The dog days of summer sports are upon us. A night of NHL awards, MLB ballot checking and an NBA Draft preview has us preparing to turn the page on a new sports season. Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals hits the ice tonight (8:00 pm ET), but the 2021-22 NHL honors get today’s spotlight.
Awards On Ice
Maple Leafs’ Auston Matthews Wins Hart Trophy for MVP & Ted Lindsay Award for Most Outstanding Player
On the day off between Games 3 and 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals, the NHL shifted the focus to the hardware. The league’s awards show was held in Tampa Bay on the eve of Game 4 with comedian Keenan Thompson serving as the host. Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews won the big trophies (MVP & MOP), and a lengthy list of other awards were dished out to cap off the 2021-22 season.
Hart Trophy (MVP): Auston Matthews
Auston Matthews (Maple Leafs) became the second U.S.-born player to win the Hart Trophy for league MVP, joining Patrick Kane (Blackhawks) who won it in 2016. Matthews led the league with 60 goals — the first 60-goal campaign since Steven Stamkos (Lightning) in 2011 — and he finished tied for sixth in total points (106). Connor McDavid (Oilers) and Igor Shesterkin (Rangers) finished 2nd and 3rd, respectively.
Norris Trophy (Defenseman): Cale Makar (Avalanche)
Vezina Trophy (Goalie): Igor Shesterkin (Rangers)
Calder Trophy (Rookie): Moritz Seider (Red Wings)
Lady Byng Trophy (Sportsmanship): Kyle Connor (Jets)
Jack Adams Award (Coach): Darryl Sutter (Flames)
Watch: NHL Awards Show Recap & Highlights
All-Star Ballot Check-In
Where the All-Star Voting Stands 1 Week Before Ballots Close
The MLB All-Star voting is coming to a close next Thursday (2:00 pm ET), but the first 70 games have shown us who’s who. The votes are already being tallied, and though things could shift in the next eight days, the early returns tell the story. Here are the top vote-getters after the season’s first half.
MLB All-Star Voting
American League Leaders
1B: Vlad Guerrero Jr. (TOR): 947K Votes
2B: Jose Altuve (HOU): 710K Votes
3B: Rafael Devers (BOS): 727K Votes
SS: Bo Bichette (TOR): 585K Votes
OF: Aaron Judge (NYY): 1.5M Votes
OF: Mike Trout (LAA): 1.3M Votes
OF: George Springer (TOR): 622K Votes
C: Alejandro Kirk (TOR): 1M Votes
DH: Yordan Alvarez (HOU): 835K Votes
National League Leaders
1B: Paul Goldschmidt (STL): 930K Votes
2B: Jazz Chisholm Jr. (MIA): 634K Votes
3B: Manny Machado (SD): 969K Votes
SS: Trea Turner (LAD): 811K Votes
OF: Mookie Betts (LAD): 1.4M Votes
OF: Ronald Acuna Jr. (ATL): 1.4M Votes
OF: Joc Pederson (SF): 630K Votes
C: Willson Contreras (CHI): 801K Votes
DH: Bryce Harper (PHI): 1M Votes
Full All-Star Voting Ballots (MLB.com)
NBA Draft: Who Goes No. 1?
Rumors & Buzz Ahead of Thursday’s NBA Draft
The 2022 NBA Draft is fast approaching, and the Orlando Magic hold the No. 1 pick. The rumors are starting to swirl, but the Magic insists they’re still weighing all the options. Many expect the Magic to select Gonzaga’s Chet Holmgren — the 7-footer with range. His NBA comparison feels similar to Anthony Davis. Meanwhile, the other top-4 prospects could shuffle after No. 1. Jabari Smith (Auburn), Paolo Banchero (Duke) and Jaden Ivey are the expected go 1-4. Ivey has stated that he doesn’t wish to play for Sacramento (Pick 4), which could mean the Kings trade down if Ivey falls there. There’s a drop-off after the top-4 where it’s anyone’s guess in the latter half of the lottery.
The NBA offseason is about to tip off. It’s t-minus 36 hours to draft night.
2022 Draft Lottery Order
1. Orlando Magic
2. Oklahoma City Thunder
3. Houston Rockets
4. Sacramento Kings
5. Detroit Pistons
6. Indiana Pacers
7. Portland Trail Blazers
8. New Orleans Pelicans
9. San Antonio Spurs
10. Washington Wizards
11. New York Knicks
12. Oklahoma City Thunder
13. Charlotte Hornets
14. Cleveland Cavaliers
SI: 2022 NBA Draft Big Board 2.0 & Top-50 Rankings
B/R: Latest Intel on NBA Draft Top Prospects & VIP Lottery Teams
The Ringer: Top-50 Prospects in the 2022 NBA Draft
College World Series
#5 Texas A&M def. Notre Dame (5-1)
Arkansas def. #14 Auburn (11-1)
For the second time, Rob Gronkowski is calling it quits. The five-time Pro Bowl and four-time All-Pro tight end, known as much for his big personality as his proficiency on the football field, announced his retirement Tuesday. (Yahoo! Sports)
Much of the early buzz is coming out of New York, where Kyrie Irving’s contract status has pundits and fans speculating. Elsewhere in the NBA, names like Zach LaVine, Jalen Brunson and Deandre Ayton are hot commodities. (ESPN)
Can Serena Contend at Wimbledon?
For the first time since turning 40, and almost one full year from the last time anyone saw her in a tennis match, Serena Williams walked out to a packed house Tuesday in Eastbourne, England. (USA Today)