After steamrolling the Algerians, the USA Olympic team turned their sights to a similarly undermanned Nigerian team. They entered the game as a 42 point favorite and aimed to leave that figure in the rear window.
Nigeria has one NBA player, Al-Farouq Aminu of the New Orleans Hornets, one former NBA player, Ike Diogu, and another that recently saw time in the NBDL in 2010, brother of Al-Farouq, Alade Aminu.
To say that the Americans got off to a hot start is an insult to the Americans, not heat. They shot 18/23 from the field and 11/15 from 3 point land in the first quarter. Kobe, Carmelo, Russell, Kevin Love and Deron Williams combined for 14/14 and 38 points in that quarter. Did I mention that it is a 10 minute quarter?
Ike Diogu, the former 6’9” center drafted 9th overall by the Warriors in the 2005 NBA Draft, single handedly kept the Nigerians in the game. He started out 6/7 for 13 points but faded soon thereafter.
There were lobs aplenty, runout dunks and buried open three pointers. The US defense stifled their counterpoints with quick halfcourt double teams and the inflated score by the Nigerian team is simply a testament to how quickly the States were able to score.
For the US: A 78-45 lead at halftime, 67.4% to 47.2% shooting. A 20/4 versus a 9/13 assist to turnover ratio. Ho hum.
Carmelo got hot from three in the second half, hitting 5 in a row to break a USA olympic player record held by Stephon Marbury with 37 points. He finished 10 for 12 from long range.
The score was 119-62. A crushing victory, right? Well, that was only after 30 minutes. The previous record for made threes in a game was 13 and the previous record for scoring by one team was 138 but the US blew past those. The final score was 156-73, the US shot 59-83 (71%) and shot 29-46 from three (63%). Check out the boxscore here and be amazed.
The USA next plays Lithuania tomorrow, Aug. 4 and then Argentina on Aug. 6.
Tags: Andre Iguodala Anthony Davis Carmelo Anthony Chris Paul Deron Williams Ike Diogu James Harden Kevin Durant Kevin Love Kobe Bryant LeBron James Nigeria Russell Westbrook Tyson Chandler United States