The match between Slovenia and Australia, of course, was not any game for bronze medals. Initially, his plot was much more global: it was decided who would be labeled as the main loser at the end of the Olympic tournament.
The Australians, who have been quite highly quoted before each Olympics for the past 10 years, have been dancing around the podium as a result, but slipping right on the ground: 4th place in Rio as the apogee of the ordeal.
As for Slovenia, the reigning European champions under the businesslike leadership of Doncic before and during the tournament demonstrated such basketball that many reasonably saw them not only as finalists, but also as favorites of the main match. As a result, both teams burst in the semifinals and went to rake in the least valuable precious metals presented at the Olympics.
— isaac (@isaacappelt) August 5, 2021
— Basketball Australia (@BasketballAus) August 3, 2021
Patty Mills and Luka Doncic embrace postgame. pic.twitter.com/LxndlKbW3W
— Alec Sturm (@Alec_Sturm) August 7, 2021
And yet the main intermediate result of the Australians was not a difference of +8, but something else. The second quarter became a clear demonstration of the emotional immaturity of Doncic, who turned into a dummy before our eyes. He muttered displeasedly towards the judges, simulated ridiculous throws in an attempt to provoke a foul, and when the whistle was silent, he sulked and threw up his hands. In general, he demonstrated excellent inclinations for a pantomime actor of the Youth Theater, but not a leader of a team playing in a match for Olympic medals.
Patty Mills drops 42 POINTS as Australia beats Slovenia to win bronze! pic.twitter.com/DGa5us5jBI
— Basketball Forever (@Bballforeverfb) August 7, 2021
Patty Mills just dropped 42 on Slovenia to get the Bronze 🥉 pic.twitter.com/yFVg8kq7Er
— The Brooklyn Netcast (@BrooklynNetcast) August 7, 2021
After that, hope loomed on the Slovenian horizon, but it quickly disappeared in the shadow of the greatness of Patti Mills, who continued to single-handedly beat Slovenia. Mills scored 42 points and effectively deprived the Slovenes of their chances of returning to the game.
Probably, every team that plans to qualify for high places should go through such emotions, and to some extent it was such a defeat that was necessary for the Slovenian national team, which caught the star fever for a moment. After all, as you know, you cannot fully appreciate the sweetness without tasting the bitterness.
Olympic Games. Tokyo 2020 (Japan)
Basketball. Men. 3rd place match
Slovenia – Australia – 93: 107 (19:20, 26:33, 22:25, 26:29)