Pre-tournament favourites the USA have been ousted from medal contention by France at the FIBA World Cup.
It is the first time since the 2006 world championships that the US men’s basketball team will fail to capture gold at a major international tournament.
Evan Fournier scored 22 points, Rudy Gobert added 21 points and 16 rebounds, as France beat Team USA 89-79 in the quarterfinals on Wednesday, rallying from a seven-point fourth-quarter deficit to pull off the upset.
The U.S. had won 58 consecutive tournament games in FIBA and Olympic competition with NBA players, starting with the bronze-medal game at the 2006 world championships and continuing through every FIBA Americas, World Cup and Olympics event since.
The U.S. was bidding to become the first nation to win three consecutive World Cups, after winning three straight Olympic golds in that span.
While the Americans have already secured a berth in the 2020 Olympics, the best they can do now in China is finish fifth.