Olympic Basketball 2021: Women's Gold-Medal Game TV Time, Live-Stream Schedule

Jake RillFeatured Columnist IIAugust 7, 2021

United States' Breanna Stewart (10), with Brittney Griner (15) and Tina Charles (14) grabs a refund during a women's semifinal basketball game against Serbia at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, Aug. 6, 2021, in Saitama, Japan. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

The U.S. women's basketball team has won six consecutive Olympic gold medals. It hasn't even lost once at the Games since 1992, winning 54 games in a row since then. And it is now one win away from keeping its incredible streak alive for at least another three years.

The Olympic women's basketball tournament will come to an end Sunday in Tokyo with the United States and Japan facing off in the gold-medal game, which will air live Saturday night in the U.S. 

Here's everything you need to know heading into this matchup.


Women's Basketball Gold Medal Game Viewing Info

Date: Saturday, Aug. 7

Start Time: 10:30 p.m. ET


Live Stream: NBCOlympics.com or NBC Sports app



This is uncharted territory for the Japan women's basketball team. The Japanese have never before medaled in basketball, which was added to the Olympics in 1936, with the women's event added 40 years later. Now, the host nation is guaranteed to at least earn the silver.

But it would take a massive upset for Japan to end up winning the gold. The U.S. women have rolled through the Olympic tournament—as they do pretty much every time the Games are held—and they would have to play their worst game in quite a while to fall short of the gold for the first time since 1992.

The Americans went 3-0 in Group B play, and their first game was their closest of the tourney thus far, as they edged Nigeria 81-72. They've won every game since then by at least 11 points.

Not only that, but the U.S. is coming off a pair of huge victories. It rolled past Australia in the quarterfinals, winning 79-55, before it cruised to a 79-59 victory over Serbia in the semifinals.

It shouldn't come as a surprise that the United States is having so much success. The Americans' leading scorers in the tournament have been A'ja Wilson (16.0 points per game), Breanna Stewart (15.2) and Brittney Griner (13.8).

However, it's a pair of U.S. veterans who have an opportunity to make Olympic history. Sue Bird and Diana Taurasi will each be looking to win a fifth Olympic gold medal, which is something no basketball player has done in the history of the Games.

As overwhelming favorites, the Americans will face the pressure of trying to keep their incredible run going. But it seems they're not fazed by that heading into the final game of the tournament.

"This is exactly where we want to be," Stewart said, per Doug Feinberg of the Associated Press. "Everything is on the line. We're going to do what we can to make sure we come home with a gold."

Japan has lost only one game since arriving at the Olympics, and that was an 86-69 defeat against the U.S. in the second matchup of group play. The Japanese rebounded, though, and they reached the gold medal game with an 87-71 win over France in the semifinals.

It's going to be tough to beat the U.S., but Japan coach Tom Hovasse believes it's possible.

"We need to be cooking on all cylinders from the jump to the end of the game," Hovasse said, per Teresa M. Walker of the Associated Press. "We have a shooter's chance. We definitely have a chance. They are contrasting styles. Can we stop them inside? No. Can they guard us from outside for 40 minutes? We'll see."

Japan has relied on the three-point shooting of its top three scorers, as Maki Takada (5-for-7), Saki Hayashi (15-for-32) and Yuki Miyazawa (16-for-35) have all fared well from beyond the arc. If the Japanese are going to have a shot at upsetting the Americans, they'll likely need a big game from three-point range.

Will even that be enough? Probably not, considering the all-around talent of the United States. But Japan is going to give its all on its home court, and it could at least be a competitive and exciting game to watch.