Kevin Durant and Jayson Tatum Lead Team U.S.A. in Scoring at Half
It goes without saying, but having Kevin Durant on your team is a great luxury.
His 21-point first-half performance propelled the United States to a 44-39 lead over France in the men’s basketball game for the gold medal.
Jayson Tatum took control of the Americans’ offense for a while while Durant rested early in the quarter. When Durant returned, the two essentially took turns finding their punches.
Tatum finished the half with 11 points, making five of his nine shots from the field. Khris Middleton was the only other American player to have made a field goal in the quarterback.
France took a time out with about six and a half minutes remaining to try to pull themselves together. But that didn’t help much. Durant completed a two-handed dunk on American possession that followed, as the Americans continued to attack the rim.
What helped most, however, was perhaps the way the United States tightened up its defense, swarming all over the place, getting its hands on everything. France, in response, struggled to find paths to the basket. They were trailing up to 13 points, but fell back late to reduce the lead before the buzzer sounded.
Rudy Gobert leads France with 13 points to go and 11 rebounds.
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