LONDON, England (AP) — Kevin Durant scored 30 points and LeBron James added 19 as the US men’s basketball team defended its Olympic title, holding off stubborn Spain 107-100 on Sunday for the gold medal — just as the Americans did in 2008.
Kobe Bryant added 17 for the US, which only led by one point after three quarters and was ahead just 97-91 when James drove the lane for a thunderous dunk and followed a miss by Spain with a three-pointer.
In the final minute, US coach Mike Krzyzewski, in his final international game, took out his top stars who came to London determined to keep American basketball on top. When the final horn sounded, Krzyzewski locked James in a tight embrace as Bruce Springsteen’s “Born In The USA” rocked the arena.
Pau Gasol scored 24 and Juan-Carlos Navarro had 21 for Spain, which had to settle for silver in the second straight Olympics.
Before the match up the US team members seemed quite relaxed compared to the Spaniards.
“The Americans are laughing and joking, with LeBron missing a dunk in the layup line and Chris Paul doing a little shoulder shimmy dance with Kevin Durant,” read one tweet.
“The underdog Spainiards look much more intense. Pau Gasol, Serge Ibaka and the rest look focused as they shoot jumpers”. Both Gasol and Ibaka play in the US NBA