Utah Jazz: Joe Ingles exhibiting possible golden stroke

Utah Jazz veteran Joe Ingles (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Utah Jazz veteran Joe Ingles (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) /

Utah Jazz treasure Joe Ingles is gearing up to help Australia unearth gold.

In light of Team USA’s stunning loss on Saturday to Utah Jazz role player Miye Oni and Nigeria in Las Vegas, it’s now anyone’s guess as to which country ought to be the favorite to take home gold from the upcoming 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

However, it seems safe to say that Australia, a tight-knit bunch with its fair share of dangerous NBA weapons, is in the conversation despite the fact no Boomer squad has ever stood on an Olympic podium. One key component this go-round is the collection’s sly Jazzman, Joe Ingles.

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In Australia’s exhibition opener against Argentina over the weekend, Ingles poured in 16 points while shooting 5-for-13 from the field, including 4-for-11 from downtown, and 2-for-2 from the foul line. The 6-foot-8 lefty also contributed three assists, two rebounds, two steals, and a block in 28 minutes on the floor.

And the Australians prevailed, 87-84, thanks to a 3-point splash at the buzzer from San Antonio Spurs guard Patty Mills.

American-sized test on tap for Utah Jazz gem Joe Ingles and his Boomers

Up next for Australia is an exhibition matchup with what will likely be an angry Team USA at 6 p.m. MT Monday. Then the Boomers face Nigeria at 7:30 p.m. MT Tuesday before wrapping up their tune-ups with another bout against Team USA at 4 p.m. MT Friday.

Ingles and Australia will officially begin their gold-medal quest on July 25 when they square off against Oni and Nigeria in Group B action.

Aside from Ingles and Oni, Rudy Gobert is the only other Jazzman set to play in Tokyo. He and France are in Group A and will tip their Olympic journey on July 25 as well when they battle Team USA.

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In what was his seventh season both in the NBA and with the Utah Jazz, the 33-year-old Joe Ingles matched his career-high 12.1 points per game in addition to setting personal bests across the board in the shooting department: 48.9 percent from the field, 45.1 percent beyond the arc, and 84.4 percent from the charity stripe.