Years ago

2012 Olympics Proved That European Basketball > US

The 2012 Olympics clearly proved that European basketball is MUCH better and superior to US basketball.

A team of 12 NBA all stars, including some of the best NBA players ever, could only beat Lithuania by 5 points and only beat Spain by 7 points in an elimination game.

We are talking about single individual European countries that only have 2-5 great European players.

Lithuania with basically just Kleiza that is one of the best European players, as Jasikevicius is way past his prime and was the third string point guard of Panathinaikos in Greece. But if you want to count him then you can.

Valanciuna, at the moment, would not even be in the top 10 of Euroleague centers, and maybe not even top 20-30.

Spain with Pau, Ibaka, Navarro, Marc...that's just 4 great European players, as Fernandez isn't at the level of the best Euroleague players even. But if you want to count him, I won't argue.

So, teams with 2-5 of the higher level European players seriously almost beat Team USA, even when Team USDA played at their best (USA played harder against Spain than in any other game in years).

Now just imagine what kind of a team all of Europe could put together.......


etc., etc., I can put together at least 2 teams, and maybe even 3 teams of players at the top European levels..

You could easily field any kind of team of 12 you wanted to. Keep in mind, you would have a team that is VASTLY superior to Spain.

If USA ever had to play a unified Euroepan team they would get absolutely destroyed. Murdered, massacared.

Hell, I think even if you made just a Team USA versus Euroleague match up (not allowing any European NBA players), the Euroleague selection would be MUCH MUCH MUCH stronger than teams like Lithuania and Spain are.

The NBA is very clever in how they market the Olympics to be "NBA versus the world", or "NBA versus Europe", to make this fantasy nonsense that the NBA is the superior league.

When in truth, they NEVER play against a EUROPEAN selection. Just against single individual countries. And even Greece beat their top A team once in 2006 in an elimination game, with not the best players from Europe, but just a few of them, like Diamantidis, Spanoulis, Papaloukas..........

If Team USA had to play against a unified European selection - they can't stay within 30 points.

If Team USA had to play against a Euroleague selection, they would lose the important elimination games when it mattered.

Because if you took a team of 12 of the top Euroleague players, they would be way better than teams like Spain and Lithuania are.

The fact of the matter is, that if anyone actually objectively analyses and breaks down the difference, you can see that the actual truth is that European basketball is superior to American basketball.

And even that the best Euroleague players are better than the best NBA players.

This tournament convinced me 100% that the Euroleague is the real top league in the world, and not the NBA.

Topic #29038 | Report this topic

Years ago

what you've just is wrote is of some of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever read. At no point in your rambling, incoherent post were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this forum is now dumber for having read it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

Reply #375342 | Report this post

Years ago

NBA is better than the Euroleague. Anyone that knows basic basketball knows that.

when they had those NBA champion versus Euroleague champion matches, the NBA lost in the 1970s and they lost again in 2010.

Reply #375343 | Report this post

Years ago

I meant, NBA isn't better than the Euroleague.

Reply #375344 | Report this post

Years ago

No, you were right the first time. NBA > Euroleague. Move on.

Reply #375345 | Report this post

Years ago

Right, so the USA go undefeated and take the gold and that proves they're inferior? Sour grapes perhaps?

Reply #375348 | Report this post

Years ago

that is an awful long post for a troll isn't it?

Reply #375349 | Report this post

Years ago

Hahaha funniest thing I have ever read.. USA do only wats needed to b done. Switch it on for 5 minutes and pour on 30points..

Never properly challenged

Yet that clearly means the Europe is superior hah

Reply #375350 | Report this post

Years ago

OK, no one with an IQ above 70 here.

Reply #375351 | Report this post

Years ago

So sad to read that. You have problems and really need to get some help. Has anyone asked 'Are you ok?'.

Reply #375352 | Report this post

Years ago

Funniest post Ive read in awhile. As a Bulls fan Im offended by your omission of Deng and subsequently, I feel you lack attention to detail.

Reply #375353 | Report this post

Years ago

And we are all dumber for having read GL's "insight"...

Reply #375355 | Report this post

Years ago

Whoops, anonymous beat me to it.

Reply #375356 | Report this post

Years ago

Why are they that good?? Not being racist! Why are the black peopple so good at everythin! The white struggle? Is it just genitics? Half of Le brons body was above the ring! Awsome! I can watch him play 24/7!

Reply #375357 | Report this post

Charon 40  
Years ago

Regardless of how stupid the OP is, their is a valid thought in it. Not that the Euro is better then the US, but that the Euro style is better then the US game.

It's well known that european basketball is a team game focussed on ball movement and smothering Defense whereas the US game was based solely on superstars playing individual basketball.

I think that this european style of game is a better version of basketball, which is why euro teams are able to challenge the US, however if the US including the NBA in general played basketball the way it should be played, their would be no comparison at all.

Reply #375358 | Report this post

Years ago

The Euro game is better version than the US - in what way? The USA go undefeated, all of the spanish starting 5 play in the NBA, the NBA have the biggest audience in the world.

Reply #375362 | Report this post

Years ago

Wow did you forget that USA were missing wade, rose, Howard, griffin (who cares about him though lol), bosh and Aldridge?

Please don't ever say silly things like that again.

Reply #375364 | Report this post

Years ago

I disagree, Charon, to an extent. Watching the offense of a team like last season's San Antonio when they are clicking is superior to anything I've seen in Europe, maybe ever.

While the European game is much slower and rigid/disciplined in terms of the offensive structure, I will always be the first to defend the NBA whenever someone makes the sweeping generalisation that is a league of superstars going one on one.

If you look at other playoff teams like Indiana, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas and Denver, there is very little isolation happening at all.

That said, Oklahoma and to a lesser extent Miami, the two finalists, were very iso-reliant teams, and that's why I found them boring to watch. Miami started sharing the ball a lot more towards the end of last season though and that's why they won it all. Lebron now realises that attacking from the top on every play while everyone stands around and watches will only get you so far. That's why only now is he a great player. Durant/Westbrook will learn that eventually too.

In general though, the lesser teams in the NBA rely more on isolation while the champs are generally ball-movement-centric. Last season was a bit of an exception to the rule.

Great basketball is about striking that balance between fluid ball-movement and improvisational virtuousity. I think both brands of basketball (Euro & USA) can learn something from each other.

Reply #375366 | Report this post

Years ago

An offense run by a French point guard?

Reply #375368 | Report this post

Years ago

You couldn't be more wrong. Pop's knock on Parker early on in his career was that he relied on isolations and couldn't play the team game. He has only now started to fully trust him as an offensive distributor. Not a protypical European player at all, if there is such a thing.

Reply #375372 | Report this post

Years ago

Continental play-offs! Euro all-stars against North American all-stars. That would be quite the spectacle.

Reply #375376 | Report this post

Years ago

Would be great to see a team made up of the Top 10 or 12 players in Europe play against the Team USA.

Reply #375378 | Report this post

Gordon Liddy  
Years ago

Ric, I think you're spot on and that’s a point that’s rarely discussed when people talk about this US team. This team is hardly representative of the best the US has to offer in terms of talent. They were missing their two best centres (Howard, Bynum), arguably their best point guard (Rose) and one their top 2-3 shooting guards (Wade) not to mention the other guys you rightfully mention. How many countries would go undefeated and win the gold medal if they were missing 5-6 of their best players that would normally make the team?

Reply #375379 | Report this post

Years ago

What about Asia-Pacific All Stars and South America?

It would be a great four nations tourney.

* Aus/NZ/China/Middle East

* South American Teams

* North America

* Europe

How would you get the players to agree though...

Reply #375385 | Report this post

Years ago

LOL to the billy madison reference. I respect GL's thought though to the extent that Euro is underappreciated.

Reply #375390 | Report this post

Years ago

I don't think you could say Euro is underappreciated. Everyone knows full well the high quality of the players, teams, and leagues there; the Americans included. It's the whole reason why they reformed their national program after the Athens "disaster", and why the NBA is full of great European players.

Reply #375393 | Report this post

Years ago

Yeah some mixed up thinking here... I think its fair to say that Europe gets better all the time

Europe isn't a team or a country... doubt they like to think of themselves that way either in sport. There are just as many differences within the europe group as there are between europe and USA, its a strange comparison.

The USA is the best team, has the best players and best domestic league. Team USA is 63 -1 since 2006. This is exceptional, even great teams have bad days, so on their bad days they still only got beat once in 6 years... come on GL - credit is due

A full strength USA team would get up v a europe team anyway.. in a seven game series the euros might pinch 1 or 2 games.

As someone else said the USA Team has done what they need to and won last two Olympics and Worlds. Its crap to say based on this that an all-europe team would get up - The USA Team would lift for that challenge and pick a team to get it done. They won this olympics with no real 4/5 men. Chandler is not much chop, Lebron / durant and company are more 3 men for mine ... shows how good they are

I think it would be more interesting to say USA v rest of the world ...? USA still get the win, but rest of world is getting closer all the time

Reply #375398 | Report this post

Years ago

Better to compare continent to continent. North America, South America, Europe, etc. More countries in Europe, but population isn't miles ahead of North America given the addition of Mexico (100m+), etc.

Europe: 740m
North America: 530m
South America: 385m

US have deep stocks. Bring Howard in for Love or Wade for whoever and it's not a massive step up. A Boomers side would have Bogut pushing out Maric (in retrospect) and that's a strong upgrade.

Given that Spain challenged the US, I think a European team would make for great competition with a North American squad. Would anyone outside of the US make their team? Nash is getting on a bit. Anyone from PR, etc?

Who could Europe put up? Or South America combining Argentina with Brazil and who else of note?

Even just taking Spain and adding Dirk, Parker, Kirilenko would make for a strong rotation.

Reply #375399 | Report this post

Years ago

yep love the billy madison reference.

Reply #375400 | Report this post

Years ago

The claim the OP makes about a combined European team beating the USA team isnt a bad one, because the talent would be similar in FIBA rules.

I doubt Europe would win at the moment though, because this American team has been coming together since 2004 and they know each other well, which is more important than just talent. It would be a great all-star game to watch though, just like when the USA play Spain.

It's a fair argument to make, even it poorly made.

These comments though, deserve all the ridicule in the world!:

"And even that the best Euroleague players are better than the best NBA players.

This tournament convinced me 100% that the Euroleague is the real top league in the world, and not the NBA."

The top teams in the Euroleague are outstanding, but overall the NBA is still the best.

Reply #375410 | Report this post

Juror 12  
Years ago

I haven't read the whole post so excuse me if I'm repeating something but you can't just put a bunch of guys together and expect for the whole to be greater than the sum of the parts. The US is a classic example and I think a European team would not have the chemistry of a team like Spain, Lithuania etc who have played together for a while and know each other's games really well. Argentina is another great example where team chemistry seems to provide that extra intangible that you can't get just buy chucking the best players out on the floor. I think that is what the US realised a few years ago and now seem to spend as much effort on getting guys to "buy in" to the chemistry/role player mentality - which is actually cringe worthy to watch at times - so many "fake" high fives and chest bumps going round IMO.

Reply #375431 | Report this post

Years ago

some of the most absurd things i have ever read in this post, the NBA is the best league in the world, thats unquestionable even though euroleague teams are vastly improving and i prefer watching them because they play for fouls alot less they are still a few steps away from equalling the quality that runs throughout the NBA

Reply #375436 | Report this post

Years ago

It is to laugh. OK so from the many countries that make up Europe.. they may make up one that equals Team USA? OK.. Possibly, But so? what does that really prove? doesnt prove that european Basketball is better... your comparing 1 country to like a third of the world you nutcase! how many countries are in Europe? how many leagues? how many basketball players? fact of the matter is... if you made a WORLD team... of all the best players in the world vs USA... USA would still be highly competitive and may even win STILL at most they may lose by 15-20 at very very most. USA Basketball is still well ahead of the world... the world just know hos to make the most of what it has..

Reply #375438 | Report this post

Years ago

I took the initial point of the OP to be that team basketball with offensive structure that moves the ball combined with off-the-ball movement, as well as refined defensive structures, make up for a lack of talent. The talent on the USA team was way superior, but they lacked both offensive and defensive structures, relying on individual brilliance to dominate. The European game -- under FIBA rules -- tends to promote team play more so than the NBA.

In that respect it's not a big statement to say that the European style of basketball is far more suitable to FIBA rules (i.e. superior) than under the NBA rules and playing schedule that favours isolation-dominated structures that breed players with outstanding athletic and solo abilities. The NBA may have cases of outstanding team play, but there are also plenty of examples of NBA teams that rely on individual talent rather than team chemistry.

For this reason, I'd argue that, as dominant as team USA were, they underachieved in this FIBA tournament.

Reply #375441 | Report this post

Years ago

I agree with Ric. How would the European teams go with 3 of their stars out? Not very good at all.

I wanted USA to lose as much as anyone but its sad to see how many people knit pick at them.

Reply #375443 | Report this post

Years ago

I think another point to consider rjd is how a player's level of 'talent' can alter between the two styles of game. For example, Huertas' NBA talent is prob well behind Deron Williams, but his skills make him a more talented player in the FIBA game.

I thought the USA's structure was pretty good. They used spacing to open driving lanes/mismatches and then moved the ball for the open shot. That suited their skill sets well. That's how Spain play against a lot of other teams too.

Reply #375445 | Report this post

Years ago

I'd just add that IMO there are three main factors that make the NBA lean more towards isolation and reliance on individual brilliance rather than the level of team play we see in Euro competitions.

1) the NBA rules that, among other things, open up the key more and rewards individual athletic ability with the ball
2) the longer games combined with a more intense playing schedule that provides less training time and discourages intense, high movement offensive play for the whole season.
3) the higher level of talent whereby the sheer offensive talent of some players makes true team play, well, less advantageous compared with letting your superstar take over.

If the NBA adopted FIBA rules and a shorter schedule, I'd expect the style to become more reflective of the European style.

By the way, the USA talent base is just so much deeper and stronger compared with the rest of the world (perhaps stronger than the rest of the world combined). IMO the American's general lack of familiarity with the style of game that works in FIBA competitions makes it seem like the talent gap is smaller than it really is.

Reply #375449 | Report this post

Years ago

Yeah, paul, you are probably right about that, at the offensive end. It was unsophisticated, but very effective with the talent that they had. I suppose when a team shoots at 44% from the perimeter that relied so heavily on 3-pointers for points production, it well supports your point.

Reply #375451 | Report this post

Years ago

I think the pendulum swung once the US realised they need to play mobile guys who could shoot and drive at the PF spot. Once they did that teams couldnt just pack in the key anymore.

Reply #375452 | Report this post

Years ago

I don't know if you noticed but the US's structure was not existent. Coach K or fan K?

Reply #375490 | Report this post

Years ago

with the talent they have maybe they shouldve beaten teams out by more, fact is.. is they didnt a full credit to the say an undefeated team underpl;ayed is really a bit of a joke... theres not a single team in the world with even half the talent USA hasd but what you have is 12 decent teams with good coaching and smart players gunning for them.... If they were around in 92 they would have been close to the dream team but probably not quite.. it would still be 30 point wins all the way around

Reply #375502 | Report this post

Years ago

The point is that European basketball would cover ALL of Europe, as in EUROPEAN, and the Euroleague covers ALL OF EUROPE.

Not just countries like Spanish basketball or the ACB league.

Quite frankly, anyone that thinks the NBA is as good as the Euroleague does not know a thing about basketball.

All 4 of the final four Euroleague teams from last season would have easily beaten the Miami Heat in a 7 game playoff series.

It's definitely true that the USA or a team of American all star NBA players, could not beat a unified European team, and could not even beat a Euroleague all star team.

I honestly don't think the US could stay within 30 points of a Team Europe.

Reply #375554 | Report this post

Years ago

Anon above: as much as I hated Miami's championship run and their ugly offense, they would sweep a seven game series against any team in Europe.

European basketball is great and always getting better, but it's a discredit to the European game to say it's a better standard than the NBA, because the mere existance of such maniacally hyperbolic exaggeration would turn many casual fans off what is truly a great calibre of basketball in Europe.

Reply #375568 | Report this post

Years ago

Olympiacos and CSKA would have destroyed the Miami Heat in a 7 game playoff series.

Reply #375731 | Report this post

Years ago

Who, pray tell, could possibly guard Lebron James?

Reply #375738 | Report this post

Years ago

The team would, that's what international basketball is about. But there is no way Miami lose to a Euro team under NBA rules.

Reply #375739 | Report this post

Years ago

The europeans play a better brand of basketball, in the US in all brands of basketball except college there are fuck all on ball picks and movement only basic dribble drive principles. Attack the rim kick out and shoot or dribble in find a reciever or just attack and finish. The US are athletic, and have dedicated their lives to shooting the rock... They are superior in that retrospect but the europeans with their ball movement various picks and smarts in some patches out play the americans but in the long run the US are far too strong powerful and athletic to beat..... /endrant

Reply #375796 | Report this post

Years ago

ALl this glamour about the greatness of NBA players really takes away just how smartly run NBA offences actually are.

The NBA is full on pick and rolls city, why? Because when you have the right players in the right places on an offense, the pick and roll is the most difficult thing to guard as a defense. Have the correct off-ball movement in correct timing with the pick and roll with the right shooters in their spots and you can always find ways to get good looks.

Yes they use isolations, but it's playing percentages, you run your offense, gain some favourable mismatches by forcing switches and then you can most likely end up with a high percentage look.

Sometimes if people take notice of the bigger picture in the NBA game they will be surprised just how effective their offensive systems are.

Reply #375834 | Report this post

Years ago

Euroleague is better than the NBA at the top. The NBA might be better after the top 4-5 teams. But the top 4-5 Euroelague teams are much better than the best NBA teams.

Not even close really.

A team like the Oklahoma City Thunder or Boston Celtics from the NBA last year (both playing in the conference finals) would be completely destroyed by any elite Euroleague team.

Reply #376121 | Report this post


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