# Winning Big – United States of America in the 2012 London Olympics

Benjamin Stanway, Derek Peters, Alex Radu, Kelvin Beeching , James Belsey

## Crynodeb

Introduction - During the 2012 London Olympics the USA won all 8 games with a mean score difference of 34.1±24.6 (range 5-83). This indicates a slight increase from their triumph in the 2008 Beijing Olympics where the mean point difference was 27.9±11.8 (range 11–49) (Sampaio et al., 2010). The aim of this single case study was to interpret how the USA won and to understand what led them to being so successful, in terms of play-by-play action variables and scoring zones (Figure 1).
Methods - The 2012 London Olympic basketball games (n=8) were captured from TV via a Blackmagic video converter in order to code and analyse each game and quarter for the USA using SportsCode Elite v8.6. By calculating the score difference of each quarter (n=32), ‘big win’ (15 and above difference, n=7), ‘balanced win’ (less than 6 difference, n=8), ‘win’ (between 7 and 14 difference, n=10) and ‘not win’ (n=7), margins could be distinguished and then categorised using the 25th and 75th percentiles. These quarters were coded and analysed by using play-by-play action variables with field goal attempts being split into five zones (Tsamourtzis and Athanasiou, 2004), each of these play-by-play action variables were normalised per actual ball possession.
Results - Results from a one-way ANOVA revealed that the number of assist passes (F=20.4, p<0.001), successful 3 point shots (F=7.1, p<0.01), two point shots missed from ‘Zone 2’ (F= 3.4, p<0.05), 3 point shots missed from ‘Zone 1’ (F=6.2, p<0.05), 3 point shots made from ‘Zone 4’ (F=3.3, p<0.05) and 3 point shots made from ‘Zone 5’ (F=4.2, p<0.05) all had a significant influence on quarter outcome. The Bonferroni adjusted post hoc tests revealed that ‘big win’ quarters had significantly more assist passes than the other types of quarters (p<0.01). In addition, there were significantly more successful 3 point shots (overall) and from ‘Zone 5’ in ‘big win’ quarters than ‘not win’ and ‘balanced win’ quarters.
Discussion and Conclusions- The 3 point shots missed from ‘Zone 1’ (p<0.05) were significantly lower in ‘big win’ quarters than ‘not win’ quarters, whereas, 3 point shots made from ‘Zone 4’ (p<0.05) were significantly higher in ‘big win’ quarters than ‘not win’ quarters. Csataljay et al. (2013) states, 3 point shots are a distinguishing indicator for success. Therefore, to reduce their success rate of 3 point shots opponents must increase the level of defensive pressure on the shot by forcing the USA to perform their shots earlier, with less time to set up the shot. Assist passes can be reduced by implementing a strategy of full court press with effective communication; this will put pressure on the attack and ultimately, force bad passes or passes that are easy to steal (Sampaio et al., 2010).
Iaith wreiddiol Saesneg International Society of Performance Analysis (ISPAS) World Congress of Performance Analysis of Sport X Opatija, Croatia, September 3 – 6, 2014 Goran Sporiš, Zoran Milanović, Mike Hughes, Dario Škegro University of Zagreb, Faculty of Kinesiology 978-953-317-027-5 Cyhoeddwyd - 2014 International Society of Performance Analysis of Sport (ISPAS) World Congress of Performance Analysis of Sport X - Opatija, CroatiaHyd: 3 Medi 2014 → 6 Medi 2014Rhif y gynhadledd: 10