For 1972 U.S. Team, No Silver Lining
LONDON -- There were no Olympic warm-up games played in Munich to commemorate the milestone, no throwback uniforms printed up for the 2012 squad to pay homage and no new documentaries commissioned by NBA TV to re-tell the story amid great publicity and pride.
The 40th anniversary of the U.S. men's Olympic basketball team and its infamous Cold War gold-medal game against the Soviet Union, up until the last week or so, had been passing rather quietly.
In stark contrast to what seemingly has been a yearlong tribute to the Dream Team -- celebrating the two decades since it changed the face of international basketball at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics -- members of the 1972 team, who to this day remain convinced they were cheated and refuse to collect their silver medals, get only occasional notice. That will naturally change in a major way if the current squad of NBA All-Stars representing the United States ends up playing Russia in Sunday's gold-medal game -- which stunningly is a possibility after the Russians' unexpected advancement to the semifinals against Spain -- but '72 hoopla has been on the scarce side so far in 2012.
Olympic Quarterfinals Big-Game Performers
Welcome to the knockout phase of the Olympic basketball event.
The NBA game affords teams a two-week chess match in each playoff round, during which a team can slip up, adjust, then eventually figure it out. That's not the case in London, where one stink bomb can send home the most talented teams and individual performers licking their wounds.
On Wednesday, the elimination tournament got under way, with standout performances from some likely -- and unlikely -- competitors.
Starting Lineup: 2012 Olympics
Team USA Schedule
Here's Team USA's schedule for the 2012 Olympic Games in London, starting July 29 until a possible gold-medal game Aug. 13. (All times ET.)
Join ESPN and Daily Dime Live for each game.
Aug. 8: United States 119, Australia 86
Aug. 10: Semifinals, noon and 4 p.m.
Aug. 12: Bronze-medal game, 6 a.m.
Aug. 13: Gold-medal game, 10 a.m.
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