#SportsReport: Celtics Top 76ers; Bruins Beat Hurricanes
Jayson Tatum had career playoff highs of 32 points and 13 rebounds to guide the Celtics to a 109-101 victory over the 76ers.
Tatum scored 15 points in the second quarter to give the Celtics a 55-49 lead at halftime. Kemba Walker added 19 points for the Boston, which scored 16 points off Philadelphia's 13 turnovers. Joel Embiid had 26 points and 16 rebounds for the 76ers, who nearly pulled off the win while All-Star guard Ben Simmons sits out indefinitely after left knee surgery.
In other playoff-opening action:
Fred VanVleet scored 30 points and led the Toronto Raptors' sizzling 3-point attack in a 134-110 romp over Brooklyn. The defending champs were 22 of 44 from beyond the arc, with VanVleet hitting eight of his 10 attempts. Toronto's accuracy from beyond the arc helped the Raptors grab a 68-35 lead with less than five minutes left in the first half. Serge Ibaka scored 22 points off the bench for the Raptors, while Pascal Siakam had 18 points and 11 rebounds.
Donovan Mitchell shattered the Utah Jazz playoff record for points in a game as the NBA embarked on its bubble playoffs near Orlando. But his 57-point performance wasn't enough for the Jazz to avoid a loss to the Denver Nuggets. Jamal Murray led the victory by scoring 20 of his 36 points in the fourth quarter and overtime to lead the Nuggets' 135-125 win against Utah. Murray sealed the win on a 3-pointer with 46.8 seconds remaining. Nikola Jokic finished with 29 points and 10 rebounds in the first game of postseason. Mitchell was 19 of 33 from the floor and 13 of 13 from the free-throw line. He also had seven assists. Mitchell's scoring spree surpassed the Jazz mark of 50 by Karl Malone on April 22, 2000, against Seattle.
Kawhi Leonard had 29 points and 12 rebounds, and the Clippers got a big boost from the ejection of Kristaps Porzingis to beat the Mavericks. 118-110. Los Angeles pulled into the lead when Porzingis was ejected for picking up his second technical foul in the third quarter. Paul George added 27 points and Marcus Morris had 19 for the Clippers. Dallas lost despite 42 points, nine assists and seven rebounds from Luka Doncic.
The Tampa Bay Lightning, Boston Bruins and Colorado Avalanche hold three-games-to-one leads in their Stanley Cup first-round series after winning on Monday. Barclay Goodrow and Yanni Gourde each had a goal and an assist as the Lightning downed Columbus, 2-1. Tampa Bay took control by scoring twice in the first 4:09 of the second period. Andrei Vasilevskiy had 28 saves and blanked Columbus after Cam Atkinson beat him in the middle period, two minutes after Gourde gave the Bolts a two-goal lead.
Also in Toronto, Jake DeBrusk scored twice while the Bruins were turning a 2-0, third-period deficit into a 4-3 win over the Hurricanes. Brad Marchand and Connor Clifton also scored in the third for Boston, which outshot the Hurricanes, 16-2 in the final 20 minutes. Justin Williams and Jordan Martinook scored to give Carolina the 2-0 lead before the Bruins ran off four straight goals.
The Avalanche coasted to a 7-1 rout of the Coyotes as Nazem Kadri delivered two goals and an assist. Kadri already has five goals and nine points in seven games at the Edmonton bubble. Matt Calvert, Cale Makar and Mikko Rantanen each had a goal and an assist for the Avs, who chased Darcy Kuemper from the nets after two periods. Philipp Grubauer faced just 15 shots and blanked the Coyotes until Jakob Chychryn scored a power-play goal 13 1/2 minutes into the second period.
Meanwhile, the defending Stanley Cup champs have knotted their series at two games apiece. Ryan O'Reilly scored twice and had an assist in the Blues' 3-1 verdict over the Canucks. O'Reilly snapped a 1-1 tie seven minutes into the second period and set up Alex Pietrangelo later in the stanza. Jake Allen stopped 23 shots for the Blues, who have won the last two games of the series.
In other NHL news, Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin has undergone left elbow surgery. The team did not provide specifics on the nature of Malkin's injury or when it occurred. The 34-year-old Malkin led the Penguins with 74 points during the regular season but was ineffective during a four-game loss to Montreal in the qualifying round of the playoffs.
Pete Alonso and Robinson Cano each homered twice as the Mets crushed the Marlins, 11-4 to end a three-game losing streak. Alonso and Cano each had three of New York's 14 hits.
Elsewhere in the majors:
Luke Voit homered twice in the Yankees' 10th consecutive win over the rival Red Sox, 6-3. Aroldis Chapman picked up the save in his return from the COVID-19 injured list, helping New York get its sixth straight victory overall.
Hyun Jin Ryu pitched six innings of four-hit ball as the Blue Jays whipped the Orioles, 7-2. Randal Grichuk homered and drove in four runs to back Ryu.
Dansby Swanson slammed a two-out, two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth to cap the Braves' four-run rally against Daniel Hudson in a 7-6 triumph over the Nationals. Washington led 6-3 in the ninth until Adam Duvall hit a two-run shot.
Fernando Tatis Jr. continues to add to his young baseball legacy. The second-year player leads the majors with 11 home runs and 28 RBIs after delivering a three-run shot and a grand slam in the Padres' 14-4 dismantling of the Rangers. Tatis put the game out of reach with his eighth-inning blast before his bases-loaded bomb capped the Padres' scoring in his 108th big league game. The two homers raised his average to .305. Austin Hedges also homered and Jurickson Profar had two RBIs for San Diego.
Brad Miller hit a tiebreaking two-run double in the seventh inning of the Cardinals' 3-1 win over the Cubs in Game 1 of a doubleheader. St. Louis improved to 3-1 since it returned Saturday after a coronavirus outbreak derailed their season, leaving them idle for weeks and resulting in 18 confirmed cases in the organization.
The Cubbies ended the season-worst, four-game skid in the nightcap as David Bote belted a three-run homer in a four-run sixth that pushed them to a 5-4 victory. St. Louis wasted a big performance by Miller, who homered twice and drove in three runs in Game 2.
Carlos Correa hit a two-run double to back a strong start by rookie Brandon Bielak in the Astros' fifth win in a row, 2-1 versus the Rangers. Bielak allowed one hit and one run in six innings to move to 3-0.
Nelson Cruz Jr. smacked a pair of solo homers and six pitchers combined on a seven-hitter in the Twins' 4-1 victory against the Royals. Cruz surpassed Duke Snider and tied Mark Teixeira with his 409th career homer, good for 55th all-time.
Tim Anderson and Luis Robert each hit two of the White Sox's six home runs in a 7-2 decision over the Tigers. Yoan Moncada and Danny Mendick also left the yards for Chicago, which banged out four consecutive home runs in Sunday's win over the Cardinals.
Kike Hernandez launched a two-run homer that capped the Dodgers' five-run eighth in their sixth straight win, 11-9 against the Mariners. Mookie Betts also homered and Corey Seager added a three-run blast for Los Angeles.
David Peralta slapped a bases-loaded single with one out in the ninth inning to give the Diamondbacks their fifth straight win and ninth in 12 games, 4-3 over the Athletics. Nick Ahmed atoned for a game-tying error by leading off the ninth with a double and scoring the winning run, helping Arizona move above .500 for the first time this season.
The Angels came away with a 7-6 win over the Giants after Tommy La Stella hit a two-run homer in the ninth inning. Mike Trout hit his 10th homer and Albert Pujols had a two-run double to help Los Angeles halt a four-game slide.
The Giants have cut placekicker Chandler Catanzaro, just 16 days after the team signed the veteran following the release of incumbent Aldrick Rosas. New York is in talks with former Carolina Panthers veteran Graham Gano.
In other NFL news:
Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle Gerald McCoy is out for the season after tearing the quadriceps tendon in his right leg. McCoy suffered the injury while working out against Antwaun Woods in an individual drill during the first padded practice of training camp.
Bengals cornerback Trae Waynes had surgery for a torn pectoral muscle, a significant setback to a defense in transition. The Bengals signed Waynes to a three-year deal as a free agent from Minnesota.
The Lions have signed running back Jonathan Williams, adding depth in the backfield behind Kerryon Johnson and rookie D'Andre Swift. Williams has 329 yards rushing on 79 carries with two touchdowns over parts of three seasons with the Colts, Saints and Bills.
The Washington Football Team has hired Jason Wright as team president. He's the first Black person to hold that position in NFL history and at 38 becomes the league's youngest team president. Wright spent seven years as an NFL running back, was an Arizona Cardinals captain and their Players Association representative.
Auburn football coach Gus Malzahn says his players have had 33 positive tests for COVID-19 this summer. Malzahn says his Tigers had no positive tests last week, but four players are still going through the testing protocols. He added that the school has administered 863 tests among players, an average of more than seven times each.
In other college football news:
Kansas State will allow 25% capacity at its football stadium for games this season after getting approval Monday from the county commission. That means a maximum crowd of just under 15,000 fans.
Mississippi starting center Eli Johnson says he won't play football this season. Johnson announced on Twitter that he'll sit out the season and focus on completing his master's degree in criminal justice in December.
There will be no fans at Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium for NFL and MLS games played in September. The Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta United say the coronavirus pandemic forced the decision. The teams say they will continue to collaborate with local and national health officials before deciding on the possibility for fans in games after September.
In other virus-related sports news:
The Canadian Football League has canceled its 2020 season because of the pandemic. The decision marks the first year since 1919 the Grey Cup won't be awarded.
Simona Halep will skip the U.S. Open, saying she wants to put her health first amid the coronavirus pandemic. Halep is a former top-ranked player who is currently No. 2. She won the title in Prague on Sunday. Six of the top eight women in the WTA rankings won't play in New York, including No. 1 Ash Barty and defending champion Bianca Andreescu.
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