Monday, August 06, 2012

OLYMPIC DAY: Part VI, Subsection (a) - Men's Basketball at the Olympic Park

First of all, the posts for Monday are being divided into subsections as we had spent 13.5 hours in the Olympic park. We won a gold medal for endurance and fun. It's easier for me to divide it up, so I shall.

Men's basketball - I love it. I earned the love through the university I attended, which can feature in the NCAA Tournament, otherwise known as March Madness. When I told people we had Olympic basketball tickets, the very first thing they inevitably asked was, "Will you see the US team?"

No. We did not see The Dream Team, the sequel. Actually, I wasn't bothered that we didn't get to see them, given that all of their victories have been so lopsided. Better to see other teams, where the games will be closer, which is exactly what we got.
Australia is in yellow and green. Russia is in red. Russia, incidentally, wins hands down for the ugliest uniforms in these Olympics. They are hideous.

The first game was Australia playing Russia. Naturally we rooted for Australia. First, because our friends Clint and Gaynor live there. Second, as children living in the US in the 1970s and 1980s, it is nigh-on-impossible to root for the Russians. It's just impossible for us to do it, no matter how friendly (NOT!) Vladimir Putin may seem to be.

The atmosphere seemed much like any other basketball game I've been to in recent years. There was the Mexican wave, the Kiss Cam (I couldn't believe the Brits would go for this, but maybe they found some Americans in the audience), dance contests and cheerleaders.

We had great seats in the lower section, which enabled us to fly our "Go Bam Bam" flag and also for my mom to find us in the US via live streaming. We were all pretty psyched that she could watch us watching the game after I sent her an e-mail describing where we were. Yet again, another gold medal goes to the wonders of the Interweb.

Here's the men in my life, watching the game under our Olympic flag. We were about 10 rows up from the floor. Result.

Australia beat Russia at the buzzer, which could not have been more exciting. Hooray for them! It was great basketball and a great show of athleticism.

The next game we saw was Lithuania versus Tunisia. Again, we have friends from Lithuania, so that's who we chose to root for. That was a good thing, too, because it seemed that the arena was filled with Lithuanian fans. By the end of the game, we were even chanting in Lithuanian. I can assure you that's never happened to me at either an NCAA game or an NBA game.

Yet another gratuitous shot of the boys at an Olympic venue. This one has been our favourite so far.

In the end, Lithuania pulled out a win, but they were losing for most of the game. But all in all, it was an unforgettable morning.

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