Triple Double King: Luka Doncic Joins Alexander Belov and LeBron James in Stunning Olympics Record During Semifinal Loss to France

Published 08/05/2021, 9:21 AM EDT
Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Basketball – Men – Group C – Spain v Slovenia – Saitama Super Arena, Saitama, Japan – August 1, 2021. Luka Doncic of Slovenia in action REUTERS/Brian Snyder


After an enthralling day of basketball action at the Tokyo Olympics 2020, USA progressed to the summit clash at the Games. In the other, more closely contested semifinal, France took on Slovenia to determine the second finalist. It was Luka Doncic vs Rudy Gobert in the battle of the international NBA stars. The high-intensity match and the French victory was overlooked by Doncic, who shattered Olympic records on the night.

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Slovenia edge out first half, France pull back

It was an engrossing encounter between two sides with supreme quality. In the first half, both teams attacked back and forth. Every time France had a sniff of a lead, Doncic decided to pull a rabbit out of the hat. He turned on the style with his fade-away threes and through-the-leg passes as well. For France, Cabarrot stood out in the first twenty minutes, before Nando de Colo and Evan Fournier took over. Slovenia pipped France 44-42 at the break.

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Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Basketball – Men – Group C – Slovenia v Japan – Saitama Super Arena, Saitama, Japan – July 29, 2021. Luka Doncic of Slovenia during the warm up before the match REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis

As the thrilling match resumed, France fought back valiantly. The star of the show in their historic win over USA, Nando de Colo, found his rhythm while attacking. On the other hand, the men in blue looked tired and out of sorts. Gobert and co. guarded Doncic well, which meant that someone else had to assume responsibilities. On this occasion, that man was Mike Tobey. As the Dalaas Mavericks superstar looked to get back into the game, it was Tobey who chipped in.

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Sensational Luka Doncic breaks triple-double record

Due to the limited time and added pressure that the Olympic Games bring, we do not get to witness many records being shattered. Yet, Luka Doncic will like to say otherwise. The Slovenian superstar is a proven record-breaker by name. Be it in the NBA or for his nation, the 22-year-old fails to disappoint. And in the Tokyo 2020 semifinal against France, he added another feather to his cap.

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In just his first Olympics, Doncic has been the revelation of the tournament. Facing off against Gobert’s rallying French troops, the 6’7 tall player became just the third player in Olympics history (as per records) to fire in a triple-double. Doncic joined an elite duo of Alexander Belov and the great LeBron James in this coveted list.

 

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In spite of his personal record, Luka Doncic will be mightily disheartened with the loss for his country. Now, his focus will be on the 3rd place match, where he will aim to secure a bronze medal. Nevertheless, the youngster has a bright future ahead of him. This is surely not the last time we will see Doncic shine on the international stage!

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Sankalp Harikrishnan

230 articles

Sankalp Harikrishnan is a tennis and NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He aspires to pursue Sports Journalism and has represented his institution in cricket, badminton, football, and table tennis. Apart from his professional desires, Sankalp does voluntary service with his friends to feed hungry animals on a regular basis.

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