The preliminary round of the 2012 Olympic basketball tournament is now complete, and thus, the single-elimination medal round can begin. The quarterfinals were essentially set prior to Team USA's blowout win over Argentina on Monday, and now, they are official. With their victory, Team USA will square off against Australia, the fourth-place team from Group B, at 5:15 EST on Wednesday.
Here is the complete schedule for the quarterfinals, all of which will be played on Wednedsay.
Russia (4-1 in Group B) vs. Lithuania (2-3 in Group A): Russia's magic in last-second finishes ran out on Monday against Australia, but coach David Blatt will take that rather than in the medal round. Lithuania, meanwhile, was very impressive against Team USA, but pretty erratic otherwise. They're always a threat, though, and Russia, while impressive, has played a lot of close games. 9 a.m. EST.
France (4-1 in Group A) vs. Spain (3-2 in Group B): After losing to Team USA in their opener, France looked generally impressive in winning their last four games. Games against Tunisia and Nigeria were a bit too close for comfort, but Tony Parker and company are a formidable threat. Spain's pedigree is obvious, and they have as good a chance as anyone to make the Gold Medal game. However, they need both Juan Carlos Navarro and Marc Gasol to fight off nagging injuries. 11:15 a.m. EST.
Brazil (4-1 in Group B) vs. Argentina (3-2 in Group A): Brazil defeated Spain on Monday to clinch this spot ... and may have made their lives more difficult in the process. Not only does a semifinal matchup with Team USA loom, but so does a difficult quarterfinal against an experienced Argentina squad. Argentina showed their age at times in losses to France and Team USA, but led by Manu Ginobili, they're the kind of team you never want to count out in this kind of tournament. 3 p.m. EST.
Team USA (5-0 in Group A) vs. Australia (3-2 in Group B): Save for their game against Lithuania and their first half against Argentina, Team USA has been dominant thus far. However, Australia, led by point guard Patty Mills, has also been impressive, finishing off a 3-2 record in a strong Group B after Mills' thrilling buzzer beater against Russia on Monday. 5:15 p.m. EST.