Game 1 Dream Team vs. 2008 Beijing squad

Posted by By at 8 August, at 19 : 48 PM Print

Game 1 Dream Team vs. 2008 Beijing squad

The first game is held in Moscow, at the Gomelskiy Sports Hall. In the first quarter, both teams begin bombing from three point range. Pippen, Jordan and Drexler all go 4 for 4 from downtown but Kobe, Michael Redd and Jason Kidd hit all their shots going 9 for 9 combined. The pace is blistering to start with both teams running up and down the court. At first, it looks like it will be an “All-Star game” like exhibition but not down in the post. Patrick Ewing and Karl Malone are dominating the glass, getting every rebound,¬†out-positioning¬†Dwight Howard and Chris Bosh. The referee calls personal fouls on Howard and Malone to start from the physicality of jockeying for position. Both teams play man to man defense to start and the Dream Teamers’ begin by cutting off driving lanes to the basket for Lebron, Wade & Melo with their interior defense. Into the second quarter, the 2008 squad is struggling and is only being saved by the three point shooting of Anthony, Bryant, Kidd and others.

Larry Bird and Magic Johnson close the half sparking a 12-1 run playing a great two man game. Both men are touch passing, skip passing and no-look passing with precise accuracy getting great shots. The 2008 squad doesn’t know which man is covering which and exposes gaps in the lanes. The defenders are running from side to side trying to keep up. The ’92 squad goes in to the break up by 10 points. To start the third quarter, the 2008 squad switches to zone and begins to slow the Dream Team down. Kobe and Chris Paul both get steals out on the perimeter which leads to fastbreak dunks at the other end. Dream Teamers’ begin to show signs of fatigue as they are struggling in transition. Coach Daly calls his first timeout when the 2008 squad ties the score mid third quarter.

Kobe and Melo begin to hold the ball on multiple possessions and the ’92 squad gets its second wind late third quarter as Chris Mullin nails a three point shot on a beautiful kickout from John Stockton. The ’92 squad decides to field a small lineup with Stockton at point, Mullin at the 2, Drexler at 3, Pippen at 4 and Laettner playing the 5 while Jordan, Bird, Barkley, Ewing and Johnson are on the bench. The ’08 squad counters with Paul on Stockton, Michael Redd on Mullin, Tayshaun Prince on Drexler, Anthony on Pippen and Bosh on Laettner while Howard, Wade, James and Bryant are on the bench. Paul hounds Stockton up the court as the game is in mid fourth quarter, Stockton passes up to Pippen who posts up Melo. Pippen backs Melo down and gets a clutch layup. Dream Teamers up by 4.

Paul brings the ball up court but Stockton plays right back at him and is relentless, not allowing Paul any space or angles. Melo gets the ball from Paul at the right elbow and now Pippen is covering him with less then four minutes to play. Melo buries a three point shot after a rock step gains a tiny amount of daylight. The ’92 squad calls timeout and brings in David Robinson and Magic Johnson for Laettner and Clyde Drexler. Stockton brings the ball up court and immediately Johnson asks for the ball to postup Tayshaun Prince, Johnson sees David Robinson get free from Bosh and Johnson alley-oops the ball to him on a thunderous slam dunk. Closing in under three minutes, the 2008 squad calls timeout and brings in Bryant and James for Redd and Prince. The Beijing squad is down by 3 points. James pushes the ball up court and passes Mullin, he probes but gets cut off by David Robinson who was lurking in the paint. James struggles to pass out of a trap to Bryant, who launches a 23′ three point shot off the backboard as the shot clock runs out.

Stockton brings the ball back up court and the 2008 squad is playing a full court press. It is getting close to two minutes on the clock. Johnson calls for the ball again with Lebron guarding him. Stockton passes to Johnson and Mullin runs through a David Robinson screen to lose Kobe Bryant and drain a three point shot with two minutes remaining. Lebron takes the ball up court and continues to press passing quickly to Bryant who bobbles the pass. He passes to Prince who rushes a tough shot, Pippen rebounds and the Dream Teamers take possession. Foul shots dictate the final minute but the ’92 squad wins by 8.

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