USA vs. Great Britain: Areas Americans Must Improve Before Facing Argentina
The United States will play Great Britain in its third exhibition game, but the true test will come in the team’s fourth tune-up, when it faces Argentina.
The USA vs. Argentina match will feature the No. 1 ranked team in the world against the No. 3 ranked squad.
Great Britain, on the other hand, sits at No. 43.
This will be a walkover for the Americans, but they will still need to work out a few kinks, as they are playing Argentina on July 22 and Spain on July 24.
Here are the three areas in which the United States must get better before heading to Barcelona for its final two exhibition games.
This, more than any other area of the game, has hurt the United States in international competition.
In the team’s last exhibition game, against Brazil, the U.S. shot just 25 percent from the three-point line. As noted by USABasketball.com, Team USA also missed 11 of its first 12 long-range attempts.
The international game features a closer three-point line and a smaller court. This benefits pure shooters, and every European team has several players who fit that description.
Team USA does not have anyone on the roster accustomed to playing off the ball and featuring in a catch-and-shoot role. Against Great Britain the team will have to show that certain players can adjust and hit three-pointers with regularity.
Which is Team USA's weakest area?
The United States was out-rebounded 38-30 against Brazil, and this will hopefully be the last time the team trails in this category.
Brazil does boast a talented trio of frontcourt players with Nene, Anderson Varejao and Tiago Splitter. Varejao was especially effective and pulled down 13 boards.
Team USA is missing Dwight Howard, Chris Bosh and Blake Griffin because of injuries, and that will hurt them.
But Tyson Chandler, LeBron James and Kevin Love should be able to pick up the slack.
In the upcoming match with Great Britain, the players who are healthy will have to focus their energies on the glass and increase their efforts to make up for all the injured big men.
The United States played spectacular defense at times during its game against Brazil, but the team allowed its opponents to jump out to a 27-17 lead and shoot 62.5 percent in the first half, as noted in the same USABasketball.com recap.
It was Team USA’s defensive intensity and frightening athleticism that brought the Americans back, but the team must play consistently for the entire game against Spain and Argentina.
Chris Paul, Kobe Bryant, Andre Iguodala, LeBron James and Tyson Chandler have all been named to All-NBA defensive teams, and Anthony Davis is the reigning NCAA Defensive Player of the Year.
The team must prove against Great Britain that it is capable of unleashing a dominant defensive performance from start to finish.
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