Nigeria Humiliate Kevin Durant led Team USA in Tokyo Olympics 2020 Exhibition Game

Published 07/10/2021, 10:42 PM EDT
DENVER, CO–Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder, during practice at Pepsi Center Friday afternoon. Andy Cross, The Denver Post (Photo By Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images)


In a huge blow to the ambitions of Team USA’s Men’s Basketball Team, the Nigerian team has defeated them in their exhibition game. The Nigerian team took a three-point 90-87 victory over a team full of All-Stars and led by the midrange sniper Kevin Durant.

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Notably, Team USA is the defending champion from 2016’s Rio Olympics and the Gold Medalist from the two Summer Games prior to that. So this exhibition loss might not impact their table tally but it’ll surely dampen their confidence. 

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Team USA failed to play like the NBA legends that they are

The starters for the Saturday night game were Damian Lillard, Bradley Beal, Jayson Tatum, Kevin Durant, and Bam Adebayo. All five of those starters are NBA All-Stars with a combined 23 ASG mentions under their belt. Surely, coach Gregg Popovich started Draymond Green from the bench, but none of those surprising strategies seemed to work in their favor.

With 13.2 seconds remaining, the Nigerian Team was 90-87 ahead of Team USA in their scrimmage in Las Vegas. The score stood the same as coach Mike Brown proved that anything is possible with grit and perseverance. 

In the game that saw Team USA struggling for the most minutes, it was this early three from Damian Lillard that proved to be one of the few decent highlights. 

Read more – “Going to Sting’: Kevin Durant Expresses Disappointment Over Decision to Bar Fans from Tokyo Olympics

Kevin Durant had a forgetful night in the pre-Olympics game

Precious Achiuwa proved to be a better performer than Kevin Durant as far as the historic night was concerned. KZ Okpala was able to guard KD in sequences that no one saw were ever possible. True, the Sniper scored clutch threes and kept the team in the game but overall it was not the same Durant from the playoffs.

Take a close look at this block from Precious Achiuwa on KD at the rim.

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This certainly gave Team USA the taste of their own pill and forced them to accept a nasty defeat. Now with this loss, will they be able to defeat the French team in their Olympics opener? Help us know in the comments. Also, note that the Frenchmen have multiple NBA players on their roster. 

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Watch this story – The Complete Team USA Men’s Basketball Roster

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Sourabh Singh

1422 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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