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The ESPN Daily: The Raptors take Game 1

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RAPTORS MAKE A STATEMENT

Toronto controls Game 1 ... The Raptors' NBA Finals debut couldn't have gone much better than it did Thursday, as they controlled the game from the opening tip to put the Warriors in a place they haven't been during their current dynasty -- down 1-0 in the championship series. Pascal Siakam led the way with 32 points and is currently the toast of Canada. Read More

THINGS TO CARE ABOUT

Tottenham vs. Liverpool ... A ridiculous Champions League season ends Saturday at 3 p.m. ET, when Tottenham Hotspur take on Liverpool. Who has the advantage in this all-England final? We have the full breakdown, including the backstory for each team and our expert prediction. Read More

James to Wade all over again ... If you're a high school basketball player, competing against one of LeBron James' sons would be difficult. Competing against him AND Dwyane Wade's son? Absolute nightmare. Good luck to the kids who are going to have to do that this fall. Read More

Best season ever? Cody Bellinger is raking right now, practically lapping the field in average, OBP and SLG. On top of that, he's playing stellar defense and making no mistakes. It's still early, but Bellinger's numbers are starting to put him on track for one of the best seasons in MLB history ... and perhaps ever. Read More


WEEKEND BINGE READS

The shadow lingering over the NBA Finals ... Regardless of whether the Warriors or Raptors prevail, the question of where Kevin Durant and Kawhi Leonard will end up next season is significant. You can bet the entire league will be analyzing each win, missed shot, and stray comment with that in mind. It's fascinating that, in the modern NBA, the league's championship event seemingly takes a backseat to the free agency sweepstakes. Read More

The toughest football player who ever lived ... Pro Football Hall of Famer Bart Starr died Sunday, and his legacy is unrivaled -- he won and was named the MVP of the first two Super Bowls, after all. But one thing that might have been lost in all the tributes was his toughness, which stood out even in the rough-and-tumble early NFL. Read More

The danger of foul balls ... By some estimates, the foul ball that struck a little girl at the Cubs-Astros game Wednesday was traveling 90 miles per hour. It highlighted a truth about baseball that often goes unacknowledged: That fans sitting down the first- or third-base lines can be in grave danger. Jeff Passan makes the case that it's long past time for baseball to protect fans by extending the nets to each foul pole. Read More


THINGS TO WATCH

play
2:08

Howard sheds tears of joy upon introduction

Juwan Howard gets emotional at his first news conference as Michigan head coach and announces that he's back.

OVERHEARD

"I smoke cigars on a golf course, but there's nobody else around. But you're in an arena and 10,000 are smoking and the players are choking."
-- Panathinaikos coach Rick Pitino, criticizing fans of his club for smoking in the arena. Read More


REMEMBER WHEN?

On this date in 2018, JR Smith dribbled out the ball at the end of regulation of Game 1 of the NBA Finals, despite the fact that the Cavaliers and Warriors were tied. The Cavaliers never recovered, lost Game 1 in overtime and were swept. LeBron departed for Los Angeles shortly after. So, all in all, not a great move by JR.


WHAT'S ON TONIGHT?

UFC Fight Night: Gustafsson vs. Smith (Saturday, 10 a.m. ET, ESPN2): Alexander Gustafsson and Anthony Smith are both coming off pretty decisive losses to Jon "Bones" Jones. While losing to Jones isn't exactly shameful, it can affect a fighter's confidence. We'll see if either of them has been thrown off their games Saturday morning.

Red Sox at Yankees (Sunday, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN): We have a good one on Sunday Night Baseball this week. The Red Sox have roared back after a terrible start, but they are still playing catch up to the Yankees, who have weathered a storm of injuries as if they never happened.

Warriors at Raptors (Sunday, 8 p.m. ET, ABC): What do we have here? The Raptors came out swinging in Game 1 and can put Golden State in a (gasp!) two-game hole with another victory in Toronto. But if there's a game where the "third-quarter Warriors" will show up early, it'd be this one.