Heat Advance, Caps force Game 7, Phils swept + Free Plays for Thursday, May 10, 2012

Grizz roll past Clippers, Heat movin’ on

Memphis knew that if they were going to win their Game Five showdown with the Clippers, they would have to get their big men involved in the scoring. That’s exactly what they did in their 92-80 win over the Clippers. Marc Gasol had 23 points and Zach Randolph 19 as the Grizz jumped out to a 36-22 lead and then held on late. The Clippers trailed by 24 in the second half but a big run cut the lead to seven before Memphis closed things out late. This has been a physical chippy series with the Clippers being whistled for 12 technical fouls, the Grizzlies have been tee’d up seven times. Game Six is Friday at the Staples Center.

The Miami Heat were not going back to Madison Square Garden for a Game Six with Knicks. The Heat took care of business right away jumping out to a 55-44 lead and then cruising to a 106-94 win. The Miami big three had a big night James/Bosh/Wade combining for 67 points, 19 rebounds, and 10 assists. Carmelo Anthony had 35 points and eight rebounds for the Knicks. It was New York’s 12th straight year without a playoff-series victory. Miami finished 7-1 against the Knicks this year and will meet either Indiana (if the Bulls win their series) or the 76ers if Philadelphia goes on to beat Chicago.

“The Association” features three more elimination games tonight. Philadelphia leads Chicago three games to two and the 76ers are -3 home favorites over the Bulls with the total just 169. The game tips at 7:05 PM EST and will be carried by NBA TV. The Thursday TNT double-header tips at 8:05 PM EST with the Celtics -6.5 over the Hawks. The total is 174 and Boston will have to figure out a solution for Al Horford who returned for the first time since January 11th to score 19 points in Game V. The Nuggets are minus 1.5 over the Lakers and the total 197.5 in the TNT finale. Denver snapped a none-game road playoff losing streak in LA Tuesday to force tonight’s Game VI.

Caps beat Rangers 2-1 to force Game Seven

The Washington Capitals got goals from Alex Ovechkin and Jason Chimera and rookie goalie Braden Holtby made them stand up with 30 saves as the Caps beat the Rangers 2-1. It was Washington’s fifth straight win coming off an overtime loss and forces a Game VII Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers have won four of their last five Game VIIs with the loss coming to the Caps in 2009. The Caps have lost seven of ten Game VIIs in their franchise history. Ten of the Ranger’s 13 playoff games have been decided by one goal.

Rays beat the Yankees with four in the ninth

Dave Robertson has big shoes to fill since taking over as closer of the Yankees since the injury to surefire Hall-of-Famer Mariano Rivera. Robertson had also been perfect in 2012 and hadn’t given up a run since August. That all ended last night at Yankee Stadium as the Rays touched up Robertson for four in the ninth of a 4-1 win. Robertson gave up three hits and walk, Matt Joyce’s three-run blast the big blow as the Rays improved to 20-11.

The Mets completed a three-game sweep of the Philadelphia Phillies with a 10-6 win at Citizen’s Bank Park. The loss dropped the Phils to 14-18, good for last in the National League East, five games behind the first-place Washington Nationals. Cliff Lee left with a 4-2 lead after six innings but the Mets rocked the Philly pen for eight runs over the last three innings. Philadelphia is now 0-6 in Lee’s six starts.

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Rivera had blood clot

The “complications” surrounding Mariano Rivera’s ACL surgery has turned out to be a blot clot found in Rivera’s calf. MLB’s all-time save leader is being treated with blood thinners and no time table has been set for his recovery or the ACL surgery.

Athletico Madrid win Europa League title

The Athletico Madrid won it’s second Europa League title in three years with a 3-0 win over Athletic Bilbao in an all Spanish final played in Bucharest. Falcao had two goals for the winners. Falcao anchored last year’s Europa League (formerly UEFA Cup) champion Porto. Bilbao had made headlines in the semifinals by knocking out Manchester United at Old Trafford.

The Players Championship starts today at TPC Sawgrass

The Players Championship starts today at the 7215 yard, par 72, TPC Sawgrass course in Ponte Vedre, Florida. KJ Choi is the defending champion from last year after beating David Toms in a sudden death playoff. World No.1 ranked Rory McIlroy is the prohibitive favorite going in with four top-five finishes in his five US events this year, his only flameout coming in the Masters in April.

A tour of TPC Sawgrass for you SP3 hackers

BoSox public address announcer Carl Beane dead at 59

Boston Red Sox public address announcer Carl Beane, the voice of Fenway Park whose booming baritone called ballplayers to the plate for two World Series champions, died on Wednesday after suffering a heart attack while driving. He was 59.

Nice tribute

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