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After two sluggish starts against France and Tunisia, the Americans came out unleashed and on fire, with Bryant leading them to a 13-0 lead in just a few minutes. Amazingly, it was 49-25 by the end of the first quarter, and 78-45 at halftime.
Six players reached double-figures, including Russell Westbrook with 21 off the bench and Bryant with 16.
A by-the-numbers look at the records set in the USA’s 156-73 win vs. Nigeria on Thursday:
10 » 3-pointers made by Carmelo Anthony (U.S. record)
29 » Total 3-pointers made (U.S. record)
37 » Points scored by Anthony (U.S. record)
59 » Total field goals made (U.S. record)
71 » Field-goal percentage (U.S. record)
78 » First-half points (Olympic record)
83 » Margin of victory (U.S. record)
156 » Total points (Olympic record)
The Nigerians had no answers.
Diogu scored 27 points, but coach Ayko Bakare blamed "mistakes on defense" for allowing the U.S. too many open shots. But he could have put 10 players on the floor, and it might not have mattered.
"We played four quarters unbelievable," U.S. center Tyson Chandler said. "I’ve never seen four quarters put together like that in a basketball game. Our whole thing is, we’re never going to cheat the game. We’re going to represent our country, come out and play hard every single second, and that’s what we did."
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