After dropping its Olympic opener, Team USA has rattled off three straight victories and can advance to the gold medal game with a win against Australia in the semifinals early Thursday morning (12:15 a.m. ET). The winner will take on either France or Slovenia, which face off in the other semifinal matchup later Thursday morning (7 a.m. ET). History is on the United States' side as it's 8-0 all-time vs. Australia in the Olympics, and won each time by double digits.
Australia, ranked No. 3 in the world, has never won a medal in Olympic men's basketball. It rosters several NBA players, including Patty Mills, Joe Ingles, Matthew Dellavedova, Dante Exum and Matisse Thybulle. While the Aussies never beat the Americans in Olympic play, they did prevail in an exhibition game in Las Vegas. They also beat the U.S. in a game played in Melbourne ahead of the 2019 FIBA World Cup. Gregg Popovich is 1-2 vs Australia as Team USA's head coach -- all exhibition games.
Ahead of the semifinal matchup, here's everything you need to know:
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How to watch USA vs. Australia
Date: Thursday, Aug. 5 | Time: 12:15 a.m. ET
Location: Saitama Super Arena -- Saitama, Japan
TV: None | Live stream: Peacock
Odds (via Caesars Sportsbook): USA -700; Australia +475 | Spread: USA -12 | O/U: 181
Team USA: The Americans outlasted Spain to get a step closer to a gold medal, and despite the early missteps U.S. is looking far better than it did when it lost to France in the Olympic opener. But now they'll face an Australia team that beat them in an exhibition game leading up to the Olympics, so the pressure will be on Kevin Durant, Damian Lillard and the rest of Team USA to prove that loss was just a blip on the radar. If they win, either France or Slovenia will match up against them in the championship game. If they lose, then not only will they be playing for a bronze medal, but the criticism that was heaped on them after losing to France will only come more furiously than before.
Australia: The Aussies haven't dropped a game the entire tournament, and hope to keep that going against a Team USA who will be heavily favored Thursday morning. But the Australian team is a well-oiled machine, and while the Americans have more talent, Australia is a more cohesive team that has experience playing on the international stage prior to the Olympics. In the exhibition game between these two teams, Patty Mills led the Australians with 22 points and four assists, while Joe Ingles tacked on another 17 points in the win. Those two have been the steady force behind this team's success all tournament long, and it will be tested against Team USA.
The Americans will want to get some revenge on an Australian team that forced them to answer some hard questions about this team. I think it's close, similar to the game against Spain, but I think eventually Team USA will come out on top and quiet some doubters. Pick: United States -700, Australia +12