Last night, USA took on Nigeria in their third game of the preliminary round of basketball at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. Their unbelievable 156-73 win put them at 3-0 and broke multiple records. It was an exhibition of American basketball skills with huge dunks and 3-pointers non-stop.
With a score of 156, they broke the previous team score record of 138 (set by Brazil against Egypt in 1988), by almost 20 points! They surpassed the old record when Andre Iguodala hit a 3-pointer with 4:37 left in the game. They also more than doubled the previous record for 3-pointers by a team with 29 (it had been 13)! What’s more, they set U.S. records for 3-pointers (29), field goals (59), field-goal percentage (71%), and tied the record for assists (41). They were incredibly accurate with their 3-pointers too, scoring 29 of 46 attempts (63%)! The 83-point margin was also a new Olympic record for the U.S..
They also had some amazing single quarters, scoring 49 points in the first, and 41 in the third! The first quarter score was helped by Kobe Bryant, who shot field goals at a ridiculous 100% accuracy, scoring 14 points (and 2 more later). At the end of the first half, Team USA led with an Olympic-record 78 points (to Nigeria’s 45), then doubled their score in the second half. Some other big contributors were Russell Westbrook, who finished with 21 points, Kevin Love with 15, and Kevin Durant with 14.
The biggest performer, however, was Carmelo Anthony who made a whopping 13 of his 16 shots, including a ridiculous 10-of-12 from beyond the three-point line for 37 points total. His 10 3-pointers set a new Olympic record and he broke the U.S. single-game scoring record in less than three quarters.
The 2012 USA Olympic basketball team is quite an amazing group. There isn’t a team in the Olympics that can match the their celebrated roster with a combined 43 All-Star appearances, seven NBA titles and four league MVPs. Could they be the new Dream Team? Are they better than the Dream Team of 1992? Only time will tell, but it’s looking good so far, and they’re doing a lot better than I thought they would.
Elsewhere in the 2012 Summer Olympics, the United States is winning a multitude of medals. As of now, we have 39 medals with 19 golds, trailing only China, who has 42 medals with 20 golds. In the various swimming events, Michael Phelps has now won 19 Olympic Medals in his career, setting a new all-time record as the most decorated Olympic athlete ever.
[UPDATE: 8/6/12] On August 4, Michael Phelps raced in his last competion event: The 2012 Olympic Men’s 4 x 100m Medley Relay Finals. He ended up winning his 18th career gold medal and his 22nd overall. By winning 4 gold and 2 silver medals, Phelps concluded the 2012 Olympics as the most successful swimmer of the meet for the third Olympics in a row. After his last event, the international swimming federation FINA honored Phelps with an award commemorating his standing as the most decorated Olympian ever!
As for the United States standings in the medal count.. we did take the lead from China over the weekend, but they are back on top as of now. Once again, though, they are only slightly ahead of us. We now have 60 medals, with 28 golds. China hads 61 medals with 30 golds.
USA vs. Nigeria Highlights:
Carmelo Anthony’s Olympic-record 10 3-pointers:
(also here if below video gets removed)
Team USA Highlights from first few games:
Thanks for reading,