Basketball at the 1972 Summer Olympics
This article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2015) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
|8th Olympic Basketball Tournament|
|Olympics||1972 Summer Olympics|
|Host nation||West Germany|
|Duration||August 27, 1972
September 9, 1972
Basketball contests at the 1972 Summer Olympics took place at Rudi-Sedlmayer-Halle in Munich, Germany from August 27 to September 9. The Soviet Union won the gold medal, after a controversial final against the United States. This was the first time the USA did not win a gold medal since the sport's introduction into the Olympics in 1936. The bronze was won by Cuba, the only Olympic medal they have won in basketball.
† – Medals refused by team
Automatic qualifications were granted to the host country and the first four places at the previous tournament. Additional spots were decided by various continental tournaments held by FIBA plus an additional pre-Olympic tournament that granted two extra berths.
|Australia|| United States – Gold medal in 1968
SFR Yugoslavia – Silver medal in 1968
Soviet Union – Bronze medal in 1968
Brazil – 4th place in 1968
West Germany – Olympic hosts
- Two groups of eight teams are formed, where the top two from each group compete for the medals in a knockout round.
- The remaining places are defined as follows:
- Fifth through eighth places are decided in a separate bracket between the third and fourth places from each group in a separate bracket.
- Ninth through sixteenth places are decided between the fifth through eighth places from each group in separate brackets.
- Head to head results
- Goal average (not the goal difference) between the tied teams
The top two teams from each group advance to the semifinals, while the remaining teams compete for 5th through 16th places in separate brackets.
|Qualified for the semifinals|
|Qualified for the semifinals|
|Team||W||L||PF||PA||PD||Pts||1st Tie||2nd Tie|
|Semifinals (September 7)||Gold medal (September 9)|
|A2||Cuba||61||Bronze medal (September 8)|
|Semifinals (September 7)||5th place (September 9)|
|A4||Czechoslovakia||63||7th place (September 8)|
|Semifinals (September 5)||9th place (September 9)|
|A6||Australia||70||11th place (September 8)|
|Semifinals (September 5)||13th place (September 7)|
- a Forfeited match.
With three seconds left in the gold medal game, American forward Doug Collins sank two free throws to put the Americans up 50–49. However, the buzzer sounded before Collins' second free throw. Immediately following Collins' free throws, the Soviets inbounded the ball and failed to score. But one official had whistled play to stop with one second remaining after hearing the earlier horn and seeing a disturbance near the scorers table. The Soviets argued that they had requested a timeout before Collins' foul shots. The referees ordered the clock reset to three seconds and the game's final seconds replayed. However, the clock was in the process of being reset when the referees put the ball in play. The horn once again sounded as a length-of-the-court Soviet pass was being released from the inbounding player, the pass missed its mark, and the U.S. again began celebrating.
However, final three seconds was replayed for a third time. This time, the Soviets' Alexander Belov and the USA's Kevin Joyce and Jim Forbes went up for the pass, and Belov caught the long pass from Ivan Edeshko near the American basket. Belov then laid the ball in for the winning points as the buzzer sounded. Herbert Mols, Resident Manager of the US team with help from MK Summers, President of the US Olympic Basketball Committee, filed an extensive and detailed appeal, protesting the final game result to a five-man Jury of Appeal, which voted down the protest and awarded the gold medals to the Soviet team. With three of the five jury members being from Soviet-allied nations, this fueled speculation that the tally had been 3–2 and perhaps based more upon Cold War politics than upon the FIBA rulebook. This view was further suggested when jury members Rafael Lopez and Claudio Coccia — from Puerto Rico and Italy, respectively — each reportedly confirmed having voted for the United States, thus indicating that pro-Soviet votes could have come only from Hepp of Hungary, Adam Bagłajewski of Poland, and Andres Keiser of Cuba. The U.S. players voted unanimously to refuse their silver medals, and at least one team member, Kenny Davis, has directed in his will that his heirs are never to accept the medals, even posthumously.
|Soviet Union||51–50||United States|
|Scoring by half: 26–21, 25–29|
|Pts: Sergey Belov 20
Rebs: Alexander Belov 8
|Pts: Tom Henderson, Jim Brewer 9 each
Rebs: Mike Bantom 9
|1972 Olympic Basketball Champions|
- Official Report (PDF). 3: the competitions. Munich: Organizing Committee for the Games of the XXth Olympiad. 1973. pp. 418–437. OCLC 829366034. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
- FIBA Results Archive:
- "Forbes Leads U.S. Romp". Spartanburg Herald-Journal. Associated Press. September 8, 1972. p. B4. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
- Chris Elzey (2002). ":03 Seconds From Gold" (PDF). Journal of Sports History. 29 (3): 518–522. Archived (PDF) from the original on 9 November 2010. Retrieved 16 November 2010.
- Gary Smith (1992-06-15). "Pieces of Silver". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 2010-08-27.