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U.S. Wins Basketball Gold As Olympics Wind Down

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U.S. Wins Basketball Gold As Olympics Wind Down

U.S. Wins Basketball Gold As Olympics Wind Down

U.S. Wins Basketball Gold As Olympics Wind Down

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/93922097/93922076" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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U.S. head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the United States receives a gold medal from Lebron James after defeating Spain in the gold medal game during Day 16 of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Harry How/Getty Images hide caption

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Harry How/Getty Images

U.S. head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the United States receives a gold medal from Lebron James after defeating Spain in the gold medal game during Day 16 of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

Harry How/Getty Images

In Depth

On the final day of the Beijing Olympics, the U.S. men's basketball team won the gold medal in an exciting victory over Spain.

As Frank Langfitt tells Liane Hansen, the U.S. team defeated the reigning world champion in a tense game that was closer than the final score, 118-107.

The closing ceremonies are now under way, with the world's sports fans looking forward to the 2012 games in London. In Beijing, London organizers may have hit a wrong note by having rocker Jimmy Page play "Whole Lotta Love" — a 1960s song that may not bring to mind images of a fresh and exciting event.

The 2008 Olympics were marked by stirring world-record performances. Those feats transcended controversies over pollution — and fakery and deception, in the form of a glittering opening ceremony and questions over the age of several of China's medal-winning gymnasts.

And two other things took a temporary backseat as the athletes took center stage: China's record on censorship and human rights.