Us men’s five have lost just four exhibition games since 1992, and half those losses happened during a span of 48 hours. After being upset by Nigeria in their first Olympic exhibition Saturday night, Team USA fell to Australia on Monday, 91-83, in Las Vegas . The U.S. is now 54-4 in exhibition games since 1992. Damian Lillard led the way for the U.S. with 22 points and 4 rebounds. Kevin Durant, who was 6 of 13 from the sector but was cold most of the sport, chipped in with 17 points while also adding four boards. With Patty Mills, Joe Ingles, Matisse Thybulle, Aron Baynes, Dante Exum, and Matthew Dellavedova, the Australians have more NBA talent than the Nigerian squad. Still, this is often another huge upset for the Americans.
Mills was huge for Australia, particularly late, scoring 10 of his 22 points within the fourth quarter because the U.S. just couldn’t get enough stops to copy their own hot shooting from 3 down the stretch. “Defense. All defense,” Mills said after the sport when asked what he attributed the Australians’ victory too. “We understand for us to be really competitive and achieve our goals, we’ve to hold our hat on defense. “Especially [against] a team just like the U.S. [that can get] call at transition and [make] easy layups and dunks, for us to require a way that was pretty impressive for our second game.”
Team USA struggled in both exhibition games to execute down the stretch. This, somewhat, is to be expected as long as this team hasn’t had much time to play together. But getting the proper shots at the proper time are some things the Americans are getting to need to specialize in moving forward. Also, the defense has got to devour. Dating back to the 2019 World Cup, the U.S. has now lost four of its last five games. that’s unbelievable given the talent disparity, regardless of what roster the U.S. puts out, and speaks to the facility of cohesion and twiddling with nothing to lose for these underdog countries.
Team USA will play one final tune-up on Tuesday against Argentina at 6 p.m. ET — stream via fuboTV (Try for free) — before heading to Tokyo for the beginning of the Olympic Games where the team is paired with France, Iran, and therefore the Czech Republic within the preliminary group. The U.S., winners of the past three Olympic tournaments, will get its 2021 Olympic campaign happening July 25 against France. The last time the U.S. men’s team did not win gold came in 2004 when it finished third with the bronze, behind Argentina (gold) and Italy (silver).