🐎 Run for the Roses

NBA and NHL playoffs Round 1, Kentucky Derby...

Happy Friday! Well finally, we got rid of that Ian kid. Joking! He was a weapon and worked so damn hard over the last two years to make the Blitz the best place to start your mornings. He will crush it in his next gig. The sports world rolls on and what a better time than playoff action. Caitlin Clark isn’t the only thing Indiana basketball fans can cheer for. Jalen Brunson went for 40 in Philly. The Maple Leafs faced a do-or-die situation without their best player last night. There’s a new beast of the East in the MLB. Saturday evening the ponies gear up for the 150th Run for the Roses, or as some would say, “the greatest two minutes in sports”. Let’s have a weekend!

WTF Stat: The Pittsburgh Steelers draft choice of OL Troy Fautanu from Washington in first round became the first player Pittsburgh's drafted from the West Coast since USC's JuJu Smith-Schuster in 2017.

Written By: Danny Healey

The 150th edition of the Kentucky Derby is Saturday afternoon and here is a full preview and betting guide for the event.

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🏈 Kirby Smart has signed a 10-year, $130M extension with Georgia making him the first ever $13M per year college coach - he’s already won two National Championships

🏈 With the new NFL kick-off rules, the Steelers coaches have teased the idea of using newly acquired QB Justin Fields as a kick-off return man

🏀 Bulls G Alex Caruso won the NBA’s Hustle Award averaging 10.1 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.0 blocks per game this season - you need to average at least one block and one steal per game to qualify, nine players were in consideration

🥊 Mike Tyson, the 57-yeard-old legendary boxer, has is an underdog (+150) to YouTuber Jake Paul for their July 20th fight at the Cowboys’ stadium - Paul is -195 to win

Photo: Jalen Brunson | Source: NBA

NBA Playoffs - First Round (Eastern Conference)

  • #2 New York Knicks 118, #7 Philadelphia 76ers 115 (NYK wins series 4-2): Jalen Brunson (39 PTS, 12 AST) was electrifying down the stretch, and after losing a 22-point lead, the Knicks climbed back in the 4th quarter to stun the Philly faithful ending their season early despite a huge game from Joel Embiid (39 PTS, 13 REB). The rest of the Knicks starters all scored more than 14 points including this three-point dagger from Josh Hart late in the game to seal the series - looks like Sixers owner Michael Rubin’s move of buying 2,000 seats to block out Knicks fans from the Wells Fargo Center failed!

  • #6 Indiana Pacers 120, #3 Milwaukee Bucks 98 (IND wins series 4-2): With Giannis on the bench once again due to injury, the Pacers took advantage leading this game from the first whistle as Obi Toppin (21 PTS, 8 REB) and TJ Connell (20 PTS, 9 AST) were huge contributors off the bench leading the team in scoring. Damian Lillard (28 PTS) just couldn’t get it done on his own only shooting 4-12 from deep with the Bucks highly anticipated season ending with a first round exit - first playoff series win in a decade (lost five times in the first round during that time period) and will play the Knicks with Game 1 Monday night at MSG

See the full box scores here.

Tonight’s Schedule - First Round (Game 6s)

  • East | #4 Cleveland Cavaliers @ #5 Orlando Magic 7:00pm ET, ESPN (CLE leads series 3-2)

  • West | #4 LA Clippers @ #5 Dallas Mavericks 9:30pm ET, ESPN (DAL leads series 3-2)

See the entire NBA playoffs bracket here.

NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs - First Round (Game 6)

  • East | Toronto Maple Leafs 2, Boston Bruins 1 (Series tied 3-3): The leading goal scorer in the NHL, Auston Matthews, was once again sidelined for an elimination game but Willy Nylander said, “hold my beer”, netting two goals and forcing a Game 7 back in Boston for a winner-take-all Saturday night. Toronto keeper Joseph Woll blanked the Bruins for 59 minutes and 59 seconds but an extra-man goal with a second left took away the shutout. That being said, the Bruins had more shots blocked than shots on net - B’s held a 3-1 lead in this series before dropping the last two, the same series lead they blew in the first round of the playoffs last season to Florida

Tonight’s Schedule - First Round

  • (P1) Vancouver Canucks @ (WC1) Nashville Predators 7:00pm ET, TNT (VAN lead series 3-2)

  • (C1) Dallas Stars @ (WC2) Vegas Golden Knights 10:00pm ET, TNT (DAL lead series 3-2)

See the entire Stanley Cup playoffs bracket here.

MLB - Top Games

  • Baltimore Orioles 7, New York Yankees 2: Ryan Mountcastle and Jorge Mateo each went yard at Camdem Yards to win the series 3-1 over the Yanks and take a one game AL East division lead

  • Miami Marlins 5, Colorado Rockies 4: The two worst records in the NL needed extra innings as Jesús Sánchez was the hero hitting in a two-out walk-off single - White Sox are the only other team under 10 wins this season besides these two franchises

  • San Francisco Giants 3, Boston Red Sox 1: Mike Yastrzemski hit a home run to the same side of Fenway Park where his grandfather’s No. 8 jersey is retired in right field with his family in attendance - “Papa Yaz” played 23 seasons for the Sox and was an 18-time All-Star

See the full MLB scoreboard here and the current standings here.

Fastest Kentucky Derby horse of all-time?

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Photo: Joe DiMaggio | Source: Chat Sports

On May 3, 1936, Joe DiMaggio made his MLB debut hitting three hits for the New Yorks Yankees. The Hall of Famer played all 13 of his major league seasons in The Pinstripes. He won a ridiculous nine World Series titles in those 13 years, which is the second most rings all-time behind Yankee teammate Yogi Berra. Here are some more Joe D accomplishments:

  • 13× All-Star (1936–1942, 1946–1951)

  • 3× AL MVP (1939, 1941, 1947)

  • 2× AL batting champion (1939, 1940)

  • 2× AL home run leader (1937, 1948)

  • 2× AL RBI leader (1941, 1948)

  • MLB record 56-game hitting streak

Friday

  • MLB | Toronto Blue Jays @ Washington Nationals 6:45pm ET, Apple TV+

  • NBA Playoffs | Cleveland Cavaliers @ #5 Orlando Magic 9:30pm ET, ESPN

  • NBA Playoffs | LA Clippers @ Dallas Mavericks 9:30pm ET, ESPN

  • NHL Playoffs | Vancouver Canucks @ Nashville Predators 7:00pm ET, TNT

  • NHL Playoffs | Dallas Stars @ Vegas Golden Knights 10:00pm ET, TNT

Saturday NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs - First Round (Game 5s)

  • Ponies | Kentucky Derby 6:57pm ET, NBC

  • NBA Playoffs | Minnesota Timberwolves @ Denver Nuggets TBD, TNT

  • NBA Playoffs | Philadelphia 76ers @ New York Knicks 7:00pm ET, TNT

  • NHL Playoffs | Toronto Maple Leafs @ Boston Bruins 8:00pm ET, ABC

  • MLB | New York Mets @ Tampa Bay Rays 7:15pm ET, FOX

  • MLB | Seattle Mariners @ Houston Astros 7:15pm ET, FOX

Sunday

  • MLB | San Francisco Giants @ Philadelphia Phillies 7:00pm ET, ESPN

  • Full Schedule

Trivia Time Answer

D. Secretariat. The legendary horse from 1973 still stands as the fastest horse to ever run the Kentucky Derby with a time of 1:59.4. The only other horse to ever run under two minutes was Monarchos in 2001.

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NHL

  • Vancouver Canucks @ Nashville Predators: Canucks ML (+110)

Happy Friday everyone. If your team is still in the NBA or NHL playoffs, enjoy it while it lasts. See you Monday!