After Team USA disappointed in 2004 with a third-place finish at the Athens Olympics, Bryant and several other stars joined to compose the Redeem Team, which first needed to qualify for the Beijing Games at the 2007 FIBA Americas. Kobe went off for 31 points in a title-game win over Argentina to send the Americans back to the Olympics.
In his first time suiting up for the United States National Team, Bryant immediately asserted himself as the group’s alpha dog. Down by one at the end of the annual Blue vs. White scrimmage, he rose up for a game-winning jumper to steal victory with 6.5 seconds remaining.
When his team needed him most, Kobe was there to provide some late-game heroics in Team USA’s gold medal match against Spain. The Lakers star scored 13 points in a fourth quarter which saw the Spaniards trim America’s lead to two. Bryant even hit a four-point play with three minutes left to seal Olympic victory.
On their road to gold in Beijing the Americans rocked their home threads four times, including in the opener against their hosts: China. Bryant enjoyed his best all-around game of the tournament in blue, scoring 25 points in a quarterfinal win over Australia.
Bryant and his fellow Americans donned the blue USA jerseys just three times in London, but each produced desired results. They rolled over Tunisia and Argentina by a combined 76 points and squeaked past Lithuania, 99-94, in their only close call before the championship match.
The U.S. National Team rolled through the majority of the London Olympics, until it faced Spain in the gold medal round. Bryant provided 17 points to aid the Americans’ 107-100 victory over their fiercest competition, as Team USA captured gold in both of Bryant’s trips to the Games.
Prior to their undefeated campaign at the 2012 Olympics, the Americans donned throwback Dream Team uniforms for an exhibition against Argentina. Team USA’s threads also featured a “CD” patch in honor of the late coach of that 1992 squad, Chuck Daly.