With Dario Saric now ousted from the 2016 Rio Olympics, Spanish point guard Sergio Rodriguez is the last hope for a member of the Sixers to bring home a medal. Getting past their opponent Friday afternoon will be no easy task.
Spain stumbled through their first two Olympic contests, but have been a well oiled machine ever since. They finished second in Group B, then routed France 92-67 in the quarterfinals on their way to a matchup with top-seeded team USA. Rodriguez contributed six points (3-5 FG), four assists, and a steal in just 15 minutes of action in the win over Tony Parker and France. Nikola Mirotic led all scorers with 23 points, and shot 4-7 from beyond the arc.
Rodriguez has seen his playing time fluctuate throughout Olympic play, but it’s quite possible that he plays in the ballpark of 15 minutes once again. His defense has always been somewhat lackluster, and his absence of both speed and strength will make it really hard for him to man both Kyrie Irving and Kyle Lowry. Regardless, the members of USA’s roster are going to be guys Rodriguez will see on a nightly basis come October, so this game could make for a decent measuring stick of his effectiveness in the NBA.
You can watch the game at 2:30 p.m. on NBCSN.