TOKYO (USA Basketball) — It was a battle of basketball titans, playing on the biggest of international stages.
And during the first half of Tuesday’s semifinal at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, the U.S. Olympic Men’s Basketball Team (3-1) and Spain (2-2) danced with each other, felt each other out and landed significant blows each way.
But in the third quarter it was the top-ranked Americans who quickly landed the haymaker. There was no standing eight count, but the second-ranked Spaniards were staggered. By hitting five 3-pointers and not allowing Spain to make a field goal for almost six minutes to begin the second half, the U.S. advanced to the Olympic semifinals with a 95-81 victory on Tuesday at Saitama Super Arena.
The U.S., three-time defending gold medalist and winner of 15 golds in 18 trips to the Olympics leading up to Tokyo, will face either Australia or Argentina in Thursday’s semifinals. The U.S. is 8-0 against Australia and 7-1 vs. Argentina in Olympic play.
Kevin Durant scored 13 of his 29 points in the third quarter, hitting two early 3-pointers to open the second half, and he lead five Americans in double figures. Former Duke men’s basketball standout…