2010 FIBA World Championship: USA Off To 2 Easy Wins

Team USA started its title bid at the 2010 FIBA World Championship with two easy victories in the group stage, defeating Croatia and Slovenia in two-successive days.

Kevin Durant scored 14 points while Eric Gordon led the Americans with 16 points to help the U.S. defeat Croatia in the opening match of the tournament being held in four cities in Turkey. The U.S.-Croatia match, as well as all Group B games, was held in Abdi ─░pekci Arena, Istanbul. The match started close with the U.S. team leading only by 2 after the first quarter, 22-20. However, the Americans launched a 14-2, second-quarter run spiked by a Durant dunk to take control of the match, which ended with a lopsided, 106-78, score.

In the Americans’ second game on August 29, Durant was again the star player, as the Oklahoma City Thunder main man scored 22 points while Memphis Grizzlies forward Rudy Gay chipped in 16 points, including three bombs from beyond the arc. Unlike in the Croatia match, the U.S. started strong against Slovenia, which was coming off an 80-56 win over Tunisia the previous night. The U.S. dropped a 12-2 bomb early in the game and never relinquished the lead, although Slovenia tried to fight back in the second quarter behind former NBA player Bostjan Nachbar, who scored 13 points to lead his team. The Americans put the game away early in the second half and never looked back en route to a 99-77 victory.

The U.S. now shares the Group B lead with Brazil, which defeated Iran and Tunisia in its first two games. The top four teams from each of the four groups will move on to the round of 16, which would start on September 4.