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The U.S. women’s basketball team faces Japan for the gold.

The U.S. women’s basketball team faces Japan for the gold.
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The U.S. women’s basketball team faces Japan for the gold.

The U.S. women’s basketball team faces Japan for the gold.

When the teams met earlier in this tournament, as a group, the Americans won by 17. In all aspects of the game – skill, speed, size, strength, to name a few – the United States. United should be superior. (The Americans, who have not lost an Olympic game since 1992, notched their 54th consecutive victory on Friday after beating Serbia, 79-59.)

Sunday’s final could represent the end of the course for two longtime superstars, both of whom are aiming for their fifth gold medals: Sue Bird has said these Olympics will be her last, while Diana Taurasi has hinted so.

“Last dance, baby!” Taurasi shouted as she returned to the locker room after the team won in the semi-final.

The Japanese will place their hopes on their ability to connect from a distance. They lead all teams in 3-point shooting, with a rate of 40.9%.

The Americans will need to keep an eye out for two snipers in particular: Yuki Miyazawa drained 19 3-pointers in this tournament and Saki Hayashi made 17. Miyazawa is shooting 45.2% at 3 points, while Hayashi is shooting 50. , 0%. But the Japanese team will not have much experience to draw on: this is the first time they have reached the medal round in basketball.

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