Argentina vs. Russia: Start Time, Live Stream and Preview for Bronze Medal Game
Argentina and Russia might both be wishing they were in the gold medal men's basketball game instead of the bronze, but that doesn't mean they won't be doing everything possible to win this bout.
Both teams have had a fine tournament, but the Russians do have a few more impressive victories on their London resume. Russia defeated gold medal contender Spain by a score of 77-74 during group play and Lithuania in its quarterfinal game.
Argentina has also defeated Lithuania during the tournament, and has only lost to France and Team USA en route to this bronze medal contest.
Neither nation wants to finish in fourth place, just short of the medal podium. Both teams will need to get over their semifinal losses and focus on the task at hand if they want to win this contest. Here's everything you need to know about this bronze medal bout:
Where: Basketball Arena, London, England
When: Sunday, August 12 at 6 a.m. ET
Watch: NBC Sports Network
Live Stream: NBCOlympics.com
Key Players to Watch
Manu Ginobili, Argentina
Ginobili—who is easily the most accomplished NBA player on the roster—has been the driving force for this Argentina team all tournament long. He's actually the most accomplished player on either roster, come to think of it, and Argentina needs him leading the way on offense to win this game.
The San Antonio Spurs' veteran has scored 18 and 16 points, respectively, in the last two contests against Team USA and Brazil. Ginobili also posted 21 points and six assists for his team against Lithuania in Argentina's final group game.
The best chance for the Argentinians to win the bronze medal is to have Ginobili repeat his performance from the Lithuania game. He should be sufficiently motivated to do just that.
Andrei Kirilenko, Russia
The most notable name on the Russian roster, Kirilenko needs to show off the talent that made him one of the Utah Jazz's more productive players from 2001-2011.
The man once called "AK47" is the key player for the Russians in this bronze medal matchup. Kirilenko was unable to have a huge impact in Russia's loss to Spain, with just 10 points scored despite 33 minutes on the court.
In contrast, the longtime NBA player had 19 points for his nation against Lithuania in the quarterfinal game en route to an 83-74 victory.
The Russians have the best chance to win when Kirilenko draws defensive attention. If he makes his presence felt in this contest, Russia will have as good a chance as the Argentinians to win this game.
The Russians have been imposing at times during these London Games, but there's too much to like about Ginobili and company to go against Argentina. Russia's opponents were indeed blown out by Team USA in their previous contest, but the Argentinians did have the Americans on the ropes early.
In the first and second quarter of the semifinal game, Argentina kept things close against the U.S. and gave them a scare in an exhibition game just before London.
Russia has been involved in some tight contests throughout the tournament, whereas Argentina has beaten all of its opponents by double digits, with the exception Brazil.
Final Score: Argentina 84, Russia 78
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