PLAYER OF THE DAY
Tony Parker (NBA) is a former guard for the San Antonio Spurs and the Charlotte Hornets who’s saying goodbye to the NBA after 18 years. After spending two years with Paris Basket Racing (yes, this is a basketball team), the French point guard was unheralded as the last pick in the first round of the 2001 NBA Draft. He blossomed into a Hall of Famer, four-time champion and one of the most creative players the league has ever seen. Nothing like a crafty Frenchman. The ’07 Finals MVP says he’ll live in San Antonio while presiding over French pro club AVSEL, where he’s the president and owner of both the men’s and women’s teams. Au revoir, Tony!
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
‘An incredible win and a horrible loss’
Warriors survive Game 5 but lose Durant
(NBA) Usually after a legendary team staves off elimination with an epic performance in the NBA Finals, it’s the clear headliner. But nobody will be talking about the Warriors 106-105 win in Toronto after Kevin Durant, arguably the best player on the planet, went down early with what was later confirmed to be an Achilles injury.
Fans feared KD had torn his Achilles over a month ago, but the team assured it was just a calf strain. The internet went crazy over the mysterious injury that sidelined Durant the last nine games, and many criticized Durant for not returning sooner. So no, you’re not the only one.
Players and coaches described a surreal, emotional scene after the injury. Warriors GM Bob Myers was openly crying when he shared details of the injury, and Warriors coach Steve Kerr called Game 5 “an incredible win and a horrible loss.”
Achilles injuries are notoriously hard to recover from and potentially career-altering. This would be devastating for free-agent-to-be Durant, who will almost assuredly miss the rest of this season and maybe next year, too. Some Toronto fans cheered after the injury, adding another sick twist to what may become one of the most gut-wrenching stories in NBA history.
The Warriors will head home for Game 6 on Thursday, and hope to stave off elimination yet again. This time, though, KD’s absence is definite.
Pelicans ‘Cash’ in with front-office hire
Makin’ Money Moves
(NBA) How about some lighter NBA news for a chance? On Monday, the New Orleans Pelicans announced the hire of former WNBA star Swin Cash, who will become the team’s vice president of basketball operations and team development.
It was one of many recently lauded hires for David Griffin, the team’s new president who worked with Cash on the NBA TV set last year. She spent a lot of time in Madison Square Garden analyzing the Knicks, so it adds another level of intrigue to the franchise’s connection with the New York Knicks, who are reportedly one of two teams that disgruntled Pelicans star Anthony Davis wants to be traded to. Griffin knows that having someone familiar with the team and what they have to offer could help make a sweet deal with New York. *eyes emoji*
Team USA starts title march Tuesday
Let’s Go Girls!
(Soccer) The quest for world domination starts Tuesday, when the United States takes on Thailand in the first round of the Women’s World Cup.
Team USA won in 2015 and is favored to win it again this year, though the U.S. has never repeated as world champions. They’re not super stressed about Thailand, and the real test will come in the semifinals where they will likely face France. Even though U.S. is ranked first, France is the favorite to win on home soil. Let’s hope they’re no match for good ol’ American grit.
ON THIS DAY
In 1997, Michael Jordan put on an all-time performance in his famous “Flu Game.” Dehydrated, drained and debilitated from “flulike symptoms,” Jordan willed himself to 38 points in Game 5 of the NBA Finals vs. the Utah Jazz, giving his team a pivotal 3-2 series lead. Two days later, the Bulls won the title in dramatic fashion.
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