The U.S. men’s basketball team will face France for the second time at the Tokyo Olympics, only this time, there’s gold on the line. NBC – not Peacock – will televise the game live at 10:30 p.m. ET.
A historically dominant force in international basketball, the United States has struggled in Tokyo – and even before it. In July, it lost exhibition matches against Nigeria and Australia. Then in the opening game of Olympic pool play, it lost 83-76 to France.
After a semifinal win over the Aussies, though, something has finally clicked for the American squad. Milwaukee Bucks star Jrue Holiday and Phoenix Suns star Devin Booker, who were busy with the NBA Finals during the U.S. exhibitions, have supplemented an offense that’s been carried by Olympic veteran Kevin Durant.
The United States has won 15 gold medals since men’s basketball was added to the Olympic slate in 1936 and four of the five this century. USA Basketball’s only blemish was a loss to Argentina in the 2004 semifinals in Athens before the team came back to beat Lithuania for bronze.
INSIDE SCOOP IN TOKYO: Subscribe to our Olympic newsletter now
TEXT WITH US AT TOKYO OLYMPICS: Subscribe to texts, where we’ll be your official guide to the Games
FRIDAY RECAP: Allyson Felix makes history with 400m bronze; US heavyweight wins wrestling gold
TEAM USA MEDAL COUNT: Full list of every American who has earned hardware in Tokyo
Jessica Springsteen set for Saturday’s equestrian finals
Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band may have resumed their residency on Broadway, but all eyes are on the daughter of « The Boss, » Jessica, as she competes in the Olympics. She’ll have one last chance to medal alongside teammates McClain Ward and Laura Kraut in the equestrian team jumping finals on Saturday at 6 a.m. ET.
Ward and Kraut already have four career medals between the two of them but they are looking for another with Springsteen. The team qualified after a trio of nearly perfect runs around the course in qualifiers, good enough for fifth out of the 10 teams that advanced.
Tuliamuk drops out of marathon due to injury
Aliphine Tuliamuk dropped out of the women’s marathon Saturday due to injury, according to a post on social media from her team.
Tuliamuk, 32, won the U.S. Olympic marathon trials in early 2020. She dropped out of Saturday’s race a little before the halfway point, roughly 12 miles into the 26.2-mile race. Her running team, HOKA Northern Arizona Elite, wrote on Twitter that her hip « has been bothering her these last two weeks. »
« She tried her best to get it right but couldn’t fix it, » the club wrote. « More to come when we have details. »
Fellow American Molly Seidel was still with the leaders at the 15-mile mark, while Sally Kipyego was slightly behind, in 9th.
— Tom Schad
Canada’s Quinn becomes first openly-transgender Olympic gold medalist
Besides being the country’s first Olympic or World Cup title, Canada’s win over Sweden in the women’s soccer gold-medal game cemented a more important piece of history.
Quinn, a Canadian midfielder and one of the first openly transgender athletes to compete at the Olympics, is now a gold medalist. Their win is a momentous one for trans representation and acceptance.
« That’s such a huge thing for me, just making sure kids know that they have a place in this sport, » Quinn said after the game. « Sports bring me so much joy, so hopefully I can pass that message along and be a role model for younger folks, seeing that they can be themselves and they can also have a place here and they can be Olympic champions. »
While the International Olympic Committee has long had rules allowing for the participation of transgender athletes at the Games, the Tokyo Olympics are the first at which any have competed. New Zealand weightlifter Laurel Hubbard also competed in Tokyo.
— Nancy Armour
Women’s marathon moved up due to excessive heat
The women’s marathon, originally scheduled to start at 7 a.m. Saturday in Tokyo, was pushed up to 6 a.m. due to high temperatures creating dangerous running conditions.
The race will be broadcast live at 5 p.m. ET Friday on USA.
→ A LIRE AUSSI : Molly Seidel races to bronze, becomes third American woman to medal in Olympic marathon