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Basketball roundup: U.S. "rock it up" to top the world on Olympic stage

Source: Xinhua | 08-24-2008 19:22

Special Report:   2008 Beijing Olympic Games

BEIJING, Aug. 24 (Xinhua) -- The whole U.S. squad joined the post-game press conference for the celebration of their come-back to the top of the world after they beat Spain 118-107 in the final of the Olympic men's basketball tournament here on Sunday.

Kobe Bryant, who had 13 of his 20 points in the fourth quarter, definitely had the right to roar, "Rock it up, baby!" to call an end of the committment of the U.S. team to the Olympics after they had been absent from the throne for eight years.

The U.S. kept an unbeaten record of 8-0, averaging 27.9-point victory margin per game in the tournament and beating world champions Spain, runners-up Greece and defending title-holders Argentina on their way to the crown.

"I want to thank all the members of the U.S. team and Jerry Colangero (national director) for the three-year program. We showed great characters in the tournament, maybe the greatest in the international basketball history. No other team had the same characters as us because if we don't have them, we won't be here at the top of the world," U.S. head coach Mike Krzyzewski said.

Colangero, who asked most of the squad for a three-year committment to bring the U.S. basketball back to the top, said the USA Basketball would discuss the possibility of setting up another program after the Beijing Olympics.

"Did I say it is a six-year program," he joked at the press conference, which was attended by about one hundred journalists around the world.