Basketball continues in the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, with four more games that will make the second day vibrate: Argentina, Spain and Luka Doncic play and the women’s tournament begins.
Following the action of Group A (victories for the Czech Republic and France) and Group B (victories for Italy and Australia), the Saitama Super Arena will vibrate again with the orange ball flying through the air and we present the three stories to follow on the second day of competition, the one of the day Monday 26 in Japanese lands.
The great duel of the day
TO Facundo Campazzo and Luka Doncic They are united by friendship and several years as teammates at Real Madrid before each one’s arrival in the NBA, but now they will face each other in an Argentina vs. Slovenia (23.40 in CDMX and 1.40 in Argentina) that promises to be exciting. The two teams rest their talent mainly on the perimeter but they also have scorers inside (Luis Scola and Mike Tobey) that are capable of going out to pitch from the outside.
While the essence of Argentina’s success seems to pass through defense, Slovenia swept a month ago in the international playoffs basing their entire game on a offensive power who got more than 100 points per game on average in four games against Angola, Poland, Venezuela and Lithuania.
Will Argentina be able to stop the magic of Doncic? Until now The Slovenian won the 12 matches he played with the senior team of his country at the international level, thus obtaining the conquest of the Eurobasket 2017. The FIBA classification system prevented Luka from participating in the 2019 World Cup (Slovenia did not qualify without his presence) and there the Argentines were at their best, reaching the final with Campazzo and Scola at a brilliant level. Luca Vildoza, Gabriel Deck and Vlatko Cancar are other names of the NBA to follow in this duel.
More | Three stories of Argentina’s debut at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games against Luka Doncic’s Slovenia
Spain goes out to the ring
In the last turn (7.00 in CDMX, 9.00 in Argentina) they will jump to the field Spain and Japan to conclude with the first date of the men’s tournament.
The stadium brings good vibes to Spain, which became world champion there for the first time in 2006. This time there will not be almost 20,000 spectators unlike on that occasion, but they will be present again Marc Gasol, Rudy Fernández, Sergio Rodríguez And till Pau Gasol, who did not play that final against Greece 15 years ago and will now play his first official match with La Roja since Eurobasket 2017.
This is a kind of “Last Dance” for a group of the Spanish team that has had so many successes in the last 15 years and therefore cannot afford a defeat against Japan, the weakest rival in Group C but a team that excites with Rui Hachimura and Yuta Watanabe at the helm and with the victory they achieved in a friendly match against France a week ago.
Will there be room for the surprise of those led by Argentine Julio Lamas in Saitama or Ricky Rubio and your colleagues will be able to put everything under control? Since Beijing 2008 (59-55 from China to Germany) that an Asian team has failed to beat a European team in the men’s tournament of the Olympic Games and any Japanese triumph in this group would go down in Olympic basketball history as one of the most unexpected results.
The female competition begins
It’s time to start the Olympic action in women’s basketball and the night will open it up Rio 2016 runner-up team, Spain. At 8 p.m. on Sunday in Mexico and 10 p.m. in Argentina, those directed by Lucas Mondelo will face South Korea, a priori the weakest team in Group A, which will make its return to the women’s basketball tournament after 13 years of absence.
Spain, with the return of the Balearic Alba Torrens to the selected team, comes out as a favorite on this first night with a team that mixes the experience of Laia Palau, Silvia Domínguez, Tamara Abalde and Torrens herself with the youth of Raquel Carrera, Maite Cazorla or Maria Conde. Clash of two WNBA names in that match: Astou Ndour vs. Park Ji-su in the painting.
The other match of Group A, at 3:20 in Mexico and 5:20 in Argentina, has a great game forecast. Serbia, bronze in Rio 2016 and European champion a month ago with the eternal Sonja vasic as MVP, will play against a Canada that dreams of flying high and features several WNBA players (Natalie Achonwa, Kia Nurse, and Bridget Carleton).
The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of the NBA or its organizations.