Israeli Coach Leads Russian Basketball Team to Bronze at London Olympics

Russia, coached by David Blatt, takes tight medal game over Argentina 81-77.

LONDON - Alexei Shved scored 25 points — 13 in the fourth quarter — and Russia, led by Israeli coach David Blatt, won its first medal in Olympic men’s basketball with an 81-77 victory Sunday over Argentina.

Andrei Kirilenko added 20 points and Vitaliy Fridzon 19 for Russia, which finished ninth at the Beijing Games four years ago.

Manu Ginobili scored 21 and Andres Nocioni 16 for Argentina, which was looking to add another bronze to its Olympic collection after winning one in China and gold eight years ago in Athens.

Fridzon’s layup with 5.2 seconds left sealed if for Russia, which came away with the ball after it changed hands several times near midcourt. When the game ended, several Argentine players surrounded the officials to protest and guard Pablo Prigioni kicked an electronic clock off the scorer’s table.