Team USA loses tune-up scrimmage against G League players
With less than two weeks out from Team USA’s FIBA World Cup opener against the Czech Republic in China, American basketball fans are starting to panic.
Following weeks of star NBA players leaving the team, the young guns headed to Los Angeles for a tune-up scrimmage game at Los Angeles Lakers’ UCLA Health Training Center.
Team USA was hoping to take a little confidence from a game against a Select Team comprised of G League talents and a couple of NBA fringe players. Instead, they were beaten soundly by their opponents on the night. As it stands, fans will not be rushing to sports betting sites to wager on the players leaving China with the Naismith Trophy.
The final score was 36-17 to the Select Team against the 15 NBA players representing the USA. This was not what was expected from a team with so much talent in it. Even though players such as Anthony Davis and James Harden have dropped out, there is still more than enough quality to avoid such a crushing defeat.
It’s not a good omen for the United States becoming the most successful nation in the history of the FIBA World Cup this year. Currently tied with the former Yugoslavia at five golds, Team USA can make history by winning the tournament.
But with performances like the one on August 15, they will need one heck of a wakeup call to pull it off.
The FIBA World Cup begins on August 31 and will end with the grand finale on September 15. Team USA is heavily favored to win the trophy, with Serbia and Australia considered the closest teams in terms of talent. A total of 32 teams will be taking part in the tournament, which will also serve as part of the qualifying process for the 2020 Olympic Games.
Regardless of the result, fans can expect to see preparations yield better results as we approach the competition. Sometimes an embarrassing loss like this can be a good thing for all involved.
Let’s hope that proves to be the case for Team USA and that they improve from this point on. They’ll certainly need to if they’re to be competitive in China.