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Considered the top challenger for the gold medal, Spain will meet France in the quarterfinals, and would meet either Lithuania or Russia in the semifinals.
If the U.S. and Argentina do meet again, prepare for battle.
Storylines USA 126, Argentina 97Kevin Durant scores 28 points, including eight 3-pointers, on 9-of-12 shooting.
» The Americans win their preliminary group with a 5-0 record and will meet Australia in the quarterfinals.
» The U.S. and Argentina can meet again in the semifinals, if they each win in the quarters.
Several American players noted they had also experienced nasty run-ins during a rough 86-80 pre-Olympic exhibition victory in Barcelona, in which the Argentines fought back from a 20-point deficit to make it close.
"You kind of want to send a message a little bit," Bryant said. "This was the second game in a row that this team has played us close. We didn’t want to give them confidence."
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