The Celtics are too physical for the Warriors, plus the Rams keep spending more money

Happy Thursday everyone. I hope you are doing well.

Let’s get straight to the point.

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Good morning to everyone, but especially to…

The Boston Celts

For the third time in this series, the Celts took the warrior‘ best shot in the third quarter. For the second time in those three games, they responded with championship-level toughness and resilience. Boston beat Golden State 23-11 in the fourth quarter, winning 116-100 and taking a 2-1 lead in the NBA Finals series.

simply put, The Celtics’ physical advantages overwhelmed the Warriorsnotes NBA reporter Colin Ward-Henninger.

  • Ward Henninger:More than anything, the Celtics simply beat the Warriors. One wonders how Golden State, whose key players are in their 30s, will fare as the series continues against a mostly young, athletic Celtics team that Marcus Smart said prides itself on its physicality.

recognitions

And not such a good morning for…

Getty Images

THE PGA TOUR

Less than a week after he said he was “not at a place in my career where [he] risk” participating in LIV Golf, Bryson DeChambeau is do exactly that. The 2020 US Open champion is likely to make his debut on the Saudi Arabia-backed tour at their second event, scheduled from June 30 in Portland, Oregon. Patrick Reed will also make the leap.

It’s no surprise these decisions came just a day after the USGA’s announcement All qualified golfers can play at next week’s US Open, regardless of tour affiliation. While the USGA didn’t say that will be their long-term stance, it likely means the other three majors will take a similar position, at least for now. The PGA Tour, on the other hand, does vaguely stated that players will be faced with discipline.

But for now it’s another win for LIV writes golf expert Kyle Porter.

  • Porter: โ€œThis is another coup for LIV Golf, which in its infancy has landed more notable names than anyone could have imagined. It’s also a concern for the PGA Tour, which has been pretty quiet up to this point on specific disciplinary action for players who jump. One PGA Tour player I spoke to expects a tough one over the next day or two Statement from the Tour and I believe it will come as soon as there are balls in the air in London on Thursday and the players are officially playing in the event.”

While JustinThomas and Rory McIlroy spoke out against the leagueit’s not hard to see the appeal from the player’s perspective: huge paydays, a more relaxed schedule and the ability to play in majors? Already several players admitted their apathy towards the sportswashing nature of the league, and that, in theory, should have been a major hurdle. That’s not to say there aren’t still big questions. There are, including…

  • Does the OWGR award points to LIV events? Majors use OWGR rankings to determine fields; If LIV players can’t qualify for Majors this way, it would make LIV much less attractive.
  • Will players miss the fanfare and familiarity of the PGA Tour?
  • What will be the official PGA Tour stance?

For now, we must await answers as the world of professional golf shifts before our eyes.

Cooper Kupp gets huge extension from Rams ๐Ÿˆ

One day after guarantee Aaron Donald will be a ram for the foreseeable futureLos Angeles did the same with Cooper coup. The record-breaking wide receiver agreed an $80 million three-year extension tying him to the team through 2026.

  • The extension includes $75 million guaranteed, the highest ever for a wide receiver.
  • Overall, Kupp’s contract is worth $110 million over the next five years. The $22 million per year is currently the sixth-highest among wide receivers.
  • Last year, Kupp only the fourth player in the Super Bowl era to win the receiving Triple Crown — most receptions, most yards and most touchdowns. The others? Jerry Rice (1990), Sterling Sharpe (1992) and Steve Smith (2005).

With the Super Bowl on the line last season, it was Kupp who provided the touchdown catch going forward, and then Donald Joe Burrow interfered in the deciding game. The Rams hope that by making sure these two are committed long-term, they can continue to deliver similar results for years to come.

Baker Mayfield excused from mandatory Browns minicamp ๐Ÿˆ

USATSI

It is unclear who Brown‘ Starter will be there to open the season but it certainly doesn’t look like it Baker Mayfield. The browns excused the 2018 No. 1 overall pick from the mandatory mini campnext week starts.

  • Maifeld asked for a trade Mid-March, and while he’s still on Cleveland’s list, he doesn’t appear to be part of the plan going forward.
  • The browns are not ready to cut Mayfieldbecause they are on the hook for paid him nearly $19 million this season, whether he’s playing or not.
  • There is uncertainty as to who Deshaun Watson is now faced with 24 civil lawsuits Allegations of sexual misconduct (cf Yesterday’s newsletter for more details on this).
  • The remaining quarterbacks on Cleveland’s roster are Jacoby Brissett and Joshua Dobbsboth earned this offseason.

Since his absence is excused, Mayfield will not face the fines he would normally receive for not attending this part of the off-season training program. However, the Browns have put themselves in a quarterback dilemma: They have no control over if/when Watson will be available — or even when a decision will be made — and are actively keeping Mayfield off the team in a now-win situation.

Pro comparisons for the top picks for the 2022 NBA draft ๐Ÿ€

The NBA Draft is exactly two weeks away and with the NBA Finals being on a day off it’s a great opportunity to get to know the draft-eligible players a little better. Lucky for you, design expert Kyle Boone has it NBA comparisons for each of its top 10 prospects.

Boone’s biggest prospect is Purdue product Jaden Iveyand Boone compares him to one of the brightest young stars in the league.

  • Boone:per comp: And Morant (minus vision in passing) — The explosive athletic ability is pretty much the end of the Ivey vs. Morant comparison. Morant is a far superior passer and playmaker. He’s a better decision maker. Its grip is firmer and crisper. That much is indisputable. However, the way Ivey pushes the rim is reminiscent of a young Morant. With his speed, he can blow past defenders โ€“ with or without an umbrella. Once he turns on the turbo, he can just zoom past anyone in front of him.”

In the meantime, maroon‘s Jabari Smith is the big favorite for first place overall, according to Caesars Sportsbook, and while he’s fourth in Boone’s rankings, he’s certainly ticked enough boxes to be the top pick.

  • Boone: per comp: Michael Porter Jr. — [Smith] shot 42% from 3-point range and ranked in the 94th percentile of all collegiate players as a spot-up shooter, according to Synergy data. They both have a lot more to offer than spot-up shooters – Smith, for example, has a lot of defensive potential – but their sniper and position size are two of the best prospects in recent years.

You can check out the full list here.

What we’re watching Thursday ๐Ÿ“บ

๐ŸฅŽ Women’s College World Series: No. 1 Oklahoma vs. Texas7:30 p.m. on ESPN 2
๐Ÿ’ Eastern Conference Finals Game 5: Lightning at Rangers8 p.m. on ESPN

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