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Thursday, September 9th, 2010 at 10:33 am  |  52 responses

Live Blog: USA vs Russia

US rolls into the Semis.

by Matt Lawyue / @mlawyue

More eerily than fittingly, USA and Russia will compete in the quarter finals on the 38th anniversary of USSR’s controversial ’72 Olympic gold medal win over America. This tidbit is more for nostalgia and the history buffs, but Coach K is sure doing his part to reignite a Cold War flicker with Russia’s American-born coach, David Blatt.

Yahoo! Sports with the story:

On Wednesday, Krzyzewski mocked a story that Blatt told about crying at the conclusion of the ’72 game as a teenager growing up in Massachusetts. Blatt recently watched a new documentary on the final minutes of the game and changed his opinion on how the events played out.

“He’s Russian,” Krzyzewski told reporters. “He coaches the Russian team. So he probably has that viewpoint. His eyes are clearer now because there are no tears in them.”

“I’m not Russian,” Blatt countered to Yahoo! Sports. “I’m an American-Israeli. But I’m proud that I can view things objectively and form my own opinion with the hope that it doesn’t insult anybody. If anything, it only asks people to be a little more open-minded and fair about things.

“I thought we were past this,” Blatt said. “Shouldn’t Mike be proud that an American coach has made his way to Europe and become coach of the Russian national team? If people are still getting emotional about that thing 40 years later or trying to use it in a way to further their own cause, so be it.”

Nonsensical mind-games aside, Russia is 5-1 this tournament and has the length and size in their front-court to utilize an effective zone defense against the undersized Team USA.

This game will air live on ESPN at 11 AM EST.

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  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    I’m going to keep an eye on Timothy Mozgov… another stroke of genius by Donnie Walsh.

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    *Timofey

  • http://twitter.com/HarryByrdMan44 LA Huey

    This Blatt is trying to play the Phil Jax mind games. Let’s hope Coach K keeps the team focused and we can dial in the 3s against their zone.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    I’ve disparaged chauncey billups a lot, but one thing about that dude is he knows how to go get a foul call.
    The US is in a dog fight right now.

  • WangChung

    Thank God we never went to war with these bastards…

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Russian fans look like they’re banging with the Bloods with all the red bandannas and whatnot.
    USA is staying mentally tough and imposing its will. I like it.

  • Ben Flook

    Mozgov is legit! Long and athletic he’s looking great in FIBA play.

  • Ben Flook

    The US are definitely staying mentally tough! Think its going to be close down the stretch Russia don’t get rattled easily.

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    @Ben Flook: That’s good, very good.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Chauncey is making me eat my insults.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Oops, never mind. He just jacked a horrible three in transition after knocking down a clutch jumper.
    That’s the Chauncey I know and love.

  • larrylegend

    i am a bit dissapointed, no post of yesterday’s classics or a vid of the buzzer…

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Westbrook suckers!!!!!!!!!

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Chauncey and his love for quick threes are very aggravating.

  • Irfan

    US players can be very thankful to the referees because they didn’t play well but are now ahead by 15! The foul trouble and the many bad calls (one superb block, many US travels not called…) have killed Russia in the third quarter.
    Right now, this US team can’t compete against Turkey, Argentina, Serbia, or even Spain & Brazil & Greece. They have very good individual players but a very bad offensive teamwork.

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    70-56 after 3 1/4. Good job by Westbrook, Billups, KD on offense and Odom and Iguodala on defense.

  • Irfan

    And very disappointed too of the lack of news here about the non-US games! Brazil-Argentina was one of the most exciting games I’ve EVER seen and Spain-Serbia was nice too – although Spanish players are so annoying, always complaining even though the refs were helping them A LOT! (Navarro and Garbajosa apart, they were good and fairplay)
    The Turkey-Slovenia blowout wasn’t very funny to watch but the Turkish players are impressive, and they really play as a team.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Westbrook is like D-Wade-lite from 2008. Same sort of impact and focus.
    Am I the only one noticing this? Dude plays with a super chip on his shoulder. Just angry.

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    Westbrook has just started the 4th 1/4 as he ended the 3rd

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    If you think it’s about the refs then you aren’t watching the same game.
    It’s about superior athletic ability and overall skill. Period.
    Russia doesn’t have the horses to compete with USA, and once the USA stopped playing stupid, and started exploiting their strengths, it was curtains.

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    The bad calls r goin both ways, that’s just a non foul called on RG. and Russia 4 3, a travel not called on Russia…

  • Irfan

    It’s obviously useless to argue with Americans about basketball rules ^^

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    Russia made 3s is the only raeson this game is not yet over. 81-65 with 7 min 2 play in the 4th

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    4 the record I’m not american but Cameroonian

  • Irfan

    Ah ouais, t’habites où ? J’ai un bon pote à Yaoundé.

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    Desole Irfan je suis a Londres mais c ki ton pote? Yaounde c ma ville.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    “Basketball rules” is a completely asinine statement.
    You meant “FIBA” rules.
    The same rules that prohibit moving screens, despite the fact that we see them every single game.
    The same rules that prohibit dislodging players from their position, which we see every game.
    The same rules that prevent going over the back, which we see every game.
    If you ever, EVER think the USA is getting the benefit of the doubt in Fiba play then you’re just a biased fan.
    And, for the record, the cat from Russia blocked D Rose’s shot clean up top, but he CRASHED into him with a hip check to do it.
    Don’t let the facts get in the way of an argument.

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    30 pts 4 KD 86-72 with 2:44 to go

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    32 4 KD, 33…

  • Irfan

    Il s’appelle Mark Minka.

    The foot wound doesn’t look pretty, poor guy =/.
    The US team won with its defense & its running offense. And the amazing skills of KD. But I stay with my word: the referees made tough calls on the Russian team which hurt them when the US team made its comeback, with key players out.
    This game wasn’t very pleasant, especially when compared to Serbia-Spain or Argentina-Brazil before.

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    89-79 final score, team USA advances 2 d semis. It was a strange game, team Russia played 2/4 where they took the lead several times (they led by as much as 5 pts) but it was a different game in the 2nd half thanx 2 adjustments by coach K. Good game by Russell Westbrook (who started the big lead in the 3rd with 7 consecutive points) KD (who finished the game with 33 points! Lamar Odom (and AI) defensively…

  • The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    Sorry Irfan, je ne le connais pas…

  • Add

    The refs were calling a bunch of stupid stuff on the us. It’s like they were giving Russia the advantage.

  • http://Www.fiba.com Darksaber

    That babyfaced 2nd PG the Russians have, Khvostov, is faaantastic. Thought i knew the russian roster well, Ponkratschov, Fridzon and Bykov are no surprise, babyface was playing with flair in the 1st half. Nice.

  • Irfan

    At the half, Lithuania leads Argentina 50-30 shooting 8/10 from three! That’s crazy, everyone I know had bet another win by Argentina & Scola. The Lithuanian defense is crazy, and Kleiza has good lieutenants!

  • http://counterkicks.com Q-Tip

    FIBA refs made me sick. All i heard was how the FIBA game is so much more physical but all i see are ticky tack fouls and completely inconsistent reffing in general

  • http://www.twitter.com/TheDiesel Anton

    Is it just me or does Juan Gutierrez of ARG have a Lost tattoo on his shoulder?

  • erich

    @Q-Tip
    The referees are way better then in the NBA.
    Did you watch US games only ?

  • JTaylor21

    @erich, Fiba referees SUCK donkey kong balls. They are even worse than NCAAB refs and that’s saying something.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    FIBA refs couldn’t hold NBA refs jocks.
    Say what you want about point shaving, but for the most part, NBA games are reffed consistently and professionally.
    I have yet to see that happen with a fiba game. It’s like intramurals out there.

  • Irfan

    New proof of how clever US players are: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9JCYP7CZCZk&feature=player_embedded#at=14.
    Amazing!

  • Tyler

    cosign JTaylor
    FIBA refs are terrible I can still hear the whistles in my head lol

  • http://sdjkflf.com Jukai

    FIBA refs are really really bad. They were bad in the Olympics but they’re TERRIBLE here. This whole experience has left me with a lot less respect for the FIBA game.

  • http://gregoden.com roybot

    Well FIBA are bad, but its not like they call it wrong for only one team, they called bad calls for both teams so it kinda evens out. That one play where D Rose get pinned to the backboard by the Russian center comes to mind.

  • http://gregoden.com roybot

    *referees

  • http://jayemmbee.blogspot.com ClutchPerformer

    they should just hire NBA Refs, they probablly know enough to hold it down and still would be a better game

  • http://counterkicks.com Q-Tip

    Its mainly the consistency that pissed me off and i watched one game where one guy called three consecutive illegal screen calls and it was obviously a bad call. Just because you allow goaltending doesn’t mean your league is more physical

  • http://joeloholic.wordpress.com Joel O’s

    Lithuania is going to be dangerous. But if Durant & company keep their composure and play tough defense, and contest every long ball, they’ll be fine. Good luck, Team USA. The world is watching.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/blogs/game-notes/2010/09/live-blog-usa-vs-russia/ GIANNIS BOUROUSIS

    the tournament is getting more and more interesting and i’m in Greece for a wEdding that lasts a week….if this is the return of the greatest bball nation in the world (Lithuania,playing without 4 of its top-5 players), then i can’t wait for the semi-finals results…unfortunatelly i will miss both….GO KD!!!!

  • http://www.dontevenreply.com total scrotal implosion

    Kleiza has been playing great, but dre dala is going to shut him down

  • bar

    good luck team usa from israel

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