About Last Night: And the Thunder Rolls

 James/DurantIn case you were out living a life of leisure, here’s what you missed in sports on Tuesday.

  • Kevin Durant scored 36 points and grabbed eight boards as the Thunder topped the Heat in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, 105-94. After the game, LeBron James remained confident. “Just wait till we get to the fourth quarter,” said James, who has been undergoing successful hypnosis therapy to erase bad fourth quarters from his memory. “That’s when the stars come out.”
  • Alex Rodriguez tied Lou Gehrig for the most grand slams in baseball history with his 23rd in a 6-4 Yankees win over the Braves. “Today-today-today,” said A-Rod, wearing a smirk as Yankee PR representatives frantically gestured for him to stop, “I consider myself … the greatest Yankee … on the face of the earth.” He then held up an old Gehrig jersey he stole from the team museum and set it on fire as Nick Swisher sauntered in with a boombox and A-Rod danced around the burning uniform to blaring techno music.
  • Police in Warsaw detained at least 100 people after fighting between fans and hooligans swept the streets prior to a 1-1 draw between Russia and Poland in Euro 2012. The tension between the two nations stems entirely from the time when Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin was caught on film making a Polish joke while he orbited the earth in 1961.
  • In World Cup qualifying, the U.S. conceded an 83rd-minute goal to Guatemalan midfielder Marco Pappa on a free kick and had to settle for a 1-1 draw. In the lead-up to the free kick, Landon Donovan closed his eyes, held out both hands, and shouted “Marco!”, but Pappa refused to play by the rules and shout his last name. Donovan panicked and stumbled into goalie Tim Howard, giving the Guatemalan a clear shot.
  • Bryce Harper hit a massive home run at Toronto as the Nationals upped their winning streak to five games with a 4-2 win over the Jays. Eyewitnesses reported that when the ball made impact, the Canadian fans spit out their bland food and hollered, “Jeezum Crow!”
  • North Dakota residents voted overwhelmingly to let the state university lose the nickname “Fighting Sioux” and avoid NCAA sanctions. Sources indicate that school administrators will propose a new nickname in the next week or so, and that the current top choice is “Cowardly Sioux.”
  • Andre Ethier knocked in the 500th RBI of his career, a game-tying eighth-inning single in a 5-2 Dodgers win over the Angels. When asked which RBI was his favorite, Ethier thought for a minute before choosing RBI no. 198. “It was the most sensual, because I hit it off Randy Johnson,” said Ethier. “And I choose not to explain that further.”
  • Madison Bumgarner struck out 12 batters and hit the first home run of his major league career to lead the Giants to a 6-3 win over the Astros. In a longstanding baseball tradition, his Giant teammates gave him the silent treatment after his home run. Unfortunately, they forgot the part where they mob him in celebration after a few seconds, and Bumgarner was found later that night weeping in his bathtub with empty bubble bath containers strewn about the room.
  • Closing arguments were held in the Roger Clemens perjury trial, and Clemens’s defense lawyer Rusty Hardin ripped former strength coach Brian McNamee, saying to call him a liar “is kind of like calling the Grand Canyon a ditch.” Lawyers for the prosecution then spent the first half of their two-hour closing argument delivering an improvised presentation titled, “The Grand Canyon: Glorified Ditch.”

Filed Under: About Last Night, Alex Rodriguez, Bryce Harper, Euro 2012, Los Angeles Dodgers, Miami Heat, NBA Finals, New York Yankees, Oklahoma City Thunder, San Francisco Giants, Washington Nationals

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Shane Ryan is a contributing writer for Grantland. His book about the young stars of the PGA Tour will be published by Random House in early 2015.

Archive @ ShaneRyanHere