TOKYO, JAPAN– Revenge is a dish best served GOLD! Team USA Basketball earned their fourth consecutive Gold Medal by holding off France, 87-82 at Saitama Super Arena on Saturday afternoon in Tokyo Japan. Team USA was led by the dominance of Kevin Durant, scoring a game high 29 points as his spectacular play has notched him three Gold medals, in addition, the distinct honor of being recognized as the greatest American player in Olympic history.
France beat the US, 83-76 early in the games. The United States squandered a seven point lead in the final three minutes to lose the opening game in Tokyo. Everyone pounced on Team USA-especially after two humiliating losses at the hands to Nigeria and Australia in Las Vegas in the preliminary games-many people wrote them off assuming their streak of gold would fade.
Early on, the US was ice cold from the three point line, missing their first eight attempts. Then KD got scorching hot from the field, scoring 21 points in the first half alone.
“One game and you go home, so I have to give it my all when I am out there,” Durant said on NBC after. “I was able to knock down shots to keep us afloat and then Dame hit some shots in the fourth.”
Jayson Tatum scored 19 points off the bench, Damian Lilliard returned to NBA form with 11 points and a couple of key buckets down the stretch after struggling through most of the Olympic games.
Team USA seemed to seal the victory with about a minute left and a comfortable 7 point advantage. But a series of turnovers and a furious French rally trimmed the lead to 85–82. Fittingly Kevin Durant would seal the victory, calmly sinking two free throws to give the USA it’s hard earned gold medal.
Team France was undefeated at 5-0 before earning the Silver medal. Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz was superb adding 16 points and 8 rebounds for the French who refused to quit in this game. Congratulations to the USA men’s national team- Olympic Gold medalist.