France defeated team USA 89-79 to progress to the FIBA World Cup semi-finals. This defeat brought an end to USA’s 58-match unbeaten streak in non-exhibition games when using a team comprised solely of NBA players.
Also brought to an end was team USA’s run of five straight major tournament wins.
Following the loss, USA team coach Gregg Popovich had this to say: “Any loss hurts, and in this situation, it hurts more. But life goes on. This is very important and we would have loved to have won … but we’re all grown, we all have families and lives and life goes on.”
The standout player for France was Rudy Gobert, who scored 21 points, grabbed 16 rebounds and even blocked three shots- two of which came in the game’s closing minutes.
Following his side’s victory, Gobert commented that “we came here to win gold. We knew it wasn’t going to be easy. A lot of people counted us out, but we got the win… It doesn’t mean anything if you don’t win in the end,”
France will face Argentina in the semi-finals on Friday, while the USA will play Serbia in the classification rounds. The highest that team USA can now finish is in fifth place.