Patty Mills copped a lot of criticism for his 9 of 24 FG effort but for the most part he used his quickness and aggression well, and at stages when it was needed, as Australia looked at its best playing at a fast pace early. Matt Dellavedova started next to Mills to allow Patty to play that scoring guard role. What he lacked though was the touch from behind the arc that would have rounded his game. He won’t go 1 of 9 from deep again.
Huertas is always a pleasure to watch play point for Brazil, but he wasn’t allowed to control the game early and the Boomers capitalised with some tight defense and quick offense. Huertas slowly worked into the game after quarter time and Brazil looked more impressive as their star guard played more on his terms. He made them pay off several turnovers and iced the game with 2 clutch free throws showing his class and poise.
David Anderson and Joe Ingles were virtual non factors in the first half, whilst Aleks Maric was in foul trouble and managed extremely limited minutes. Anderson became the focal point of the offense in the 3rd quarter and scored on a baseline jumper, a pair of free throws, and two fadeaway jump shots out of the post, lifting Australia out of a hole and giving them a chance entering the fourth.
One significant issue for the Boomers was their lack of three point shooting which translated into a struggle in the half court at stages. Just 1 made shot from long range in the first half wasn’t ideal and Brazil’s bigs, especially Varejao and Nene, wore the Aussie’s down as the game went on. The last quarter did have a surge from the Boomers though as Anderson and Ingles put in solid second half performances including some much needed threes.
Some statistics to consider in regards to our three point shooting:
- Leaders in three pointers made per game in the Olympic preparation match-ups were; Mills (2.3), Ingles (1.7), Crawford (1.6), Anderson (1.3) & Gibson (1.1). In these games, percentage wise, the best Boomers were; Ingles (57.14%), Anderson (45.45%), Gibson (42.86%) & Mills (42.11%). Coming into the Olympics, over the last 4 years of official FIBA play for Australia, only David Anderson had shot over 40% from three point land (42.86%).