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#SportsReport: Lightning Rip Islanders; Baseball HOF Lifts Capacity Limit For Sept. Ceremony

Lightning, Islanders logos
Lightning, Islanders logos

Steven Stamkos had two goals and an assist and Andrei Vasilevskiy notched his fourth career playoff shutout, helping the Tampa Bay Lightning rout the New York Islanders 8-0 in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup semifinal series.The defending NHL champions improved to 13-0 in games following a postseason loss since launching their 2020 title run and will take a 3-2 series lead over the Islanders into Game 6 of their best-of-7 matchup Wednesday night in Uniondale, New York. Brayden Point had a goal for the eighth straight game, and postseason scoring leader Nikita Kucherov had three assists for the Lightning.

In NHL news: 

The New York Islanders have sold out of season tickets for the first season in their new home at UBS Arena. The team says that's an allotment of about 15,000 season tickets. The Islanders are in the midst of their second straight trip to the semifinal round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, and the new arena won't open for almost another four months.

Former NHL player and Minnesota Wild assistant general manager Tom Kurvers has died after a battle with lung cancer. He was 58. Kurvers won the Hobey Baker Award as the top college player. He then played 11 NHL seasons from 1984-1995 before moving into management.


Jacob deGrom shouldered the load for New York in his return from another injury scare, pitching one-hit ball over five scoreless innings as the Mets beat the Atlanta Braves 4-2 to open a doubleheader. DeGrom didn't allow a hit in the seven-inning game until Mets outfielders misplayed a fly ball with two outs in the fifth, letting it fall for a ground-rule double. DeGrom threw 70 pitches, 15 of them over 100 mph, with two walks and six strikeouts. It was a comfort for fans concerned about New York's ace after he left his previous outing with shoulder soreness. In the end, the Braves took the nightcap though, 1-0.

In other MLB action:

Yu Darvish struck out 11 in six brilliant innings to become the fastest big leaguer to reach 1,500 for his career, Manny Machado and Jake Cronenworth homered and the San Diego Padres beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-2 in the opener of a three-game series between the NL West rivals. Darvish reached 1,500 strikeouts on the nose in 197 starts. He held the Dodgers to two hits, including Mookie Betts' solo homer, and walked just one. The Padres improved to 5-3 this season against the Dodgers.

Merrill Kelly pitched seven effective innings, Ketel Marte had two hits and the Arizona Diamondbacks finally snapped a 17-game losing streak by beating the Milwaukee Brewers 5-1 Monday night. The win was a long time coming for Arizona, which has plunged to the bottom of the standings in the NL West and has the worst record in the majors at 21-53. It's the first win for the Diamondbacks since June 1, when they beat the Mets 6-5 in 10 innings.

Jake Odorizzi and the Houston bullpen took a bid for a combined no-hitter into the eighth inning, eventually settling for a 10-2 victory over the Baltimore Orioles that marked the Astros' eighth straight win. Maikel Franco hit a two-run homer with one out in the eighth off Brandon Bielak, breaking up the no-hitter. Odorizzi and reliever Cristian Javier held the Orioles without a hit through seven. The start of the game was delayed by rain for an hour, and there was also a 41-minute rain delay during the top of the eighth.

Bobby Bradley and Josh Naylor homered, helping the Cleveland Indians overcome the loss of Aaron Civale during a 4-0 victory over the Chicago Cubs. Civale, who leads the majors with 10 wins, exited with two out in the fifth inning because of a right middle finger injury. The Indians moved within two games of the idle White Sox for the top spot in the AL Central. Chicago lost for the sixth time in eight games, and shortstop Javier Báez was pulled by manager David Ross after he made an embarrassing mental mistake.

Andy Ibañez and Jose Trevino each hit three-run homers as the Texas Rangers ended a six-game losing streak with an 8-3 win over Oakland. Kyle Gibson had another solid start pitching into the sixth inning Monday night. He is 5-0 and unbeaten in his last 15 starts overall.

In MLB news:

With the pandemic on the wane, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum has removed restrictions for its in-person induction ceremony. The induction ceremony is September 8th at 1:30 p.m. in Cooperstown. Earlier this month, the Hall announced plans for a ticketed event under COVID restrictions. But after New York lifted the remaining limits, the Hall said Monday the induction for Derek Jeter, Marvin Miller, Ted Simmons and Larry Walker will proceed as an outdoor general admission event, with no tickets required. 

Major League Baseball has started its crackdown on sticky stuff and foreign substances. Umpires are now doing regular checks of all pitchers for tacky substances that could be used to doctor baseballs. That was long against the rules but rarely enforced until now. Jacob deGrom was the first pitcher inspected under the new directive that took effect Monday. In the opener of the New York Mets' doubleheader against Atlanta, the two-time Cy Young Award winner passed when inspected after the first and fifth innings. Any pitchers using illegal substances will be ejected and then suspended 10 games.

The New York Mets have fired two high-ranking employees and will overhaul their legal and human resources departments on the recommendation of independent investigators hired to review the organization following allegations of sexual misconduct against former manager Mickey Callaway. was fired in October of 2019 for on-field performance. He was banned by Major League Baseball through at least 2022 in May following allegations of inappropriate behavior toward several women who work in sports media, including from his time with the Mets.


Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib on Monday became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he wasn't doing it for the attention but because he felt representation and visibility were important. Nassib also said in his short video message that he was donating $100,000 to the Trevor Project, a nonprofit that seeks to prevent suicide among LGBTQ youth. Nassib is a sixth-year pro who was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in 2016 in the third round out of Penn State. He played two seasons for the Browns and two for Tampa Bay before joining the Raiders in 2020.

In other NFL news:

The Buffalo Bills have received the green light from New York state health officials to return to full capacity for home games this season. Vaccinated and unvaccinated fans will be allowed to attend, though unvaccinated folks will be required to wear masks under federal guidelines. The coronavirus pandemic led to Buffalo playing home games in an empty stadium during the regular season last year. The rules were loosened to allow about 6,700 fans attend the Bills' two home playoff games in January.

Eli Manning has a new job with the New York Giants. The two-time Super Bowl MVP is rejoining the organization to work in business opportunities and fan initiatives. The Giants announced the hiring on Monday, roughly 18 months after Manning retired following the 2019 season.

Zaven Collins, a first-round draft pick by the Arizona Cardinals, was arrested over the weekend for reckless driving and excessive speeding. Scottsdale police say Collins was pulled over Sunday for allegedly driving 76 mph in a 35-mph zone. Police say Collins was booked and released later in the day. Collins was taken by the Cardinals with the 16th overall pick in this year's draft out of Tulsa.


In a ruling that could help push changes in college athletics, the Supreme Court has unanimously sided with a group of former college athletes in a dispute with the NCAA over rules limiting certain compensation. The high court ruled today that NCAA limits on the education-related benefits that colleges can offer athletes who play Division I basketball and football can't be enforced. Under current NCAA rules, students cannot be paid, and the scholarship money colleges can offer is capped at the cost of attending the school. The NCAA had defended its rules as necessary to preserve the amateur nature of college sports. The case doesn't decide whether students can be paid salaries.


James Harden has committed to playing for U.S. men's national basketball team that will play in the Olympics that begin next month. That's according to a person familiar with the situation. The men's roster is getting closer to filled, with Miami's Bam Adebayo also informing USA Basketball of his intention to play in the Tokyo Games. The eight commitments, for now: Adebayo, Harden, Brooklyn's Kevin Durant, Golden State's Draymond Green, Washington's Bradley Beal, Boston's Jayson Tatum, Phoenix's Devin Booker and Portland's Damian Lillard.

Two days after it was ousted in the second round of the NBA playoffs, the Nets say they will take some time evaluating their players and training staff. General manager Sean Marks says he won't make any rash decisions. The Nets were eliminated with a 115-111 overtime loss to the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. James Harden and Kyrie Irving were hurt for much of the series.

© The Associated Press 2021. All Rights Reserved.