Suns spoil Nikola Jokic’s MVP celebration, LeBron’s big change, and Pete Alonso’s accusations against MLB
Hello everyone! Here’s Gabe Fernandez bringing you your daily morning dose of CBS sports news.
Today we are full of stories about a round orange ball that bounces and sometimes falls into a round hoop. That’s right, it’s basketball. There have been a plethora of jokes about how people lost some of their social skills during the pandemic, but what concerns me most is how rusty my jump shot is. Let’s be clear: I don’t enlighten recreation centers like I am Steph, but I could get by in pickup games for a long time – provided no one is within 10 feet of me.
Now I’m almost afraid to go back to a field to practice because what might happen is I’m being asked to play a fast game, I think I’m ready to play again and I totally embarrass me in front of strangers. A miserable experience just to think about. When was the last time you played a pickup game of any sport? Let me know on Twitter.
Anyway, let’s get started.
What you need to know
1. The Suns dominate, take the lead of the series 2-0 against the Nuggets 🏀
It wouldn’t have been too surprising if new MVP Nikola Jokic came out the door shooting and helped the Nuggets tie the series against the Phoenix Suns. However, that is not what happened on Wednesday as the Suns quickly reminded the Nuggets that their stars are still there and (relatively) healthy enough to put Denver on its heels.
While the average paranoid Suns fan might not be quick to admit it, this Phoenix team is absolutely legitimate. It was their fifth straight playoff victory, and the perennial Chris Paul has continued to show off and prove that he truly is the point god himself. Not only was last night’s stat line 17 points, 15 assists and zero turnovers, but his assists-to-turnover ratio for this series so far is 26 to 1.
Of course, it’s only been two games and the series is now heading to Denver, but it’s just impressive to see this Suns team not only playing well, but downright dominating. Keep in mind: The franchise made the major decision to bring in Chris Paul after the top brass saw what the team could do in an eight-game sample in the Orlando bubble. The fact that this bet has paid off shows that front offices actively striving to improve lists in the short term are only offering a better product on the ground.
2. The Indiana Pacers dismiss Nate Bjorkgren after a season 🏀
Nate Bjorkgren’s experience came to an end in Indiana after a less than stellar season. The details of the layoff mostly focus on Bjorkgren’s inability to develop meaningful relationships with players and other staff, as Jasmyn Wimbish notes in her story post.
- Wimbish: “But that seemed like a bigger problem than just the players not being able to stay on the pitch. At team president Kevin Pritchard’s end-of-season press conference last month, he said painted a portrait of a coach who lacked in interpersonal skills, and said “this needs to be improved.” Clearly, however, Indiana did not want to wait and find out if he could restore confidence in the locker room. ”
Lack of patience appears to be the main hallmark of Indiana’s training decisions over the past two seasons. After Nate McMillan put on a solid season after a strong season, even with a rotating talent cast on the roster, the organization decided he wasn’t putting up a championship contender quickly enough and moved on to Bjorkgren afterwards. the end of last season’s bubble. . After last season, the Pacers showed they weren’t even going to wait and see if things got better in the second year.
McMillan has now served as the Hawks’ interim head coach and brought them to the second round of the playoffs, with the series against the 76ers tied 1-1. The Pacers, meanwhile, have withdrawn from the play-in tournament. Of course, the team had to deal with injuries, but there was just something missing in Bjorkgren’s diet that just didn’t work out.
The good news for the former Raptors assistant is that given the way things have turned out for the Pacers’ last coach, he should expect a starring role on a playoff team next season. .
3. Pete Alonso has a crazy MLB conspiracy ⚾
Mets first baseman Pete Alonso has an idea: The MLB changed the physical properties of baseball so that free agent wages were lower for frugal owners. Here’s the full quote reporters heard when the Mets star spoke to media on Wednesday.
- Alonso: “The biggest concern is that MLB is handling baseballs year after year based on free agency class… Oh, no, that’s a fact. Yeah, guys talked about it. no coincidence. It was definitely something they did. “
Alonso’s two sources for this take are the 2019 and 2021 seasons. After 2019, a year that saw league-wide home run records that will likely last for years to come, most of the best free agents were pitchers. While the biggest names were signed, some of the proverbial upper-middle-class stars were given serious pay cuts based on what they were supposed to get, or had to wait awhile before being signed.
This year, as the best free agents are expected to be hitters, the ball appears to have been cushioned to the point where there was real concern that non-hitters would become too common. I could guess what all of this means, but why would I do it when our CBS Sports baseball scribe, RJ Anderson, did.
- Anderson: “Whether or not there is merit in Alonso’s conspiracy theory – and it is reasonable to doubt that MLB is an organization competent enough from top to bottom to perform such maneuvers – its willingness to do so. to know and to suggest to other players to hold the same belief, underlines the mistrust which exists within the clubs towards the commissioner Rob Manfred and the owners. “
It had been a while since sport had a good ol ‘work stoppage time. It could be a sign that the next one is coming ASAP.
4. LeBron changes his number again 🏀
There comes a time in every man’s life when he recognizes his own mortality and begins to make changes that remind him of its use. I have to assume that’s what prompted LeBron James to change his jersey number from 23 to 6.
The Lakers star last wore this number in 2014, when he was at the height of his league villainy as part of the Miami Heat with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. He will make the switch this coming season after the release of his summer film, Space Jam: a new legacy.
If you remember, LeBron initially wanted to move up to number 6 the season Anthony Davis came in so that his new star teammate could keep the number he wore in New Orleans. However, due to the timing of his request, the LeBron jerseys had already been made, so it would have been a logistical (and expensive) nightmare to make this change.
This begs the question of what is LeBron’s reason for this change. Is he trying to see if he can pull it off in a different jersey number like Kobe Bryant was during his Lakers tenure? Is he switching to his Heat number because he’s trying to go back to a style of play he had back then? Did Anthony Davis win a bet and get James’ number next season? Whatever the reason, one thing is for sure: he probably won’t retire now until the number of rings he has earned matches his new number, because that is just the individual obsessed with the story that is LeBron.
Dimensions and ends
- The New York Islanders defeated the Boston Bruins in the second round to advance to the semi-finals of the Stanley Cup playoffs.
- NASCAR changes rules for slowing cars at Daytona and Talladega in response to spooky crash last April
- USMNT beat Costa Rica 4-0 in international friendly
What to watch tonight
🏀 Nets vs. Bucks, 7:30 p.m. I BUCKS -160 I TV: TNT
Clippers vs. Jazz, 10 p.m. I JAZZ -150 I TV: TNT
🏒Avalanche vs. Golden Knights, 9 p.m. | LV -140 | Television: NBCSN
🏆 Florida State vs. Oklahoma (WCWS Game 3) 3 p.m. | Television: ESPN
The best thing I have seen on the internet
Credit where credit is due: Eric Sogard made an effort to dive towards the first in an attempt to reach base safely so he could help his team on Sunday. Sadly, he forgot that an important part of the base operation process was, well, hitting the base, which he missed. You can see his hilarious dive attempt here.