USA vs. Australia Betting Odds, Picks, Predictions: How to Bet Friday’s Olympic Exhibition (July 16)
Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Damian Lillard.
Editor’s note: Friday’s USA vs. Australia game has been canceled due to coronavirus-related health and safety protocols.
USA vs. Australia Odds
|Time||6 p.m. ET|
The United States men’s basketball team finally got off the snide in exhibition play with a dominant 108-90 victory over Argentina on Tuesday night. After back-to-back losses against Nigeria and Australia, the U.S. made easy work of Argentina and looks to continue to round into form as they head to the Tokyo Olympics on their path to the gold medal.
Previously sporting a 54-2 record in exhibition matches since NBA players began playing in 1992, the U.S. is certainly embarrassed after back-to-back losses to start exhibition play, and we should expect better play from this team going forward.
While they rebounded with a victory over Argentina on Tuesday, can the US avenge Monday’s loss against Australia? Oddsmakers think so, as they’ve been installed as 13.5-point favorites over the Boomers. However with news of a COVID-19 outbreak among Team USA, this game is in danger of being canceled. Nonetheless, let’s analyze both sides and find out where the value is.
USA Basketball Roster in Flux
The US men’s basketball team finally lived up to their potential on Tuesday night, making easy work of Argentina. Although I’m not particularly fond of this Argentina team, the U.S. did what they were supposed to do, exerting their dominance over an inferior team. They increased their defensive intensity, holding Argentina to just 38.4% from the field and 9-of-29 (31%) from behind the arc.
In addition, they also displayed their star power with Bradley Beal, Kevin Durant, Zach Lavine, Damian Lillard and Bam Adebayo all scoring double-figures. The U.S. as a whole shot 51% from the field and jumped out to a 15-4 lead just three minutes into the game, leaving no doubt of who the superior team was from jump street.
The U.S. won the rebound battle against Argentina 40-34 which will be key against a bigger Australian team which out-rebounded them 32-25 and outscored them 44-22 in the paint. Keeping Australia out of the paint will be key, and while Team USA changed up its starting lineup to include Jerami Grant for Jayson Tatum, Grant will be unavailable for Friday’s game.
If you haven’t heard the news Beal has been ruled out of the 2021 Tokyo Olympics after entering Team USA’s health and safety protocols on Wednesday. Grant entered the health and safety protocols as well.
Team USA is in a struggle with COVID as one player is out of Olympics (Brad Beal), another is in protocols (Jerami Grant) and now there are discussions underway about canceling tomorrow's game with Australia, sources tell @OlgunUluc & me
— Brian Windhorst (@WindhorstESPN) July 15, 2021
With Jayson Tatum listed as day-to-day with right knee soreness and Khris Middleton, Jrue Holiday and Devin Booker not joining the team until the completion of the NBA Finals, the United States will find themselves shorthanded in Friday’s exhibition against Australia. Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see if this game still happens.
Australia Has Real Shot at a Medal
After defeating the U.S. on Monday, the Boomers sat Patty Mills, Joe Ingles, Matthew Dellavedova and Aron Baynes, while playing Jock Landale with a fresh group of starters that included Nathan Sobey, Dante Exum, Matisse Thybulle and Nick Kay. When the Australian Boomers decided to sit their stars in Tuesday night’s exhibition matchup against Nigeria, many assumed we’d see Nigeria pick up their third straight win in exhibition play.
Things couldn’t have gone any better for the Boomers as they dominated Nigeria 108-69. Holding Nigeria to just 23-of-67 (34.3%) from the field, Australia led 49-29 on their way to the 39-point victory. Chris Goulding had a team-high 21 points and finished 7-of-7 from behind the arc with the Boomers as a whole shooting 18-of-29 (62.1%) from three. You’re not going to lose many games shooting those percentages, but the Boomers had six players score in double-figures.
We even got to see NBL Rookie of the Year and projected NBA Lottery Pick Josh Giddy of the Adelaide 36ers who scored 14 points while grabbing four rebounds and dishing three assists in 24 minutes. While he won’t be on the Olympic team, he’s certainly a talent that we’ll see in the NBA next season and should be a part of Australia’s teams going forward.
As a whole this Australian team is very good and has a real shot at coming away with a medal in the Olympics. They have the athletes to cause problems for anyone. Australia outrebounded Nigeria 31-27, the same team that outrebounded the U.S. by 12. They also have the scoring necessary to keep up with the U.S., and based on what we saw Monday, this won’t be an easy matchup for anyone.
The U.S. are certainly warranted as being 13.5-point favorites under normal circumstances. The Australian Boomers typically wouldn’t want to show anything that would give the US an advantage in Olympic play.
These are far from normal circumstances as the U.S. is dealing with a potential COVID outbreak. For a team that is already missing players and is still adjusting to playing together under the FIBA rules, the U.S. is at severe disadvantage. The is too many points. Take the +13.5 with the Australian Boomers.
Pick: Australia +13.5 (-110)