Team USA and France are the last two teams standing in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and as such they will go head-to-head for the gold medal. The contest between the U.S. and France will serve as a rematch, as the two teams also met in the first game of group play last month. In that game, France pulled out a 83-76 win, thanks largely to Evan Fournier, who had a game-high 28 points on 11 of 22 shooting from the floor. Rudy Gobert also added 14 points and nine rebounds of his own. As a team, France shot an impressive 47 percent from the floor. It outscored the U.S. 46-31 in the second half, and went on a16-2 run to close out the game and secure the win.
The group stage loss was actually the United States' second straight to France in international play, as the French also prevailed over the U.S. in the 2019 FIBA World Cup. Given the way their last couple of meetings played out, it's safe to say that the Americans will be seeking revenge -- in addition to a gold medal. Falling to France was the only defeat that the U.S. suffered during these Olympics, while the French team has yet to lose a game.
Here's everything you need to know about the gold medal game between the United States and France.
United States vs. France
Date: Friday, Aug. 6 | Time: 10:30 p.m. ET
Location: Saitama Super Arena -- Saitama, Japan
TV: NBC and Peacock | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
Odds: USA -900; FRA +600 | O/U: 175.5 (via William Hill Sportsbook)
United States: Team USA has been playing much better basketball since they lost to France at the start of group play, but it will take a full 40-minute effort if the Americans are going to exact their revenge and claim a fourth consecutive gold medal. One obvious adjustment that the U.S. will have to make? They need to do a much better job of defending Fournier, who was the best player on the floor the first two the two teams met. Fournier hit big bucket after big bucket for France, and ultimately his production was a major determining factor in the contest. In all, he finished with a game-high 28 points while shooting 50 percent from the floor (11 of 22). He also knocked down four 3s and grabbed four rebounds.
After the game, Fournier provided an honest assessment of Team USA. "They are better individually but they can be beaten as a team," he said.
It will now be up to Team USA to prove Fournier wrong, and limiting his offensive production will help their cause. They'll also have to shoot better than they did in the first game. The U.S. shot just 36 percent from the floor in that contest, compared to 47 percent from France. In a game that was decided by seven points, this made a big difference.
France: It's tough to overstate how big of an opportunity the French team has here. France has won a silver medal in Olympic play twice (1948, 2000), but it has never won gold. Now, the only thing standing between the French and their first gold is a team that they've already bested in these very Olympics. Both times the French team has finished with the Silver Medal they lost to the U.S. in the championship game, so in a way they're seeking some revenge of their own. To get it, they'll need big games from Fournier, Gobert, Nic Batum and all of their other key contributors.
The U.S. has been playing better basketball as the Olympics have gone on, and as such they're not the same team that dropped their Olympic opener to France late last month. They've found an identity on the defensive end, and their shot making has been there when it's mattered most. The French team is excellent, but at the end of the day the U.S. is the more talented team, and they should be able to take care of business. Pick: United States -12.5