WATCH: Kevin Durant Makes Back to Back Difficult Shots to Keep Team USA in the Game vs Australia in Tokyo Olympics Semifinals

Published 08/05/2021, 1:24 AM EDT
Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Basketball – Men – Semifinal – United States v Australia – Saitama Super Arena, Saitama, Japan – August 5, 2021. Kevin Durant of the United States in action with Dante Exum of Australia REUTERS/Sergio Perez


After Team USA defeated Spain in an intense quarterfinal of the Tokyo Olympics, most fans breathed a sigh of relief. However, a much more difficult matchup was waiting for them next door and it was Australia. Knowing that they were facing the Aussies, all anybody could think about was how they defeated the USA in the exhibition game and if this time would be any different. And Kevin Durant is the one man who can make this happen.

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Kevin Durant keeping Team USA alive

Well, it doesn’t seem that way so far, and the USA seems to be letting its chance at redemption slip away. This win by Australia could finally put an end to the dominance the Americans had inflicted upon other teams in the Olympic Games. They had been winning gold medals for the past three competitions and, thanks to Australia, their reign might come to an end.

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While other teams might celebrating this, team USA will cost themselves a legacy. Well, what did they really expect? The whole team seems to be dependent on the likes of Kevin Durant.

In other games as well, if it wasn’t for Durant’s production, USA would have been knocked out. By the end of the second half vs Australia, only he had contributed to the scoreboard in double digits, with hardly anyone else scoring. In fact, he was making some unbelievably difficult shots in an effort to ensure they kept Australia close.

However, it has seemed to work a little. At halftime, he has 15 points with Devin Booker behind him with 7 points. With four minutes left in the second quarter, Team USA was down by double digits. But once it was over, they were able to reduce the deficit to just three with a score of 43-45, in favor of Australia.

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Where is this game heading?

Australia entered this matchup after a blowout 97-59 win against Argentina. Like most of their games, they were dominant on both ends of the floor, and in their bout against the USA, it was no different.

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Veteran player Patty Mills has been unstoppable, but it was Dante Exum who led in scoring with 10 points at least until halftime. This team has all the necessary tools they need to crush an overconfident team USA.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Basketball – Men – Semifinal – United States v Australia – Saitama Super Arena, Saitama, Japan – August 5, 2021. Kevin Durant of the United States in action with Nicholas Kay of Australia REUTERS/Brian Snyder

Despite USA having a star-studded roster, Australia has kept their lead intact. But will KD make his magic work again and turn the tables around? Or will Australia punch them with another loss that will knock them out of the race for the gold?

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Yashima Bhatia

1478 articles

Yashima Bhatia is an NBA writer for EssentiallySports who specialises in providing nuanced predictions and updates for matches. She has a Bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication. Yashima's love for playing the game came up at a young age, when the excitement of the games coupled with the intensity of the Playoffs had her hooked.

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