The United States men?s basketball team enters the knockout stage in Rio with a perfect 5-0 record but the criticism is mounting on the once thought to be an invincible team.
The latest Dream Team USA came out undefeated after the Olympic pool play but it was hardly the dominating team the Americans are used to. Instead, the Dream team struggled in the past three games as they scraped past Australia, Serbia and France by a mere 16 points combined.
TNT analyst and Hall of Famer Charles Barkley, who was part of the 1992 ?Dream Team,? joined in the criticism, saying he?s been disappointed with what he?s seen from the 2016 edition of Team USA.
In an interview with Sports360AZ.com?s Brad Cesmat on Tuesday, Barkley blamed the Team USA?s roster make-up for their lackluster performance in the Rio Summer Olympics Games.
He said that ?Well, I hope they win gold. I want always us to win the gold medal. It?s not a good team to put together. I don?t think they did a good job because if you watch all those guys ? they?re all good players, don?t get me wrong ? they all need the ball.?
Barkley added that Carmelo Anthony?s crew isn?t working despite the 12-player packed strong roster picked to represent the Stars and Stripes.
?If you take away DeAndre Jordan, every guy on that team is a ball-dominant guy. You see them playing a lot of one-on-one basketball. That?s the thing I?ve noticed more than anything. Like, you have to understand when you put a team together like that, you have to have some role players. ? But you take a guy like Kyle Lowry, who is a hell of a player, he wants to score. Kyrie wants to score. Kevin wants to score. DeRozan wants to score. So, I think they have been really stagnant offensively.?
Barkley is right as many countries at the Games have a core of players who have played together for years. The American team, on the other hand, looks like somewhat thrown together, with only a couple of weeks? practice as a unit.
He concluded that the future Dream Team USA should have players that work more as a team than packing a loaded roster of offensive team.
?When they put that team together in the future, they have to realize we can?t have just really, really great offensive players. They gotta have players that if they don?t get a shot, they?re not just gonna stand around and mope.?
USA Basketball opens the knockout round against Argentina on Wednesday and you can check here for schedule and live-streaming of the event directly on your mobile devices.