Team USA cruises to 88-67 victory over Czech Republic in FIBA World Cup opener
Team USA kicked off their FIBA World Cup campaign with an easy victory over the Czech Republic, as the Americans cruised to an 88-67 win in the opener on Sunday.
Utah Jazz stud Donovan Mitchell led the way for the Red, White, and Blue, logging a team-high 16 points on a very efficient 7-of-11 shooting, along with a couple of 3-pointers, two rebounds, two assists, and a steal in 25 minutes of action.
Kemba Walker of the Boston Celtics formed the starting backcourt for Team USA along with Mitchell, and the new Celtics recruit did not disappoint. Walker was also highly efficient on the evening, going 6-of-8 from the floor en route to 13 points in 18 minutes of action:
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The Czechs, led by Chicago Bulls combo guard Tomas Satoransky (game-high 17 points on 7-of-13 shooting, with one 3-pointer, two rebounds, and five assists) actually kept it close in the first quarter, ending the opening period just three points behind the powerhouse Team USA side.
However, the Americans would eventually get it going, and they used a 26-15 second-quarter advantage to pull away from their opponent.
Team USA is in Group E, with Turkey and Japan the other two sides in the group. Earlier in the evening, Turkey defeated the Japanese, 86-67.
The next set of games for this group is scheduled on Tuesday, with the Americans set to face off against Japan. Team USA will be the heavy favorite to win that contest.
The top two teams of each group will move on to the next stage, and should Team USA survive the opening round as expected, they will be grouped with the top two sides from Group F, which is comprised of Greece, Brazil, New Zealand, and Montenegro.