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#SportsReport: Nets Rout Bucks; Islanders Beat Bruins

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Kevin Durant scored 32 points in three quarters of a top-to-bottom blowout that sent the Brooklyn Nets halfway to the Eastern Conference finals with a 125-86 rout of the Milwaukee Bucks.

Playing without the injured James Harden but showing no hint that they needed him, the Nets led by as much as 49 points and held the NBA's highest-scoring team 34 points below its season average. Kyrie Irving added 22 points and Bruce Brown filled in nicely for Harden with 13 points and six rebounds. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 18 points and 11 rebounds for the Bucks but was thoroughly outplayed by Durant in a matchup of NBA MVP winners.

And in Monday's other playoff action, the Phoenix Suns cruised in the second half to a 122-105 win over Denver Nuggets. Chris Paul had 21 points and 11 assists despite recent injuries that have slowed him. The Suns had four players with 20 or more points. The Nuggets' Nikola Jokic had 22 points.

In NBa news: 

Tom Thibodeau got the New York Knicks back to the playoffs, guiding the team to its second-best record in 20 years. And in the eyes of the voters, that coaching job was the best in the NBA. Thibodeau was revealed Monday as the NBA's Coach of the Year for 2020-21, as determined by a global panel of 100 sportswriters and broadcasters who cover the league. The Knicks went 41-31 this season, then fell to Atlanta in five games in the first round of the playoffs.

The Philadelphia 76ers and their president of basketball operations, Daryl Morey, have each been fined $75,000 for a tweet Morey sent about Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry. The NBA says Morey and the team were fined for violating the league's anti-tampering rule. On Thursday, Morey tweeted "join 'em" with a screenshot of a social media post by Stephen Curry praising his brother, Seth.


Mathew Barzal scored one power-play goal and assisted on another, and Semyon Varlamov stopped 40 shots to give the New York Islanders a 5-4 victory over the Boston Bruins and a 3-2 lead in their second-round playoff series. The Islanders have won two in a row to take their first lead in the series. They can advance to the Stanley Cup semifinals in Game 6 at home Wednesday. Kyle Palmieri, Josh Bailey and Jordan Eberle all scored in the second period, when the Islanders opened a 4-2 lead. Brock Nelson made it 5-2 just two minutes into the third after Jeremy Swayman replaced Tuukka Rask in the Bruins goal.

And in other Monday NHL playoff action, Tyler Toffoli scored at 1:39 of overtime to lift the Montreal Canadiens to a 3-2 victory over the Winnipeg Jets and a four-game sweep of their second-round playoff series. Erik Gustafsson and Artturi Lehkonen scored in regulation for Montreal, which has won seven straight playoff games since trailing Toronto 3-1 in the opening round. Toffoli also had an assist. Carey Price made 14 saves. Montreal awaits the winner of the Colorado-Vegas series, which is tied 2-2. Game 5 is tonight in Denver. Rookie defenseman Logan Stanley had two goals for Winnipeg.


Christian Arroyo hit a two-run single in Boston's three-run fourth inning, and the Red Sox took advantage of Miami's shoddy play to hold off the Marlins 5-3 for their fifth straight victory. Alex Verdugo added an RBI double and two hits for the Red Sox, who were coming off their first three-game sweep at Yankee Stadium since June 2011. Starling Marte hit a solo homer and two singles for Miami, which stranded 14 baserunners in its ninth loss in its last 10 games. The Red Sox are a season-high 14 games over .500 at 37-23.

In other MLB action:

Max Stassi homered and drove in three runs, and the Angels turned Jackson Kowar's major league debut into a nightmare as Los Angeles defeated the Kansas City Royals 8-3. Stassi had an RBI single off Kowar during a four-run first inning and hit a two-run shot in the fifth. Kowar, the 33rd overall pick in the 2018 amateur draft, faced seven batters before being lifted after two-thirds of an inning. The 24-year-old right-hander allowed four runs on three hits and two walks. Dylan Bundy snapped a 10-game winless streak for the Angels. He allowed two runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings.

Manny Machado and Brian O'Grady each homered and had three RBIs to lead the San Diego Padres over the Chicago Cubs 9-4 in the opener of a three-game series between National League contenders. Machado hit a solo home run and two sacrifice flies. O'Grady, just recalled from the minors, had a two-run homer and an RBI single. Ryan Weathers lasted five innings for the win, giving up three runs and five hits. Chicago starter Adbert Alzolay left in the fourth with a blister on his right middle finger after walking leadoff batter Tommy Pham, who reached base four times.

In MLB news, Mike Trout says his right calf is starting to feel better, but the Los Angeles Angels superstar still doesn't know when he will be able to return. The time-time AL MVP went on the injured list on May 18 after straining his calf the night before against the Cleveland Indians. The Angels said at the time that Trout would miss six to eight weeks, which would sideline him through the All-Star break. Trout said he would like to start jogging soon but doesn't have a timetable on when he would be able to do that, much less resume baseball activities.


American teenager Coco Gauff served superbly to reach her first Grand Slam quarterfinal with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Ons Jabeur at the French Open. The 17-year-old Gauff lost only nine points on her serve. Gauff also had a quick match in the previous round. Jennifer Brady retired with an injured left foot after Gauff won the opening set. Gauff will next face Barbora Krejcikova. She also reached her first quarterfinal at a major by beating 2018 French Open runner-up Sloane Stephens 6-2, 6-0. Meanwhile, American Sofia Kenin lost in the fourth round to Maria Sakkari of Greece, 6-1, 6-3. At No. 4, Kenin was the highest-seeded player left.

On the men's side, defending champion Rafael Nadal beat Jannik Sinner 7-5, 6-3, 6-0 to reach the quarterfinals and extend his streak of sets won at Roland Garros to 35. Novak Djokovic rallied from a two-set deficit to win for the fifth time in his career. He beat 19-year-old Lorenzo Musetti of Italy, who retired with an injury two games from defeat in the fourth round at the French Open. The Serb will next play another Italian, No. 9-seeded Matteo Berrettini, who advanced when Roger Federer withdrew.


Former New York Giants coach Jim Fassel has died. He was 71. Fassel was named NFL coach of the year in 1997 and led the team to the 2001 Super Bowl. Fassel’s son confirmed the death to the Los Angeles Times on Monday. Fassel coached the Giants from 1997-2003. His team lost to the Baltimore Ravens in the Super Bowl after the 2000 season. The Los Angeles Times reports that Fassel died of a heart attack. Fassel played college football before a brief career in the NFL and Canadian football. He was also part of the coaching staffs at Denver, Oakland, Arizona and Baltimore.

In other NFL news: 

The Buffalo Bills are staying home for training camp again. The Bills cited the NFL's COVID-19 health protocols in their decision to not travel to their traditional training camp site at St. John Fisher College outside of Rochester, New York. The team instead will hold camp at its headquarters in Orchard Park.

The San Francisco 49ers have signed safety Tony Jefferson to a one-year deal. The 49ers released cornerback Briean Boddy-Calhoun to make room for Jefferson on the roster. Jefferson played seven seasons with Arizona and Baltimore but sat out last season after tearing his ACL with Baltimore in 2019.

The Baltimore Ravens have signed running back Gus Edwards to a two-year contract extension. The deal announced Monday goes through the 2023 season. Edwards ran for 723 yards last season and helped the Ravens rank first in the NFL in rushing for a second consecutive year. Edwards, J.K. Dobbins and quarterback Lamar Jackson all ran for more than 700 yards for Baltimore last season. In three years with the Ravens, Edwards has rushed for 2,152 yards and 10 touchdowns and averaged 5.2 yards per carry.


Alabama coach Nick Saban has agreed to a three-year contract extension running through the 2029 season. Alabama announced the extension on Monday. The extension includes $8.425 million in base salary and talent fee for the current contract year with annual raises of unspecified amounts. The 69-year-old Saban, who has led the Crimson Tide to six national championships since taking over in 2007, will receive an $800,000 "contract completion benefit" after each contract year from 2022-25.


A dozen female water polo players who accused their former coach of sexual misconduct will split nearly $14 million to settle a lawsuit against USA Water Polo and a California club. The settlement agreement was filed Friday in Orange County Superior Court. The athletes sued the sport's governing board and the International Water Polo Club over alleged abuse by Bahram Hojreh. The coach has been banned from the sport and faces criminal sexual abuse charges. The settlement follows a California State Supreme court ruling in April that found sports governing organizations have a duty to protect athletes. Hojreh has pleaded not guilty to charges filed by the Orange County district attorney.

© The Associated Press 2021. All Rights Reserved.