Argentina vs. Russia Olympic Bronze-Medal Game: Live Score, Stats and Recap
With Team USA and Spain slated for a gold-medal showdown Sunday afternoon, Argentina and Russia are battling to take home the bronze hardware.
Follow below for live updates and analysis throughout.
If you take anything away from this game, it should be this: the Minnesota Timberwolves may have found a star in Alexey Shved.
In a game that was close throughout, Alexey Shved never let up on the gas pedal. The combo guard finished with 25 points, 7 assists, 5 rebounds, 1 steal and 1 block while connecting on five three-pointers. That includes the game-deciding three with less than 40 seconds remaining.
Andrei Kirilenko tacked on 20 points and 8 rebounds, while Vitaliy Fridzon put up 19 of his own.
As for Argentina, the "Golden Era" may have come to a close. This did not occur without incredible play from the team's core, as each member contributed in a major way.
Manu Ginobili paced the Argentinians with 21 well-timed points while Andres Nocioni added 16 points and 8 rebounds. Carlos Delfino threw in 15 points and 6 rebounds, with Luis Scola tacking on 11 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists.
Pablo Prigioni also added 6 assists and three steals.
In the end, Argentina just didn't have enough to take down the full throttle attack of the Russians. The recently signed Timberwolves Alexey Shved and Andrei Kirilenko were powerful in every sense of the word. Their size offered a major advantage, while the sharpshooting became insurmountable.
Argentina played an outstanding game but they simply lacked the necessary size to compete. Russia, meanwhile, earned this medal with gritty and brilliant play.
Final Score: Russia 81 - 77 Argentina
Argentina Team Leaders
Points: 21 - Manu Ginobili
Rebounds: 7 - Andres Nocioni
Assists: 6 - Pablo Prigioni
Steals: 3 - Pablo Prigioni
Blocks: 1 - Pablo Prigioni
Russia Team Leaders
Points: 25 - Alexey Shved
Rebounds: 8 - Andrei Kirilenko
Assists: 7 - Alexey Shved
Steals: 2 - Sergei Monya & Viktor Khryapa
Blocks: 2 - Andrei Kirilenko
Alexey Shved for three and Russia takes the two-point lead! Andres Nocoioni's three rattles out!
Russia wins! Russia has won the Bronze medal!
End of the Game: Argentina 77 - 81 Russia
Wow! Manu Ginobili drives the lane and goes high off glass for the unbelievable finish! What a play! What a clutch score!
Fourth Quarter, 43.2 remaining: Argentina 77 - 76 Russia
Alexey Shved misses the three but Andrei Kirilenko grabs the offensive board. Pablo Prigioni called for his fourth foul and sends Vitaliy Fridzon to the line.
He hits both.
Fourth Quarter, 50.0 remaining: Argentina 75 - 76 Russia
Carlos Delfino and Alexey Shved have begun a free throw battle, as each have spent their past two possessions at the charity stripe. Delfino, however, has missed his first of two attempts this time around.
He connects on the second after hitting back rim.
Fourth Quarter, 1:05 remaining: Argentina 75 - 74 Russia
Alexey Shved draws another foul and has a chance to get two at the line. Andrei Kirilenko, for the record, hasn't touched the ball in about four minutes.
Shved ties it up.
Fourth Quarter, 1:26 remaining: Argentina 74 - 74 Russia
Carlos Delfino, who has dominated from distance but been horrific from the free throw line, connects on both of his shots from the charity stripe.
Scary moment on the other end, as Manu Ginobili goes down hard and holds his neck as he does. That was a shoulder-lowering pick on Viktor Khryapa.
Ginobili may flop, but there was legitimate contact there.
Alexey Shved ball-stopped on that one and was fortunate to draw a foul. He has superstar potential, in terms of ability, but he must mature as a decision-maker.
Fortunately, his size enables him to draw fouls. He hits one of two and ties the game.
Fourth Quarter, 2:20 remaining: Argentina 72 - 72 Russia
Manu Ginobili for three and Argentina re-takes the lead!
Fourth Quarter, 2:44 remaining: Argentina 71 - 72 Russia
Andres Nocioni with a huge three-pointer to break the team's cold spell. They force the turnover on the other end but Manu Ginobili is unable to finish the transition layup.
Russia has the bronze medal within reach at this point.
Fourth Quarter, 3:00 remaining: Argentina 69 - 71 Russia
Alexey Shved with his first two-point field goal of the game and he extends the lead to 69-66. He then throws down a dunk and extends that lead to five.
That's 19 points, 6 assists and 5 rebounds for Shved. The Minnesota Timberwolves may have found a future star.
Fourth Quarter, 4:16 remaining: Argentina 66 - 71 Russia
Back and forth.
Andrei Kirilenko draws the foul and connects on both free throws. Carlos Delfino, meanwhile, draws the goaltending call and ties this one back up with just over 6 to go.
Alexey Shved then hits his fifth three-pointer of the game and gives Russia a three point lead. Luis Scola responds with two of his own.
Fourth Quarter, 5:22 remaining: Argentina 66 - 67 Russia
Tie game with seven minutes remaining!
Argentina, 6:46 remaining: Argentina 62 - 62 Russia
Luis Scola hits the jump shot after the ball takes a nice roll around the rim. This 10-0 run has the Argentinians within one point.
Andrei Kirilenko, meanwhile, picks up where he left off against Spain: struggling mightily at the charity stripe. AIr balls one and makes the second.
Fourth Quarter, 7:15 remaining: Argentina 60 - 62 - Russia
Argentina with a huge chance to tie and Carlos Delfino fails to do that with a rare missed three. That's been the story, as getting close is all Argentina has been able to do as of late.
Fourth Quarter, 8:00 remaining: Argentina 58 - 61 Russia
Andres Nocioni is a name that got lost in the madness of the NBA but his ability should not be forgotten. He's capable of putting up double-digit scoring, hitting multiple threes per game and taking on a variety of defensive assignments.
Olympic play appears to have re-lit the fire beneath him.
Argentina and Russia have been nothing short of magnificent on both ends of the floor, trading shots and never breaking their focus. Russia has shot 53.8 from the floor while Argentina's 42.3 percent has paced the team to competition.
Fourth Quarter, 9:25 remaining: Argentina 57 - 61 Russia
Alexey Shved has attempted far too many deep jump shots. Fortunately, that one falls and ends a cold spell for Russia.
Viktor Khryapa follows that score up with three of his own. Tie ball game!
Second Quarter, 7:00 remaining: Argentina 27 - 27 Russia
Juan Gutierrez with a nice score out of the post.
Second Quarter, 7:48 remaining: Argentina 27 - 21 Russia
Carlos Delfino connects on both free throws and follows that up with a deep three off of a Pablo Prigioni steal of the inbounds. Delfino has been money all Summer long!
Argentina 8:35 remaining: Argentina 25 - 21 Russia
End of the First Quarter: Argentina 20 - 19 Russia
Argentina Team Leaders
Points: 8 - Manu Ginobili
Rebounds: 2 - Carlos Delfino
Assists: 3 - Luis Scola
Steals: 1 - Luis Scola
Russia Team Leaders
Points: 7 - Vitaliy Fridzon
Rebounds: 3 - Andrei Kirilenko
Assists: 1 - Andrei Kirilenko & Anton Ponkrashov
Steals: 1 - Viktor Khryapa
Blocks: 1 - Alexey Shved
Andres Nocioni with a huge pocket three and Argentina is firing on all cylinders. Carlos Delfino follows that up and connects from distance as well.
This team personifies elite execution.
Manu Ginobili commits his second foul. He already has 8 points.
First Quarter, 15.1 remaining: Argentina 20 - 19 Russia
Sometimes the bounces and rolls just don't go your way. That's how it appears for Luis Scola.
Alexey Shved has been short on quite a few jump shots already. He has generated some significant buzz but failed to provide consistency at the point guard position for Russia.
Manu Ginobili drops in yet another three and that adds to a 10-2 run.
First Quarter, 3:47 remaining: Argentina 14 - 12 Russia
Outstanding ball movement from Russia results in two free throws from Viktor Khyrapa. Manu Ginobili responds with some lethal ball handling that leads to a three-point field goal.
First Quarter, 6:41 remaining: Argentina 7 - 10 Russia
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