The Rainmaker On Repeat

04/20/2021

Crossover. Step-back. Rainmaker. Repeat.

 

Steph Curry was at it again on Monday night with 49 points on ten 3-pointers (10-for-17). I watched. I admired. I couldn’t look away. He’s rewriting the record books in the month of April, and there are ten days (five games) left to play.

 

Most Games With 10+ 3s in NBA History

Steph Curry: 21

Klay Thompson: 5

James Harden: 3

Damian Lillard: 3

 

Curry (in the Last 7 Days): 4

 

We’re witnessing the greatest month-long shooting showcase in NBA history (40.8 points per game). And it’s not over yet…

 

Letter Rip!

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NBA

Taking Aim at the Playoffs

Photo: Ezra Shaw / Getty Images

The NBA’s Final Month Sets the Stage for a Wild Postseason Ahead

 

The NBA postseason begins exactly four weeks from today (May 18), and that means the playoff chatter is picking up steam.

 

[Yes, we’re tabling the Steph Curry shrine until his next outburst on Tuesday against the Wizards. The rest of the league needs love, too.]

 

Some things have stayed the same atop each conference race — like the 76ers-Nets and Jazz-Suns jockeying for position as the top seeds — but other late entries are starting to make noise. And this year’s unique format could give those late risers a chance to bring chaos to the summer postseason.

 

The Play-In, Explained: This year’s NBA playoff format features ten teams from each conference versus the traditional eight. Those teams seeded 7, 8, 9 and 10 will play each other in a two-game play-in tournament to fill out the last two spots. If you’re in the 7 and 8 spots, that means more basketball. But teams like the Warriors, Wizards and Bulls — playing some of their best basketball of the season right now — could play spoiler.

 

NBA Playoff Standings

If the postseason started today…

 

Eastern Conference

1. 76ers (39-18), 2. Nets (38-19), 3. Bucks (35-22), 4. Hawks (31-26), 5. Celtics (31-27), 6. Knicks (31-27), 7. Heat (30-28), 8. Hornets (28-28), 9. Pacers (26-31), 10. Bulls (24-33) | In The Hunt: Wizards (24-33), Raptors (24-34), Cavaliers (20-37)

 

Western Conference

1. Jazz (43-15), 2. Suns (41-16), 3. Clippers (40-19), 4. Nuggets (37-20), 5. Lakers (35-22), 6. Blazers (32-24), 7. Mavericks (30-26), 8. Grizzlies (29-27), 9. Warriors (29-29), 10. Spurs (28-28) | In The Hunt: Pelicans (25-32), Kings (23-34)

 

Nightly NBA Highlights

 

Steph Curry shattered more records with another 49 points (10 3-pointers) in the Warriors’ win over the 76ers (107-96).

 

Nuggets escape Grizzlies in double overtime thanks to 47 points from Nikola Jokic (139-137, 2OT).

 

Suns beat Bucks on Devin Booker free-throw with 0.3 seconds left (128-127, OT).

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NFL

A Comeback We’ll Never Forget

Photo: Patrick McDermott / Getty Images

QB Alex Smith Announces Retirement After 16 Seasons & One of the Greatest Comeback Stories in Sports

 

The ending to one of the NFL’s greatest comeback stories is finally here. Alex Smith, the quarterback who suffered a gruesome and life-threatening leg injury in November 2018, announced his retirement on Monday. Now 37, Smith made his improbable return to the football field last season and led the Washington Football Team to the playoffs in what was the most remarkable comeback in recent sports memory.

 

The Legacy of Alex Smith

The former No. 1 overall pick in 2005 played for the 49ers, Chiefs and Washington in an up-and-down career filled with adversity. He was largely thought of as a bust after just one trip to the postseason in his first seven years in San Francisco. After five years in Kansas City and three years in Washington, Smith finishes his career as the only player to win 40 games in both the AFC and NFC since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger.

 

Alex Smith’s Career (By the Numbers)

Record: 99-67-1

Passing Yards: 35,650 (Rank: 27th)

Passing TDs: 199 (Rank: 46th)

Passer Rating: 86.9 (Rank 35th)

 

Watch: Alex Smith’s Retirement Announcement (Instagram)

 

Additional Storylines

FTW: NFL Fans Want to Name the Comeback Player of the Year Award After Alex Smith

ESPN: Inspiration, Respect & Admiration: NFL World Reacts to Alex Smith’s Retirement From Football

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NHL

Marleau Breaks Longevity Record

Photo: Brandon Magnus / Getty Images

San Jose Sharks Forward Patrick Marleau Snaps Gordie Howe’s Record for Games Played (1,768)

 

After 23 seasons on the ice, Patrick Marleau broke the NHL’s longevity record held by Gordie Howe since 1961 (1,767 games). Mr. Hockey played 26 seasons, but the 41-year-old Marleau only needed 23 years to hit the mark, including 21 seasons with the Sharks. The milestone moment came against the Vegas Golden Knights on Monday as Marleau was celebrated with a standing ovation and a message from commissioner Gary Bettman after the first shift.

 

Marleau was selected with the No. 2 overall pick in the 1997 draft and made his NHL debut shortly after his 18th birthday. He’s still the youngest player to skate in an NHL game since Hy Buller in 1943 (17 years old).

 

NHL All-Time Games Played

Patrick Marleau: 1,768

Gordie Howe: 1,767

Mark Messier: 1,756

Jaromir Jagr: 1,733

 

Gordie Howe’s scoring records were once thought to be unbreakable until Wayne Gretzky came along. Now, his longevity record has fallen, too.

 

Additional Storylines

NBC Sports: Stunning Numbers: Patrick Marleau NHL Edition

The Guardian: Patrick Marleau’s Journey From Canadian Farmboy to NHL’s 1,768-Game Recordbreaker

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THE STORYLINES 

⚾️ Bombers to Bust?

The Yankees’ 5-10 start has kickstarted the blame game in the Bronx. Sensing the unrest, general manager Brian Cashman called a rare off-day Monday video news conference, offering something of a mea culpa while hiding the panic button. (USA Today)

 

⚽ The Super League Pyramid Scheme

Two contradictory imperatives—money and sentiment—fuel any discussion about the future of European soccer. Sunday’s announcement of a breakaway league revealed which side the game’s elite clubs have chosen. (The Ringer)

 

🏈 Another Chance at Lance

Three teams were in attendance at yesterday’s pro day for North Dakota State QB Trey Lance. They included the Falcons, Patriots and Broncos. It was Lance’s second showing in front of NFL scouts, and he could be quickly climbing draft boards. (Sports Illustrated)

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