Monday, August 18, 2008

Final Olympic Qualifying Round Standings

Croatia beat Iran 91-57; Australia beat Lithuania 106-75; Greece beat China 91-77; Spain beat Angola 98-50; the United States defeated Germany 106-57; and Argentina beat Russia 91-76. So Russia, Iran, Germany and Angola are all out. Only the big boys remain, the top 4 teams from Group A and Group B.


    Bracket A:           Bracket B:
A2 Flag_ARG Argentina     B2  Flag_ESP Spain
B3 Flag_GRE Greece       A3  Flag_CRO Croatia
B1 Flag_USA USA       A1  Flag_LTU Lithuania
A4 Flag_AUS Australia     B4  Flag_CHN China

Bracket A appears as it will end up being a USA vs. Argentina semi-final to see who gets to play for the Gold Medal. Bracket B will be Lithuania against, most likely, Spain.


Team Russia really disappointed in this tournament, you would expect them to be able to rank higher than Australia -- but the Aussie team played with much more heart and did what they had to do to advance, so much respect for them, as they earned it . . . Croatia was one of the better teams in Group A early on, but fizzled down the stretch -- showing us all that in this type of tournament if you win your first two games, it's almost impossible to not advance to the next around . . . Angola and Iran were both severely at a disadvantage in terms of depth, the talent is there, but just unable to complete with powerhouses like Spain, Lithuania and the USA . . . Argentina, who may not play in the Gold Medal game has to surely be one of the favorites to medal in this group, it's funny that their last win (vs. Russia) relegated them to the same bracket as the USA, had they lost, they probably would have had to play Spain first, but had a chance at the gold medal this way . . . China impressed in much the same way as Australia, they did not care about rankings, they cared about playing the games, and their close victory over Germany ultimately was all the difference in advancing or going home . . . I fully expect the United States to take home the gold, and exorcise the demons of Lithuania in the process.