The US was considered an overwhelming favorite to win the World Cup and took a strong team to the Philippines. However, following a disappointing performance, the US was the victim of a huge upset.
As expected, the semifinal match-up got off to a tight start. Neither team was able to take control throughout the opening two quarters with the US taking a slight 60-59 lead into halftime.
However, the third quarter saw the tide change and Germany seized its opportunity, catching the US sleeping following the break.
Germany outscored the US 35-24 in the third quarter and took a crucial 10-point lead into the final 10 minutes of the semifinal clash.
Led by Anthony Edwards and Austin Reaves, Team USA rallied in the fourth and a final quarter comeback looked to be on, but it proved to be too little, too late.
Germany held on resolutely, making key plays in the clutch, to book a spot in the FIBA Basketball World Cup final.
The loss represents another disappointing World Cup campaign for the US.
Despite taking a team full of NBA stars including Edwards, Tyrese Haliburton and Jalen Brunson, it marks the second consecutive World Cup where the US has failed to reach the championship game.
“Terrible. Plain and simple,” Brunson told reporters of his performance against Germany.
“We knew the task at hand, that was to go and win and we didn’t do that,” Reaves added following the defeat.
“The game has been globalized over the last 30 years or so. These games are difficult. This is not 1992 anymore,” US head coach Steve Kerr told reporters postgame. “Players are better all over the world. Teams are better. It’s not easy to win a World Cup or an Olympic Games.”
The Germany team boasted a host of NBA players with Dennis Schröder, Franz Wagner and Daniel Theis playing key roles throughout Germany’s World Cup run and the semifinal win.
It will now face Serbia in the World Cup final with the US having to settle for a third-place playoff game against Canada. Both games will be played on Sunday with the third-place playoff acting as the curtain raiser for the final.