France eliminated from FIBA World Cup and everyone is pointing fingers at Rudy Gobert

After France's shocking elimination from the FIBA World Cup, many looked to Rudy Gobert. Could he have done more to avoid this early, unexpected exit?

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

After back-to-back tough losses, France has officially been knocked out of the FIBA World Cup. Following a blowout loss to Canada and a last-minute fumble against Latvia, France now cannot finish higher than 17th.

With a FIBA world ranking of No. 5, the team was a medal favorite at the event. Their core included NBA players such as Evan Fournier, Nicolas Batum, and Rudy Gobert. However, not all core members performed up to par, most notably the Timberwolves' Rudy Gobert.

Timberwolves: Rudy Gobert underperforms in FIBA World Cup

In the game against Canada, Gobert only tallied eight points and nine rebounds. In fact, Gobert's backup Mathias Lessort scored better, finishing with 12 points and six boards. France lost to Canada 95-65. This was France's largest loss by the men's team in a major tournament since 1987.

In the following game against Latvia, Gobert's output was pretty much the same. Gobert finished with nine points and seven rebounds. These numbers are again far from impressive especially when compared to his teammates. For example, Fournier, who averages 14 points per game in the NBA, scored 27 points against Latvia.

France's performance is especially disappointing because, by the numbers, Gobert is a player who can get a double-double on any given night. However, after combining for 17 points and 16 rebounds through two matches, it's safe to say that Gobert has underperformed for France this summer.

NBA Insider, Bill Simmons had a little fun at France's expense via Twitter:

What's ironic is four years ago, during the 2019 FIBA World Cup, a France team led by Gobert, Fournier, and Batum beat the US by 10 points. In that same game, Rudy Gobert finished with 21 points and 16 boards. Maybe it's father time at work. Or maybe it's a two game slump. Either way, France, that's what we call payback.

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