Redeem Team one step away from gold

Argentina figured to be one of the toughest tests for Team USA at these games, but the U.S. raced out to a 21-point lead in the early second quarter of the single-elimination semifinal. The first half was a tale of two quarters. The lead, coupled with an injury that knocked Manu Ginobili out of the game, made it easy for the U.S. to get complacent. Even without their star, Argentina is a good team and while the Americans were sleepwalking, the lead was cut to six just before the half.

The U.S. got its act together after a halftime tongue-lashing from Coach K, and won the game going away, 101-81. Carmelo Anthony led Team USA with 21 points, but it was a very balanced attack as seven Americans scored in double figures.

The U.S. moves on to face Spain in the gold medal game. Jose Calderon is iffy to play with a strained groin, and given the Americans’ dominance in the two teams’ first meeting, the Spaniards are really going to have to raise their game if they’re going to keep it close. The game is scheduled for 2:30 AM ET on Sunday morning, so check your local listings.

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