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What you may have missed this weekend: 4/25 – 4/28

Behind all the mayhem of the NFL Draft and where each of the top college football players will go, we might have forgotten that we have other sports playing essential games in their season.

For both the NBA and NHL it’s all about the playoffs and fighting to see who will win the title. As of last Tuesday, we knew that a new champion is guaranteed in the NHL as the Washington Capitals lost in overtime of a game 7 to the Carolina Hurricanes.

I will give you an update on the current playoffs standing, and series leads for both sports. We also have some MLB, College Football and Nascar to talk about.

“John Havlicek” by The Sporting News is licensed under Public Domain.

NBA:

Boston Celtics Legend Dies at 79:

Celtics legend, John Havlicek was pronounced died on Thursday night after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. Havlicek was one of the greatest players in the history of the game, and he made some crucial plays during his Celtics title run. He was a member of the Celtics eight championships that will forever go down in history was the best team in any decade. Past players and teammates honored the eight-time champ. In the Celtics next home playoff game, they will wear a black stripe with the No. 17 on it to honor Havlicek on their jerseys. Havlicek meant a lot to the Celtics organization as they took him with the seventh pick in the 1962 NBA draft. He was named the 1974 NBA Finals MVP. Havlicek leads the Boston’s franchise in games played, points and field goals made. He is second in assists and fifth in rebounds. He also ranked fourth behind Dirk Nowitzki, Kobe Bryant, and Tim Duncan in points scored by a player who spent his entire career with one NBA franchise.

NBA Playoffs:

  • Kevin Durant scores 50 as the Golden State Warriors beat the Los Angeles Clippers 129-110 in Game 6 to advance to the second round of the playoffs on Friday.
  • After the San Antonio Spurs forced a Game 7 against the Denver Nuggets, they fell short in a 90-86 loss to the Nuggets. The Nuggets will now face the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday night.
  • The Blazers might be down another big if Enes Kanter is unable to play. Blazers’ Jusuf Nurkic is already out with a broken leg. Kanter has been an excellent addition to the Blazers since being acquired before the All-Star break.
  • Kawhi Leonard and the Toronto Raptors aren’t playing around this year. Leonard scored a career playoff-high 45 points in Game 1 of the series as the Raptors beat the Philadelphia 76ers 108-95. This was the 14th consecutive home won for the Raptors against the Sixers. The Raptors are also 22-3 against the Sixers in the last 25 games played, so this series may be a tough one to get out of for the Sixers.
  • Kyrie Irving and Al Horford lead the Boston Celtics past the Milwaukee Bucks 112-90 in Game 1 to steal home court advantage. A significant loss like this should bring worries to the faces of the Bucks, but let’s not forget that these two teams have had historic playoff series of the past years. Al Horford had his hands full with Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo, and he got the best of him in this game. Look for Giannis to rebound in Game 2 on Tuesday.
  • And now it’s the series we’ve all been waiting for all season, the series between the Rockets and Warriors. The Warriors are entering Game 1 a little banged-up as both Steph Curry and Klay Thompson were questionable. They both played, but that’s not the highlight of the game. It was a close game as we all expected, but Houston Rockets want a “fair chance.” Warriors outlasted the Rockets 104-100 in Game 1, but James Harden, Chris Paul, and coach Mike D’Antoni weren’t happy with the referees especially after they admitted the missed FOUR calls in the first half. Game 2 is Tuesday night, so let’s see how well that goes.

NHL:

NHL Playoffs:

  • After watching the defending champions, Washington Capitals get eliminated, the playoffs just got more interest. Let’s not forget that the Calgary Flames and Tampa Bay Lightning took an early 1st round exit too.
  • The Carolina Hurricanes are continuing their momentum into the second round against the New York Islanders as they look a 2-0 series lead on Sunday. How will the Islanders react to their first two losses of the 2019 Stanley Cup playoffs? They have until Wednesday to figure out what to do in Game 3.
  • The Boston Bruins and Columbus Blue Jackets series looks like it’s going to be one of the ages. Game 1 on Thursday went to the Bruins in a 3-2 overtime win. Game 2 had the same score, but after two overtimes and it was the Blue Jackets tying up the series at a game apiece. Game 3 is set for Tuesday night.
  • The Dallas Stars found themselves fighting against the St. Louis Blues to bring the series to a 1-1 tie on Saturday which they did in their 4-2 win on Saturday. Game 3 is Monday night, so let’s see who takes the upper hand.
  • Speaking of the upper hand, the Colorado Avalanche just took that in their series with the San Jose Sharks despite a 1-1 series tie. After the 5-2 betting of Avalanche given up the Sharks, their 4-3 win on Sunday was a great way to get back in.

MLB:

Giants scored in the first inning for the 1st time this year:

This isn’t going to be a successful season for the San Francisco Giants, so whenever they do something good we have to talk about it. They did something they haven’t done all season and that was score in the first inning of a game. It took 26 games to get a run in the first inning. That ended the second-longest, first-inning scoring drought. The major league record of 28 games at the start of a season was set by the 1948 Chicago White Sox.

It was off a Buster Posey’s sacrifice fly against the New York Yankees Friday night. Posey came up to bat with one out and runners on second and third basemen. The Giants haven’t had much success in the first inning as they were hitting .089 with three walks and 22 strikeouts.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. made major league debut:

The long wait is for the dream of one major league son. That son is Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and we know Papa Vlad os happy about this one.

Vlad Jr. came on in the ninth inning to hit a lead off double for his first hit. He hit was the winning runner on base, but teammate Brandon Drury added a game winning two-run homer with two outs as the Toronto Blue Jays beat Oakland Athletics 4-2 on Friday night.

Braves bad bullpen spoils Mike Foltynewicz return:

The Atlanta Braves have one of the youngest offenses in the Majors and they are quite good, but the Bullpen has been lacking this year. Things are looking good for them as some of their star pitchers return from injury.

The latest return is Mike Foltynewicz, and he returned to pitch a good game against the Colorado Rockies this weekend. When Foltynewicz was replaced by a member of the bullpen, the Braves had a 5-4 lead as Foltynewicz gave up four runs and six hits in six innings, including solo homers to Nolan Arenado and Daniel Murphy.

But Braves closer A.J. Minter (0-3) has been terrible this season. He has let several leads up late in games that result in Braves losing. But this one when Foltynewicz return has to hurt the most. The Braves lost 9-5 after giving up 5 runs in the top of the 9th inning.

College Football

Swinney gets new deal:

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney has agreed to a 10-year, $93 million deal. That deal is the largest deal in college football history and it is deservingly so. Swinney has coached Clemson to two national championships in three years, beating Alabama both times. This could be a great way to continue the dynasty that Swinney has developed. Swinney is looking to have the most wins for a Clemson coach. He is currently at 116 wins which is ranked second all time.

Nascar:

“If you ain’t first, you’re last.” – Ricky Bobby:

Though that is one of many famous lines from Will Ferrell’s hit movie: “Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby), it is still one of the best lines in all sports. That is a story of a different day though, now we are here to congratulate Chase Elliott on winning the Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday afternoon. This was Elliot’s first win since October and the first victory of the season for Chevy car drivers, it also ended a seven-race winning streak for Ford at Talladega. With this win, Elliott became the sixth driver to win 10 Cup races this season and lock up a playoff spot.

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