Gordon sank four three-pointers and scored 16 points and Durant added 14 points for the United States, which won the gold medal at the 2008 Olympics and dominated in its first game at Istanbul, Turkey.
The Americans last took the FIBA World Championship in 1994.
Chauncey Billups chipped in with 12 points and four assists in the Group B contest.
Croatia was led by Bojan Bogdanovic with a game-high 17 points while Marko Popovic added 16 points.
The United States plays its next game Sunday against Slovenia.
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]
UPI horse racing roundup