Host City: London, Great Britain
Date Started: July 28, 2012
Date Finished: August 12, 2012
Participants: 287 (144 men and 143 women) from 17 countries
Youngest Participant: Guo Ailun (18 years, 258 days)
Oldest Participant: Nate Reinking (38 years, 230 days)
Most Medals (Athlete): 72 athletes with 1 medal
Most Medals (Country): United States (2 medals)
Basketball took place at two venues. All preliminary games were held at the [Basketball Arena] within the Olympic Park. In the knock-out round, all men's games and women's semi-finals and finals were held at the [North Greenwich Arena]. The Basketball Arena was a temporary structure that looked like a large inflatable tent, and it was proposed that it would be broken down and sent to Brazil for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.
The format was the same as from 1996-2008, with both men and women playing the same format – two 6-team groups, playing in a round-robin format, with the top four teams in each group advancing to the knock-out phase, beginning with the quarter-finals.
The 12 men’s teams were selected as follows – Great Britain as the host nation; the United States as the 2010 World Champion; the 2011 Tournament of Americas Championships (Argentina, Brazil); the 2011 EuroBasket Championships (Spain, France); the 2012 World Olympic Qualifying Tournament (Lithuania, Russia, Nigeria), and the 2011 Oceanian, Asian, and African Champions (Australia, China, and Tunisia, respectively).
The 12 women’s teams were selected as follows – Great Britain as the host nation; the United States as the 2010 World Champion; the 2011 Champions at the EuroBasket Championship (Russia), Asian Championships (China), Oceanian Championships (Australia), Tournament of the Americas Championship (Brazil), and the African Championships (Angola); and five teams from the World Olympic Qualifying Tournament (France, Turkey, Czech Republic, Croatia, Canada).
As they had in 2008 the United States won both gold medals. The women were especially dominant and were never challenged. The men's team was again made up of NBA players but the rest of the world has gotten close to the USA, as several of the games, including the final against Spain, were tightly fought. The United States' men were led by repeat gold medalists [Kobe Bryant] and [LeBron James], as well as first-time Olympian [Kevin Durant].