Lithuania was supposed to represent an increase in competition. It wasn't supposed to potentially be an upset of the Team USA men's basketball team. However, the Lithuanian national team was up late in the fourth quarter over the U.S. before the men finally pulled out a victory on the scoring of Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James and Kevin Durant. Consider it a lesson learned for the Americans.
Head coach Mike Krzyzewski was likely reflecting on record setting wins in recent days by the Americans when giving them two days off this week. Games against Nigeria and Tunisia went as expected in dominating victories for Team USA, so it's understandable that the team's leader would feel quite confident. Not anymore.
"It's safe to say, though, that the Americans have enjoyed their last practice-free day of the Olympics after coach Mike Krzyzewski unexpectedly canceled Friday's workout, having already given his players a full day off Wednesday," wrote Marc Stein. "The extra rest in the past 72 hours was conceived to help keep the Americans fresh for the medal round, but they looked several notches short of sharp against a team that, by contrast, has continuity and confidence in abundance."
Expect Team USA to come out with an extra spark against Argentina on Monday.