Dunk of the Night: OG Anunoby - August 1, 2020
Major League Baseball made it through the first full week of the season. For now, MLB marches on, with players being told to more strictly stick to the health and safety protocols and the commissioner threatening to shut this all down if he doesn't see improvement. Here's where they stand after a strange week and a half ...
For as much as Bears fans despise Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, it's fair to say he's a smart guy both on and off the field. And when his team traded up to select Utah State quarterback Jordan Love in the first round of the 2020 NFL draft, he knew the end of his run in Green Bay is coming sooner than maybe anyone would've expected. "You know, based on just the circumstances around everything when you just look at the facts," Rodgers said on the '10 questions with Kyle Brandt' podcast.
On Saturday, the St. Louis Cardinals had four members of its traveling party test positive for COVID-19, with four more having what the Cardinals have characterized as “inconclusive results.” Could be four Cardinals positive tests? Cardinals personnel have been isolated from one other since arriving in Milwaukee for the completely postponed three-game weekend series they were supposed to play against the Brewers.
What would Bill Russell have thought of Sunday's NBA bubble thriller between the Boston Celtics and Portland Trail Blazers? The Celtics legend entered the conversation during the first quarter of Sunday's game, when Marcus Smart's block of Carmelo Anthony and subsequent save to keep the ball in bounds reminded a fan of Russell's patented block-and-save move. Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Heat, which begins Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live followed by tip-off at 6:30 p.m. You can also stream the game on the MyTeams App.
Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman is jacked—as if that's news to anyone—and he's been rocking a crop top and short shorts at practice to prove it yet again. In a new series of Instagram photos, Edelman gave a peek at his pre-season training for the Patriots, which included a close-up look at his shredded abs, defined quads, and bulging arms for good measure. In his latest photo, Edelman sports a gray crop top, seafoam-hued shorts and white Nikes in the photo series, which shows him grinding hard through his practice workout.
Chicago Bears general manager Ryan Pace told reporters this week that he expected to get to the club's 80-main training camp roster limit this weekend, and while he's not quite there yet, he did give one of the team's running backs his pink slip on Sunday. The Bears released undrafted rookie Napoleon Maxwell (Florida International). Meanwhile, Artavis Pierce (Oregon State) was activated from the Reserve/COVID-19 list.
So far, eight New England Patriots players have decided to opt out of the 2020 NFL season. Dont'a Hightower, Patrick Chung, Marcus Cannon, Brandon Bolden, Danny Vitale, Najee Toran, Marqise Lee, and Matt LaCosse each are sitting out this year due to concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of the players opting out are doing so for family reasons or because of underlying health conditions.
'Pulisic injury news' is probably trending worldwide at this point, and Chelsea and USMNT star Christian Pulisic has an injury update after he damaged his right hamstring in the FA Cup final against Arsenal on Saturday. Pulisic, 21, scored a superb goal early on and was arguably the man of the match even though he pulled up abruptly in the 46th minute when sprinting free (once again) of the Arsenal attack and then hitting a shot wide. After being helped off the pitch while clearly in pain, Pulisic was seen hanging around the tunnel area after the FA Cup final and was at least walking on his own.
Major week arrives, Justin Thomas walks to another title in Memphis, Brooks Koepka shows signs of life, Brendon Todd has another Sunday to forget, the LPGA and PGA Tour Champions restart, and more in this week's edition of Monday Scramble: 1. The best players in the world – finally! gather for a major this week with the PGA Championship getting underway Thursday at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco.
The big slugger homered twice and drove in five runs, connecting for the fifth straight game and breaking an eighth-inning tie with a tape-measure shot that powered the New York Yankees past Boston 9-7 on Sunday night for their sixth consecutive victory. I really think he's on a mission right now,'' Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. Luke Voit also went deep in a back-and-forth slugfest to help the Yankees (7-1) finish a three-game sweep in the first series this season between the longtime rivals.
TPC Harding Park will be the host venue this year. The course was laid out by Willie Watson and Sam Whiting, opened for play in 1925, and was renovated in 2003 ahead of the 2005 WGC-American Express Championship at Harding Park. The course also re-grassed the greens in 2014 just ahead of the 2015 WGC-Match Play.
After the first quarter of the Sixers' first game since March 11, Joel Embiid and Shake Milton had an apparent confrontation on the sidelines. Milton was restrained by teammates during a back-and-forth with the Sixers' All-Star center (see video above). In a video conference with reporters after the game, Embiid portrayed the incident as insignificant, the kind of moment that happens often during an NBA season.
The new look didn't do Tatum any favors, though: He scored just five points on 2-of-18 shooting Friday in the Celtics' seeding round opener against the Milwaukee Bucks. So, the 22-year-old decided to lop off his locks prior to Sunday's game against the Portland Trail Blazers. Turns out that was the right call: Tatum dropped 34 points on 11-of-22 shooting while adding eight assists and four rebounds in Boston's 128-124 win.
If Bubba Wallace stays at Richard Petty Motorsports, he could be a part owner of the team. Team majority owner Andrew Murstein told Forbes that the team had offered an ownership stake in the No. 43 car to Wallace as a way to try to keep him at the team in 2021 and beyond. Wallace, who is set to be a free agent at the end of the season, confirmed the offer to NBC Sports on Sunday according to pit reporter Marty Snider.
That didn't take long. One week and two appearances into the season, Craig Kimbrel has pitched his way out of the Cubs' closer role, underscoring the bullpen turmoil that figures to be a storyline as long as this scheduled 60-game season lasts. Not that it's even a question worth answering after a four-walk, hit-batter performance in his first appearance and the back-to-back homers he allowed in the second on Friday night.
Jim Furyk turned 50 when golf was shut down and made the most of it when the PGA Tour Champions returned, closing with a 4-under 68 to win the Ally Challenge on Sunday when Brett Quigley bogeyed his last two holes. Furyk became the first player since Miguel Angel Jimenez in 2014 to win in his start on the 50-and-older circuit. ''I'm the 19th person to come out and win their first event on the PGA Tour Champions,'' Furyk said.
The Los Angeles Lakers followed up their cathartic NBA bubble-opening win over the Los Angeles Clippers with a resounding thud. The Lakers' second game in Disney World saw them fall 107-92 in a rough loss to the defending champion Toronto Raptors. While 14 points from Anthony Davis and 20 points form LeBron James wasn't ideal, the bigger problem was the Lakers' supporting cast.
Detroit Tigers reliever Tyler Alexander made history in MLB, while Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw starred in his 2020 debut. The Tigers lost their doubleheader against the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday – 4-3 and 4-0 – but unheralded pitcher Alexander set a league record. Alexander struck out the first nine batters he faced in the opening game – tying the American League (AL) mark and setting an MLB record for most consecutive strikeouts by a reliver.
NFL training camps kicked off last week and with them came hope for a successful 2020 season (if there is one). COVID-19 still has American sports on shaky ground, and if there's an outbreak of the novel coronavirus in training camps this summer, we might all be turning our attention to the 2021 NFL draft sooner than we could've imagined. The Draft Wire published a new three-round mock draft that has the Bears grabbing their QB-next in Round 1 (at No. 12 overall): North Dakota State's Trey Lance.
Get the latest news and analysis on all of your teams from NBC Sports Boston by downloading the My Teams App On Sunday night, the Red Sox dropped their toughest contest yet, a 9-7 loss to the Yankees that wasn't decided until Aaron Judge blasted the go-ahead two-run homer in the eighth to propel New York to a three-game sweep. It was actually one of Boston's better efforts, thanks to two homers from Xander Bogaerts and another from Rafael Devers, but if the Red Sox have proven anything over the first 10 games, it's that they can find new ways to lose on a nightly basis. Usually their losses are over before they start, thanks to a beer league pitching staff that excels at digging 5-0 holes.