Sports fans had no shortage of viewing options Monday night, with two NBA playoff games, four NHL playoff games and 10 MLB games.
It’s not easy to concisely sum up quite so much sports action, but we’re going to try anyway.
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Big Three all have big games as Cavs go up 2-0 on Pacers
In some ways, Monday night’s Cavaliers-Pacers game looked exactly like what Cleveland fans imagined when LeBron James, Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving first became teammates.
In a 117-111 Cavs win, James scored 25, Love put up 27, and Irving led the way with a game-high 37.
This is the first time that Kevin Love, Kyrie Irving & LeBron James have all scored 25+ points in the same playoff game. ? pic.twitter.com/S2RHKLk1DR
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 18, 2017
Cleveland’s defense still looks a little shaky, and guard J.R. Smith could miss some time with a hamstring injury, but things are generally looking good for the defending champs. After falling out of the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference and backing into the playoffs, the Cavs are up 2-0 on the Pacers as the series heads to Indianapolis.
Paul George continues to do his best to keep Indiana afloat—he accounted for 32 points, eight rebounds and seven assists in Monday’s Game 2—but there’s no stopping LeBron and company.
LeBron says NOPE‼️ pic.twitter.com/SjrzdhVuoj
— NBA Quick Report™? (@NBAquickreport) April 18, 2017
Larry Bird is not amused. pic.twitter.com/drqIk3KouM
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 18, 2017
Grizzlies make Spurs sweat, but San Antonio goes up 2-1
For a minute there, it looked like the Spurs might actually be trouble.
After trailing by 26 points in the first half Monday, the Grizzlies chipped away steadily and narrowed their deficit to 4 with 10 minutes to play in Game 2 of their Western Conference playoff series against San Antonio. But the Spurs characteristically didn’t crack and wound up pulling away again to prevail 96-82.
One game after tying a postseason career high, former NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard… set a new postseason career high.
Game 1: Ties postseason career high (32 pts)
Game 2: New postseason career high ? pic.twitter.com/jWiNdTbgHQ
— NBA on ESPN (@ESPNNBA) April 18, 2017
One of the keys to the game was the free-throw disparity between the two teams. The Spurs attempted 32 shots from the charity stripe, whereas the Grizzlies were awarded only 15. This caused Memphis coach David Fizdale some consternation, which he took out on the referees.
Grizzlies coach David Fizdale goes off on the refs after the Game 2 loss: 'Take that for data!' pic.twitter.com/kBaGytjyyW
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) April 18, 2017
The Spurs lead this series 2-0, and there’s little reason to think the Grizzlies have a shot, even with Game 3 taking place in Memphis.
On the bright side for the Grizz, this was pretty cool.
Marc Gasol the goat for this. ??
— NBA SKITS (@NBA_Skits) April 18, 2017
Capitals go down 2-1 to Maple Leafs, causing Washington fans to feel deja vu
Year after year, the Washington Capitals are among the best teams in the NHL, and year after year they flame out in the postseason.
So you can somewhat forgive Caps fans for absolutely panicking after their team blew a 2-0 lead Monday night and wound up losing to the Maple Leafs 4-3 in overtime to fall behind in the series 2-1.
CAPITALS FANS ARE EXTREMELY CONCERNED pic.twitter.com/39aDWSEsoo
— Dan Steinberg (@dcsportsbog) April 18, 2017
Minutes later, Capitals fans had settled down just a bit, but the point remained: They’re expecting the worst.
Update: now less concerned somehow pic.twitter.com/4Q0JKp9oxy
— Dan Steinberg (@dcsportsbog) April 18, 2017
The No. 8 seed Maple Leafs won Monday on an overtime power-play goal from Tyler Bozak. The victory was Toronto’s second consecutive 4-3 overtime win over the Caps in this series, and it gives Mike Babcock’s team a decided edge in the best-of-seven series.
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) April 18, 2017
Overall, it was quite a night for the NHL playoffs.
The Senators beat the Bruins 4-3 in overtime (sound familiar?) to take a 2-1 lead in that series. The game-winning goal came courtesy of Bobby Ryan.
— World of Sports (@WorldofSports77) April 18, 2017
The Chicago Blackhawks scored a goal (multiple, in fact!) for the first time this postseason but lost 3-2 to the Predators in overtime. Kevin Fiala scored the winner for Nashville.
And finally, in yet another overtime game, the Ducks beat the Flames 3-2 on a goal from Corey Perry to extend their series lead to 3-0.
If the entire NHL playoffs are like Monday night, we’ll all need defibrillators by the end.
– In baseball news, the Cubs put on a bunting clinic Monday against the Brewers. It started with Kyle Schwarber…
Kyle Schwarber with the greatest bunt of all-time. pic.twitter.com/lJmnOVRnr7
— Matt Clapp (@TheBlogfines) April 18, 2017
And continued with fellow slugger Anthony Rizzo…
Copying your teammate like … pic.twitter.com/wECK2pc6yB
— MLB (@MLB) April 18, 2017
The shift giveth, and the shift taketh away.
– Meanwhile in the Chinese Professional Baseball League, here’s an amazing bat flip:
– Adam “Don’t Call me Pacman” Jones flipped out at a reporter who asked about his recent arrest.
– Raiders quarterback Derek Carr said he thinks “true Raiders fans,” will follow the team to Las Vegas, which presumably didn’t sit well with the true Raiders fans who live in Oakland and care about the team precisely because it’s in Oakland.
– Danish soccer fans threw dead rats at opposing players, but joke’s on the fans because they had to hold the vermin for almost two hours of game-time.
– Braun Strowman’s massive superplex of the Big Show broke the Monday Night Raw ring.
— WWE (@WWE) April 18, 2017
– The last remaining person born in the 1800s has died at the age of 117.
One last moment of procrastination:
You’ve probably seen a few videos of a college walk-on being told of his new scholarship. But have you ever seen one involving an elaborate Easter egg hunt?