Sunday, August 12, 2012


Kevin Durant had thirty points.  Kobe Bryant shut down the main stud for Spain in the second half, and Chris Paul made a beautiful driving shot in the fourth quarter that sealed the victory. However, the player who was the essential component of the gold medal victory today was Lebron James.

This was an exciting contest.  Unlike the preceding games with the exception of the close Lithuania match, the US did not go on a run of three point shooting that pulled them away from their opponents.  This gold medal contest came down to a fourth quarter in which  Lebron James made the first basket, then another important driving slam dunk, and finally a three point shot with a seven footer in his face.

After the notorious "decision" broadcast, Lebron James was reviled.  His stock, for anyone who has followed these games, should be bullish today.

A shout out to Pao Gasol who played today like the class act he is.  Almost singlehandedly, Pao kept Spain in the game during the third quarter.  Had it not been for an inadvertent scraping around his eye which caused him to leave the game for a spell, the game might have had a different outcome.  But my sense is that as long as James did not foul out, the US was going to find a way to win.

Startling moment of this game was when Spain went to a box and one on Durant.  Some kind of respect for  Durant leaving James and Bryant relatively free. Doug Collins commented that he wondered if Kobe Bryant ever faced a box and one, when the one defender was not on him.

Another shout out to the Olympic basketball network which kept the cameras on the action throughout the games.

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