Top-seeded and previously unbeaten Spain is out of the medal round in men's basketball, and the Spaniards aren't happy about it.
As the teams left the court Thursday after Team USA's 102-94 victory, Spanish coach Mario Pesquera and United States coach Larry Brown yelled and
pointed at each other about a late U.S. timeout. After about a minute, they had to be separated by their assistants.
"I'm very happy with the way my team played,'' Pesquera said. "I'm not happy with the way things turned out.''
Pesquera was upset Brown called a timeout with 23 seconds left and the Americans leading by 11 points. He let the U.S. coach know it as they left the
"I had -- and I stress the word 'had' -- a lot of respect for Larry Brown,'' said Pesquera, who smirked and shook his head when he heard Brown explain
that he tried to rescind the timeout. "Dean Smith would have never done anything like that.''
Said Brown: "Hopefully I'll learn to handle these situations, which are new to me, a little bit better.''
This was Spain's chance to shine, especially after rolling to a 5-0 record before the Olympic quarterfinals. But the Spanish were paired against a
mercurial U.S. squad that lost twice in the opening round yet this time hit 55 percent from 3-point range.
The Spaniards lost, and now they'll play for seventh place.
"Let's be honest,'' Pesquera said. "The Americans have played to 40 percent of their capacity in two of their games. I think it's very strange to take
part in a competition that rewards teams that lose.''
Pau Gasol led Spain with 29 points but was held to just four in the fourth quarter by a tenacious American defensive effort, which quieted a
pro-Spanish crowd of 14,500 that included Spain's King Juan Carlos.
"It was said that the public supports the weaker team. I think in this case the public was solidly behind the stronger team because we were the
stronger team,'' said Pesquera, who also complained that the officials allowed the Americans to get away with multiple traveling violations.
"I think this game was played under NBA rules, not FIBA rules,'' he said.
Comments: I had watched a good portion of this game, and i see exactly Were the spanish coach is coming from. NBA players traveled so many times that
i have lost count. And some of the calls that were agaisnt the Spanish players were rediculous. And i see perfectly were the Spanish coach is coming
from saying this tournament supports teams for lossing and just look at the times USA lost, they shouldnt have been in the medal round.