Argentina’s men’s basketball team, the last team other than the U.S. to win Olympic gold, will miss the Olympics for the first time since 2000.
A Bahamas team with Deandre Ayton, Eric Gordon and Buddy Hield beat host Argentina 82-75 in a pre-2024 Olympic qualifying tournament final.
The Bahamas advances to one of four, last-chance, winner-take-all Olympic qualifying tournaments next year, likely in June.
Argentina, ranked fourth in the world, was eliminated from Olympic qualifying.
Its loss came six months after Argentina failed to qualify for the FIBA World Cup, missing that quadrennial championship for the first time since 1982.
Argentina made the quarterfinals of the last five Olympics, highlighted by winning the 2004 Athens Games, the last time the U.S. did not prevail.
That team was led by Manu Ginobili, but Argentina now has zero active NBA players. Carlos Delfino, 40, is the last link to the Golden Generation, playing 29 minutes against the Bahamas.
The Bahamas has never competed in Olympic basketball. Its men’s team is ranked 56th in the world, but surely moving up under Chris DeMarco, a Golden State Warriors assistant.
Gordon, a Suns guard who scored 27 points Sunday, has a Bahamian mom and was reportedly cleared to represent the nation earlier this month. He previously played for the U.S. at the 2010 Worlds.
Ayton, a Phoenix Suns center who had 10 points and 21 rebounds on Sunday, is from the Bahamas.
Hield, an Indiana Pacers guard who scored 15 points, is also from the Bahamas.