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Canada beats France by 30 points, Evan Fournier can’t stomach it

Fournier scores 21 points on 19 shots, RJ Barrett drops five on 10

BASKET-WC-2023-CAN-FRA Photo by YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP via Getty Images

Canada got its 2023 FIBA World Cup journey started in sublime fashion after mauling fifth-best France on Friday beating the European squad 95-65 in Jakarta, Indonesia.

According to FIBA, the 30-point loss is the worst defeat by France at a World Cup since 1963, 60 years ago.

France started strong and weathered the Canadian storm at the beginning of the game, but things changed for the bad in a second half in which the North Americans (Cadana is ranked no. 15 in the world) outscored the Euros 52-25.

Evan Fournier’s candid response during his postgame press conference was succinct and pinpoint accurate: “We got our ass kicked.”

Evan Fournier’s reaction followed an extraordinary 21-point performance in which he scored nearly a third of France’s total points on the day.

Despite Fournier’s scoring outburst, to which he added three boards, a couple of thefs, and a dime through 36 minutes of playing time, the New York Knicks player still found a way to finish with the worst rating among all players involved in the game at minus-28.

Fournier might have dropped 21 pops, but 19 of those came in the first half with a lone second-half bucket scored by Eves in the fourth quarter when all of France’s hope was already lost.

Fournier reached his numbers more on pure volume than ruthless efficiency, mind you.

He had to hoist 19 field goals and 13 three-point shots to reach his 21-point figure. He went 8-of-19 from the floor and a putrid 3-of-13 from beyond the arc, which is nothing to call home about too proud of.

And speaking of dreadful performances, fellow Knickerbocker RJ Barrett was even worse than Fournier on the shooting front, finishing the game with five points on a night to forget. RJ scored more freebies (two) than he did field goals (one) even though he attempted 10 FGA against and only four free throws.

Barrett went 1-of-10 overall, with his lone make from beyond the three-point arc. At least he put up some numbers across the board with five assists, four rebounds, and a steal against two turnovers.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (27) and Kelly Olynyk (18) led Canada in points scored with Dillon Brooks and Nickeil Alexander-Walker scoring 12 each.

For France, Rudy Gobert was the “best” player scoring eight points to go with nine rebounds, a block and a dime. Former NBA player Nando De Colo and Mathias Lessort added 12 points each.

Canada plays Levanon next with their ticket for the next round nearly punched after beating tournament-favorite France. The latter will have to fend off Latvia next in a must-win game for the Euros after losing their debut matchup.