• France has +700 odds to win the Olympic Men’s Basketball gold medal.
• This puts them third behind the United States and Slovenia.
• France faces off against Italy in the knockout rounds, and has -400 odds to win.
TOKYO - France handed the United States a defeat in Olympic Basketball, but their work will be cut out for them in terms of winning the tournament. Not only are the online sportsbooks not bullish on France’s chances to beat the United States in a rematch, Luka Doncic has Slovenia in fine form as well.
These two factors combine to put France third on the odds boards, behind - perhaps unsurprisingly - the two teams who have a top 10 NBA player on them.
Tokyo 2021 - Men's Basketball
- USA -250
- Slovenia +300
- France +700
- Australia +1000
- Spain +2000
- Italy +2800
- Argentina +4000
- Germany +5000
France’s next opponent is Italy, a team that has ended up on the bottom side of the Olympic odds boards, in no small part due to their matchup against France.
France is expected to win this game, and the online sportsbooks have them as a serious favorite.
Tokyo 2021 Olympic Men’s Basketball - France vs. Italy Moneyline
- France -400
- Italy +305
France does have a history of recent international basketball success. In the 2019 FIBA World Cup, France took the bronze medal, while Italy finished in 10th place.
In the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, France finished in sixth place, while Italy did not compete in the event in either year.
In fact, this is Italy’s first Olympic basketball qualification since 2004.
France is a country that has produced legitimate NBA players, such as Nic Batum, Rudy Gobert and Evan Fournier.
The player on the Italian roster who is most well known in the NBA is Danilo Gallinari - who, to his credit, performed admirably for the Atlanta Hawks in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Tokyo 2021 Olympic Men’s Basketball - France vs. Italy Spread
- France -8.5 (-105)
- Italy +8.5 (-115)
In group play, Italy squeaked out a 2-1 qualification to the knockout rounds, while France - to everyone’s surprise - dominated their group 3-0, handing the United States a defeat on opening day.
Italy doesn’t look to have the talent to take down this France squad, which has demonstrated an ability to hang with the top contenders in the sport.
Rudy Gobert is likely the best non-Luka non-American player in the tournament, while his supporting cast of Evan Fournier, Nic Batum, Guerschon Yabusele, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarot, Nando de Colo and Frank Ntilikina all have NBA experience on a level that Luka’s Slovenian squad does not.
This is a legitimately good team, and it could be that they’re being underrated on the futures odds boards due to Luka-mania. France should take the win against an up-and-coming Italian squad, but savvy online gambling fans might be looking to the future for this team.