Jayson Tatum has been sidelined with an ankle injury since USA Basketball’s win over Turkey last week and the former no. 3 overall pick was expected to miss the remainder of the tournament. However, according to Marc Stein of The New York Times, Tatum was participating in shootaround and is a game-time decision.
Kemba Walker and Jaylen Brown are among the players to step up in Tatum’s absence. Brown, in particular, has expanded his game with the team enabling him to be a play-making, small-ball power forward.
Gregg Popovich’s squad will face arguably their greatest challenge in France, a team led by Rudy Gobert. France has lost just one game during the World Cup (a two-point loss to Australia in the second round of group play).
The winner of the Team USA-France contest will take on Argentina on Friday.