LeBron James just made some more history
The debates focusing on Michael Jordan vs. LeBron James will never go away, although I think it is perfectly fine to say both are/were great and the best players of their respective time in the NBA. Regardless, LeBron just made some history as the Cavs are moving on in the NBA Playoffs. Are the Cavs perfect? Who am I to say. What I do know is we have some good stuff for you in your Monday morning edition of The Cheat Sheet.
Celtics tie Bulls, Cavs sweep Pacers
The Chicago Bulls looked to be poised to pull a massive Round 1 stunner after taking a 2-0 series lead in their playoff matchup with the Celtics, but Boston has regained the momentum in the series with two straight wins. The absence of Rajon Rondo has been one the Bulls have been unable to overcome after a good start to the series. In Game 4, Boston roared out to a 12-point lead and held off the Bulls the rest of the way. Isaiah Thomas scored 33 points in the game, which got testy at times.
After the game, Jimmy Butler sounded off about Marcus Smart, calling him a great actor.
Jimmy Butler just went all the way in on Marcus Smart pic.twitter.com/GMlmzsXvoS
— Kenny Ducey (@KennyDucey) April 24, 2017
While the Celtics and Bulls play on with a pivotal Game 5 coming up Wednesday night in Boston, LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers are already looking forward to their Round 2 matchup. The Cavs put away the Indiana Pacers on Sunday with a four-game sweep. And yes, LeBron had a pretty important shot.
— NBA (@NBA) April 23, 2017
The first-round victory means LeBron moves into first-place all-time with 21 consecutive wins in the first round of the NBA playoffs.
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 23, 2017
LeBron doesn't even remember the last time he lost a first round game pic.twitter.com/nsJUohB9V8
— NBA Gods (@SportsLeakers) April 23, 2017
And how about this for some dumb luck?
Jeff Teague has now been swept by LeBron James for three straight years. pic.twitter.com/u61WmJ7w0J
— Dylan (@DylansFreshTake) April 23, 2017
Jeff Teague is not alone in making it a habit of losing to LeBron…
Paul George before the series: "I'm tired of losing to this guy (LeBron)"
*gets swept* pic.twitter.com/iZ3Kj34R3f
— Sports Nation Ohio (@SN_Ohio) April 23, 2017
Warriors try to win without Steve Kerr, Westbrook shuts down reporter
The Golden State Warriors may have to win a few games without head coach Steve Kerr on the sideline. How many games remains unknown. Kerr was not with the team for Game 3 of their playoff matchup with the Portland Trail Blazers and it remains unknown how long he will take a leave of absence from the team due to back problems stemming from back surgery done two years ago. It’s possible he may even be out for the rest of the postseason. Steph Curry joked the Warriors are now looking to “win one for the Gipper,” despite Kerr not wanting to go that route with his motivation for the team. The Warriors are up 3-0 in the series, which continues tonight in Portland.
Elsewhere in the Western Conference, things seem to be getting heated in Oklahoma City, where the Thunder are down 3-1 to Houston and this year’s likely regular season MVP Russell Westbrook is getting into some verbal jousting with a local columnist.
Russell Westbrook goes off on reporter who asks about team's play while he's on the bench pic.twitter.com/oikTf0GxCj
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) April 23, 2017
Caps and Senators clinch series with OT goals
The first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs have certainly packed the drama and excitement with so many overtime games. It was only fitting that two series in the Eastern Conference would be clinched with overtime goals.
The top-seeded Washington Capitals certainly had a tough first-round matchup against the young up-and-coming Toronto Maple Leafs and finally got by them with this overtime clincher.
A crazy night comes to a crazy OT finish.
— NHL (@NHL) April 24, 2017
The Capitals now move on to play the Pittsburgh Penguins, which is another ridiculous matchup thanks to the stupid playoff setup the NHL is using this season. This should be the Eastern Conference finals, as these are the top two teams in the conference this year. And the Penguins just took out the third top team (Columbus) in the opening round). This playoff format needs to be trashed immediately once this season is over.
On the bright side, no more Justin Bieber wearing a personalized Toronto uniform that says “Da Biebz” on the back.
— NHL (@NHL) April 24, 2017
In the other series clincher on Sunday, the Ottawa Senators moved past the Boston Bruins with this overtime goal by Clarke MacArthur.
— NHL (@NHL) April 23, 2017
Here is how Round 2 looks…
Round 1: DONE.
— NHL on NBC (@NHLonNBCSports) April 24, 2017
– The Los Angeles Kings hired a new coach with the addition of John Stevens.
– Hockey analyst Don Cherry is known for his fashion, but after seeing what he wore this weekend it might be expected his story will once be retold in a series of “Fargo.”
– The Minnesota Wild lost their series against the St. Louis Blues, but Bruce Boudreau doesn’t think the better team won.
– I am a bit of a fan of trick shot pool. This isn’t quite that, but it qualifies.
– The weekend series between the Boston Red Sox and Baltimore Orioles got a bit chippy. On Friday night, Dustin Pedroia left the game after getting spiked on a slide by Manny Machado. On Sunday, Pedroia missed a second straight game and was reported to be going for an MRI today. Frustrated, the Red Sox took aim at Machado, literally.
STOP. INTENTIONALLY. THROWING. AT. PEOPLE. pic.twitter.com/3anXLWo9k2
— Justin Russo (@FlyByKnite) April 23, 2017
– The Cincinnati Reds now have the best in-stadium video board gimmick in baseball…
Here's this. pic.twitter.com/iyfcv9B3eB
— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) April 22, 2017
– Daniel Murphy hit a grand slam in the first inning to put the Nationals on pace to sweep the Mets this weekend. Bryce Harper is hitting .400 so far this season.
– The NFL Draft is this week, and Warren Sapp is not nearly as high on Myles Garrett as others seem to be. And when watching the draft, if you are looking to avoid spoilers, ESPN will take care of you. Our pal Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated has your full media coverage breakdown for the NFL Draft.
– Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh is the highest-paid coach in college football, earning $9 million, but he still haggles with street vendors over the price of some cheap sunglasses.
– Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly took the blame for the Irish going 4-8 last year. Guess he finally ran out of scapegoats.
– The son of Randy Moss (Thaddeus Moss) is transferring from NC State to LSU.
– How did this guy not crash?
– FC Dallas is the last unbeaten club in MLS this season.
– A Mike and the Mad Dog reunion? Both parties are open to the idea.
– I don’t know what my career high in bowling is with or without bumpers, but I know I will never be able to pull off bowling a 300. I certainly could never dream of bowling a 300 in under 90 seconds.
– Kobe Bryant has a new youth basketball league, called the Mamba League, of course.
– Get caught up on all the latest movie and TV trailers you may have missed last week.
– Here is a list of video games that had sequels far superior to the original games in their respective franchises.
One last gratuitous moment of procrastination
Remember that dude who bowled a 300 in under 90 seconds? Well, here’s what he should try next…