Team USA’s exhibition tour has not gone as planned, to say the least. Last night, the Americans fell to Australia 91-83, their second straight loss following Saturday’s stunning defeat by Nigeria, a team they were favored to beat by nearly 30 points. At 6 p.m. ET, Team USA will try to get back on track vs. Argentina, which also lost to Australia and Nigeria this week. Yesterday, Nigeria routed Argentina 94-71, and on Saturday, Argentina lost to Australia by three, 87-84.
Argentina is No. 4 in FIBA’s world rankings, just behind Australia (No. 3). In addition to former 10-year NBA veteran Luis Scola, who now plays for Pallacanestro Varese, and Leandro Bolmaro, the No. 23 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft who now plays in Spain, its roster includes three current NBA players: Facundo Campazzo (Denver Nuggets), Gabriel Deck (Oklahoma City Thunder) and Lucas Vildoza (New York Knicks).
Team USA (FIBA No. 1) is still without Devin Booker, Khris Middleton, and Jrue Holiday, who are playing in the NBA Finals and will rejoin the team for the Olympics. Keldon Johnson was added to the exhibition roster and saw his first game action last night, scoring seven points in 13 minutes. Fellow former Cat Bam Adebayo came off the bench to contribute six points, three rebounds, and two assists in 16 minutes. Patty Mills was the hero for Australia last night, but not before Johnson got the better of him on this play:
— Ty Jäger (@TheTyJager) July 13, 2021
Despite the modified roster and glaring issues with chemistry and execution, the Americans are 17.5-point favorites tonight. DraftKings set the over/under at 183, and gave the US -1375 moneyline odds with Argentina at +800 to pull off the upset.
In case you missed it, this clip of Gregg Popovich going off on The Athletic’s Joe Vardon in the postgame press conference made the rounds last night and this morning. Clearly someone’s touchy.
Gregg Popovich gets into exchange with reporter after Team USA’s loss to Australia. pic.twitter.com/5XEp114qIh
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 13, 2021
You can watch today’s game live on NBC Sports at 6 p.m. ET.