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Rio 2016: American Basketball Men Face First Challenge vs. Australia

The United States men’s basketball team haven’t faced much resistance so far at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, but they’ll have their hands full on Wednesday when the hungry Australians await them on the hardwood.

Shark Bites
  • Australia and U.S.A. are the only unbeaten teams in Group A.
  • U.S.A. has won its first two games by a combined 101 points.
  • Kevin Durant leads U.S.A. in scoring, averaging 20.5 points per game.

The Americans have been tabbed as 29-point favorites for the tilt at sportsbooks, and the OVER/UNDER was sitting at 187.5 at the time of writing.

Team U.S.A. (2-0) easily dispatched China in their opening game and got by Venezuela on Monday, but they’re 1-1 ATS after failing to cover the huge spread against the Venezuelans. Australia (2-0) mopped the floor with France before using a late run to pull away from an upstart Serbian squad.

The Boomers, who entered the tournament as +15000 long shots to win it all, have established themselves as serious contenders this time around. Led by NBA talents Andrew Bogut, Matthew Dellavedova and Patty Mills, the Aussies have since seen their gold medal odds rise to +2800.

Venezuela demonstrated a blueprint for how to go toe-to-toe with the Americans – by slowing the pace down and forcing the United States to operate in the halfcourt. That’s an area where the Australians specialize in, so it won’t be much of a surprise if this game is closer than many people expect.

For more betting-related Olympic coverage, check out our Rio page here.

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