MANUEL DE LA TORRE / COMMUNICATION AREA FEB

The Men’s National Team faces this Tuesday (06:40 CET) what will be its seventh quarter-final match in the Olympic Games. And he will do so against the rival he has faced the most times in his Olympic history, the United States. With this Tuesday, there will be 12 matches against Team USA of the 97 played by the National Team in the Games. It so happens that Spain is also the most repeated opponent by the USA in its Olympic history.

If we include the rest of the competitions and friendly matches, the National Team has four victories in the 30 games played against the United States. Of these four, two are in friendlies (in 1972 in Buenos Aires and in 1993 in Castellón) and the other two in World Cups, in Colombia in 1982 and in Indianapolis in 2002. The latter is the only one achieved with NBA players in the American ranks.

Returning to the Olympic Games, the first match between Spain and the United States takes us back to Mexico 1968. Although yes, the FIBA ??archives count the match scheduled for the 1936 Berlin Games to which Spain did not attend due to the outbreak of the Civil war. In Mexico, the National Team began its second Olympic adventure after Roma 1960 with a defeat (46-81) against a team that included two future hall of famers such as Spencer Haywood and Jo Jo White. Four of them later, in Munich 1972, Santillana and Rullán, with 14 points per head, did not avoid the defeat by 56-72.

Los Angeles 1984, the basketball boom

The historic silver of Los Angeles 1984 was a milestone for Spanish sports in general. The Díaz-Miguel National Team completed a fantastic tournament in which only the United States, twice, was able to overcome it. Losses 68-101 in the group stage and 65-96 in the grand final, held at the legendary The Forum in Inglewood. In that American team made up of university players, Michael Jordan and Patrick Ewing stood out. From the last game in Los Angeles to the first in Seoul 1988. Spain opened its Olympic career in the Korean capital with a setback (53-97) against a team led by David ‘El Almirante’ Robinson.

The Dream Team’s passage through Barcelona 1992

The Barcelona Games marked a turning point in the history of world basketball with the participation, for the first time in history, of NBA players in FIBA ??competitions. An occasion that the United States took advantage of to amaze the world with the famous Dream Team: Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, John Stockton … A host of stars led by Chuck Daly who, among other rivals, surpassed Spain (81 -122) at the Palau Olímpic de Badalona.

Athens 2004: the distance is closing

The turn of the century brought with it a competitive leap from the rest of the world’s teams. With the Golden Juniors at the helm, Spain became one of the benchmark countries in the world of basketball. A status that was certified with an immaculate group stage in Athens 2004. In the quarterfinals an irregular United States played that relied on the success of Stephon Marbury to leave the Men out of the semifinals in a duel in which Pau Gasol he added 29 points: the Olympic cap of a Spaniard against the almighty USA.

Beijing 2008 and London 2012, two unforgettable finals

In Beijing 2008 there was a new double confrontation. The 82-119 was an anecdote before the spectacle provided by both teams in a tremendous final. For many, the best game in the history of FIBA ??basketball. Spain brushed glory in a match that left Ricky Rubio, still a minor, as the youngest Olympic medalist in basketball history and Rudy Fernández (Spanish leading scorer with 22 points) starring in an unforgettable dunk over Dwight Howard. Kobe Bryant’s killer instinct led to an epic duel.

Fate offered a third Olympic final, second in a row, on the banks of the Thames in London 2012. Another outstanding battle in which Spain, with Sergio Scariolo in command, had the Kobe, LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant on the ropes … All of them showed their respect by lining up one by one to embrace Pau Gasol as soon as the match ended. A moment to remember.

For the moment, the last chapter of this story takes us to Rio 2016. A semifinal in which the National Team made Team USA sweat again. Scariolo’s team recovered from the narrow defeat (76-82) getting bronze against Australia. The fourth Olympic medal for Spanish men’s basketball.

All Spain vs United States

Year

Tournament

Beef.

City

1960

Friendly

59-91

Lugano

1962

Friendly

73-90

Manila

1962

Friendly

63-112

Taipei

1966

World Extra

71-90

Valparaiso

1968

Olympic Games

46-81

Mexico DF

1972

Friendly

97-80

Buenos Aires

1972

Olympic Games

56-72

Munich

1972

Friendly

82-100

Sao Paulo

1974

world

71-114

Caguas

1982

world

109-99

Bogota

1984

Olympic Games

68-101

The Angels

1984

Olympic Games

65-96

The Angels

1988

Olympic Games

53-97

Seoul

1990

world

85-95

Villa Ballester

1992

Olympic Games

81-122

Badalona

1993

Friendly

85-83

Castellon

1994

world

100-115

Hamilton

1998

world

73-75

Athens

1998

Friendly

78-95

Monaco

2000

Friendly

66-95

Saitama

2002

world

81-75

Indianapolis

2004

Olympic Games

94-102

Athens

2008

Olympic Games

82-119

Beijing

2008

Olympic Games

107-118

Beijing

2010

Friendly

85-86

Madrid

2012

Friendly

78-100

Barcelona

2012

Olympic Games

100-107

London

2016

Olympic Games

76-82

Rio de Janeiro

2019

Friendly

81-90

Anaheim

2021

Friendly

76-83

Las Vegas

Via Feb.es