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Matisse Thybulle up to his usual tricks in Olympic debut

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Basketball - Olympics: Day 2 Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images

Before Team USA dropped its first game at the Olympics since 2004, Team Australia handled its business, defeating Nigeria, 84-67 — the same Nigeria squad that upset the stars in stripes in an exhibition game a couple weeks ago. Taking the court for the Boomers, Sixer Matisse Thybulle continued to shine in international play, recording seven points (3-of-6 FG, 1-of-2 3PT), four rebounds, two assists, and five steals.

Already an All-NBA defender, the FIBA rules clearly help Thybulle even more with ticky-tack foul calls no longer an issue. Having Matisse deny you trying to bring the ball up the court, then block your pass, and finally bat it away from you when you try to dribble again must be pure torture. I’m not sure Olympians are ready for a real-life Hecatoncheires looming over them on the court.

Passing lanes are closed to everyone with Matisse roaming the floor, even if you meet the HOV requirements.

Even when things didn’t quite work out for Matisse, you had to admire the gumption. Here’s some grainy footage of him trying to absolutely throw down on someone. I imagine next time when he completes the slam, it will be in full 8K Ultra HD.

While Team USA looks set to disappoint, I’m looking forward to watching Matisse wreck havoc on the court like the Cloverfield monster and vlog about it afterwards over the next couple weeks. Jump on the Aussie bandwagon now, folks.