Team USA Basketball 2012: Top 5 Dunks of Summer Olympics
The following is the top five dunks from the Team USA during the 2012 Summer Olympics.
The US was initially criticized for their lack of size in the middle, only boasting one seven-footer, but made up for their size disadvantage with pure athleticism and skill.
The Americans dominated their opponents both on the scoreboard and around the rim. Every player on the US roster demonstrated that they could get to the rim and throw down a highlight-worthy dunk.
Kobe Bryant Dunks Against Nigeria
The 33-year-old Kobe Bryant may not be as explosive as he use to be, but against Nigeria he used an open look to prove that he could still hang with the likes of Russell Westbrook, LeBron James and Andre Iguodala.
Kobe nearly took the ball coast-to-coast before he threw down an uncontested reverse dunk.
While it may not be the flashiest dunk, it is nice to see Kobe getting up around the rim—he was the only US player who did not record a dunk against Tunisia.
Anthony Davis Pretends London Is Lob City
Anthony Davis has not played a single minute in the NBA, but he did plenty during the 2012 Summer Olympics to get New Orleans Hornets fans excited about the upcoming season.
Against Tunisia, Davis grabbed alley-oop passes from Andre Iguodala, Chris Paul and Kevin Durant on his way to 12 points and going five for five from the field—all dunks.
Hopefully, we will see many more highlight plays like these from Davis in the coming season.
Andre Iguodala Throws It Down Too Hard
Andre Iguodala has been known for his high-flying antics, but against Argentina he unintentionally pulled off one of the strangest plays in history.
Iggy pulled the ball back so far and threw it down so hard, that the ball bounced off his own shoulder and back out of the basket.
Fans, refs and players were left confused. Unfortunately, for Iguodala, the basket ended up not counting.
If he can master the art of the self-block, he would surely have the edge to win the dunk contest next year.
It was possibly the most impressive missed shot in the history of the Olympics.
LeBron James Ignites a Fire Against Tunisia
LeBron James is unlike any athlete that has ever played the game of basketball.
He's big, he's fast and he can throw down monster dunks at will.
Against Tunisia, LeBron threw down a huge dunk on a pass from Kevin Durant that sparked a dunk fest by the US team against the 32nd-ranked team in the world.
Tunisia player Mohamed Hdidane attempts to play defense on the charging LeBron, but as you can tell from his passive play, he doesn't feel like being fully posterized by the reigning NBA MVP.
Russell Westbrook Puts Argentina on a Poster
Russell Westbrook brought comparisons to Vince Carter's legendary Olympic dunk at the 2000 Olympics when he dunked over Argentina's Leonardo Gutierrez.
The 6'8" Gutierrez did not stand a chance as Westbrook, who is 6'3", got a running start and threw down the dunk of the 2012 Olympics.
While it will not surpass what Carter did, it is definitely in the running for No. 2.
Westbrook received a technical foul for taunting after the dunk. After throwing it down that hard, you can't fault the UCLA alumni for being a little pumped up.
Honorable Mention: Liz Cambage Makes History
While this is neither from a US player or from the men's tournament, I think Liz Cambage of the Australian women's basketball team earns at least an honorable mention.
Cambage made history at the 2012 Summer Olympics during her team's 70-66 win over Russia, becoming the first woman to dunk in an Olympic game.
Only seven different women have dunked in a college basketball game and three in a WNBA contest.
What was your favorite basketball moment from the Olympics? Leave a comment below with your opinion.
Follow me on Twitter, @john_degroote