How about this one from Nicolas Batum, who flies through to catch Lithuania’s Martynas Pocius utterly unawares to start the French fast break amidst Les Blues pulling away for the 82-74 victory?
Just enough time to get in some Official Fearless Predictions™ this morning … note that BallinEurope is at 12-0 through two days of Olympic competition. Note, too, that only serious homers and lobotomized octopi should be less than 11-1 at this point anyway, depending on the person/being’s choice for the Argentina-France game.
So here goes on a day with what should be a couple of fair battles and a bunch of blowouts: Lithuania over France (still running with this pick); Australia over China; Argentina over Tunisia; Russia over Brazil in today’s match of the day; Spain over Britain; and Team USA over Nigeria.
BallinEurope’s Lithuanian agent Skyped BiE today with two words on his mind: “Lithuania’s doom.”
“Today?” BiE countered.
“No, it already happened two days ago,” said Y. and he was off with a prescient, simple formula for success after the 23-point blowout at the hands of Argentina.
1. USA (5-0)
5. Nigeria (1-4)
6. Tunisia (0-5).
BiE’s taking Team USA to run the table for a few reasons … Continue Reading…
BallinEurope’s Official Fearless Predictions™ for 2012 Olympic basketball will be posted tomorrow, but with the 2012 Olympics opening ceremonies taking place tonight and the men’s competition tipping off on Sunday, BiE got out the virtual calendar to make time for the following seven (or eight) games, matches that should fundamentally shape the greater 30-game picture, the subsequent knockout tournament and the OFPs™ themselves. BiE’s keeping eyes peeled for…
• Argentina vs. Lithuania, July 29. The Olympic schedulers decided to place a couple of dandies on day one of men’s basketball play in a pair of games that will send two Group A teams scrambling immediately. Argentina looked impressive in friendlies in general and against Team USA, but this team’s weakness in 2012 is a traditional Lithuania strength. Continue Reading…
Quel dommage! Eurobasket 2011 runners-up France are finding the road to London bumpy indeed recently. Already losing Joakim Noah throughout the 2012 Olympic Games due to injury, Les Bleus must temporarily sit Boris Diaw and Nando de Colo due to NBA-related insurance issues. And now Mickael Gelabale faces penalties from FIBA, including possible suspension for part of the ‘Games.
With France chipping away at a seven-point third-quarter Spain advantage in yesterday’s “friendly,” Les Bleus forced a turnover out of Rudy Fernandez which led to a breakaway layup for two. Gelabale, meanwhile, was confronted by Fernandez with the expected results. Gelebale was ejected from the game, necessitating a report to FIBA by the official – a report which could in turn become suspension for one Olympic match or more.
With “Le Gros Match” about to start and Team USA ready to invade the Continent in preparation for the 2012 Olympic Games, BallinEurope takes a brief look at some recent results from European national teams in friendlies. And we’ll do this is true TrueHoop fashion, a la bullet-style…
You’d think that boasting six NBA players on an Olympic squad would automatically count as a positive against a tough 2012 Games field – but today Team France discovers the down side of running with US-based players.
France-based Basket Actu and San Antonio Spurs blog Air Alamo are reporting this morning that, since Boris Diaw and Nando De Colo have just signed new contracts, certain insurance issues must be worked out before either can suit up for Les Blues. This means that both will miss the friendly match against Team Spain today.
Explained France national team director Patrick Beesley to media, “…From the moment a player is under contract, he is insured by the NBA in collaboration with [FIBA]. If he is not under contract, he is [insured by FIBA]. We hope to have an answer tonight.”
This one goes out by request to BallinEurope’s Lithuanian agent Y. … with Team USA coming together to play the Dominican Republic today – with or without Chris Paul – BiE tries to answer the question “Who [if anyone] can beat Team USA?”
A few gauntlets have been thrown by the Americans already, the least of which is certainly not the roster itself. That roster, one more time, is the following.
Carmelo Anthony (New York Knicks)
Kobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers)
Tyson Chandler (Dallas Mavericks)