Things didn't go especially well for the United States in the 2019 FIBA World Cup, as they lost to France, 89-79, in the quarterfinals on Wednesday. The loss snapped a streak of 58 straight wins in international competition, and it also marked the United States' first loss in the FIBA World Cup since 2006 when it lost to Greece in the semifinals.
Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell led the way for Team USA with 29 points, six rebounds and four assists, but ultimately it wasn't enough, and afterwards Mitchell was much more concerned with the outcome of the game rather than his personal production.
"I could care less about the 29," Mitchell said to media members in China. "To me the only thing that sticks out is what I did wrong, and I think that's all that's going to stick out in anybody's mind. Anybody could have had a big game, but we didn't lock in on certain possessions. Obviously we had some mistakes where we missed a few layups or whatever. So, whether it's 29, nine, or zero, we lost. That's where my head is at."
A lot of the talk surrounding Team USA this summer was about the top-tier talent -- guys like Anthony Davis, James Harden, Bradley Beal, Dame Lillard, and Kevin Love -- that decided to withdraw from competition for various reasons. But, after the loss to France, the Americans weren't using that as an excuse. In fact, coach Gregg Popovich said it was "disrespectful" to France and other teams in the tournament for the media to focus on the players that didn't participate.