USA Basketball’s path to the podium: When and how to watch

Harry How/Getty Images

USA Basketball’s quest for a seventh consecutive gold medal is officially underway. With the squad announced and the schedule solidified, all eyes are on the heavy favorites heading into Tokyo.

The U.S. team’s podium ambitions first start with the preliminary round group stage. Team USA is in Group B with France, Japan and Nigeria. The squad’s Olympic journey begins with Nigeria on June 27, airing in the United States at 12:40 EST. Preliminary round play continues with Japan on July 30 at 12:40 EST and concludes with France on August 2 at 12:40 EST.

If the Team USA advances out of the group stage as anticipated, quarterfinal matches begin on August 3 and run through the 4th. Semifinals are scheduled for August 6, with the bronze-medal game set for August 7. The gold-medal matchup is also planned for August 7, airing in primetime at 10:30 p.m. EST.

The Tokyo Olympics carry a unique weight for Sue Bird and Diana Taurasi as the duo attempt to become the first players ever to win five gold medals in basketball.