A USA crew led by NBA All-Star Kevin Durant, 11 instances, was crushed 83-76 by France on Sunday, taking a streak of Olympic victory that stretches to the 2004 Athens Video games.
France, with a crew consisting of NBA gamers together with Rudy Gobert and Evan Fournier, restricted Durant to only 10 factors within the first-round sport.
Durant sat many of the third quarter in bother and when he mattered, he was unable to encourage his crew because the French got here from behind to take management within the final quarter whereas the People missed out. I do know 9 last photographs.
The US had seen little conviction within the Tokyo build-up and the defeat would underscore the fears Durant expressed earlier than the Video games that his band wouldn’t face a “cakewalk” in Japan.
Fournier marked the highest with 28 factors for France. Though the Boston Celtics participant made simply 4 of 12 from past the three-point line, he discovered his vary when it was essential to assist the French shock the People.
“I attempted to be aggressive. As an NBA participant I do know the gamers we had been on the forefront of. We needed to present the crew how you can assault it, ”Fournier mentioned.
France recovered a 10-point deficit to set a breathless final quarter and because the People had been unable to search out any tempo, the French smelled victory in Saitama, the place spectators had been absent as a result of coronavirus measures.
Fournier’s triple with 57 seconds left put their crew forward 76-74 and when Durant hit the board with a three-point try the French closed out the sport with a succession of free throws.
When Jayson Tatum beat Nicolas Batum, the French NBA veteran attacked the 2 free throws from the road to seal the victory.
Gobert downplayed the importance of the victory.
“I imply it’s nice, however so long as we’ve what we wish round our necks, it doesn’t actually matter,” the Utah Jazz participant mentioned.
“Each man who got here into the sport introduced us one thing,” he added.
“It is actually the crew we need to be and it is thrilling for the remainder of the match.”
America will face Iran of their subsequent match on Wednesday when France face the Czech Republic.