The U.S. men’s basketball team will not be in the same group as any of Spain, Argentina, Brazil or Lithuania after the Olympic draw was announced Friday.
It’s the first time since 1976 that the U.S. is grouped with neither of recent rivals Spain nor Lithuania.
The U.S. women are in the same group as Canada, while longtime rival Australia is in the opposite group. Canada beat the U.S. in the 2015 Pan American Games final, but that U.S. team included zero Olympians.
The Olympic men’s and women’s basketball tournaments are made up of two groups of six teams each. The top four teams from each group advance to the knockout rounds, which begin with quarterfinals.
The men’s groups:
The final three Olympic men’s basketball qualifiers will be winners of global tournaments in July. Those fields:
Serbia (host), Puerto Rico, Latvia, Czech Republic, Japan, Angola
Philippines (host), France, Canada, Turkey, New Zealand, Senegal
Italy (host), Croatia, Greece, Mexico, Iran, Tunisia
The women’s groups:
The final five Olympic women’s basketball qualifiers will come from a global tournmanent in June.
The U.S.-Canada game could include two players on the University of Connecticut’s current undefeated team — American Breanna Stewart and Canadian Kia Nurse.