Thursday, August 24, 2006

Waking up to Hoops

I've enjoyed getting up at 6:30am the past three mornings and watching the FIBA games featuring the USA team. Team USA put a good whupping on Slovenia and Senegal and handled Italy with ease. Carmelo Anthony's 27 point second half burst pulverized the Italians who led by 12 at the half. Next is Australia who won their group (C). Expect either an USA-Argentina final which should be incredible or USA-Germany.

It's amazing watching international play. The USA players, individually, are the still the best, but the need to play as team still tops everything. In the NBA it takes two great players and three or four good players to win a title. But how do you take 12 great players and make them play as a team? This is why it is easy for Argentina, Spain and other countries to field a team with two great players and a few good team/role players. And in a one-off championship all it takes is one hot-hand shooting threes by an opponent and a cold-shooting off night for Team USA to send us home again. Talk about pressure. The Europeans are used to it. Now the Americans are learning it.

Copyright 2006 James D. Fisher
All Rights Reserved.


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