Australia pulls away from Nigeria in men's basketball

Patty Mills stretches through the Nigerian defense Sunday in Saitama.
Patty Mills stretches through the Nigerian defense Sunday in Saitama.

BOX SCORE

Patty Mills has done almost everything an Australian basketball player can do. He plays in the NBA with the San Antonio Spurs, coached by U.S. coach Gregg Popovich. He is playing in his fourth Olympics. He was a flagbearer in this year's Opening Ceremony, the first Indigenous Australian to do so.

What he has not done is win a medal, coming close with fourth-place finishes in the 2016 Olympics and 2019 World Cup.

On Sunday, he took a step toward changing that, scoring 25 points and adding six assists to lead Australia to an 84-67 win over a Nigerian team that recently upset Popovich's U.S. team.

Nigeria trailed by just three points at the half and trailed 58-54 early in the fourth quarter, but the offense went cold after that. Australia pushed its lead to 78-60 with two minutes to play.