Update on the latest sports
Nets beat Bucks, lose Harden
NEW YORK (AP) — The Brooklyn Nets’ Big 3 quickly became the Big 2 before they took the opener of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
Kevin Durant scored 29 points and Kyrie Irving had 25 as the Nets downed the Bucks, 115-107. Joe Harris provided 19 points for the Nets, who played all but the first 43 seconds without James Harden because of a hamstring injury.
Blake Griffin had 18 points and 14 rebounds while helping Brooklyn hold Milwaukee to 13 points below their NBA-leading average.
Giannis Antetokounmpo (YAH’-nihs an-teh-toh-KOON’-poh) had 34 points and 11 rebounds, but the Bucks were just 6 for 30 from 3-point range and lost for the first time in the playoffs after storming past Miami in a first-round sweep.
Game 2 is Monday in Brooklyn.
Clifford won’t return as Magic coach…Embiid status still uncertain
UNDATED (AP) — Steve Clifford is out after three years as Orlando’s head coach, with the team saying it was a mutual decision. Magic President Jeff Weltman indicated that Clifford might not have wanted to be part of a long rebuild around young players and draft picks. Clifford was 96-131 in his three years, reaching the playoffs each of his first two seasons.
In other NBA news:
— Joel Embiid’s (joh-EHL’ ehm-BEEDZ’) status for Game 1 of Philadelphia’s playoff series against Atlanta is still unknown. The Sixers are set to open their playoff series with the Hawks at home Sunday. The All-Star has a small lateral meniscus tear in his right knee and coach Doc Rivers says no decision has been made on his availability.
Bolts down Canes, Isles square series
UNDATED (AP) — The defending Stanley Cup champs are one win away from reaching the semifinals.
The Tampa Bay Lighting own a three-games-to-one lead in their second-round series after Nikita Kucherov (KOO’-cheh-rahv) and Steven Stamkos each had two goals and an assist in a 6-4 win over the Hurricanes.
The Lightning trailed 4-2 before scoring three straight goals in the second period. Stamkos and Kucherov tallied on the power play and Tyler Johnson also beat Petr Mrazek with 5:22 left in the period.
Tampa Bay finished 3 of 6 on the power play, and it has scored five times with the man advantage in the last two games.
Vezina Trophy finalist Andrei Vasilevskiy (va-sih-LEHV’-skee) finished with 21 saves and blanked Carolina after Jaccob Slavin’s (JAY’-kahb SLAY’-vihnz) goal at 12:41 of the second.
The Bolts can wrap up the series on Tuesday in Raleigh.
The Islanders have evened their second-round series at two games apiece, guaranteeing at least one more game at Nassau Coliseum.
Mat Barzal (bahr-ZAL’) scored the game-winning goal and had an assist as the Isles knocked off the Bruins, 4-1. Barzal broke a 1-1 tie with 6:57 remaining before Casey Cizikas (sih-ZEE’-kihs) and J.G Pageau (PA’-zhoh) added empty-netters.
Kyle Palmieri also scored and Semyon Varlamov (SEHM’-yahn vahr-LAH’-mahv) stopped 28 shots for New York. Varlamov was perfect after David Krejci (KRAY’-chee) scored on a power play 3:57 into the second period.
Game 5 is Monday in Boston.
Essential Quality wins Belmont Stakes
NEW YORK (AP) — Essential Quality has won the third leg of the Triple Crown, capturing the Belmont Stakes.
Essential Quality went off as the 6-5 favorite and passed early leader Hot Rod Charlie around the final turn before holding on to win the 1 1/2-mile race.
Brad Cox’s gray colt finished fourth in the Kentucky Derby after going off as the favorite and enduring a rough trip.
Hot Rod Charlie was second, Preakness winner Rombauer third and Known Agenda fourth.
FRENCH OPEN-DAY 7
Nadal, Djokovic in 4th round, as usual
PARIS (AP) — A trio of familiar names have advanced to the Round of 16 at the French Open.
Rafael Nadal has advanced to the fourth round at a Grand Slam for the 50th time by beating Cameron Norrie in the French Open, 6-3, 6-3, 6-3. The defending champion is trying to add to his record 13 French Open championships and seeks his 21st major title, which would break the men’s record he shares with Roger Federer.
Federer survived a draining 7-6, 6-7, 7-6, 7-5 win over 59th-ranked Dominik Koepfer in a match that ended around 1am local time.
Men’s top-seed Novak Djokovic (JOH’-koh-vihch) reached the fourth round for a record 12th consecutive year with a 6-1, 6-4, 6-1 win over 93rd-ranked Ricardas Berankis. Djokovic’s streak of appearances in the Round of 16 in Paris is one more than the previous mark shared by Nadal and Federer.
Other winners on the men’s side include ninth seed Matteo Berrettini and No. 10 Diego Schwartzman.
In the women’s bracket, defending champion Iga Swiatek (shvee-AHN’-tehk) rallied from a slow start to beat Anett Kontaveit 7-6, 6-0. The eighth-seeded Swiatek has won 20 consecutive sets at Roland Garros and dropped just 12 points in the second set.
Fourth-seeded Sofia Kenin remains the highest seed in the women’s draw after rallying to win 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 against American countrywoman Jessica Pegula (peh-GOO’-luh). American teenager Coco Gauff is into the fourth round for the first time after her opponent Jennifer Brady stopped playing because of an injured left foot.
Former French Open runner-up Sloane Stephens also advanced to the fourth round, but fifth-seeded Elina Svitolina (svih-toh-LEE’-nah) was upset by Barbora Krejcikova.
Guerrero hits 18th homer as Blue Jays beat Astros 6-2
UNDATED (AP) — The Blue Jays were able to bounce back from Friday’s 13-1 blowout loss to the Houston Astros, Toronto’s only home loss since returning to Buffalo.
Homers by Vladimir Guerrero and Joe Panik (PA’-nihk) powered the Blue Jays past the Astros, 6-2 in Buffalo.
Panik’s tiebreaking three-run shot off José Urquidy (ur-KEE’-dee) gave Toronto a 4-1 lead in the fourth inning. Guerrero connected in the fifth, sending a two-run drive deep to left for his 18th homer.
Ross Stripling pitched five innings of one-run ball for the Blue Jays, who improved to 3-1 at their temporary home in Buffalo.
Elsewhere in the majors:
— Kiké (KEE’-kay) Hernández snapped an 0-for-27 skid with a tiebreaking double in the eighth inning of the Red Sox’s major league-leading 20th comeback win, 5-3 versus the Yankees. Hernández got his first RBI since May 20 by roping a two-out fastball from Chad Green to the wall in left, scoring Rafael Devers (DEH’-vurz) from first.
— Rich Hill pitched another five scoreless innings on just 59 pitches as the Rays blanked the Rangers, 3-0. Austin Meadows delivered a two-run single off in the first inning before Manuel Margot (mahn-WEHL mahr-GOH’) hit a solo homer in the eighth as Tampa Bay improved to an AL-best 37-23.
— Cole Irvin pitched six strong innings and the Athletics improved to 4-1 on their 10-game road trip with a 6-3 victory against the Rockies. Matt Olson and Chad Pinder and Mark Canha (KAN’-ah) had three hits, including including an RBI single.
— Tarik Skubal (TAH’-rihk SKOO’-bul) struck out a career-high 11 and Eric Haase (hahs) homered twice in the Tigers’ 4-3 downing of the White Sox. Skubal allowed one run and four hits in five innings to help Detroit beat Chicago for just the second time in their last 15 meetings.
— Homers by Ryan Jeffers, Kyle Garlick and Miguel Sanó helped the Twins beat the Royals, 5-4 and end a four-game skid. Hansel Robles gave up Kelvin Gutiérrez’s leadoff double in the ninth before the Twins eventually turned a game-ending double play with the potential tying run on third.
— Cesar Hernandez and Harold Ramirez homered off John Means before the Orioles ace who exited with shoulder fatigue in the first inning of the Indians’ 10-4 thumping of the Orioles. Yu Chang also homered to help Aaron Civale improve to 8-2, tying him for the major league lead in victories.
— Kevin Gausman struck out 10 and Alex Dickerson homered for the second straight day in the Giants’ third consecutive win over the Cubs, 4-3. Gausman limited the Cubs to a pair of unearned runs on two hits over seven innings, leaving him 7-0 with a 1.27 ERA.
— Ozzie Albies supplied a go-ahead, two-run double while the Braves scored five times in the third off Clayton Kershaw to beat the Dodgers, 6-4. Abraham Almonte got a pinch-hit homer off Blake Treinen in the seventh and Charlie Morton gave up a pair of earned runs over five innings to get the win.
— Bryce Harper poked a run-scoring single that stopped an 0-for-18 skid in his return from the injured list, helping the Phillies top the Nationals, 5-2. Andrew McCutchen hit a three-run homer in Philadelphia’s second win in six games.
— Jonathan India and Eugenio (ay-oo-HEH’-nee-oh) Suárez homered for the Reds in a 5-2 victory over the Cardinals. St. Louis finished the game without catcher Yadier (YAH’-dee-ehr) Molina, who came out in the fourth inning with a bruised knee.
— The Pirates pulled out an 8-7 win over the Marlins on Jacob Stallings’ game-ending single in the 12th inning. Pittsburgh trailed 5-2 before sending Miami to its eighth straight loss, the Marlins’ longest skid since 2015.
— Arizona’s road losing streak has reached a team-record 16 games after Christian Yelich (YEH’-lihch) and Omar Narváez (nahr-VY’-ehz) hit back-to-back homers in the eighth inning to send the Brewers past the Diamondbacks, 7-5. Willy Adames (ah-DAH’-mehs) smacked a two-run homer in the sixth before Milwaukee squandered a 5-2 lead.
Yanks call up slugger
UNDATED (AP) — The Yankees have promoted slugging prospect Chris Gittens from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, hoping the hulking 27-year-old can provide a jolt at first base in his first turn in the majors.
Luke Voit led the majors with 22 homers as the Yankees’ first baseman in 2020 but has played in just 12 games this season.
In other baseball news:
— Right-hander Jon Gray has been placed on the 10-day injured list by the Rockies with a right flexor strain. Right-hander Jordan Sheffield also went on the 10-day injured list and the team recalled left-handed pitchers Ben Bowden and Lucas Gilbreath from Triple-A Albuquerque.
— The Tigers have placed right-hander Spencer Turnbull on the 10-day injured list with a strained right forearm.
Packers CEO says team’s fans divided on Rodgers situation
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Green Bay Packers CEO Mark Murphy says he believes the uncertainty surrounding MVP Aaron Rodgers’ future has divided the team’s fan base.
Murphy said in a monthly column on the Packers’ website that emails and letters he’s received regarding Rodgers reflect this division. Murphy added that “we remain committed to resolving things with Aaron and want him to be our quarterback in 2021 and beyond.” ESPN reported in late April that Rodgers doesn’t want to return to Green Bay.
Rodgers hasn’t participated in the Packers’ voluntary organized training activities. That’s a change from his usual offseason routine.
Coronavirus knocks Rahm out of Memorial after 6-shot lead
DUBLIN, Ohio (AP) — One minute, Jon Rahm was headed for a blowout victory in the Memorial. The next minute, he was out of the tournament with a positive test for the coronavirus.
Rahm was subject to daily testing this week after being in close contact with a person who was COVID-19 positive. He passed every test until Saturday morning when the second round of the rain-delayed tournament ended.
The final result was returned as he was on the 18th green capping off a 64 to tie the 54-hole record and lead by six.
The positive test now puts Collin Morikawa and Patrick Cantlay back in contention for the title. Morikawa fired a 6-under 66 to pull into a first-place tie with Cantlay at minus-12.
Branden Grace and Scottie Scheffler are three shots back.
LPGA-US WOMEN’S OPEN
Thompson leads through 54
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Lexi Thompson shot a bogey-free 5-under 66 to take the lead into the final round of the U.S. Women’s Open for the first time in 15 tries.
Thompson played a nearly flawless round in taking a one-shot edge over teenager Yuka Saso.
She made three birdies on the front nine and two more on the back nine to overcome a four-shot deficit and take the lead at 7 under.
Thompson was the first player all week to make par or better on every hole in the round.
GOLF-PGA TOUR CHAMPIONS
Herron takes 4-shot lead in Iowa
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Tim Herron shot a 9-under 63 and will carry a four-stroke lead into the final round of the the PGA Tour Champions’ Principal Charity Classic.
Trying to win for the first time on the 50-and-over tour, Herron birdied the par-4 18th for a back-nine 30 and 14-under 130 total at Wakonda Club.
Shane Bertsch and Rod Pampling share second after 67s.