The 2012 Team USA Men’s Basketball squad will never be able to prove whether or not it could beat the 1992 Dream Team, but it can handle its business on the court. Team USA got its quest for the gold underway on Sunday, defeating France easily, 98-71 in both teams opening contest of the London 2012 Olympics.
Kevin Durant led Team USA with 22 point and nine rebounds in his Olympic debut. Yahoo Sports reported that six Durant made 6 of his 13 shots, including 3 of his 5 3-pointers as Team USA effortlessly moved the ball, racking up 27 assists as a team.
France, who’s best player Tony Parker has seen only limited practice time, was unable to seriously challenge the Americans. Parker finished with just 10 points.
The French team included a handful of players with NBA experience, but few teams in the games are expected to be able to hang with Team USA. The roster includes NBA all-stars (or potential all-stars) from the starting five all the way to the last man on the bench, allowing coach Mike Krzyzewski to make frequent substitutions to keep players fresh.
Kevin Love scored 14 points and Kobe Bryant added 10. LeBron James scored nine points with eight assists and five rebounds in 25 minutes of play.
Yahoo Sports Blog Fourth Place Medal reported that after the win, each member of Team USA got a hug from First Lady Michelle Obama, who NBC play-by-play man Bob Fitzgerald called the “first fan.”
Team USA continues its journey toward hopefully an Olympic basketball gold medal on Tuesday when Durant and company will face Tunisia. Tunisia lost its opening contest to Nigeria, 60-56. Along with France, Tunisia and Nigeria, Team USA is in Pool A with Argentina and Lithuania.