An absolutely gigantic basketball game will take place in the early hours of Saturday morning. The United States, the No. 1 men’s basketball team in the world, and the Czech Republic, which are ranked 12th, will go head-to-head in Olympic group play. It’s the final game in Group A play, and while it is not technically an elimination game, the loser will slide into third place in the group.
While the top-2 in each group advance, the three third-place teams in the tournament will then be ranked to determine which two go through. They’ll be sorted by points, with the tiebreakers (in order) being point differential, points scored, and FIBA ranking. Basically, being in third place is not fun, and both of these teams have a big-time vested interest in not falling into that spot.
Still, the Americans are overwhelming 23.5-point favorites, while the Czechs have one active NBA player (Tomas Satoransky) on their roster. It is hard to see the United States losing this game, but the team has shown cracks in the armor in exhibitions and Olympic play up to this point, so perhaps Sato and co. can pull off a monumental upset.
As for you, dear viewer, here’s the deal on watching. You know Peacock, that app where it seems like everything related to the Olympics lives? Well, you could watch there, but if you do not want to (either because you don’t have Peacock or because you are also tired of the decentralization of television), good news! If you have a cable or satellite provider, you can click on this link and watch there. It does not air on television, but this is a mechanism to use what you pay for in order to watch it.
Please, enjoy the basketball — and don’t forget to make a run for coffee and a bagel or something, this one tips right around breakfast time.
Tip Time: Saturday, July 31 at 8 a.m. ET
TV Channel: None
Streaming Info: NBCOlympics.com (with TV provider login) and Peacock app (with premium subscription)