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France, Spain gear up for another classic showdown

France, Spain gear up for another classic showdown
france-spain-gear-up-for-another-classic-showdown
In France, they call it "La Classique," the north-south http://www.authenticlakersstore.com/authentic-11-wesley-johnson-jersey.html footballing derby between Paris St. Germain and Marseilles. "El Clasico" in Spain is of greater renown, the bearpit of mutual antipathy between Real Madrid and Barcelona. International basketball, claims Tony Parker, has its own rivalry for the ages. "I feel it's like a classic now," the San Antonio Spurs guard says. "France-Spain in the European Championships, or any competition. It brings a lot of excitement." The boos that have been directed so far toward Spain during EuroBasket games in their neighboring country illustrate the edge that the duel has acquired over a decade in which both have wrestled for continental supremacy. Between the players involved, there is respect, even friendship. But when the sides face off yet again on Thursday Yankees Johnny Damon Jersey with a place in the final of EuroBasket -- and a guaranteed spot at the Rio 2016 Olympics at stake -- camaraderie is out the window. This, my friends, is war. Or, declares French guard Evan Fournier, "a dogfight." Recent history tells us not to expect anything less. "It all began in Poland in 2009," French forward Nicolas Batum adds. France thought they were ready to contend. Instead they were ruthlessly punished in the quarterfinals as Spain marched toward its first European title. A year later, some retribution: a 72-66 win in the opening round of the world championships in Turkey. Neither team would factor in the medal hunt. A summer onward and the tide turned again, with the Spaniards prevailing 96-69 in the opening round of EuroBasket 2011 before repeating the feat in the final to retain their crown. But, Parker adds, "The worst one, that was the Bruins Terry O'Reilly Jersey defeat at the Olympic Games in 2012. We were ahead, we had the game in the palm of our hands three minutes from the end and we completely lost our way." With a 15-6 fourth quarter, Spain swept into the semifinals before losing to Team USA in the gold medal contest. "That one was hard to swallow," the Parker said. "We lost in 2009, in 2011, and I was thinking it was just their right." It wasn't that France player poorly. Parker in his prime. Batum, Boris Diaw, Ronny Turiaf, Kevin Seraphin. A group inspired by a preceding generation that claimed a silver medal at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. Spain, going toe to toe with the United http://www.authenticrangersshop.com/authentic-28-dominic-moore-jersey.html States to be designated as the best international squad on the planet, had just a little more. The brothers Gasol. Jose Calderon and Juan Carlos Navarro still operating a full speed. A roster, one through 12, that would not have looked out of place in the NBA.

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