By: Frank Hyden
–The Toronto Raptors beat the Boston Celtics 104-103 as OG Anunoby hit a 3 pointer with 0.5 seconds left on the clock. Boston now leads the series 2-1. Kyle Lowry had 31 points and 8 assists, and Fred VanVleet had 25 points to lead the Raptors. Kemba Walker had 29 points, Jaylen Brown had 19 points and 12 rebounds, and Jayson Tatum had 15 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 assists for the Celtics. We have a series now. This is the kind of win that could give Toronto a big boost and give them confidence moving forward. Boston is a good team, though, and you know they want to take a 3-1 lead in the next game. I think Boston takes the series in 6 games but Toronto’s tough.
-The Los Angeles Clippers beat down the Denver Nuggets 120-97 to take Game 1 of their series. Kawhi Leonard had 29 points to lead the Clippers while Nikola Jokic had 15 points to lead the Nuggets. I think the Clippers take this series in 5 games, though the Nuggets could extend it to 6. I just don’t think the Nuggets have the firepower to beat the Clippers, especially not after that grueling 7 game series with Utah.
-Ja Morant from the Memphis Grizzlies has won the NBA Rookie of the Year award. Not a real surprise, as Zion Williamson hadn’t played enough games. Morant got 99 out of a possible 100 first place votes and has already said that will motivate him to get even better.
-Steve Nash has been named the new head coach for the Brooklyn Nets. Nash has never coached before so this might go badly but it might also go great. Here’s a story about the various players who jumped straight to head coach without having prior experience. There’s some big successes on there and some big failures so it’s impossible to say how Nash will do. Of course, there’s some people (most notably Stephen A. Smith) have tried to make this about race and white privilege and all that junk but one look at that list shoots that down. I don’t know if this is a good move but, assuming Kevin Durant and to a lesser extent, Kyrie Irving are healthy, the Nets are a playoff team. Durant is an incredible player and they’ve got talent on that team. I think this will be a success but that’s more because of the players on the team than the coach. I was a big Nash fan while he played so I think he’ll do a good job but being a good player isn’t guaranteed success as a coach.
-Some quick NFL signings. WR Josh Gordon has signed with the Seattle Seahawks and it’s expected Jadeveon Clowney will sign with the New Orleans Saints. Clowney would be a huge signing for New Orleans as he would presumably be very motivated and provide some good pass rush for them. Whether you like him or not, he’s a good player. Gordon’s signing is nice but Seattle already has Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalf so Gordon is the 3rd option there. Also, you hope this doesn’t happen, but there’s also always the chance Gordon gets suspended again. I hope not, but it’s possible.
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