menu close twitter facebook snapchat instagram youtube article basketball gallery graph left-arrow right-arrow search star trophy video net clipboard shield-check shield-star stopwatch filter reset Share
DeMarcus Cousins

USA Dominant In FIBA World Cup Opener

  • Date:
    Aug 30, 2014

Bilbao, Spain

Box Score

Additional Quotes

Complete Schedule & Results

• VIDEO: Game Recap

Photo Gallery

The most impressive part of the USA’s (1-0) 114-55 rout of Finland (0-1) in its opening game of the 2014 FIBA World Cup on Saturday night at Bizkaia Arena in Bilbao, Spain, in fact was an entire quarter.

In the whole second period, the USA allowed just two made free throws for Finland and limited its opponent to 0-17 shooting from the field, while it raced to 29 points of its own to improve upon an already sizable first-quarter lead.

The 59-point win was the USA’s largest margin of victory in FIBA World Cup play since NBA players have been included on rosters (1994).

“Congratulations to Finland. They played hard for forty minutes, we played hard for forty minutes,” said USA coach Mike Krzyzewski (Duke University), who is now 4-0 in FIBA World Cup opening games. “We’re more talented, but I thought the effort for both teams was at a high level.

“Our defense was outstanding, forcing 31 turnovers and to only give up I think five assists, I just thought our guys played very hard the whole time. We won by a lot of points, but I think Finland is a good team. I think they are a well coached (team). Their fans were terrific. What a nice atmosphere, and it was an honor to play them.”

All 12 U.S. players scored, led by 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the field and 4-of-7 marksmanship from beyond the 3-point arc by Klay Thompson (Golden State Warriors). Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans) was 6-of-8 from the field and 5-of-5 from the free throw line to finish with 17 points; Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls) also was 5-of-5 from the line on his way to 12 points and three assists; and Rudy Gay (Sacramento Kings) added 10 points and five rebounds.

“I’ve got to give credit to the starters, they came out and put the pressure on and played with great energy,” Thompson said. “With this team I feel like if we play with great energy, play unselfish, you know, we’re pretty hard to beat.”

It seemed that more than half of the 11,300 fans in the at-capacity Bizkaia Arena were Finnish, and buoyed by the crowd, Finland, which was playing in its first FIBA World Cup contest, trailed 17-12 to start the game before the USA made its move. James Harden (Houston Rockets) recaptured what would have been a U.S. turnover and found Gay for an alley-oop at 3:15, which ignited a 14-4 U.S. run that closed the first quarter with the USA leading 31-16.

The second period found Finland completely stymied by the USA. While Finland scored its only two points from the line at 6:25, the USA shot 13-of-17 from the field (.765) to lead 60-18 at halftime.

“Yeah, our coaches were encouraging us to keep up that effort by telling us at every timeout, every dead ball that they only had two points or whatever,” said Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors), who dished out a game-high five assists. “That’s just motivation to keep doing what we’re doing. Defense is going to be the key for us throughout this tournament. We’re going to make shots. We’re going to miss some shots. It’s just a matter of how our effort on defense is every night to get to where we want to go.”

Finland actually outscored the USA 14-12 over the first 6:25 of the second half, but the effort essentially was for the Finnish fans, as the USA still led by 40 points, 72-32 at the peak of that run at 4:45. From there, the USA outscored Finland 17-7 to lead 89-39 headed into the final 10 minutes.

The USA broke triple-digits on the scoreboard at 5:22 in the fourth quarter when Gay finished a fast-break that was started by a steal and assist from Kyrie Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers), and the USA secured an easy win.

Finland was led by a trio of scorers in Shawn Huff (12 points), Petteri Koponen (12 points) and Erik Murphy (10 points).

Also today in the USA’s Group C: Ukraine (1-0) beat Dominican Republic (0-1) 72-62, and Turkey (1-0) edged out New Zealand (0-1) 76-73). In Group A in Granada, Spain: Serbia (1-0) won against Egypt (0-1) 85-64, Brazil (1-0) slipped past France (0-1) 65-53 and host Spain (1-0) downed Iran (0-1) 90-60. In Group B in Seville, Spain: Croatia (1-0) topped Philippines (0-1) 81-71 in overtime, Argentina (1-0) defeated Puerto Rico (0-1) 98-75 and Greece (1-0) was victorious against Senegal (0-1) 87-64. Finally, in Group D in Gran Canaria, Spain: Angola (1-0) got the win against South Korea (0-1) 80-69, Slovenia (1-0) beat Australia (0-1) 90-80 and Lithuania (1-0) won against Mexico (0-1) 87-74.

Rounding out Krzyzewski’s USA National Team staff as assistant coaches are Syracuse University and Naismith Hall of Fame coach Jim Boeheim, Chicago Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau and New Orleans Pelicans head coach Monty Williams

The USA faces Turkey at 3:30 p.m. EDT on Aug. 31 (ESPN) in a rematch of the 2010 FIBA World Championship gold medal game, a contest in which the USA claimed an 81-64 victory. Following a day off on Sept. 1, the USA resumes play Sept. 2 facing New Zealand at 11:30 a.m. EDT (ESPN2). The U.S. will go against the Dominican Republic at 3:30 p.m. on Sept. 3 (ESPN2) and will conclude its preliminary play on Sept. 4 facing Ukraine at 11:30 a.m. EDT (ESPN2). 

Each team at the 2014 World Cup will play the other teams in its preliminary group, and the top four finishing teams from each of the four preliminary round groups will then qualify for the round of 16. Winners of the round of 16 games will advance to the quarterfinals, while losers are eliminated. Winners of the quarterfinals games will advance to the medal round semifinals, and quarterfinals losers are eliminated from the competition. Winners of the semifinals will advance to the Sept. 14 gold medal game, and semifinals losers will meet in the bronze medal game on Sept. 13. The round of 16 and semifinals games will be played in Barcelona and Madrid, and the bronze and gold medal games will be held in Madrid.

Since the first FIBA World Championship was held in 1950, the USA has won 11 medals – four gold medals, three silver medals and four bronze medals – while compiling an all time 115-27 win-loss record. Led By Krzyzewski, the Americans are defending World Champions having claim gold in Istanbul with a 9-0 record.

STAT NOTES:  The USA controlled the glass and outrebounded Finland 46 to 31 … The U.S. shot a blazing 58.9 percent from the floor in the game, and made 62.8 percent (25-35 FGs) of its shots in the first half … The USA outscored Finland 34-6 in the paint, outscored the Fins 27-2 off of turnovers and out did Finland 20-0 in fast-break points.

 

***** 

 

For more behind-the-scenes video, photos and content, be sure to follow USA Basketball on every social media platform!


Twitter - https://twitter.com/usabasketball

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/usabasketball

Instagram - http://instagram.com/usabasketball

Vine - https://vine.co/u/962865913139515392

YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/user/therealusabasketball


Related Videos

On Sept. 25 at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, Vince Carter slammed what likely was the most famous dunk of his career.

Twenty years after the 1992 USA Basketball Dream Team made its indelible impact on international basketball at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, USA Basketball’s 2012 Men’s National Team, wearing 1992 USA Basketball throwback jerseys, returned to the hardwood in Palau Sant Jordi, Barcelona, Spain and battled to a hard-fought 86-80 win over Argentina.

USA co-captain Allen Iverson had never hit a game winning shot in his illustrious playing career until he did so on Aug. 4, 2004. With time about to run out, he dribbled across mid-court and launched a game-winning 40-foot 3-pointer to lift the USA National Team to an 80-77 victory over Germany in front of a sold-out Kolnarena crowd numbering 18,000. The Iverson answer was a fitting end to a game that was tight the entire way and one in which NBA All-Star Dirk Nowitzki almost single-handedly kept his country within striking distance. Nowitzki finished the night with a game-best 32 points on 13-for-23 shooting overall, while adding 12 rebounds, three assists and two blocked shots.

The USA National Team handed the USA Select Team a 111-74 loss in an action filled contest at the University of Hawaii Stan Sheriff Center in front of 8,980 fans. Leading by only 10 points at the half after the select team's Jason Richardson poured in 19 first half points, the USA National Team behind a game high 24 points (10-10 FGs) from Vince Carter dominated the second half with its high-octane running game and posted a 111-74 victory.

The U.S. 22-and-under team, made up of college all-stars and coached by
Stanford's Mike Montgomery, led by 17 points at the half and nearly upset
the Men's Olympic Dream Team in the first exhibition game before the
Summer Games in Atlanta. 22-and-under team featured Paul Pierce,
Chauncey Billups, Tim Duncan.

Related Content

The Los Angeles Lakers claimed the 2020 NBA Championship and did so with a roster filled with players possessing USA Basketball experience.

Four-time gold medalist Charles Barkley tallied a 37-2 record during a USA Basketball career that spanned 14 years.

Hall of Fame coach Mike Krzyzewski’s USA Basketball career has spanned 38 years and included 12 gold medals.

2017 AmeriCup Team

Tags

Montevideo, Uruguay and Córdoba, Argentina • August 25-September 3, 2017 It had been 10 years since the United States last competed in its zone championship. While the format of the competition was different and the official name of the Americas Championship had been altered to the FIBA...

On Sept. 25 at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, Vince Carter slammed what likely was the most famous dunk of his career.

Coach Licensing & Organization Accreditation Login



Forgot Password?