US win men’s basketball goldLebron James of the U.S. celebrates with national flag victory against Spain after their men's gold medal basketball match.
Sun, August 12, 2012 - 1:25 PM
LONDON, Aug 12 (Reuters) - The United States beat an inspired Spain 107-100 in a fast-paced match to win the Olympic gold medal in men's basketball at North Greenwich Arena on Sunday.
With Kevin Durant leading the way with 30 points, the U.S. retained their Olympic title in a rematch of their closely-fought 2008 final in Beijing.
Both teams pushed the ball upcourt in nonstop action to the roaring delight of the 20,000 fans packed in to see the gold medal game and were separated by just one point at halftime.
The U.S. were still clinging to their one point lead at 83-82 going into the fourth quarter of a physical clash.
Point guard Chris Paul and LeBron James, however, took control of the game at the start of the final quarter to give the United States some breathing room and the Americans built a nine-point lead at 95-86 midway through the fourth that they held on to.
James scored 19 points as second-high scorer for the Americans behind Durant, while Kobe Bryant registered 17 points.
Spanish centre Pau Gasol, who scored the first 13 points for Spain at the start of the third quarter to help them take a 71-70 lead, topped the scoring list for Spain with 24 points.
Juan-Carlos Navarro, whose outside shooting fueled the Spanish offense in the first half, had 21 points in the game.
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