After producing three lackluster defensive performances to end pool play, the U.S. men’s basketball team will have a lot more on the line Wednesday night when they play Argentina in the quarterfinal round.
Argentina finished fourth in balanced Pool B, with their loss to Croatia Monday both keeping rival Brazil out of the quarters but also meaning that they’ll have to take on a team that beat them by 36 in an exhibition back in July. The key word: exhibition, as none of Argentina’s most recognizable names (Manu Ginobili, Andres Nocioni and Luis Scola) played more than 25 minutes in that loss. Those three vets will play a lot more Wednesday, as will a point guard in Facundo Campazzo who has the tools needed to give a U.S. team that has struggled to defend ball screens fits.
WATCH LIVE: U.S. vs. Argentina, men’s basketball quarterfinals — 5:45 p.m. Eastern
Campazzo went for 33 points and 11 assists in a double overtime win over Brazil, and he’s shown the ability to not only score but get others involved throughout Olympic play. How they defend Campazzo will be key for the U.S., and they’ll be doing this in what will amount to a road game given the number of boisterous fans who have made the trek to Rio from Argentina. But even with all that said, Mike Krzyzewski’s team will be expected to win and do so in impressive fashion.
If they have better ball and player movement offensively, and do a better job defensively, the U.S. should be on their way to the semis. But it won’t be easy.
Look close at Mikaela Shiffrin as she steps into a race start gate for the first time in eight months on Oct. 17.
Shiffrin, the two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time World Cup overall champion, plans to wear a helmet with two special stickers on the back.
She’s donned the first decal for years — the initials ABFTTB, which stand for “Always Be Faster Than The Boys,” a personalized autograph motto from retired Olympic Alpine skier Heidi Voelker.
The new sticker reads, Be nice. Think first. Have fun.
Those lines came from Shiffrin’s father, Jeff — the mantra instilled in her and older brother Taylor, also a young ski racer at the time.
After Jeff died on Feb. 2, Shiffrin regularly remembered the question that Jeff posed years ago: “What are the golden rules?”
Be nice. Think first.
When the Shiffrin siblings were old enough, Jeff added the third rule.
“He felt like we could understand that having fun wasn’t just about going and doing whatever you want because it’s instantly gratifying,” Shiffrin told NBC Sports’ Alex Azzi in an On Her Turf interview. “Fun is doing something well and the satisfaction you get from sticking to something.”
She plans to race all season with the golden rules sticker on her helmet, right next to ABFTTB.
Shiffrin detailed more about her prep for a very different World Cup campaign, in conjunction with a new fund in honor of her late father, in this On Her Turf report.
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2020 Tour de France results for the yellow jersey, green jersey, white jersey and polka-dot jersey …
Overall (Yellow Jersey)
1. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) — 87:20:05
2. Primoz Roglic (SLO) — +:59
3. Richie Porte (AUS) — +3:30
4. Mikel Landa (ESP) — +5:58
5. Enric Mas (ESP) — +6:07
6. Miguel Angel Lopez (COL) — +6:47
7. Tom Dumoulin (NED) — +7:48
8. Rigberto Uran (COL) — +8:02
9. Adam Yates (GBR) — +9:25
10. Damiano Caruso (ITA) — +14:03
13. Richard Carapaz (ECU) — +25:53
15. Sepp Kuss (USA) — +42:20
17. Nairo Quintana (COL) — +1:03:07
29. Thibaut Pinot (FRA) — +1:59:54
36. Julian Alaphilippe (FRA) — +2:19:11
DNF. Egan Bernal (COL)
Sprinters (Green Jersey)
1. Sam Bennett (IRL) — 380 points
2. Peter Sagan (SVK) — 284
3. Matteo Trentin (ITA) — 260
4. Bryan Coquard (FRA) — 181
5. Wout van Aert (BEL) — 174
Climbers (Polka-Dot Jersey)
1. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) — 82 points
2. Richard Carapaz (ECU) — 74
3. Primoz Roglic (SLO) — 67
4. Marc Hirschi (SUI) — 62
5. Miguel Angel Lopez (COL) — 51
Young Rider (White Jersey)
1. Tadej Pogacar (SLO) — 87:20:13
2. Enric Mas (ESP) — +6:07
3. Valentin Madouas (FRA) — +1:42:43
4. Dani Martinez (COL) — +1:55:12
5. Lennard Kamna (GER) — +2:15:39
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