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Nets’ Kyrie Irving nearly struck by water bottle thrown from stands in Boston



Nets' Kyrie Irving nearly struck by water bottle thrown from stands in Boston

Nets guard Kyrie Irving had a water bottle thrown at him from the stands at TD Garden in Boston, following Brooklyn’s playoff win vs. the Celtics on Sunday night.

YES Network captured the moment: Irving was walking off the court with teammates when the bottle landed in front of him.

MORE: Why did Kyrie Irving leave the Celtics?

“We keep saying things like ‘We’re human, we’re human,’ but we don’t get treated like we have rights when we’re out there at times and people feel entitled to go and do things like that,” Irving told reporters in his postgame Zoom call.

A later video (screenshot below) showed a Celtics fan being led from the arena in handcuffs. It is not yet clear whether that person threw the bottle.

Celtics fans are angry at Irving for, among other things, leaving the team in 2019 after saying the year prior that he would re-sign with Boston. Irving stirred the pot earlier in the week by expressing his hope that the Boston crowd would stick to basketball for Games 3 and 4 of the Nets-Celts series and not display “subtle racism.”

On Sunday, Irving walked to center court after the Nets defeated the Celtics 141-126 in Game 4, then stomped on Boston’s logo. Brooklyn took a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven series with the victory. Game 5 will be Tuesday in Brooklyn.

Sunday’s incident is the latest instance of fans crossing lines with players or their families during this year’s NBA playoffs:

— A 76ers fan in Philadelphia dumped popcorn on the Wizards’ Russell Westbrook.

— A Knicks fan in New York spit on Hawks guard Trae Young.

— Jazz fans in Salt Lake City made racist and vulgar comments to the family of Grizzlies guard Ja Morant.

Each of those fans was identified and then banned from their respective arenas.

Irving reminded reporters that the issue of fan misbehavior has been around for many years.

“A lot of older players went through it, and any great person, great entertainer, performer understands that when you’re achieving something bigger than yourself you’re going to have a lot of adversity, animosity and you’ve just got to figure out how to deal with it,” he said.

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Padres’ Manny Machado wore the perfect Father’s Day footwear



Padres' Manny Machado wore the perfect Father's Day footwear

Manny Machado’s got heat on feet. Kind of.

While ostentatious, loud and colorful cleats are all the rage in baseball, the Padres’ star third baseman dialed it down on Father’s Day. Like, a lot down.

Machado took the field wearing a pair of Nike Air Monarch cleats — the preeminent, iconic dad shoe — during San Diego’s Dad Day matchup vs. the Reds.

The Monarchs have fostered a reputation for being an unforgettable dad-worn sneaker, making Machado’s footwear a tremendous salute to fathers (and grillmasters) around the country.

What makes the cleats even better is that they are in the classic white, silver and navy blue colorway, which is the only way to wear those bad boys. While these are Jordan Brand player-exclusive cleats, they’re dad-exclusive away from the field.

MORE: Joey Votto makes young fan’s day in San Diego

Machado has worn all different makes of cleats throughout his career, usually flashy and gaudy types. The All-Star infielder has worn Jordan 11s, 12s, 4s and a bunch of others on the field.

Still, lacing up a pair of Grillmaster 5s on Father’s Day earned him plenty of praise from fans who understood the tribute:

You’ll probably be able to catch Machado after the game at a BBQ near you, likely cracking some bad puns and calling everyone “big guy.”

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Nets’ Kevin Durant joining Team USA for Tokyo Olympics after Game 7 loss vs. Bucks, report says



Nets' Kevin Durant joining Team USA for Tokyo Olympics after Game 7 loss vs. Bucks, report says

Kevin Durant isn’t going to be taking much time off this summer.

In fact, he appears to be ready for more action despite playing all 53 minutes of the Nets’ Game 7 overtime loss to the Bucks and scoring a game-high 48 points. And he’s joining another super team that has title hopes.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Durant is expected to commit to Team USA ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.

Durant would become the sixth player to commit to Team USA, joining another player with Olympic experience, Draymond Green, and four first-time Olympians: Damian Lillard, Jayson Tatum, Bradley Beal and Devin Booker.

MORE: Kevin Durant blames ‘big-ass foot’ for loss to the Suns

Durant competed in both the 2012 and 2016 Olympics. He averaged 19.5 points at the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro and 19.4 points at the 2012 London Olympics.

In addition, Durant shot 54.6 percent from the shorter-range international 3-point line at the two tournaments and has compiled a 39-0 record in international play.

Team USA can now turn its attention to its remaining question marks with Durant’s commitment reportedly secured. Anthony Davis and LeBron James won’t be participating in this year’s Olympics, but Stephen Curry was “50-50” about competing in the event.

Either way, Team USA should be considered the top threat at the 2021 Summer Games with Durant in the fold.

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Yankees secure win vs. Athletics with another triple play, tie MLB record



Yankees secure win vs. Athletics with another triple play, tie MLB record

If a double play is a pitcher’s best friend, then what’s a triple play?

The Yankees had already turned two triple plays this season before Sunday, including one that has literally never been seen before in MLB history. Then they pulled off one more, and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

With the Yankees teetering on the brink of danger in the ninth inning, closer Aroldis Chapman got A’s catcher Sean Murphy to ground to third baseman Gio Urshela, who stepped on the bag and relayed to DJ LeMahieu, who then threw to Chris Gittens for the 5-4-3 game-ender.

It was a record-tying play by the Yankees: The high-water mark for triple plays turned in a season is three, with the feat most recently accomplished by the White Sox in 2016.

The Yankees’ second triple play of the year — a 1-3-6-2-5-6 triple killing vs. the Blue Jays on June 17 — had never accomplished in baseball history:

The around-the-horn game-ending triple play on Father’s Day secured a 2-1 victory over Oakland and gave New York the series win over a hot A’s team. New York moves to 38-33 and continues to right the ship in an up-and-down season.

But, hey, that’s a pretty cool gift for dads everywhere.

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