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#SportsReport: Celtics beat Bucks; Grizzlies top Golden State Warriors

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NBA PLAYOFFS:

Ja Morant scored 47 points to match his postseason high and carry the Memphis Grizzlies into a tie in the Western Conference semifinals with a 106-101 victory over the Golden State Warriors.

Morant scored the last 15 points for Memphis, starting with 4:16 left. The NBA’s Most Improved Player became only the third player in league history to have multiple 45-point games in the postseason before turning 23. The other two? LeBron James and Kobe Bryant.

Now the youngest team to reach the semifinal round in the last 25 years heads to San Francisco for Game 3 on Saturday night knowing the series will return to Memphis for Game 5.

In the NBA's other playoff game, Jaylen Brown scored 30 points, and the Boston Celtics beat the Milwaukee Bucks 109-86 to even their second-round playoff at one game apiece.

Brown shook off a dismal shooting night in Game 1, scoring 25 points in the first half on 9 of 10 shooting, including 5 for 5 from the 3. Jayson Tatum added 19 points and eight assists. Al Horford had 14 points and 11 rebounds.

The Celtics played without point guard Marcus Smart after he was ruled out with a bruised right thigh.

The series shifts to Milwaukee Saturday for Game 3.

NHL PLAYOFFS:

Game 1 of the Rangers-Penguins first-round series at Madison Square Garden had enough drama for two games, which works out because it was nearly as long. In a game they never led until they won it, Pittsburgh emerged the 4-3 victor over New York in triple overtime.

Evgeni Malkin scored on a deflection 5:58 into the third extra period.

Pens’ goalie Casey DeSmith had 48 saves but left midway through the second overtime appearing to favor a leg. Louis Domingue came on and made 17 saves.

The Rangers nearly won it in regulation, when Filip Chytil scored with 3:10 left in the third period. However, the Penguins challenged and the goal was disallowed for goalie interference after a video review.

In other NHL playoff action:

T.J. Oshie scored the go-ahead goal midway through the third period and the Washington Capitals rallied past the top-seeded Florida Panthers 4-2 in the opener of their Eastern Conference first-round series. Tom Wilson, Evgeny Kuznetsov and Lars Eller also scored for Washington, which trailed 2-1 going into the third period. Vitek Vanecek stopped 30 shots. Teams had been 0-39-1 against Florida in the regular season when trailing after 40 minutes, 0-22-0 when doing so on the Panthers’ home ice.

The Colorado Avalanche erupted for 5 goals in the first period and rolled to a 7-2 victory over the Nashville Predators in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series. Nathan MacKinnon got the scoring started and Devon Toews followed up 22 seconds later. The five goals chased Nashville’s backup goaltender David Rittich from the game with 4:56 remaining in the first. Andrew Cogliano, Cale Makar and Artturi Lehkonen also scored in the first. Game 2 is Thursday in Denver.

Jacob Markstrom recorded his second career playoff shutout as the Calgary Flames beat the Dallas Stars 1-0 in the opening game of their first-round playoff series. Elias Lindholm scored the game's lone goal a power-play early in the first period. Markstrom only faced 16 shots.

Toronto Maple Leafs forward Kyle Clifford has been given a one-game suspension for a boarding incident in Toronto’s playoff-opening win over the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The NHL’s department of player safety issued the suspension following a hearing with Clifford. It described the incident as a forceful hit to a defenseless player who is no longer in possession of the puck.

Clifford was assessed a major penalty for boarding and a game misconduct 6:59 into Game 1 of the first-round series for a hit on Ross Colton. Colton escaped serious injury. The Leafs won 5-0.

MLB:

The New York Mets swept a doubleheader from the National League East rival Atlanta Braves.

Mets manager Buck Showalter saved veteran starter Carlos Carrasco for the nightcap, hoping the 35-year-old could adjust his game plan to pitch more innings if Game 1 taxed New York’s bullpen.

Everything seems to be working out as hoped for the first-place Mets.

Carrasco dodged trouble for eight innings, Pete Alonso homered against Kyle Wright on an off night for Atlanta’s breakout right-hander and New York beat the Braves 3-0 Tuesday night to complete a doubleheader sweep.

Alonso had two RBI singles in the opener as the Mets pounced early against Charlie Morton, and New York’s bullpen closed out a five-hitter to beat the Braves 5-4. Alonso had two hits in each game.

Elsewhere in the major leagues:

The Yankees have notched their 11th straight win with a 9-1 victory over the Blue Jays in Toronto. Aaron Judge homered and drove in three runs, while Jameson Taillon allowed one run in six innings to get the win for New York.

Houston Astros manager Dusty Baker has won his 2,000th game, becoming the 12th skipper in major league history to reach the milestone and the first Black man to do it. The benchmark victory came in Houston’s 4-0 win over the Seattle Mariners. And, it comes more than 29 years after he collected his first win on April 9, 1993 when he led San Francisco to a 2-1 victory over St. Louis.

The Los Angeles Dodgers opened their annual rivalry series against the San Francisco Giants with a 3-1 victory. Chris Taylor had an early two-run single and Julio Urías pitched six scoreless innings of four-hit ball as Los Angeles won for the third time in four games.

Pinch-hitter Mike Zunino tied the game with a two-run homer in the ninth inning and Yandy Diaz hit a go-ahead double in a five-run 10th to lead the Tampa Bay Rays to a 10-7 win over the Oakland Athletics. Kevin Smith hit a grand slam in the first inning to stake the A’s to a 5-1 lead but Oakland didn’t score again and lost its fifth straight game.

Rafael Devers homered, Michael Wacha pitched into the sixth inning and the Boston Red Sox beat the Los Angeles Angels 4-0. J.D. Martinez added a solo homer in the eighth to help seal it for Boston.

Round one of the battle of Chicago goes to the White Sox. Tim Anderson homered and José Abreu made two nice plays at first base, helping the White Sox beat the Cubs 3-1 at rainy, chilly Wrigley Field.

Bobby Witt Jr. hit his first major league home run, Brad Keller pitched shutout ball into the seventh inning and the Kansas City Royals beat the St. Louis Cardinals 7-1 to end a four-game losing streak. Witt's home run was one of two hits to go with two RBIs and two runs scored.

Christian Walker had a homer, double and three RBIs, and Arizona Diamondbacks held on to beat the Miami Marlins 5-4. Arizona starter Humberto Castellanos completed his longest outing of the season, pitching 5 2/3 scoreless innings to earn the win.

Brandon Woodruff struck out 12 to tie his career high, as the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Cincinnati Reds 6-3. Willy Adames hit a three-run homer for the NL Central-leading Brewers, who have won six of their last seven games. The Reds have lost seven in a row and have the worst record in the majors at 3-20.

Zach Reks snapped a tie game with a two-RBI double to lead the the Texas Rangers past the Philadelphia Phillies 6-4. Mitch Garver and Jonah Heim homered for the Rangers.

Ryan Jeffers hit a tiebreaking, three-run homer in the sixth inning and the surging Minnesota Twins defeated the Baltimore Orioles 7-2 for their fourth straight victory. The Twins have won 12 of 13 to move six games over .500 and into first place in the AL Central, which does not have another team with a winning record.

Josh Bell and Juan Soto homered and the Washington Nationals beat the Colorado Rockies 10-2. Keibert Ruiz had three hits and three RBIs and Yadiel Hernández added three hits and two RBIs for the Nationals, who entered the game averaging a major league high 6.4 runs on the road. Erick Fedde pitched seven sharp innings for the win.

Rain forced postponement of games between the Padres and Guardians in Cleveland and the Pirates-Tigers in Detroit. Both will be made up Wednesday as part of traditional doubleheaders.

Minnesota Twins infielder Miguel Sanó will undergo surgery to repair a meniscus tear in his left knee and there’s no timeframe for his return.

Twins manager Rocco Baldelli says the procedure will take place later this week. Sanó was placed on the 10-day injured list Monday.

He sustained the injury on April 26 while celebrating Minnesota’s 5-4 victory over the Tigers, a game decided on the final play.

In other baseball news:

The Cincinnati Reds have put slumping first baseman Joey Votto on the COVID-19 injured list. Manager David Bell says Votto hadn’t tested positive for the virus but was showing symptoms. The six-time All-Star is hitting just .122 with no home runs and three RBIs. He has struck out 29 times in 74 at-bats. Cincinnati is struggling with the worst record in the major leagues at 3-19.

The Chicago Cubs have placed left-hander Drew Smyly on the bereavement list and brought up right-hander Robert Gsellman from Triple-A Iowa. Smyly was slated to start against the Chicago White Sox at Wrigley Field. Right-hander Scott Effross got the call instead, beginning a bullpen day for the Cubs.

The Los Angeles Dodgers have unveiled plans for this summer’s MLB All-Star Game. The franchise will be hosting for the first time since 1980. Dodger Stadium, LA Live in downtown Los Angeles and the Santa Monica Pier will be backdrops for events running from July 15 to July 19. The Dodgers plan to honor Jackie Robinson, who broke baseball’s color barrier with the franchise 75 years ago. His widow, Rachel, turns 100 on July 19, the same day as the All-Star Game. The Home Run Derby is July 18.

WNBA:

The Biden administration has determined WNBA star Brittney Griner is being wrongfully detained in Russia, meaning the U.S. will more aggressively work to secure her release while the legal case against her plays out. That’s according to two U.S. officials who spoke Tuesday to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

Griner was detained at an airport in February after Russian authorities said a search of her bag revealed vape cartridges containing traces of cannabis oil. U.S. officials previously stopped short of classifying the Phoenix Mercury player as wrongfully detained.

The president of the WNBA players’ union says it’s time for Griner to “come home.”

NFL:

The New Orleans Saints and Tyrann Mathieu have agreed to a three-year, $33 million contract, reuniting the All-Pro safety with his hometown team. That's according to a person familiar with the terms.

The contract includes $18 million guaranteed, a sizeable investment for a safety who turns 30 next week.

Elsewhere in the NFL:

The Atlanta Falcons have picked up right guard Chris Lindstrom’s $13.2 million fifth-year option while declining the option on right tackle Kaleb McGary. The Falcons also announced a $51 million, three-year contract extension with defensive tackle Grady Jarrett, a two-time Pro Bowl selection.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have signed safety Damontae Kazee to a one-year contract. Kazee spent the 2021 season in Dallas, making 52 tackles and finishing with two interceptions in 17 games, with 15 starts. The 28-year-old Kazee began his career in Atlanta, playing four seasons for the Falcons. He'll compete with Terrell Edmunds for playing time.

The NFL has hired 10 new on-field officials, including the first Asian American to officiate in the league and a former player. Lo van Pham joins the NFL from the Big 12 Conference. He was born in Vietnam and after a stop in the Philippines, moved to the United States when he was seven. Mike Morton becomes the third former NFL player on the 2022 roster of officials. He was a linebacker for the Raiders, St. Louis, Green Bay and Indianapolis during a seven-year NFL career that began in 1995.

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