During the Olympics we’ve talked a lot about the importance of cohesion in basketball and how it’s more of an advantage for other teams than it is for the US simply because they spend more time together.
Well for men’s basketball.
Not only does the US have the best players in the world, many of them have played together for years. Diana Taurasi and Sue Bird are now 39 and 40 respectively and have been Olympic teammates for 20 years.
They also played together for Geno Auriemma at UConn. So did Napheesa Collier, Breanna Stewart and Tina Charles.
Toss in Brittney Griner and the rest and the women’s program is arguably more dominant than the men’s has been and has a core that understands itself very well.
And we saw that again in Tokyo as the US won gold for the seventh straight time. For Taurasi and Bird, the 90-75 win over Japan makes it five straight.
And while Bird and Taurasi are likely at the end, current UConn prodigy Paige Bueckers will probably be on the team in 2024. Given her transcendent talent, and that whoever coaches in London will probably still have Stewart and Griner and several other returnees, the US is probably going to make it eight straight.
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