Team USA routed Brazil on Sunday and successfully swept Group B while remaining undefeated in tournament play along with Argentina's B-Team who swept Group A. Now USA faces a much more challenging quarterfinal round where it will play Group A's Mexico, Puerto Rico, Uruguay, and Argentina respectively.
Mexico: Where they lack in talent they make up for in grit. Mexico plays Nolan Richardson's patented "40 minutes of hell" system where they apply full court pressure all game to cause turnovers. Mexico does have one standout talent in Romel Beck Castro, a 6-7 UNLV alumni Guard/Forward who has been averaging 22.8 ppg on shooting 62% from the field, 35% from beyond the arc.
Puerto Rico: Considered one of the biggest underachievers of this year's tournament with a 1-3 record, Puerto Rico hopes to restart on a new slate in quarterfinal action with its strong guard play from Carlos Arroyo, Elias Ayuso, and Fili Riveria.
Uruguay: A favorite to move on to the semifinals, Uruguay boasts one of the tournament's best non-American centers in Esteban Batista who has been averaging a solid 23 ppg with 14.5 rpg. He has just been dominating the boards in Group A play, it will be interesting to see how he matches up against Dwight Howard, Amare Stoudemire, and Chandler. Another Uruguayan standout is 6'0" guard Nicolas Mazzarino who has shot an outstanding 46.9% from behind the arc.
Argentina: Last but not least is the only other undefeated team in the tournament, Argentina's B-Team. Their performance so far just goes to show you how much talent Argentina has in basketball. Unlike other teams in this tournament who just have 1 or 2 stars, Argentina's starting five are all solid players. They are led by Carlos Delfino, the 6'7" guard who has been productive in all categories (points, rebounds, assists, steals). Next is Center/Forward Luis Scola who is close to averaging a double-double. Finally, my personal favorite, the clutch 6th man Paolo Quinteros (he is the dude with the Air Jordan tat on his right shoulder 😛) who is Argentina's most dangerous weapon from behind the arc in close games. Argentina as a whole is shooting 42.3% from downtown.