USA vs Australia
August 5, 2021 12:15 am EDT
The Line: USA -12
(Get latest betting odds)
USA and Australia meet Thursday morning in the 2020 Olympics Basketball Semifinal at the Saitama Super Arena. USA have won their last three games and look to make their fourth straight gold medal game appearance. Australia has yet to lose in these games and looks to make its first ever gold medal game.
USA has won five of its last six games and is coming off a victory over Spain. In the winning effort, USA shot 48 percent from the field and 40.6 percent from three. Kevin Durant led USA with 29 points and two rebounds while Jayson Tatum had 13 points and three rebounds. Jrue Holiday was the third double-digit scorer and Damian Lillard grabbed four rebounds. Defensively, USA allowed 45.3 percent shooting from the field and 30.4 percent shooting from three. USA really put its foot on the gas in the second half and we saw Durant takeover for long stretches. The United States still has another gear it can reach and that’s good with two games left to play. However, the competition doesn’t get any easier for the Americans.
Australia has won nine straight games overall and is fresh off a win over Argentina. In the winning effort, Australia shot 49.3 percent from the field and 44.7 percent from three. Patty Mills led Australia with 18 points and two rebounds while Jock Landale had 12 points and seven rebounds. Matisse Thybulle was the third double-digit scorer and Joe Ingles grabbed four rebounds. Defensively, Australia allowed 33.8 percent shooting from the field and 26.7 percent shooting from three. Australia has been on a roll all year long and that offensive production seems to improve each game. The Aussies are fresh off a contest where they had seven players score at least eight points. Now the trick for Australia is to finally get over the hump, bringing home its first ever Olympic medal.
USA is 8-2 against Australia, but those two losses came in the last two contests. Australia beat Team USA last month in a friendly and a 2019 friendly as well. In the game a few weeks ago, Australia shot 50 percent from the field and held the Americans to 42.6 percent shooting.
Australia and the points are hard to turn down, as the Aussies have legit NBA talent and they haven’t lost a game since Asia Cup qualifying in February. Australia is capable of winning this game outright if some things break for them. With that said, losing to Australia already should have the Americans attention. Also, it feels like Team USA has found its swagger and can put teams to bed when needed. Even when Spain fought back and made the game competitive, USA immediately went on a run and pulled away. The Americans won’t play around in this game.
I’ll lay the chalk with Team USA.