The USA men’s Olympic basketball team sent shockwaves through London 2012 with a 156-73 win over Nigeria, thumping their opponent by 83 points and easily covering the 42-point spread Thursday.
That dominant performance by the Americans has them listed as 34.5-point favorites against Lithuania in Group A action Saturday. Lithuania is 1-2 and coming off a 82-74 defeat to France Thursday.
The U.S. topped the century mark with five minutes left in the third quarter versus Nigeria, en route to setting new Olympic records for points in a half and points in a game. The 2012 “Dream Team” nearly eclipsed the 168.5-point total on its own.
Forward Carmelo Anthony also broke the record for most 3-pointers made in a Olympic game, knocking down 10 of his 12 attempts from beyond the arc while the U.S. set the new Olympic mark for 3-pointers in a game with 26. Anthony finished with 37 points and was one of six players in double figures. All 12 American players scored at least two points.
Outside of an groin-shredding crossover from former George Mason star Tony Skinn on USA guard James Harden, Nigeria didn’t put up much of a fight despite having 10 players with U.S. college experience including two NBA players in Ike Diogu and Al-Farouq Aminu.
The U.S. squad covered the 24.5-point spread with a 98-71 win over France in its Olympic opener but came up short against a massive 55-point spread versus Tunisia, winning 110-63. It has topped the total in all three games so far in Group A play.
The total for Saturday’s game against Lithuania is posted at 185.5 points.