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USA vs. Argentina – Rio 2016 Olympics Men’s Basketball Quarterfinal Predictions, Picks and Betting Preview – August 17, 2016

USA vs. Argentina – Rio 2016 Olympics Men’s Basketball Quarterfinal Predictions, Picks and Betting Preview – August 17, 2016

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USA vs. Argentina Betting Preview

Where: Carioca Arena 1 — Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

When: Wednesday, August 17, 2016, 5:45 PM EST

Line: USA (-22.5) vs. Argentina (+22.5); total: 188.0 view all men’s Olympic basketball lines

TV Broadcast: NBCSP / NBCOlympics.com

Writer’s Pick: USA


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Betting on USA (-22.5)

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The United States are not unbeatable. Yes, their 5-0 record in the group stages says otherwise, but their last three games, all of which were near losses, exposed some of the weaknesses, inconsistencies and the lack of international experience of this American roster.

For instance, the US defense took a huge step back since kicking off their gold-medal quest with a pair of massive wins over China and Venezuela. It’s given up an average of 92.0 points per game on above 50 percent shooting in the team’s nail-biting victories over the Aussies, Serbians and French.

The offense, however, is still scary and remains to be the American’s biggest strength. Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Kyrie Irving and Paul George have all taken their turns in piling up the points.

Durant and Anthony have led the way in this department with 16.8 and 15.2 points per game, respectively, in the tournament. Irving and George, meanwhile, are averaging 24.2 points combined.

All four superstars should continue gaining most of the share in points, but it’ll be interesting to see who will rise to the occasion and deliver the clutch baskets to seal the win.

Team USA destroyed Argentina by 37 points during their exhibition match last month.

Betting on Argentina (+22.5)

It’d be fair to say that Argentina needs to execute perfectly on both ends of the floor for it to pull off an upset over the United States. That’s easier said than done, but having a handful of talented players and proven veterans in Facundo Campazzo, Luis Scola, Manu Ginobili and Andres Nocioni should give them a relatively good chance to do so.

Campazzo, in particular, could be the biggest thorn for the American defense. He’s the kind of point guard who can create shots on his own, make plays for everybody else and thrive under pressure. The stats can prove this as Campazzo is averaging 16.4 points and 5.2 assists per game in this tournament thus far.

Meanwhile, El Alma also needs to improve on their transition defense. They are  much older, and slower than the Americans, so it’s very important for the Argentines, who are committing 13.0 turnovers per game, to avoid any costly errors that could surrender easy points and more possessions to the opposition.

Argentina, by the way, defeated the US back in the quarterfinals of the 2004 Olympics in Athens. Since that loss, the Americans have won 21-straight games under the tutelage of Mike Krzyzewski.

Writer’s Prediction

Team USA (-22.5), as expected, wins but fails to cover the spread.

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Bief
Written by Bief

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