I've been wrong about so much already that I was hesitant to even post this. Off the top of my head:
- Greece will give America a game.
- Argentina will give America a game.
- Team USA will not dominate every team it plays.
- Carlos Boozer will see more time than Chris Bosh.
- Carmelo Anthony will be the key to Team USA's offense.
- Dwyane Wade will pull a Vince Carter circa 2000, from an attitude stand point.
Thankfully I did not get caught up in the Jason Kidd love fest or make an argument for Australia pulling off an upset in the quarterfinals. Still the fact that I have Manu Ginobili's epic quote to Craig Sager "I'm telling you we, we play till we die" running through my head only added to my hesitation.
Having said all that I can't imagine the Argentinians emerging victorious. For starters they are not deep enough. And that's before you take Andres Nocioni's injury into account. After that I see a couple of issues:
1. The American defense has been really, really good. After all of the talk about hitting 3-pointers, playing the international game, and everything else, the American formula has been pretty simple. Get an outrageously talented core - Kobe, LeBron, a healthy Wade, Paul, and to a lesser extent Carmelo - fill in the other roster spots, and play ridiculous defense. It has been something to watch. And yes Bosh has been fantastic.
2. On the flip side Argentina's offense is clearly not Princeton's reincarnated. I'm a little late to the party on this one so I'll direct your attention to 48 Minutes of Hell's take (Hat tip Ball Don't Lie):
"Ball Movement: The nature of Argentina's ball movement caught me off guard. I think of them as being a very fluid team, having several guys who are effective passers. Really, even Oberto is a decent passer for his position. But they seemed to run a lot of isolation sets through Delfino, Ginobili, and Nocioni. If Argentina can't learn to make some safer, crisper passes, I am not sure how they are going to survive against the "steal first" USA defense."
Agreed. Hey my respect for Ginobili is a given. And Carlos Delfino was fantastic offensively against Greece. But I just don't see them taking down the vaunted American defense.
3. I can already picture Team Argentina racking up fouls. That's not going to help.