View Full Version : Nugs in the Olympics Thread - Congrats on the GOLD, Melo & Team USA!

07-21-2008, 12:51 AM
Please post discussion and news about Carmelo Anthony playing for America and anything otherwise related to Team USA and the Olympics in this thread.

rockymountainnews (http://www.rockymountainnews.com/news/2008/jul/20/melo-has-gold-on-his-mind/):

Melo has gold on his mind

Carmelo Anthony loves his mother very much, but there are limits.

When Anthony won a bronze medal in the 2004 Olympics, he gave it to his mother, Mary, and it's on display in her Baltimore home.

But who gets the gold medal if Anthony brings one home from Beijing?

"Me," the Nuggets forward said. "I'm going to get it."

The quest for gold begins in earnest today when Anthony and the Americans begin training camp in Las Vegas. They will play an exhibition game Friday in Las Vegas, against Canada, then head to China for four exhibitions before Olympic play begins Aug. 10.

After the 2004 disaster, USA Basketball put together a core team.

This is the third straight summer players have been together.

"(It's easier) than putting together a team for two weeks and sending us out there and just telling us to go out and win the gold medal," Anthony said earlier this month. "(It's easier) having guys together for three years to prepare for the biggest stage in the world."

Anthony stumbled the last time he stepped on such a stage, playing sparingly and having coach Larry Brown saying Anthony wasn't buying into the team concept. Anthony said he and the several other young players on that team were "thrown to the wolves" but that the Americans are ready to "redeem" themselves.

If they do that, Anthony will hold on to the medal.

07-26-2008, 01:57 AM
wow melo played excellent d tonight, only if he played like that for the nuggets.

07-26-2008, 03:40 AM
wow melo played excellent d tonight, only if he played like that for the nuggets.

Yeah, well let's hope he'll get some inspiration/drive/education from his teammates on the U.S. team and make it carry over into his Nuggets play. The anger and frustration he felt after that 3rd playoff game, he needs to remember that and use it as fuel to motivate himself to make bigger strides, especially on the defensive end.

07-26-2008, 06:02 AM
Video (http://sports.espn.go.com/broadband/video/videopage?videoId=3505879&categoryId=2459788)
^featuring some nice plays by Melo, and an interview as well

box score (http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/summer08/basketball/gamepackage/boxscore?gameId=725)

recap (http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/olybb/news/story?id=3505801)

There's also a big interview on espn (http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=jackson/080723&sportCat=nba):

Growing up where I grew up and how I grew up, I think we appreciate it more. When we watched the Olympics and the opening ceremonies, we don't really know what's going on, to actually see ourselves as being a part of that. So now I really appreciate it. Just walking and hearing the United States of America [being announced] during the opening ceremony, the fireworks, the lights -- all of that stuff really means a lot. In my life, I could have never envisioned something like this or being a part of something like that. I never envisioned myself playing for the U.S. Olympic team -- growing up, I never envisioned playing in the NBA, to be real with you. I never envisioned that type of stuff. So this is like a dream that I never had come true. It's like I'm a part of what's really going on. It's still very hard for me to believe that I am really going to be a part of the biggest thing in the whole entire world...

I can't even put that into words. That feeling. That would be the best thing that ever happened to me. The best thing ever, period. Winning that gold medal … [takes a deep breath] … look, I won in high school, I won a national championship in college, I want to win one in the NBA. But winning a gold medal, I don't think anything can top that. I know people say that they want to win a world championship in basketball and in football and things like that, but nothing compares to winning a gold medal.

07-27-2008, 04:22 AM
Nice scoring from Melo:clap:, I was expecting that lol but 6 boards is nice aswell.. I am looking at his rebounds because he is going to need to step that up now that Camby is gone!! Den thanks for the article and video, I have said for a long time Melo has been the best US player for years but it is nice seeing someone else say it!! I really think Melo just needs a good pg and maybe Karl will watch and see how coach K plays Melo!!

On a side note I am really pumped for the Olympics this year and really believe we are going to win this thing again and bring back the gold where it belongs!!

07-30-2008, 08:39 PM
Carmelo Anthony finds less pressure, not more, on Olympic team
The Denver Nuggets' franchise player is just one of 12 as a member of the U.S. team heading to the Beijing Games. Just don't ask him about the Marcus Camby trade.

The Nuggets assured Anthony that he wouldn't be traded. Signaling his displeasure at being dangled, he asked them to make an announcement, but they held off.

"He's just frustrated with the rumors, but NBA teams usually don't make public statements about trade rumors," Anthony's agent, Calvin Samuels, told the Rocky Mountain News. "He just wants them to go public, but that's not their policy."

OK, who's ready for summer?

"When you're with your own team, when you're winning, everything's good," Anthony said here today. "When you're losing, not so much that it's your fault, but everything comes back on you.

"Whereas this team has 12 guys," he said of the Olympic squad. "We're all going to take the blame if we lose, so nobody says it's my fault or points fingers. We win or lose together.

"There's 11 other guys -- on their own team they have those same pressures, so they know what I go through and I know what they go through."

Unfortunately, while Anthony was off having fun, the Nuggets were sending Marcus Camby and his $11-million salary to the Clippers, avoiding a luxury tax hit at the cost of 10 rebounds and a league-high 3.6 blocks a game.

"I was salty," Anthony said. "I was kind of mad at the way they went about it. Camby and me, we were two of the main guys who started that whole Denver thing over again. . . . To see a guy like that go is really crazy."

Until Aug. 24, however, Anthony has all the support any NBA star could wish for.

In the wake of reports that Sacramento's Ron Artest was headed for Houston, Bryant, sitting next to Anthony before practice, said the Lakers' small forwards were fine.

"Could be worse," Bryant added for Anthony's benefit. "Could be the Nuggets."

"Say it again louder!" Anthony said, laughing. "Say it again loud and proud!"latimes (http://www.latimes.com/sports/olympics/la-sp-olyheisler31-2008jul31,0,623401.story)

07-31-2008, 02:35 AM
Can't wait for the game! Just a few more hours...............

07-31-2008, 09:57 AM
Turkey 82, United States of America 114 (http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/summer08/basketball/men/boxscore?gameId=726&refresh=60)

^box score linked

Melo on 5-6 shooting w/ 17 points, 1 reb, 1 ast, 1 pf

He must have been making some 3s and taking it to the hole getting fouled.

07-31-2008, 10:32 AM
Turkey 82, United States of America 114 (http://sports.espn.go.com/oly/summer08/basketball/men/boxscore?gameId=726&refresh=60)

^box score linked

Melo on 5-6 shooting w/ 17 points, 1 reb, 1 ast, 1 pf

He must have been making some 3s and taking it to the hole getting fouled.

I just watched the whole game...

He was knocking treys down, well excuse me, mid-range jumpers in the NBA.

His defense wasn't that great, not a surprise :rolleyes: He stumbled when that one guy pump faked and dribbled left...

That D-Wade play was amazing... Dwight Howard stuffed it right over Ilyasova... It was bad... Poster bad...

But back to the Nuggets talk, yeah Carmelo "defense on my mind"? Well, not this morning it wasn't.

08-01-2008, 09:16 PM
ya olympic 3's dont mean nothing

melo can hit that 20 footer all day just not 23 foot

5-6 is what i like to see though

lack of defense def dont want to see that

08-05-2008, 11:44 PM
Melo's Double-Double Helps USA Complete Winning Exhibition Slate

SHANGHAI, China -- Former Syracuse All-American Carmelo Anthony (Denver Nuggets) recorded a double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds to lead the USA Basketball Men's Senior National Team to an 87-76 triumph against Australia on Tuesday night. It was the squad's fifth and final exhibition outing before opening Olympic play Aug. 10 in Beijing against host China.

Dwyane Wade (Miami Heat) pumped in 22 points, LeBron James (Cleveland Cavaliers) had 16 points, and Kobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers) tallied 13 points. Chris Bosh (Toronto Raptors) added nine points and Dwight Howard (Orlando Magic) scored eight.

"Australia played us very well. We were not shooting well and their defense took away a lot of driving areas," said USA and Duke University head coach Mike Krzyzewski." They got really hot (shooting) in the second half to put a lot of game pressure on our guys. I thought our guys handled it well on a night where from the free throw line or from the 3-point things were not easy for us.

"We're still in the process of getting prepared (for the Olympics). We've played four games in six days and we gave them off yesterday just because we're trying to pace ourselves. Probably that lack of practice had a little bit of an impact on our performance. I didn't think we were as sharp as we have been and the three days that we can have practice in Beijing have to be three good practice days in order to get us going. We've been playing outstanding basketball and tonight I didn't think we played very well, or not up to what we can play."suathletics.com (http://www.suathletics.com/News/basketball/mbasket/2008/8/5/TeamUSA8.5.08.asp?path=mbasket)

08-06-2008, 12:34 AM
totally agree i wonder what happened to Melo's touch he hasnt been shooting very well and his D still needs vast improvement but 10 rebounds in an int'l game is impressive keep it up melo

08-10-2008, 12:15 PM
In the US Olympic team opening game against China:

C Anthony, G 0 0-3 0-2 3-4 0 4 4 0 0 0 0 3 3

And I ask again:


08-10-2008, 12:16 PM
Okay, obviously at least some of the info is incomplete, as obviously he didn't score 3 points in ZERO minutes.

But anyone who actually watched the game, please report on Melo's performance.

Thanks - D

08-10-2008, 12:32 PM
haha he stunk it up. It wasnt all his fault because he got alot of questionable passes thrown his way. He also was committing dumb fouls. 2 in the span of 1 minute.

08-10-2008, 12:36 PM
melo did kind of suck in this game.....it was more dwade and lebron and defense that sparked that 30pt win.....look for melo to do much better against angola

08-10-2008, 12:49 PM
ya, melo wasnt really a factor at all, ill like seeing him redeem himself next game

08-10-2008, 02:25 PM
kleiza was more impressive earlier in the night

Nugget Tony
08-10-2008, 02:28 PM
Maybe that big jelly roll in his unconditioned stomach played a part in his bad play.....


08-10-2008, 03:27 PM
yeah, he looked pretty bad. Slow, lazy.. settling for jumpshots.. etc.

08-10-2008, 07:20 PM
I Saw 2nd Half Of Game He Is In Really Good Shape From Wat I Saw, Looked As Slim As Ever

08-11-2008, 01:37 AM
Per usual, Carmelo Anthony made the highlight reel.

In Team USA's Olympic opener against China, a shot by a Chinese player gently bounced off the rim and hung in the air. Anthony made a futile attempt to block out and reach for the rebound, while China's Yi Jianlian leapt over Anthony and emphatically dunked on the all-star.

It was that type of night for the Nuggets forward, who struggled while his team erupted against China, defeating the host country, 101-70, here on Sunday night.

In the past two summers of competition, Anthony led Team USA in scoring. Against China in the opening game of pool play, he scored just three points in 14 minutes.

3-for-4 from the line. "Me and as a team, we can do better. But games are going to happen like that. So it's nice that we did other things to win the game."

Anthony didn't seem to be completely focused on the court, and it showed. He was pulled in Team USA's first substitution and, when he returned, never got into an offensive flow that has made him so valuable for Denver.

"I just have to keep shooting," Anthony said. "Maybe I've never been this open before." denverpost (http://www.denverpost.com/nuggets/ci_10158688)

08-11-2008, 01:41 AM
Nice job, Linas! :clap:

BEIJING — Carmelo Anthony said Linas Kleiza was trash talking before the Olympics began.

Now, Kleiza really has something to talk about.

Kleiza, a Nuggets forward, drilled a three-pointer with 2.1 seconds to break a 75-75 tie, and Lithuania upset defending gold medalist Argentina 79-75 in an Olympic basketball opener Sunday.

“This is definitely an important game for us,” Kleiza said. “We are just a small country.”

If you ask Anthony, his Nuggets teammate has a big mouth. Anthony ran into a boastful Kleiza in the athlete’s village Wednesday and said Kleiza still “always trash talks to me.”

Kleiza, though, was humble after his decisive three-pointer gave Lithuania a 78-75 lead. Argentina threw the ball away before Lithuania added a free throw with 1.5 seconds left.

“We’re happy,” said Kleiza, whose team wasn’t so happy after blowing an 11-point lead with a little more than 3 minutes left. “At the end we almost choked, but we were able to come out with a win and that’s what counts.”

For much of game, Kleiza, a reserve sparingly. He scored four points in the first three quarters and didn’t have an official field-goal attempt.

But he added nine of his team-high 13 points in the fourth quarter, going 3-for-3 on three-pointers.

“It’s huge when you have a shooting (power forward),” said Argentina and Spurs star guard Manu Ginobili, who scored a game-high 19 points.

Kleiza now has something to brag about the next time he sees Anthony.rockymountainnews (http://www.rockymountainnews.com/news/2008/aug/10/nuggets-kleiza-lifts-lithuania-upset-win/)

And a bit more from the denverpost (http://www.denverpost.com/nuggets/ci_10157407):

In a breathtaking moment of Lithuania Olympic lore, Nuggets forward Linas Kleiza hit a 3-pointer with 2.1 seconds left, a game-winner against Argentina, the 2004 gold-medal winners, here Sunday.

"It definitely felt good when it came out," Kleiza said Sunday. "It's a good feeling, I'm not going to lie."

Kleiza had been quiet in the first three-plus quarters, in which his team played splendidly. With five minutes left, his team led by eight — and Kleiza had just four points.

He suddenly started playing like the gritty 3-point threat he is for the Nuggets, hitting two treys, the second with 3:50 left, giving his team an 11-point lead.

But Argentina, loaded with NBA talent, charged back with an 8-0 run, tying the game.

"We almost choked," Kleiza said.

Lithuania regained possession with 19 seconds left, setting up history.

Guard Sarunas Jasikevicius, one of Kleiza's close friends, drove toward the basket and found Kleiza open near the top of the key.


The Nuggets' star hit the shot, hopped around and then threw both arms into the air.

"I was waiting for my moment," he said.

08-11-2008, 03:52 AM
wow im still surprised they played argentina so well i guess it is true they are getting old but put credit where credit is due congrats Linas and congrats Lithuania.

08-11-2008, 05:44 AM
Anthony struggling in China

By Chris Tomasson

If Carmelo Anthony struggles against Angola, then maybe there really is a problem.
In Team USA's 101-70 win Sunday over China in an Olympic opener, the Nuggets forward scored three points and shot 0-of-3. The game came two days after USA managing director Jerry Colangelo said Anthony needs to get in better shape and to shoot better.
"My shots were wide open,'' said Anthony, who takes to the court again Tuesday against Angola. "Just weren't dropping. It doesn't worry me.''
Nevertheless, Anthony has shot just 4-of-16 in past two games, including 0-of-6 from three-point range. He was 4-of-13, including 0-of-4 on three-pointers, in Team USA's final exhibition game against Australia.
"The only thing I can do is keep shooting,'' Anthony said. "Maybe I've never been this open before.''
It's obviously too early for concern to set in, but the Americans need Anthony to be on his game at least by next Saturday. That's when they play Spain, perhaps their top competitor for the gold medal.
Right now, Anthony isn't too concerned. He had a big smile on his face after the win over China, which came before President Bush.
Anthony was asked if he'd ever played in front of Bush before.
"I'm pretty sure he's seen me on TV,'' Anthony quipped.
So the president gets the NBA Ticket?
"I'm pretty sure,'' Anthony said.
Lowly Angola is next for the Americans. One thinks the president might miss that one. Nevertheless, it seems like an ideal time for Anthony to get back on track.rockymountainnews (http://blogs.rockymountainnews.com/nuggets/archives/2008/08/anthony_struggl.html)

08-11-2008, 11:28 AM
Who Cares Anyway Over Half The Players Dont Even Wanna Be There Anyway, Its Jus A Fake Committment To Rep Our Country Who Really Aint Worth Reppin Anyway If U Look At Our History, Past N Present..i Mean Hes Always Leadin Scorer Most Of Time So Who Cares They Won By 30 Against A Very Weak China Team Playin Park Ball, I Would Rather Play Well Against Stiff Competition Instead Of Lame

08-11-2008, 12:47 PM
Over Half The Players Dont Even Wanna Be There Anyway, Its Jus A Fake Committment To Rep Our Country Who Really Aint Worth Reppin Anyway If U Look At Our History, Past N Present

It would be easy enough for players who didn't want to go to back out. I think you're way off the mark in thinking they don't want to be there and don't want to represent the U.S.

I also think you're way off the mark about the U.S. not being worth representing - and I'm someone who isn't shy about criticizing America, its government, or its historical (and present) wrongdoings. But if you take "our country" to mean "our government" or "our politicians", then you're taking a narrow view imho. "Our country" could mean simply no more than our friends and family and people we care about. It could mean the place we grew up in and call home. It could mean the ideals the country was founded on (even if it's never successfully lived up to them). It means lots of different things to lots of different people.

I think the pride of the U.S. Team (basketball and otherwise) is genuine for the most part, and they don't only just want to win and compete, but they want to do it so they can bring gold back home to America.

And just for the record, I don't say the Pledge of Allegiance, I don't feel obligated to stand during the national anthem, I think the whole thing about Obama not wearing a flag pin is ridiculous. There are things about America I take pride in, and things I don't, but just because I'm not a blindly loyal flag waver doesn't mean I won't give credit where it's due.

It's the only country where basketball and the Grateful Dead could have been born, for one thing. :smoking:

08-11-2008, 03:09 PM
Go Kleiza xD.

08-11-2008, 10:22 PM
i still think we sould trade him

08-12-2008, 06:51 AM
Anthony: Bring gold back with Phelps
By Carmelo Anthony
Updated: 2008-08-12 10:18
(August 11, 2008)

Hi, folks!

I got a chance to talk with Michael Phelps several nights ago at the Olympic Village. He is, of course, from my hometown of Baltimore. I met him before just growing up, but I hadn't met him since he won those six gold medals in 2004. So his whole life has changed. He’s not from the same neighborhood as me, but we'll claim him.

This is my first time to really get a chance to mingle and interact with him. We talked about spots back home, but we were talking about getting out to each other's events. He's going to bring some golds back to Baltimore and I'm going to bring a gold back. They can have our parade together in Baltimore.chinadaily.com
More if you follow the link.

08-12-2008, 11:30 AM
Lithuanian men beat Iran in Basketball preliminary
Updated: 2008-08-12 11:23:00

(BEIJING, August 12) -- The Lithuanian Men's Basketball team beat Iran 99-67 in a group A match in the preliminary round of the Olympic Men's Basketball tournament on Tuesday, August 12.

Lithuania's Linas Kleiza was the game's high scorer, netting 22 points, grabbing eight rebounds and giving two assists. His teammate Sarunas Jasikevicius made 20 points and three assists.

Iranian player Hamed Haddadi was the biggest contributor to his team with 21 points, nine rebounds and one assist. No other Iranian player scored in the double digits.

Though Lithuania made the first two-pointer, Iran led almost all the way through the opening quarter and closed it 20-15. However, Lithuania gained momentum in the next quarter, claiming 31 points while rival Iran only got 14. At the half, the score was 46-34, Lithuania.

Lithuania kept its lead in the third quarter, making 28 points to Iran's 19. Though Iran made great efforts to catch up, the team was 21 points behind its opponent at the end of this quarter. The fourth quarter saw Lithuania gain 25 points and Iran only 14, making the final score 99-67 in favor of the Lithuanian team.beijing2008.cn (http://en.beijing2008.cn/news/sports/headlines/basketball/n214531647.shtml)

U.S. Basketball Team Defeats Angola, 97-76

Dwyane Wade and LeBron James led the U.S. team to a deciding win against Angola in the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing on Tuesday. The U.S. won 97-76.

Wade led the U.S. team, known as the "Redeem Team", with 19 points, showing flashes of his past NBA form. Wade entered the Olympics after suffering from a severe injury that cut his NBA season short.

Dwight Howard added 14 points and James finished with 12 points and led with five assists and three steals for the Americans. Carmelo Anthony added 12 points and six rebounds.

The U.S. team continued their awful shooting from three-point range led by Kobe Bryant, who shot 0-for-8 from beyond the arc against Angola. Bryant had eight points.

Carlos Morais led Angola with 24 points, but also had 10 turnovers. He was the only player for Angola in double-figures.

The U.S. team (2-0) moves on to face Greece, the team that stunned them two years ago in the semifinals of the world championship. The U.S. will take on Greece on Thursday morning at 8 a.m. EST on USA.transworldnews.com (http://www.transworldnews.com/NewsStory.aspx?id=56181&cat=6)

Melo didn't have a really high scoring game, but judging from the box score, he played much more efficiently than he did against China:

20:57 4/6 67 1/2 50 3/5 60 1 5 6 0 3 0 1 1 12

08-12-2008, 12:58 PM
Im glad Linas is playing well. This will keep him sharp for the upcoming season. Im excited to see LK and JR this year. Hopefully after another season (and olympics) the Nuggets second string can be even more potent.

08-12-2008, 08:24 PM
Melo finally had a good game and Linas is tearing it up for Lithuania good news all around

08-14-2008, 09:01 PM
Team USA Takes Care of Greece (http://www.denverpost.com/nuggets/ci_10202892)

Melo had 8 points on 2/6 shooting, with 6 rebounds and 2 steals.

Lithuania edges Russia to advance into quarters (http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2008-08/14/content_9315292.htm)

LK had 4 points on 1/7 shooting with 11 rebounds and 3 assists.

Looks like if the U.S. and Lith. match up, and so LK and Melo do, too, that it will be crashing the boards where they battle it out.

08-22-2008, 06:51 AM
so, who is routing for a Melo vs Kleiza final? I know I'm not :D

08-22-2008, 06:56 AM
The Beast, getting his game-face on. (http://d.yimg.com/a/p/sp/getty/b5/fullj.111081e45babd70ba36bcbfdac96d5bc/111081e45babd70ba36bcbfdac96d5bc-getty-81973194cc007_olympics_day_.jpg)

08-22-2008, 07:06 AM
so, who is routing for a Melo vs Kleiza final? I know I'm not :D

Oh, I most definitely am. But Spain's looking good, I think, so Lithuania is really going to have to step up to make that happen.

In the U.S. game, it'll be interesting to see if Kobe can lock down Manu. You know he'll take that assignment for sure. Actually, partly because of that, I think Melo has a chance to step up in a scoring role because Kobe should be more focused on defense.

08-22-2008, 07:08 AM
The Beast, getting his game-face on. (http://d.yimg.com/a/p/sp/getty/b5/fullj.111081e45babd70ba36bcbfdac96d5bc/111081e45babd70ba36bcbfdac96d5bc-getty-81973194cc007_olympics_day_.jpg)

I wonder what he is thinking

08-22-2008, 07:13 AM
I wish I had a clear shot of Kleiza making that face... It would make a fantastic sig.

08-22-2008, 07:16 AM
Nice - LK rockin' the beard! :cheers:

(denbutsu has a beard, too)

08-22-2008, 07:19 AM
This one (http://www.slamdunkcentral.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/02/00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 000000000000000000000000000000a43.jpg) isnt too bad

or this one (http://foto.inna.lt/Photos/Sportas/mid/S6300_mid_76029005884415593591.jpg)

08-22-2008, 07:20 AM
I've always pictured you rocking the Jerry Garcia Den. :laugh2:

LK = the most photogenic NBA player ever.

08-22-2008, 08:15 AM
I've found a pattern... LK's main game face...

1 (http://www.fiba2006.fiba.com/images/web/News/players_head_shots/ltu/Linas_Kleiza/_original/LTU_kleiza_2_o.jpg)
2 (http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u43/nbaactionphotos/fullj-106.jpg)
3 (http://i49.photobucket.com/albums/f279/GoldRush67/NBA/LAS104010600_1024x768.jpg)

08-22-2008, 12:41 PM
so, who is routing for a Melo vs Kleiza final? I know I'm not :D

when I said this for some reason I had completely forgotten that Kleiza was on Lithuania

08-22-2008, 12:54 PM
well Lithuania is gone so looks like well have to settle for. Melo getting some revenge on Pau for the first round beatdown of the nugs.

08-22-2008, 01:03 PM
didnt they already get revenge in the prelims?

08-22-2008, 07:28 PM
didnt they already get revenge in the prelims?

Yeah, but now's when it really matters.

08-22-2008, 08:32 PM
heres a cool article on melo about how much he stepped up today. which i completely agree.

BEIJING — Carmelo Anthony, a 6-foot-8 billboard, had just led Team USA to a huge Olympic win. He plopped into a chair at the postgame news conference, where cameras zoomed in. The mediator, a Chinese man, glanced over at Melo and politely requested into the microphone: "A statement please from player No. 15."

This verbal humbling sparked the Nuggets star's million-watt (and million-dollar) smile.

In his biggest game of the Beijing Games, player No. 15 had his best game. Team USA routed Spain 119-82 on Saturday, powered by Anthony's 16 points in 16 minutes. He made four 3-point shots in six attempts.

"It was the same shots I was taking the last couple games. They just went in tonight," Anthony said. "That comes from

View slide show of U.S.-Spain men's basketball
putting in the extra work in practice, before practice, getting in a little better shape. It paid off tonight, and I'm going to continue doing it until the tournament is over."
Criticized for being a little chubby, and criticized for shooting from the shadows in previous games, Anthony stood tall in the spotlight against Spain, defending world champion.

It was a statement game for Team USA, which looks like it might not have much competition in China.

Saturday was just like the old days, way back in 2007, when Anthony was the premier scorer for Team USA, unlike last week when Anthony played, if you will, fourth fiddle to LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade.

Melo was locked in. He splashed two 3-pointers in the first quarter. He then hit a nifty turnaround jumper from the right elbow. And he played OK defense — A-OK good for someone not known for his intensity at that end. He did get into some foul trouble while banging with low-post opponents, but the flip side was that, at least, Anthony was actually getting physical instead of playing matador to the Spanish players.

"Tonight was a heck of a statement," he said. "A heck of a statement."

For Team USA, the victory was actually a little surprising. The Americans thought it would be tough. Spain's roster has four NBA players and three future NBA players — and has dominated world basketball of late, featuring a rare international inside-outside game, notably with Lakers center Pau Gasol and Raptors guard Jose Calderon.

Saturday, however, Spain looked like a JV team.

Yes, it was just a pool play game. And the teams, both officially bound for the Olympic quarterfinals, could meet again with elimination on the line. But the Americans played Saturday like gold was at stake.

Asked the difference between the U.S. squads of 2008 and 2006, Gasol said: "As a team, they're working better together, more intense. And they're playing with a purpose — to show everybody else that they're superior."

Said Anthony: "I was really proud how we came into this game focused, especially on the defensive end. When we get everybody on the same page, it's kind of hard to beat us."

The "Redeem Team" in red, white and blue had 32 fast-break points. Spain had none.

"First time I've ever seen that happen," Anthony said.

The Americans play Germany on Monday and then the quarterfinals are Wednesday, semifinals Friday and medal games next Sunday. Team USA, so far, has not been tested.


08-23-2008, 11:58 PM
Yeah, but now's when it really matters.

I guess Kleiza failed then

08-24-2008, 01:04 AM
I guess Kleiza failed then

He did. He totally choked in that game. What, like 0-4 or something? :pity:

08-24-2008, 01:25 AM
I dont remember

08-24-2008, 01:42 AM
I dont remember

I couldn't watch the game, so I only followed the box score (Lithuania-Spain, that is). But it looked like he was stinking it up.

But I'm psyched - the ONLY Olympic basketball game that will be shown in Japan is the gold medal game, so I finally get to watch at least that one. It starts in less than an hour.

Go USA, and go Melo! :clap:

08-24-2008, 04:40 AM
Gold For Melo!!!! Congrats Melo You Deserve This Youve Worked Hard For 3 Years And Its Payed Off Well Done Melo And The Rest Of Team Usa

08-24-2008, 04:49 AM
Yeah, what he^ said! :clap:

08-24-2008, 04:49 PM
I am glad for Melo but was kinda bummed he didn't play more.. I really didn't like the way he played on offense but he looked good on defense?? Spain played a great game they played with heart and were making great shots it was a great game but Kobe came up biggest!!

08-24-2008, 08:06 PM
I am glad for Melo but was kinda bummed he didn't play more.. I really didn't like the way he played on offense but he looked good on defense?? Spain played a great game they played with heart and were making great shots it was a great game but Kobe came up biggest!!

What didn't you like about his offensive game? Settling for 3s too much?

If that's the case, then I agree, and I'd have liked to see him be more aggressive. Although, that did improve in the last couple of games. I mean, 13/13 from the line in the Olympics (where the stars don't get favorable treatment from the refs) is a great accomplishment, and you don't get there without being assertive.

But for me, I'm much more concerned (and pleased) with what Melo was able to do defensively in these Olympics. It's impossible for us to know, really, how much of that was coaching, how much was his own doing, how much was just the product of being on a team with so many All-Stars... But I just hope it's a trend that continues. With Camby gone, we're gonna need a lot more of that, wherever it came from...

08-25-2008, 04:08 PM
Hehe I got to watch the Gold medal match at midnight...so scared when Spain was only behind by 2.

08-25-2008, 04:37 PM
now i know this wouldnt ever happen i think but how many of you think that young ricky rubio (my new second favorite player)would be perfect in denver hes a excellent passer and defender and only seventeen and hes expected to come out in 2010 and by them if ai leave we could be looking lottery god forbid but i think he would make us a contender.

08-25-2008, 05:47 PM
Id definately like to get Rubio but i guarantee we wont be the only ones. And theres a damn good chance he'll be a top ten draft pick. Who im really impressed with is rudy fernandez, dudes got serious game hell of a pick up by Portland.