In preparation for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, the U.S. Men’s Basketball team is looking to qualify and lock their spot into place for next summer. After 78 straight wins in the past 13 years, Australia took down the U.S. in a four-point victory on August 24 in an exhibition game. It it is evident that the gold medal won’t be the cakewalk as experienced for over a decade.
After the loss, U.S. Head Coach Gregg Popovich said that nobody wins forever and the Aussies gave them a great lesson of how they have to play against this kind of competition.
After only having two and a half weeks to play together, the US was going up against guys who have had years to develop extremely strong chemistry and know each other’s games inside and out.
Popovich went on to say they looked discombobulated at times, but that some of it is expected with this new group that’s still learning the system.
Despite the loss, the U.S. can now focus on these points of improvement and avoid making the same mistakes in the future.
According to Popovich, their main job is to get better every day and to learn some things from the loss. He believes that they’re actually a better team after the loss than before because of the knowledge that they’ve gained.
US will regroup and use this loss as a learning experience to improve and give themselves a better chance at success against Canada in the last exhibition game before the start of the World Cup.
Shooting guard Donovan Mitchell said they’re going to watch the film on the plane to get ready for Canada.
Although the US Men’s Basketball team has experienced nothing but success for over the past decade, they are going into the tournament with a chip on their shoulders.
Guard Marcus Smart said they’re always the underdog in a sense, so they have to come out and prove everybody wrong.