#SportsReport: Bucks Down Hawks; NFL Fines Washington $10M After Misconduct Investigation
Playing without Giannis Antetokounmpo, the Milwaukee Bucks leaned on a balanced attack to take a 3-2 lead in the NBA's Eastern Conference Finals. Brook Lopez scored a playoff career-high 33 points as the Bucks dumped the Atlanta Hawks, 123-112. Lopez was among four Bucks to score over 20 points. Khris Middleton provided 26 points, Jrue Holiday had 25 and Bobby Portis added 22. Middleton also had 13 rebounds and eight assists, while Holiday had 13 assists and six boards. Milwaukee led 36-22 after a first quarter in which the Bucks outscored the Hawks 28-8 in the paint. Each team was missing its biggest star as Antetokounmpo dealt with a hyperextended left knee and Atlanta's Trae Young sat out a second straight game due to a bone bruise in his right foot. Bogdan Bogdanovic led the Hawks with 28 points. Atlanta also got 19 points each from John Collins and Danilo Gallinari, and 17 from Lou Williams. The Bucks are one win away from reaching the NBA Finals for the first time since 1974. Game 6 is Saturday in Atlanta.
In NBA news, Toronto Raptors guard Jalen Harris has been dismissed and disqualified from the NBA for violating terms of the NBA/NBPA Anti-Drug Program. The league, teams and union are prohibited from publicly disclosing information about testing or treatment of any NBA player under the Anti-Drug Program, other than to announce a suspension or dismissal. Harris is eligible to apply for reinstatement in a year. Harris averaged 7.4 points and 13.2 minutes in 13 games this season for Toronto on a two-way contract.
It was a good afternoon for a pair of American League leaders. Kiké Hernández led off with a homer for the third time in five days to ignite the Red Sox's 15-1 laugher over the Royals. J.D. Martinez also homered, starting Boston's four -run fourth with his 17th of the season. Danny Santana and Rafael Devers each homered and drove in five runs to add to the assault. Nathan Eovaldi scattered five hits over seven shutout innings to help the AL East leaders pick up their seventh consecutive win.
The White Sox coughed up a 3-0 lead before Zack Collins hit a tiebreaking homer in the sixth inning of their 8-5 win over the Twins. Brian Goodwin also went deep for the AL Central leaders, who have won four in a row while scoring at least seven runs in each game. Carlos Rodon struck out nine over five innings but left with the game tied 4-4.
In other Thursday action:
The Braves pulled out a 4-3 win over the Mets on Freddie Freeman's game-winning, RBI single off Seth Lugo in the bottom of the ninth. The Braves were the first team to score three earned runs in a game off Jacob de Grom, who also struck out 14 over seven innings. Austin Riley homered as the Braves took the rubber match of the series and dealt New York its 11th loss in 17 games despite Dominic Smith's first two-homer game.
The Mariners were 7-2 winners over the Blue Jays behind Yusei Kikuchi pitched one-run ball over seven innings. Kikuchi struck out six and allowed five hits in winning his third straight start, moving to 5-0 in his last seven. Jake Fraley and Shed Long Jr. homered off Hyun Jin Ryu.
Max Muncy's grand slam was the difference as the Dodgers earned a rain-shortened win over the Nationals, 6-2. Muncy's blast off Patrick Corbin snapped a 2-2 tie in the fifth, a few batters after A.J. Pollock began the inning with a home run. The game was stopped after five innings due to a tornado warning and was halted for good following a 77-minute rain delay.
José Altuve hit a grand slam and the Astros snapped a four-game losing streak with a 7-2 win over the Indians. Targeted from the moment he stepped into the batter's box to start the game, Altuve connected for his fifth career slam in the fifth inning off rookie J.C. Mejia to give Houston a 5-2 lead. Yordan Álvarez and Michael Brantley homered in support of Framber Valdez, who allowed two runs and four hits in seven innings.
Joey Gallo homered in his fifth straight game and Nate Lowe went deep twice in the Rangers' 8-3 pounding of the Athletics. Gallo finished 3 for 3 with a walk and three RBIs while tying the second-longest home run streak in club history. John Hicks hit his first home run since 2019 as Texas won for the fifth time in six games.
Corbin Burnes went beyond seven innings for the first time in the majors allowing a run and four hits over 7 1/3 as the Brewers earned their ninth straight win, 7-2 versus the Pirates. Jace Peterson put the Brewers ahead for good with an RBI triple in the second before scoring on Jackie Bradley's double later in the inning.
Elías Díaz hit a three-run homer in the bottom of the ninth to give the Rockies a rain-delayed, 5-2 win over the Cardinals. Brendan Rodgers also homered and Daniel Bard (4-4) got the win in relief as Colorado won its fourth in a row. Nolan Arenado went hitless in four at-bats in his first game in Denver since Colorado traded him to St. Louis in the offseason.
Tyler Stephenson's RBI single with two out in the bottom of the ninth gave the Reds a 5-4 win over the Padres. Kyle Farmer smashed a tying homer in the ninth against San Diego closer Mark Melancon, who loaded the bases before Stephenson lined a 1-0 pitch down the right-field line to win it. Manny Machado gave the Padres a 4-3 lead by scoring from second on a throwing error before San Diego lost for just the second time in 13 games.
Pavin Smith and Josh Reddick homered for the Diamondbacks in a 5-3 victory against the Giants. Winning pitcher Merrill Kelly allowed three runs and seven hits, struck out seven and did not walk a batter. Arizona snapped a four-game losing streak and ended its nine-game skid against the Giants, whose lead in the NL West is down to a half-game over the Dodgers.
The Phillies and Marlins were rained out in Philadelphia and will make up the game on July 16. About 90 miles northeast, the Yankees and Angels were rained out. That game will be played August 16.
In MLB news:
The Major League All-Star Game will include two slugging sons of former big leaguers. Padres outfielder Fernando Tatis Jr. will be among the starters for the National League, while Blue Jays outfielder Vladimir Guerrero Jr. will represent the American League. They are among nine first-time All-Stars elected Thursday to start the July 13 game at Colorado's Coors Field. Guerrero will be joined in the AL starting lineup by Toronto teammates Marcus Semien and Teoscar Hernandez. The rest of the AL starters are Royals catcher Salvador Perez, Red Sox infielders Rafael Devers and Xander Bogaerts, Angels DH Shohei Ohtani, and Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge. Angels outfielder Mike Trout was selected as a starter but won't be available. Reds outfielders Nick Castellanos and Jesse Winker are NL starters, as are Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman and outfielder Ronald Acuna Jr. Giants catcher Buster Posey, Pirates second baseman Adam Frazier and Cardinals third baseman Nolan Arenado round out the NL lineup.
Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts says pitcher Trevor Bauer is still on track to start Sunday against the Washington Nationals despite a police inquiry. Police in Pasadena, California, are investigating claims by a woman who says the reigning NL Cy Young winner assaulted her. The woman has obtained a protection order. Under the Joint MLB-MLBPA Domestic Violence Policy, MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred has the power to place a player on administrative leave while allegations are investigated.
Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner vows to keep manager Aaron Boone, general manager Brian Cashman and the core of his team. Steinbrenner spoke with reporters on Thursday, hours after a crushing loss to the Angels in which New York wasted a four-run, ninth-inning lead. The Yankees are 41-39, fourth in the AL East and nine games behind first-place Boston.
The Dodgers will visit the White House on Friday to celebrate their first World Series championship in 32 years. President Joe Biden will welcome the team for a ceremony in the East Room. It will be the Dodgers' first visit to the White House since 1988, when President Ronald Reagan welcomed them after their championship season.
The NFL has fined the Washington Football Team $10 million after a months-long independent investigation found the organization's workplace "highly unprofessional," especially for women. The team was not stripped of any draft picks and no formal suspensions were handed out as part of the league's discipline. Owner Dan Snyder is stepping away from day-to-day operations for several months after the inquiry revealed that ownership and senior officials paid little attention to sexual harassment and other workplace issues. Snyder says his wife Tanya will be in charge for the next "several months."
In other NFL news:
The Jaguars and first-year coach Urban Meyer have been fined along with the Cowboys and 49ers for violating rules governing offseason practices. That's according to a person with knowledge of the decision who says Meyer and the Jaguars incurred the biggest fines. Meyer is being docked $100,000 while the team was fined $200,000.
The Steelers have signed kicker Sam Sloman to a one-year contract, giving veteran Chris Boswell some competition going into training camp. Sloman made 10 of 13 field goals as a rookie last season while splitting time between Tennessee and the Los Angeles Rams.
Coco Gauff has advanced to the third round at Wimbledon with a 6-4, 6-3 victory over Elena Vesnina. The 17-year-old Gauff admitted to be nervous early in the match, and she sputtered after winning the first three games of the second set. But she broke serve to clinch the win when Vesnina double-faulted on match point.
Eight-time champion Roger Federer also won, as did second seed Daniil Medvedev, fourth seed Alexander Zverev and No. 7 Matteo Berrettini. The 40-year-old Federer is oldest man to reach the third round since a 40-year-old Ken Rosewall made a run to the fourth round in 1975. Women's top seed Ash Barty also won, but Elina Svitolina's loss means eight of the top 11 women in the WTA rankings are missing from the bracket due to defeat, withdrawal or injury. Former Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber needed 3 hours, 19 minutes to get past unseeded Sara Sorribes Tormo.
Davis Thompson tied a Detroit Golf Club record with a 9-under 63 to take the early first-round lead in the Rocket Mortgage Classic. Thompson made just his third PGA start after receiving a sponsor exemption for the tournament. He missed only one green and needed just 26 putts in a bogey-free round with nine birdies. Brandon Hagy, Tom Lewis and Joaquin Niemann are two strokes back.
Meanwhile, Jin Young Ko shot an 8-under 63 in hot conditions at Old American to take a one-stroke lead in the opening round of the LPGA's Volunteers for America Classic in Texas. Ko played the final nine in 6-under 29 as the temperature climbed into the mid-90s. She's just ahead of fellow South Korean major champions and area residents In Gee Chun and Jeongeun Lee6.
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