Special thanks to John ‘Fatty’ Fatland for writing this take and giving us the privilege to add it to TheLakersNation.com. Again, if you guys see anything Lakers related that you think deserves to be put up, just e-mail us at articles@TheLakersNation.com.
Fatty’s Scouting Report: Team USA vs Brazil; Sunday 6:00 PM ESPN 2. Also remember, that theLakersNation.com has Live Gameday Chat one hour prior to the game. Join us!
Kobe Bryant and Team USA have been on Cruise Control, with the average margin of victory at a whopping 51.5 pts/game.
Kobe hasn’t been needed much, only playing 17.5 min/game, just a mere sampling of Mamba24.
I feel like I’m visiting Costco, with all those food samples to try. These sweet little old ladies that smile and pleasantly offer neat things to eat are really clever. Why? Because they make you want more, and to get more you must purchase the item. With Kobe, we’ve seen a sampling of spectacular dunks, nifty behind the back passes, three point swishes, tenacious defense, and some incredible moves that have us and the crowds yelling for more.
Instead of more Kobe, we are forced to listen to Bill Walton read from the World Almanac. Question: Which is more boring? Bill Walton sharing geographical facts or elevator music? I’d say it’s a toss up.
Today all of that changes, because we play Brazil, which is led by Leandro Barbosa of Phoenix Suns fame.
Some Fatty Fun Facts:
Last game: USA defeats Canada 113-63; Brazil defeats Virgin Islands 93-89 (The team we beat by 62 pts)
Who’s Hot, Hot, Hot?
Team USA: Everybody. We cooled down from our 61% shooting in the first two games to shoot a measly 55% against the Canucks. 3 pointers, the last two games, 50%.
Team Brazil: Barbosa 12-22 = 36 pts in 36 minutes of play against US Virgin Islands
Team USA: Nobody. Unless you count Tyson Chandler who was 0-2 against Canada, but that doesn’t count.
Team Brazil: Machado and De Rosa, starting Forwards shot a combined 5-16 last night
Key Match Up of the Game: Kobe vs Barbosa – ‘Lightning quick’ Barbosa scored 36 points. He is the key to Brazil’s scoring machine. Stop him, stop Brazil. What do you think Kobe is thinking? ’He’s mine, I want him.’ Kobe has been overly aggressive and in foul trouble each game. Will that change tonight?
The Side Match Up: Kidd on Da Silva. Da Silva had 10 assists in 33 minutes
The Intangibles: Brazil is quick and athletic. Team USA is quicker, more athletic and mean.
What to expect? Its taken years for Brazil to learn that Basketball can be played with your hands and not your feet. They are exciting and fun to watch. But, last night struggled to beat the US Virgin Islands. All of their starters played long minutes, while the USA starters didn’t even take a shower after the game because they played so little. Look for Coach ‘Special K’ to throw Kobe, Billups, and Deron Williams at Barbosa to tire him out. Barbosa will shoot a few free throws, but that’s all. Brazil’s tempo will be disrupted. Brazil’s forwards were in foul trouble and were dominated by the Virgin Island forwards. How will they handle Howard, Amare, and Lebron? They won’t. USA will attack, attack, attack and get Barbosa and Splitter in foul trouble.
What can Brazil do to win? Hire a Voo-Doo priestess and put a curse on Kobe. Which my sources have informed me they have already done. Won’t work. Mamba24 has much more powerful magic on his side. Or, they can hire Donaghy to ref and fix the game.
Projected Outcome: Are you kidding me? With Team USA’s new policy of NO MERCY, TAKE NO PRISONERS, KICK THEM WHILE THEY ARE DOWN approach, the only question is, how many points do we win by? If we lose? We’ll, you can Blame it on Rio. But that won’t happen, because the only Momba Dancing happening, will be Mamba24 dancing on Brazil, all game long.