PLAYER OF THE DAY
Donovan Mitchell (NBA) is a star shooting guard for the Utah Jazz. On Monday, he scored a game-high 31 points (including 19 in the fourth quarter) to survive elimination in Game 4. Elimination, you say? The Jazz entered the game down 0-3 in the best-of-seven series against the Rockets — in large part because Mitchell missed a wiiiiiide-open shot that would have tied it late in Game 3. His teammates fervently defended him after the game, and the 22-year-old bounced back before his home crowd with a performance that prolonged their season. On Sunday, Mitchell witnessed a car accident while he was driving. Instead of rubbernecking, like most people do, he stopped at the scene and called 911. He’s just a regular citizen out there making sure the other regular citizens are safe, right?! No team has ever come back from an 0-3 series deficit in the NBA playoffs, but Mitchell is determined to keep his team, and the fine citizens of Utah, alive.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
We talkin’ about playoffs?!
Gimme the scoop
(NBA) Mitchell’s heroic efforts in a 107-91 win over Houston wasn’t the only NBA action last night. The Milwaukee Bucks wiped the floor with the Detroit Pistons and beat them 127-104. Superhero Giannis Antetokounmpo had 41 points to finish off another clean 4-0 sweep. The win capped off Milwaukee’s first playoff series win in 18 years. The youngest Buck, Donte DiVincenzo, was 4-years-old at that time. On the other hand, the Pistons have now lost an NBA-record 14 straight playoff games. You can only lose four in one series, so that’s, uh… that’s more than you’d like…
How about hockey?
In the NHL, the Carolina Hurricanes were down 1-0 in a potential elimination game against the defending champion Washington Capitals. For the first five games of the series, the team that scored the first goal not only led the entire game, but also won each game. The Hurricanes ended that trend when they scored five goals to come back and win, forcing a Game 7. The ‘Canes haven’t won a playoff series in 10 years, so this is a big deal in the Carolinas. The home team has won each of the first six games in this series, so look out, Carolina.
Out west, the Dallas Stars needed overtime to outlast the Nashville Predators, but they won the series 4-2. This is the first playoff series Dallas ended at home in 11 years. The last time was in 2008, when they needed four overtimes to beat the San Jose Sharks. The Stars will face the St. Louis Blues in the second round.
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Top prospects commit to be rivals
Why would they do that?
(NCAA) Two of the biggest stars in high school basketball announced their college decisions within the past 24 hours — and neither likes what the other had to say.
On Monday, Duke commit Cassius Stanley made his decision official with a short video that’s well worth your time, even though I just killed the suspense. He joins a stacked recruiting class that now features five top-40 prospects, including two in the top 10.
Then, earlier this morning, point guard Cole Anthony confirmed the long-suspected rumor that he’d be heading to Chapel Hill to play for North Carolina. Anthony, the No. 2 player in ESPN’s rankings, was the top player that still hadn’t announced his commitment, just to keep things interesting. He’s the son of former NBA player Greg Anthony, who is probably more well known for his work on TV than as a player. You’ve probably seen him in March.
Now, Anthony and Stanley, two of the final players to commit, will be rivals just eight miles down the road from one another in college basketball’s most epic rivalry. And if Anthony and the Tar Heels advance to the NCAA Tournament, his dad may be covering him on TV. Cue the ‘awwwwws’…
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Luke Walton accused of sexual assault in lawsuit
Who? What happened?
(NBA) Early Tuesday morning, the brand new Sacramento Kings coach, Luke Walton, was accused of sexual assault by Kelli Tennant, a former TV host for Lakers’ sports network Spectrum SportsNet LA. Tennant alleges that Walton invited her to his hotel room and made unwanted advances in April 2016, the same month the Lakers hired him to be their head coach.
Walton parted ways with the Lakers a couple of weeks ago after a disastrous season that ended Walton’s losing tenure in Los Angeles. He was immediately hired by the Kings in a move that many lauded for basketball reasons. Both the Lakers and Kings released statements Tuesday, as did the Golden State Warriors, whom Walton was an assistant coach for when the incident allegedly occurred.
We don’t have a ton of info here, so we’ll keep you updated when the facts come out. Needless to say, this story could have serious repercussions in the NBA.
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ON THIS DAY
In 1962, the New York Mets won their first-ever MLB game with a 9-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates. This wasn’t their first-ever game, oh not even close. New York started that season 0-9 as an expansion team and faced an undefeated Pirates team in historic Forbes Field in Pittsburgh. The Mets needed a win to avoid double-digit losses to start their franchise. Yikes.
Somehow, the Mets didn’t need the luck — they clobbered six home runs in the first two innings and added another in the sixth before the Pirates could respond with their lone run.
The ball that “brought home” that victory is finally back home in Citi Field after a 57-year journey through three states and six locations. Of course, Citi Field isn’t actually “home” for this ball. You can keep that part out when you talk to Mets fans, though. They’ve endured enough over the years.
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