The daily sports news cycle is crazier than ever. Don't have the stamina to keep up to speed? Around The Bases is your daily morning destination to stay in the know on the biggest stories in both local and professional sports. We’ll start at first base with an intriguing story or event, and bring you home with a must-read story in the North Peace sports scene.
First Base - Blue Jays lose fifth straight
The Toronto Blue Jays were embarrassed 9-1 at home last night against the Minnesota Twins, and the Jays have now lost five straight. It's been a tough stretch in which the good pitching of April has disappeared, and the hitting has regressed to where we all expected it would be at the start of the season — not existent. Still, it's hard to get too worked up about it. This is a team in the midst of a rebuild, that is set on trading its good, veteran players and is stockpiling young talent. Stretches like this are bound to happen, and Jays fans have no choice but to patiently ride it out.
Second Base - Warriors pull off win despite losing Durant
The Golden State Warriors led by as many as 20 points in last night's Game 5, and looked like they were going to win easily. But then Kevin Durant was injured on a non-contact play and had to leave the game. It looked really bad, like it was a torn achilles, but reports after the game suggest its just a calf strain. Either way, Durant is expected to at least miss Game 6, in Houston on Friday, May 10. The Rockets climbed back into the game, getting within one point with three minutes left, but turned the ball over late and missed key shots, ultimately wasting a huge opportunity to steal the game, and the Warriors held on for the 104-99 win.
Third Base - Pavelski leads Sharks to next round
The San Jose Sharks are off to the Western Conference Final, thanks to a timely return by captain Joe Pavelski, who played for the first time in seven games since going down in Game 7 against the Vegas Golden Knights. Pavelski had a goal and an assist in the first period, and the Sharks ultimately won 3-2. It was a tough game though, and the Avalanche never gave up. Colorado outshot the Sharks 15-2 in the third, but wern't able to get the third goal to tie the game. The Avalanche did appear to tie in the game in the second, but it was overturned after it appeared Gabriel Landeskog was offside as he was late getting back on the bench on a line change. The Sharks will now play the Blues, two teams who won Game 7s, and who have never won a Stanley Cup. It's hard to see that series not going seven.
Home Base - Raptors can close out series tonight in Philadelphia
The Toronto Raptors are in Philadelphia tonight for Game 6 against the 76ers. Tip off is at 5 p.m. Up 3-2 in the series, Toronto can punch its ticket to the Eastern Conference Finals for just the second time in franchise history, where they would face the Milwaukee Bucks. However, Philadelphia is a strong and prideful team, and it's hard to imagine them laying over in this game. Expect a game more similar to Game 4 then Game 5. Win or lose, I expect the full Raptors team to be engaged and fighting hard to end the series before Game 7.
Around the Bases runs Monday through Friday. If you have a news tip or story to share, email Dillon Giancola at firstname.lastname@example.org.