I know I previously stated I would like to broaden my horizons with my writing, however, I need to go over what is wrong with Team USA.
Am I worried? Should you be worried? The answer to both of those questions is ... no.
Did they lose two exhibition games in a row? Yes, yes they did.
Are Carmelo and Lebron walking through that door planning on “saving” Team USA. No, they are not, and I believe that the team does not need to be saved. Sure, you could absolutely blame it all on the fact that the roster is missing three players and Gregg Popovich is digging depth from the Select Team. But this team is still full of all-star and superstar players. I mean these guys are going to be the best the USA has to offer.
Team USA has not lost back-to-back exhibition games since the 2019 FIBA World Cup, resulting in failing to earn a medal for the first time since 2002. That team we lost to, France, is the same team that I will admit I am very scared of.
I am scared of France because of the size difference in the front court, given the fact that the French national team has 7-foot-1-inch Utah Jazz big man Rudy Gobert and Team USA has Kevin Durant as its tallest player standing at 6 feet, 11 inches tall.
Having Durant as your tallest player is not necessarily a bad thing, seeing that he is one of the best players in the world. Just because Team USA has talent, they lack experience, chemistry and size. The foreign national teams have been training for months together and some even playing together in previous games, meanwhile, Team USA has been training together in Vegas for a few weeks. On top of only having weeks of training together, Team USA also is bringing in nine first-time Olympians.
If all of that worries you, do not let it, because it is going to take time for the team to gel, and after that win in the third exhibition game, these players will come together soon enough. Gregg Popovich is one of the greatest coaches in basketball history, so he can do it.
Team USA is going to win gold again, just like the past three Olympics. I believe in this team and these players. There is no doubt in my mind and there should be no doubt in yours.
Anyway, that is just my take on the Olympics, specifically, basketball. I really only like basketball; my dad always liked women’s beach volleyball, for some reason. But I want to say thank you for reading my piece.
• Ben Donner is a student at IVCC, living in Streator. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.