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Yahoo Sports AM: Panthers win it all

June 26th, 2024

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🚨 Headlines

⚽️ Euros scoreboard: Defending champion Italy advanced to the knockout round thanks to a 98th-minute equalizer against Croatia, whose tournament hopes were left hanging in the balance. Spain beat Albania, 1-0, to stay perfect and win their group.

⚾️ Rare triple play: The Phillies turned the first triple play of the season — and MLB’s first 1-3-5 triple play since 1929 — in the third inning of their 8-1 win over the Tigers.

🏀 Cavs ink Atkinson: The Cavaliers are hiring Warriors assistant Kenny Atkinson as their next head coach. The 57-year-old was previously head coach of the Nets from 2016-20.

💵 $270 million man: Raptors All-Star Scottie Barnes has agreed to a five-year maximum rookie extension worth up to $270 million. Barnes, 22, averaged 19.9 points, 8.2 rebounds and 6.1 assists per game last season.


🏆 The Panthers hoist the Cup

Yahoo Sports AM: Panthers win it all

(Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

The Panthers beat the Oilers, 2-1, in Monday’s Game 7 to win their first Stanley Cup title and avoid a historic collapse.

Consider this: Florida, the land of sunshine, has three Stanley Cups in five years. Canada, where hockey is religion, has none since 1993.

Notes:

  • After 26 seasons as an NHL head coach, Paul Maurice finally won his first title. “It’s not what I thought it would be,” said the hockey lifer. “It’s so much better.”

  • Connor McDavid secured the Conn Smythe Trophy as MVP of the playoffs, joining Reggie Leach (1976 Flyers) as the only skaters from a losing team to win.

  • Panthers star Matthew Tkachuk and Celtics star Jayson Tatum were high school classmates. Over a decade later, they both won championships days apart.

Wild stat: Corey Perry has now lost in the Stanley Cup Final four times in five years with four different teams (Oilers, Ducks, Stars, Canadiens). Brutal.

McDavid after the loss. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)McDavid after the loss. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

McDavid after the loss. (Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

The drought continues: A Canadian team still hasn’t won a Stanley Cup since 1993. Seven have come close, but they all lost in the Final.

  • 1994: Canucks lost to Rangers

  • 2004: Flames lost to Lightning

  • 2006: Oilers lost to Hurricanes

  • 2007: Senators lost to Ducks

  • 2011: Canucks lost to Bruins

  • 2021: Canadiens lost to Lightning

  • 2024: Oilers lost to Panthers

Quote of the night: “Shoutout to my fans in Calgary,” said Tkachuk, who spent his first six seasons with the Flames. “You know I couldn’t let Edmonton win.”

Three-for-three: South Florida’s major sports teams have hosted three championship Game 7’s and won them all: the Marlins in 1997, the Heat in 2013 and now the Panthers in 2024.


🏆 Rocky Top reaches the mountaintop

(C. Morgan Engel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)
(C. Morgan Engel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)

(C. Morgan Engel/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)

Tennessee held on to beat Texas A&M, 6-5, on Monday to win their first national title and put a stamp on one of the greatest seasons in college baseball history.

Quick recap: Vols lefty Zander Sechrist shut down the Aggies with 5.1 innings of seven-strikeout, one-run ball, and the offense hammered out 13 hits to take a comfortable 6-1 lead in the seventh inning.

  • A&M rallied with four runs in the final two frames before Tennessee reliever Aaron Combs finished them off with a championship-clinching strikeout.

  • Tennessee is the first No. 1 overall seed to win it all since Miami in 1999, the first year the NCAA tournament field expanded to 64 teams.

The conference of champions: The SEC has won 10 of the last 15 national titles, including five straight by five different schools.

(Screenshot)(Screenshot)

(Screenshot)

Play of the game: Tennessee’s Hunter Ensley scored from first on a double off the wall in the seventh inning, avoiding the tag in epic fashion to give the Vols their 6-1 lead. The Aggies unsuccessfully challenged the call, and it ultimately proved the difference in the 6-5 win.

The MVP: Sophomore outfielder Dylan Dreiling was named the CWS Most Outstanding Player after going 13-24 in Omaha and 7-12 with three homers and seven RBI in the championship series.

  • He kept the Vols alive in Game 2 with a go-ahead dinger and provided insurance late in Game 3 with another, becoming the first player ever to homer in all three games of a CWS final.

  • He’s also just the second player to bat .500 (min. 20 AB) in the CWS since it moved to its current location in 2011. The other? Oregon State’s Adley Rutschman, now a superstar for the Orioles.

A season to remember: Tennessee won a program record 60 games (60-13), a share of the SEC regular season title, the conference championship and the CWS. Credit head coach Tony Vitello, who inherited a middling program in 2018 and turned it into a juggernaut. The Vols have made almost as many CWS in the last seven years (3) as they reached in the 70 years prior to his arrival (4).


🥇 Devastation for Athing Mu

(Patrick Smith/Getty Images)(Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

(Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Athing Mu’s bid to repeat as Olympic champion in the women’s 800 meters ended Monday night at the U.S. trials after she fell midway through the first lap, leaving her too far back to catch the other runners.

  • The reigning gold medalist, 22, has battled injuries for much of this season, but after posting the fastest semifinal time any fears about her fitness were put to rest.

  • But this untimely stumble cost her a chance to defend her crown, because at the U.S. trials, it’s “top three or bust.”

From Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Eisenberg:

Other countries have built safety nets into their Olympic selection process for situations like this. They’ll consider season-long performance or previous Olympic or World championship results when selecting their team.

In the U.S., there is no politics involved, no big names resting on past achievements. It’s top three or bust, whether you’re a past champion or a young unknown.

What’s next: Mu could still head to Paris as part of the 4×400 relay team, in which she also won gold three years ago.


🏀 The NBA’s French revolution

(Bruno Rouby/Yahoo Sports)(Bruno Rouby/Yahoo Sports)

(Bruno Rouby/Yahoo Sports)

Victor Wembanyama took America by storm during his historic rookie season — and there’s a flood of talent from France following him to the NBA.

What to watch: Three French players could be picked in the top five of tomorrow’s NBA draft: Zaccharie Risacher, a 6-8 wing for JL Bourg (France); Alex Sarr, a 7-1 center for the Perth Wildcats (Australia); and Tidjane Salaun, a 6-9 wing for Cholet (France).

  • Risacher and Sarr are projected to be the first two players off the board, and Salaun could go anywhere from 5-12, according to Yahoo Sports’ Krysten Peek.

  • Meanwhile, Pacôme Dadiet, a 6-8 wing and one of the youngest players in the draft, is a potential first-rounder and Melvin Ajinça, another 6-8 wing, is a second-round sleeper.

It’s not just this year’s class… French point guard Nolan Traoré is a projected top-five player in the 2025 class and NBA scouts are already salivating over 15-year-old wing Nathan Soliman, who will play up two divisions at this summer’s U17 FIBA World Cup.

The Wemby Wave: “There’s a lot of young talent coming up in France, and a lot of kids now are playing basketball because of Victor,” French guard Bilal Coulibaly, the No. 7 pick in last year’s draft, told Yahoo Sports. “It started with Tony Parker … Now we’re part of that next generation inspiring the young kids in France to chase their dreams.”


📆 June 25, 1999: Spurs win first title

(Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)(Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

(Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

25 years ago today, Tim Duncan* and the Spurs beat the Knicks in Game 5 of an extremely low-scoring NBA Finals to capture their first of five championships.

End of an era: This was the last NBA Finals where neither team scored 100 points in any game. The final scores: 89-77, 80-67, 89-81 (NYK win), 96-89, 78-77.

More on this day:

  • ⚾️ 1903: Boston Beaneaters lefty Wiley Piatt tossed two complete games in one day and lost them both, falling 1-0 and 5-3 to the Cardinals in a doubleheader.

  • 🏒 1997: The NHL approved four new teams in Nashville, Columbus, Minneapolis-St. Paul and Atlanta. All four franchises (Predators, Blue Jackets, Wild, Thrashers/Jets) are still seeking their first title.

*Fun fact: San Antonio’s title came exactly two years to the day after they drafted Tim Duncan with the No. 1 pick. He won Finals MVP after averaging 27.4 points and 14 rebounds in the series.


📺 Watchlist: Subway Series

Pete Alonso (L) and Anthony Rizzo during one of last year's meetings. (Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)Pete Alonso (L) and Anthony Rizzo during one of last year's meetings. (Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Pete Alonso (L) and Anthony Rizzo during one of last year’s meetings. (Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

The Yankees and Mets square off tonight in Queens (7:10pm ET, TBS) for their first of four meetings this season.

Hot and cold: The Yankees have the AL’s best record (52-28) but are in the midst of a slide, winning just three of their last 10 games. The Mets remain below .500 (37-39) but have been one of baseball’s hottest teams, winning 13 of their last 17.

More to watch:

  • 🏀 WNBA: Lynx at Liberty (8pm, Prime) … Commissioner’s Cup Championship*.

  • ⚽️ Euros: Poland vs. France (12pm, Fox); Austria vs. Netherlands (12pm, FS1); Slovenia vs. England (3pm, Fox); Serbia vs. Denmark (3pm, FS1)

  • ⚽️ Copa América: Canada vs. Peru (6pm, FS1); Argentina vs. Chile (9pm, FS1)

*Money on the line: Tonight is the culmination of the WNBA’s fourth annual in-season tournament, with a $500,000 prize pool up for grabs — one-third of each team’s salary cap. Players on the winning team will receive ~$30,000 each, while the losers get ~$10,000.


🌎 South America trivia

(Getty Images)(Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

10 South American countries are competing in Copa América 2024. Can you rank them by population (largest to smallest)?

  • Argentina

  • Bolivia

  • Brazil

  • Chile

  • Colombia

  • Ecuador

  • Paraguay

  • Peru

  • Uruguay

  • Venezuela

Answer at the bottom.


⚾️ Pat Murphy’s long, winding road to “The Show”

(Bruno Rouby/Yahoo Sports)(Bruno Rouby/Yahoo Sports)

(Bruno Rouby/Yahoo Sports)

Brewers manager Pat Murphy admits he doesn’t have the MLB pedigree of his peers, but the former boxer and D-III football coach does have one of baseball’s hottest teams.

From Yahoo Sports’ Russell Dorsey:

If you ask around about who Pat Murphy is, you might get 100 different answers. To some, he’s the first-year manager of the Brewers who finally got his shot in the big leagues. To others, he’s the longtime successful college baseball coach at Notre Dame and Arizona State, who even befriended Daniel Ruettiger, better known as simply “Rudy.”

And then, every once in a while, you get an answer you don’t expect. “He’s Patches O’Houlihan from ‘Dodgeball,'” Brewers slugger Christian Yelich said with the biggest smile.

Yup, he’s referring to the fiery, wheelchair-bound dodgeball coach of Average Joe’s gym in the 2004 Vince Vaughn classic. Murphy even has an O’Houlihan jersey hanging in his office. But it’s not just an inside joke — the Brewers’ skipper really does embody those characteristics. He’s fiery like a football coach, though he teaches like a longtime baseball coach.

Keep reading.


Trivia answer: Brazil (216.4M), Colombia (52.1M), Argentina (45.8M), Peru (34.4M), Venezuela (28.8M), Chile (19.6M), Ecuador (18.2M), Bolivia (12.4M), Paraguay (6.9M), Uruguay (3.4M)

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This content was originally sourced and posted at Yahoo! Sports – News, Scores, Standings, Rumors, Fantasy Games »
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