Fresh off their win over Argentina in their exhibition opener, Kyrie Irving and the rest of Team USA are set to face the Chinese National today in Los Angeles.
Who: Team USA vs. Team China
When: 8 p.m.
Where: Staples Center - Los Angeles, California
Where on my eyeballs? NBA TV, or you can head to USA Basketball or the NBA's Facebook pages. The games will be streamed on Facebook live, which worked very well for the previous exhibition game.
Enemy Blog: There isn’t one.
Opposing players to know: former NBA-er Yi Jianlian, recent Rockets draft pock Zhou Qi and team captain Zhou Peng.
Keys to the game
- In the first game, we saw a different type of play from Kyrie Irving and it’s a style that will probably continue for the entirety of his run with USA Basketball this summer. Against Argentina, Irving got his shots, but mostly served as the lead distributor for Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony and the rest.
- Zhou Qi is very tall, if not overly skilled or sized. He’s 7’1”, but only weighs 218 pounds. For China, this means that they have to hope he can do just enough to stop DeMarcus Cousins and DeAndre Jordan from wreaking havoc inside. They’ll probably do doing a lot of hoping.
- Yi Jianlian, who now has played in China since 2012, will also see time on Cousins and Jordan. He never worked out as an NBA player, and at 30, he probably never will. But amongst opposing teams, he’s a guy who will be fascinating to watch if only because he has some name value from his time in the NBA.
- Expect Team USA to roll again here. There’s really no reason they won’t and, if anything, Team USA should be crisper here than they were against the Argentinians.
Correction: A previous version of this post indicated that the game started at 4 p.m. when tip-off is actually scheduled for 8 p.m. FtS regrets the error.