwight Howard (http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/players/profile?statsId=3818) and Elton Brand (http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/players/profile?statsId=3324) for more than 12 minutes apiece, if you can't find a way to make better use of a 15-4 edge in offensive rebounding, if you miss 14 of 34 free throws, you don't deserve to call yourselves the best in the world.

The United States hasn't been the best in the world for six years now, and they won't have a chance to reclaim that spot for another two years, when the Beijing Olympics roll around. Maybe by then, the enormity of what's going on in international basketball will finally sink in. This is a huge, huge story, and folks back home either can't comprehend it or refuse to comprehend it.

You're not going to read much about this loss in USA Today, The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the Dallas Morning News or almost any of the other major metropolitan newspapers that somehow decided what's been happening to USA Basketball for over half a decade was not worthy of their coverage. None of them showed up, because they just don't get it, the same way that 90 percent of my e-mailers don't get it.

The basketball world has changed, folks, and Americans have fallen behind. I feel like I'm yelling into the wind when I keep saying how and why it's been happening, but maybe now folks back home will start to understand.
There's a bright side to this loss, believe it or not, and it's this: Colangelo realizes that there is no quick fix to this slippage, that it'll only get fixed by building a program and keeping a team together for three years.

The Americans now must go to Venezuela next summer to qualify for the Olympics, and they'll grow as a team there just as they did here, learning lessons along the way that they never imagined they'd have to learn. Lesson No. 1 moving forward is how to defend the pick-and-roll. Lesson No. 2 is to wake up to the reality that there's a huge gap between the best teams in the world and the rest of the pack. All those victories over the likes of China, Italy, Puerto Rico, Australia, Senegal and Slovenia don't mean much now, do they?
Some might call this Team USA a failure, but it isn't. It's too soon to make any call.

We can judge them two summers from now when they get back from Beijing. Until then, they're a work in progress, a team that's had its eyes opened to how vulnerable and beatable they can be. There is nothing for them to be embarrassed about. They just weren't as good as Greece.

That's the way the basketball world is these days, and if Team USA wants to restore the Old World Order, they're going to have to work at it. You can't just become the Redeem Team overnight. It might take three years, and it might take even longer. For now, they'll learn Saturday against Argentina whether they're the planet's No. 3 or No. 4 team. Then they'll have two years to work together toward being No. 1.

fluid.forty.one
09-01-2006, 12:59 PM
"The U.S. seemed in control after Joe Johnson's 3-pointer gave the Americans a 33-21 lead with about 6˝ minutes left in the second quarter. It was around then that James told his teammates on the bench: "They don't know what to do.""

What a stupid comment by james.

Tokey41
09-01-2006, 01:26 PM
Well i'd hate to say it but... thats what you get! Sure the US was undefeated, but guess what? So was Greece. No one ever praised them at all over here, they didn't take the challenege seriously and when those calls arent going your way like your used to your going to have to actually earn your win. Best of luck to Greece and congrats to them, hope Spain beats the hell out of them in the finals though (but Spain vs US would be interesting to watch as well).

dude1394
09-01-2006, 01:28 PM
"The U.S. seemed in control after Joe Johnson's 3-pointer gave the Americans a 33-21 lead with about 6˝ minutes left in the second quarter. It was around then that James told his teammates on the bench: "They don't know what to do.""

What a stupid comment by james.

This IS the kind of stuff from US Bballers that drive me nuts.

This was a pertty astute observation by the columnist.

The Americans were helpless to stop them.
"They're pretty somber. They're really down in the locker room," Colangelo said. "They're as disappointed as Coach K and myself, and we're going to hurt for a while for sure."
If there's a bright side in this loss, it is this: The Americans needed a loss like this to realize where they stand in the world pecking order. Blame for the three losses in Athens was too easily laid on Larry Brown, just as the three losses in Indianapolis in 2002 were too easily pinned on George Karl.

Better team won.

vjz
09-01-2006, 08:02 PM
If the NBA wants to do more than compete, but dominate these games they may have to move their game even more internatioally. I for one would welcome that immensely. The one-on-one ego driven NBA really turns me off, it has for a long time. Ever since Barkley/Shaq just pounded on people until they got into the paint and dunked. Now the rules have changed more to allow for nothing much more than a foul-fest. I'm thinking a flat out zone will be what has to happen forcing teams to play more ball movement and outside shooting a lot less dunks and chest-puffery.

Great, great comment. It's unfortunate it'll never happen.

Oh well, I guess I'll watch the NBA till Dirk is done, then give up on it. I can't watch Wade and LeBron win free-throw contests for the next 10 years.

vjz
09-01-2006, 08:05 PM
"Mike Krzyzewski -- who was looking for gold after winning bronze with the 1990 team -- and a few American players walked to midcourt to congratulate the Greeks, while most of the U.S. roster quickly headed to the locker room."

Ouch - that is no good behaviour for getting nice reputation!

I'd love to know who where the players that walked to congratulate the Greeks.

dude1394
09-01-2006, 08:37 PM
Great, great comment. It's unfortunate it'll never happen.

Oh well, I guess I'll watch the NBA till Dirk is done, then give up on it. I can't watch Wade and LeBron win free-throw contests for the next 10 years.

VJ...I think I may be right there with you. I lost most of my interest in the NBA when jordan/shaq/barkley came around. I would have probably bailed after watching sacremento get jobbed by the lakers in the wcf but it was just too much fun watching the mavs.

dude1394
09-01-2006, 08:39 PM
I'd love to know who where the players that walked to congratulate the Greeks.

Me too, only one's I'd bet on would be battier, jamison.

fluid.forty.one
09-01-2006, 10:13 PM
Kirk seems too competitive to do it, same with JJ... maybe bosh?

nashtymavsfan13
09-02-2006, 12:30 AM
Dwight Howard probably did too, he's a really classy nice guy. I would agree that Jamison and Battier prolly did too.

alby
09-02-2006, 12:54 AM
if you watched the game everyone left except for carmelo and lebron.. i dont know if they congratulated them.. they stood there and watched greece celebrate, that's about it probably