Team USA was knocked out of the FIBA World Cup by France on Wednesday, ending a 58-game international winning streak with NBA players.
The U.S. was short-handed, with many of the NBA’s best dropping out of the event, leaving a thin roster reliant on several young players and veterans.
Instead of going home, the U.S. now plays Serbia, one of the competition’s best teams, in the “losers'” bracket.
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Team USA was knocked out of the 2019 FIBA World Cup by France on Wednesday in a stunning, 89-79 loss.
The loss ends a 58-game international winning streak with NBA players by the U.S.
The short-handed U.S. roster went down by as much as 10 vs. France in the third quarter before rallying behind the play of Donovan Mitchell, who scored 14 of his 29 points in the period.
After taking a five-point lead in the fourth quarter, however, France than rallied, going on an 18-5 run, spearheaded by the play of three NBA countrymen, Rudy Gobert, Evan Fournier, and Frank Ntilikina.
The 2019 roster was the weakest in recent memory for U.S. Basketball, with notable withdrawals including James Harden, Anthony Davis, Damian Lillard, C.J. McCollum, Bradley Beal, and more.
Read more: The NBA’s best players are dropping out of the first Olympics qualifying event at an alarming rate
An already-thin roster relying on veterans and young players was stretched further with injuries to Jayson Tatum and Kyle Kuzma, two of the more promising young players on the team.
To counter France’s size, first-time USA head coach Gregg Popovich went small. He used reigning Defensive Player of the Year Gobert in the middle and played lineups featuring players like the 6-foot-7 Jaylen Brown and 6-foot-8 Harrison Barnes at center to spread the floor. The U.S. often struggled on the boards and had no rim …read more
Source:: Business Insider