In 2016, the Olympic Games were held in Rio de Janeiro, where the United States beat Spain by a tight 76-82 in the semifinals. At the other crossing, Serbia beat Australia more clearly (61-87). In the fight for the Bronze Spain made history by winning its third medal in the last three games, although it had to suffer until the final whistle to win the oceanic (89-88). All the equality that there was for the Bronze, disappeared in the final, where the United States finally showed their power to take off the track to a Serbia very blurred, but a silver. In the end (96-66), with a Durant MVP plan
The U.S. team has won the gold medal in Rio 2016 after clearly beating Serbia 66-96 in the final of the Olympic basketball tournament held in the Carioca Arena 1 pavilion of Barra Olympic Park.
The NBA Golden State Warriors’ forward Kevin Durant was, with 30 points, the top scorer of a game that already at half-time reflected a clear score 29-52 for the Americans.
The ‘Team USA’ completed with final victory a tournament in which, without being completely spectacular, did not suffer major problems to win their eight games and capture a gold that is the third in the account of Carmelo Anthony, who this Sunday became the only triple Olympic champion in this sport and captured his fourth medal in as many Games, after having suffered in their flesh the affront of leaving Athens with a bronze in 2004.
Bearing in mind that the overwhelming exhibition of the ‘Dream Team’ that won gold in Barcelona’92 – in which, with twelve stars in its ranks, Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson or Larry Bird bordered on the divine category – will never be equaled Mike Krzyzewski’s team more than fulfilled the file. In the last act, he doubled the Serbia of Sasha Djordjevic, who, if he was already a national hero in his time as a player, as a technician has put his country in the last two great finals, the one of the World Cup in Spain, two years ago, and this one, in Rio.
He reached it by walking through the wire in the group stage, in which he debuted with victory over Venezuela, before losing the next three games – against Australia, France (by a single point, 75-76) and United States (which he tightened the screws, before falling by three: 91-94) and ensure the pass, by the hair, as fourth classified after defeating China.
Always with Milos Teodosic, winner of the Euroleague with CSKA, as Djordjevic’s extension on the parquet, Serbia won the emotionally charged quarter-final against Croatia (86-83). And in the semi-finals they surprised, without giving them a chance (87-61), the then brilliant Australia, who lost to Spain for bronze on Sunday. If he was already a hero, Sasha is now a myth.
Twenty years ago he himself played an Olympic final, the Atlanta, with the former Yugoslavia, which, after crushing the ‘Boomers’ in the semifinals, did not want to comment in a press conference. Because he lost that match. Likewise, against the USA.
Djordjevic, however, has many reasons for pride. But this Sunday, his team held on as long as they could. And that was exactly until the final stretch of the first quarter. Equal. In which thanks to a basket Bogdan Bogdanovic (Fenerbahce) got to go ahead (14-12), but that closed with a score against him of 15-19, after a triple of Kevin Durant.
Durant, 27, who after leading the Oklahoma City Thunder for several seasons will play from next season with the Golden State Warriors, captured his second Olympic gold on Sunday. The spectacular forward, also world champion in Turkey 2010, was called to share the lead in Rio with Anthony, a power forward of the New York Knicks. But, without detracting from the performance during the Carmelo tournament, it was Durant who led a team to victory in which Kyrie Irving, winner of the last NBA ring with the Cleveland Cavaliers and key piece in the title that ‘Team USA’ won in the World Cup in Spain, also stood out.
In the first half of the final, Durant -maximum U.S. contributor in the tournament- scored 24 points, almost half of his team and only five less than Serbia, which went to rest 23 points below (29-52).
And in the restart Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors) increased the difference to 35 (40-75), shortly before again a spectacular Durant, which ended the match with thirty points, increased one more to close the third act with a score of 43-79.
For Serbia, Teodosic, which was fused in an emotional embrace with Djordjevic when he sat down, with eight minutes to go, contributed nine points. The top scorer of the team was Nemanja Nedovic, Unicaja Malaga escort, with 14. Milan Macvan, power forward of Emporio Armani Milan, added eleven, and power forward Miroslav Raduljica, who after playing in Panathinaikos will join the previous Italian team, seven.
Draymond Green, center of Golden State, ascended the advantage to 41 (49-90) less than three minutes, and in the end, with the players of the ‘States’ celebrating early victory, Serbia maquilló something the result. He narrowed the gap to thirty (66-96) before coach K also celebrated his third Olympic title as a coach.
The fifteenth U.S. in eighteen appearances (did not, by boycott, at the Moscow Games). In which he always won a medal. And he only gave titles to the former Soviet Union, with controversy, in Munich’72; and in Seoul’88, where he finished third, as well as in Athens, where the gold went to Argentina.
United States 96
*Irving – 4p, 4a, 3r.
*Thompson – 12p, 3r, 1a.
*Anthony – 7p, 7r, 2a.
*Durant – 30p, 4a, 3r.
*Jordan – 4p, 5r, 3t.
Cousins – 13p, 15r, 2a.
George – 9p, 2r, 2a.
DeRozan – 6p, 2r, 2a.
Lowry – 5p, 5r, 5a.
Butler – 2p, 5r, 1a.
Green – 2p, 1r.
Barnes – 2p, 1a.
*Markovic – 3p, 2r, 2a.
*Teodosic – 9p, 3a, 2r.
*Kalinic – 2p, 1r, 1a.
*Macvan – 11p, 2r.
*Raduljica – 7p, 3r, 1t.
Nedovic – 14p, 2a, 1r.
Bogdanovic – 7p, 3r, 3a.
Jokic – 6p, 4r, 2a.
Simonovic – 3p, 2r, 1a.
Jovic – 3p, 3a, 1r.
Bircevic – 1p, 3r.
Stimac – 0p, 3r, 1a.