Aside from the lone blemish on their record, a third-place showing at the 2004 Olympics, the US Men's Basketball team is expected to maintain a flawless win-loss record, at all costs. Unfortunately, that did not occur last night when USA Basketball was hit with a permanent stain to their record, in the form of a loss to Australia by a narrow score of 98-94.

Coach Popovich's failure to will his squad members to victory, all but snaps a historic run for the US program: 78 victories in succession. After the game, Popovich and most notably, the team's projected starting point guard Kemba Walker, were on hand to reflect on the exhibition loss.

"They say Team USA doesn’t lose. I get it. They haven’t lost in a very long time, which I understand, but it happens. Teams lose. Like I said, we’re going to take this loss and build from it," Kemba Walker opined after the contest. "That’s all we can do. That’s all we can do is continue to try our best to get better. The real thing doesn’t start until China."

Kemba's not fibbing. It can be at times, rather difficult, to raise one's "compete level" when the stakes are lowered. Hence why NBA players often take a month or so to rear into gear upon opening tip-off. The FIBA World Cup commences in a week. Is USA's loss to Australia a caveat or just another blip on the radar? Comment below.

[Via]