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03:50

China: US crush Japan at Basketball World Cup to progress to next round

China, Shanghai
September 05, 2019 at 20:11 GMT +00:00 · Published

Players from the US men's basketball team held a post-game press conference after destroying Japan 98-45 in Shanghai during the first group stage of the FIBA World Cup.

Head coach of the USA team Gregg Popovich said that he was "pleased" with the squad's performance, noting that "they played hard."

Jaylen Brown said that "we've got a lot of room for improvement," before adding that "of course, we are looking forward to the next matchup."

The win means the US finish Group E with an invincible 3-0 record, extending their unbeaten run to 59 games, as they attempt to clinch the World Cup for a third straight time.

Celtics star Jaylen Brown led the Americans' scoring with 20 points, followed closely by Boston teammate Kemba Walker who sunk 15.

03:50
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Players from the US men's basketball team held a post-game press conference after destroying Japan 98-45 in Shanghai during the first group stage of the FIBA World Cup.

Head coach of the USA team Gregg Popovich said that he was "pleased" with the squad's performance, noting that "they played hard."

Jaylen Brown said that "we've got a lot of room for improvement," before adding that "of course, we are looking forward to the next matchup."

The win means the US finish Group E with an invincible 3-0 record, extending their unbeaten run to 59 games, as they attempt to clinch the World Cup for a third straight time.

Celtics star Jaylen Brown led the Americans' scoring with 20 points, followed closely by Boston teammate Kemba Walker who sunk 15.

W/S Head coach and player of US men's national basketball team Gregg Popovich and Jaylen Brown entering press conference room and sitting down

SOT, Gregg Popovich, Head coach of US men's national basketball team: "Well, I think we are getting better with each outing, and that's our goal. We haven't been together very long, and I think our players are enjoying playing with each other and understanding that consistency is necessary in what we have to do as a team to be successful. So in that regard, they were very serious tonight, and they respected the Japanese team very much. They didn't take anything for granted, and they played hard. So I was pleased with their performance."

M/S Journalists *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Jaylen Brown, US men's national basketball team player: "I still think we've got a lot of room for improvement. Of course, we are looking forward to the next matchup. So I think we are focused on us, just trying to get better and represent our country the right way."

W/S Press conference *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Gregg Popovich, Head coach of US men's national basketball team: "All these players from overseas that play in the NBA are obviously good players or they wouldn't be there. Giannis is pretty special, as far as good players are concerned. But when they play for their countries, we like to say that they become super heroes. They get together and, through their relationships, and you know, their views about the game, they just form a team that - they fall in with each other; they enjoy playing with each other. And that goes across the board for everybody that's in the tournament. You can see that. You know, a lot of them have grown up together, and a lot of them spent a lot of time playing together. So it shows."

W/S Press conference *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Gregg Popovich, Head coach of US men's national basketball team: "But as far as preparing, you know, each team is obviously very different. You know, in the NBA you pretty much know every night the O's and X's of what people are going to run and that sort of thing. But here, every team has a different take [on] the way they want to play, so it's actually enjoyable and challenging at the same time because each team is a different war, a different art work, you know, to be figured out. And it makes it very interesting."

M/S Journalist *CUTAWAY*

W/S Popovich and Brown leaving

SOT, Khris Middleton, US men's national basketball team player: "Just get to out spots a little bit quicker. Be a little bit sharper, more aggressive instead of indecisive."

M/S Players of Japan men's national basketball team in mixed zone *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Donovan Mitchell, US men's national basketball team player: "Just continuing to be aggressive, you know, communicating on defence, finding ways to stay locked in. I think for us, if we can just continue to play like this for a full 40 minutes - I think this is the first game where we've done 40 minutes of great defence, great offence - and I think obviously even when shots weren't falling, we were still getting back and communicating, and that's what you want to see."

M/S Players of Japan men's national basketball team in mixed zone *CUTAWAY*

SOT, Journalist: "On Saturday, you play Greece not going to have him..."

Donovan Mitchell, US men's national basketball team player: "I think just continuing to build. I mean if they build defence, the guys are going to have to step up. You know, we have the bet for that. Obviously, we'd love to have JT out there. But I think for us, you know, guys are going to step up the way we did tonight. If we could just lock in on defence, I think we'll be in good shape."

Journalist: "Are you excited about the matchup with Greece?"

Donovan Mitchell, US men's national basketball team player: "Always. Always, you are excited about a challenge, you know. I think every matchup is great. But you know if we start to look at it as a bigger game than what it is, you start to lose sight of what we're focusing on. So we will just push it as a regular game, and go out there and do what we do."

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