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Giannis Antetokounmpo wins Finals MVP after historic Game 6 performance – Sportsnet.ca

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MILWAUKEE — Three weeks ago, a knee injury left Giannis Antetokounmpo looking 50/50 to return for the rest of the Bucks’ playoff run.

Look at him now.

The Greek Freak delivered perhaps the best performance of his career at the best possible moment and can now add an NBA Finals MVP award to his two regular-season MVP trophies. Antetokounmpo scored 50 points in a series-clinching 105-98 Game 6 victory that ended the Bucks’ 50-year title drought.

A half century ago, it was Lew Alcindor — before he was Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — earning the MVP honors for the Bucks by averaging 27 points and 18.5 rebounds in a four-game sweep of Baltimore. This time, it was another big man leading the way as Antetokounmpo became the first player to average 35.2 points, 13.2 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game while shooting 61.8%.

He followed that up by saying how his improbable rise to stardom should serve as a inspiration to others.

“Believe in your dreams,” Antetokounmpo said. “Whatever you feel, when you feel down, when things don’t look like it’s going to happen for you or you might not make it in your career — it might be basketball, it might be anything Just believe in what you’re doing and keep working. Don’t let nobody tell you who you can’t be or what you can’t do.”

Antetokounmpo was an easy choice for the MVP honour after also adding 14 rebounds and five blocks in Game 6. He had at least 40 points and 10 rebounds in three of the six games in this series.

He did all that while dealing with a hyperextended left knee that prevented him from playing in the last two games of the Eastern Conference finals against the Atlanta Hawks.

“It’s just completely awe-inspiring, his performance tonight, this whole series, this whole year,” Bucks center Brook Lopez said.

Antetokounmpo initially feared the injury was more serious and would keep him out of action for an entire year. He instead was back on the floor a week later for the start of the NBA Finals.

He collected 20 points and 17 rebounds in a Game 1 loss. He followed that up with at least 41 points and 12 rebounds in each of the next two games.

Then he played major roles in the two signature plays of this series.

He saved his finest outing for the championship clincher, scoring nearly half the Bucks’ points.

Antetokounmpo collected 20 points in the third quarter alone to help Milwaukee rally from a 47-42 halftime deficit, though the game was still tied 77-all heading into the final period.

He had 27 of the Bucks’ 48 total points through the game’s middle two quarters. And after making just 55.6% of his free throws in his first 20 games of this postseason, Antetokounmpo went 17 of 19 from the line Tuesday night.

“It’s hard to find more words to describe what Giannis does,” Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. “But the way he made his free throws, the way he did everything, stepped up, the poise, the confidence, the leadership. He has been working on it. We say we want Giannis to get to the free throw line. We believe. We talked about it this past summer. To win a championship, you’ve got to make free throws and you’ve got to make shots.”

Antetokounmpo’s rapid recovery to lead Milwaukee to it first title since 1971 represents the crowning achievement in Antetokounmpko’s remarkable rise to NBA stardom.

The 26-year-old Antetokounmpo noted this week he hadn’t even started playing basketball in 2007, when LeBron James made his first finals appearance. His rare blend of size and athleticism made him the No. 15 overall pick in the 2013 draft, and he made his first All-Star appearance four years later.

He earned back-to-back MVP honors in 2019 and 2020 while leading the Bucks to the league’s best regular-season record each of those years, but they kept falling short in the playoffs. The Bucks blew a 2-0 lead to Toronto in the 2019 Eastern Conference finals, then lost to Miami in the second round.

Antetokounmpo kept his faith in the Bucks by signing a supermax extension in December.

“There was a job that had to be finished,” Antetokounmpo said.

Antetokounmpo also decided to take a different mental approach.

He acknowledged getting too caught up in the emotional swings of each win and loss earlier in his career. He stayed more level-headed this year while also emerging as a more vocal leader.

That strategy allowed the Bucks to erase 2-0 deficits in the second round against Brooklyn and again in these finals. It helped Antetokounmpo deal with the uncertainty in the immediate aftermath of his injury.

And now it has him on the highest of highs as the MVP of a league championship series.

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Olympic wake-up call: Simone Biles, Ellie Black inspire on beam, kayaker wins 2 gold in 1 hour – CBC.ca

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In a highly anticipated balance beam final, gymnast Simone Biles of the United States won a bronze medal Tuesday, while Canada’s Ellie Black finished just off the podium in fourth place. 

Both women were inspiring on the beam and throughout the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Biles was returning to Olympic competition after withdrawing from events to look after her mental health. Black had reinjured her ankle in training and dropped from the individual all-around for a shot at the beam. 

Biles earned a score of 14.000 for a seventh Olympic medal, and Black delivered a powerful performance for 13.866. The 25-year-old from Halifax was tearful and embraced her coach after her performance. 

Ellie Black competes to a fourth-place finish at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre. (Lisi Niesner/Reuters)

China finally reached the podium in women’s artistic gymnastics in Tokyo. Guan Chenchen won gold and Tang Xijing earned silver.  

Here’s what else you may have missed on Tuesday in Tokyo: 

Bring on the cheers

Find live streams, must-watch video highlights, breaking news and more in one perfect Olympic Games package. Following Team Canada has never been easier or more exciting.

More from Tokyo 2020

Upcoming men’s 200-metre semis

Canada’s Andre De Grasse and Aaron Brown have both qualified to race in the men’s 200-metre semifinals. 

You can watch them compete in that race, scheduled to start at 7:50 a.m. ET here.

De Grasse ran 20.56 seconds to finish third in his qualifying heat, while Brown won his own with a time of 20.38 seconds.

De Grasse took the silver in Rio 2016, with Jamaica’s Usain Bolt speeding to his third consecutive gold medal in the event. Brown raced to 16th place.

Canada’s Andre De Grasse competes in men’s 200-metre heats during the Tokyo Olympic Games on Tuesday. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

It was that semifinal that gave the world the iconic photo of the pair, with De Grasse and Bolt sharing smiles as the Canadian tried to push past him at the finish. 

Sport climbing debut

It was a special moment for Canadian sport climber Sean McColl, who is among the first Olympians in the sport. 

The 33-year-old from North Vancouver had advocated for sport climbing to be included in the Games, and saw his dream become a reality with its debut in Tokyo. 

Sean McColl of Canada competes in the speed event of sport climbing at the Tokyo Olympic Games. (Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press)

“I am incredibly honoured to be part of this historical group, to be forever written into the history books of [the International Federation of Sport Climbing’s] first Olympics,” he wrote on Instagram. 

Fellow Canadian and family friend Alannah Yip, also from North Vancouver, will make her debut on Wednesday.

New Zealander wins 2 gold, 1 hour apart

It only took just over an hour for Lisa Carrington of New Zealand to paddle her way to two Olympic gold medals. 

For a third straight time, the 32-year-old claimed Olympic gold in the single kayak 200-metre race. Afterward, Carrington and partner Caitlin Regal won gold in the doubles 500-metre event. 

  • Have a weird or random question about the Tokyo Olympic Games? We want to hear from you for an upcoming story: Email us: Ask@cbc.ca

Carrington set Olympic records in both.  

Lisa Carrington of Team New Zealand reacts after winning her gold medal in the women’s K1 200-metre final at Sea Forest Waterway in Tokyo. (Photo by Adam Pretty/Getty Images)

She flew to the finish in a time of 38.120 seconds in the individual round. Then with teammate Regal, she broke the doubles time in one minute 35.785 seconds. 

Women’s team pursuit finishes 4th

The Canadian women’s team pursuit squad came fourth after losing their bronze medal race to the United States.

The Americans were silver medallists in Rio 2016 and London 2012, while Canada was looking to repeat its back-to-back bronzes.

Team Canada races in the women’s team pursuit event at the Izu Velodrome in Shizuoka, Japan. (Matthew Childs/Reuters)

The Canadian team of Allison Beveridge, Annie Foreman-Mackey, Ariane Bonhomme and Georgia Simmerling couldn’t quite catch up to their opponent and finished in a time of four minutes 10.552 seconds.

The United States were ahead in a time of four minutes 08.040 seconds. 

Canadian squads bounced from medal contention

The Canadian men’s volleyball team and women’s water polo team won’t be bringing home medals from Tokyo. Both fell in their quarter-final matches on Tuesday. 

The men went down in straight sets on the court (21-25, 28-30, 22-25) to the Russian Olympic Committee. While the Canadians were hoping to compete for a medal, their match ended in a repeat of their fate in Rio 2016

The Canadian women took on the two-time consecutive gold medallists U.S. in the pool, and lost 16-5. It was their first appearance in the Olympic tournament since Athens 2004, where the women finished seventh and didn’t reach the quarter-final stages. 

Smashing a world record

Norweigan hurdler Karsten Warholm destroyed his previous world record in the intense heat and humidity of Tokyo. 

It had only been a month and two days since he broke it the first time, shattering a record held by American Kevin Young that stood since the Barcelona Olympics in 1992. 

Karsten Warholm of Norway celebrates after winning gold Tuesday and setting a new world record in the men’s 400-metre hurdles. (Phil Noble/Reuters)

Warholm had an incredible performance in the 400-metre hurdles final, winning gold in a time of 45.94 seconds. The 25-year-old’s jaw dropped when he saw his time. He grabbed his jersey, ripping it open across his chest in celebration. 

American Rai Benjamin broke the record, too, but came close behind in second. 

  • Have a weird or random question about the Olympic Games? We want to hear from you for an upcoming story: Email us: Ask@cbc.ca

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Record-holding Canadian sprinter, Olympic medallist Angela Bailey dies at 59 – CTV News

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MISSISSAUGA, ONT. —
Angela Bailey, the Canadian women’s record holder in the 100-metre sprint and an Olympic 4×100 relay silver medal winner, has died after battling cancer under complicated conditions. She was 59 years old.

Bailey’s 1987 Canadian women’s 100-metre sprint record time of 10.98 seconds still stands today. She was also part of the women’s silver medal-winning 4×100 metres relay team at the 1984 Games in Los Angeles.

Athletics Canada confirmed Bailey’s July 31 death in a statement Monday and offered condolences to her family and loved ones.

“I was very sad to hear of Angela’s passing. I remember her as a talented and determined athlete,” Athletics Canada board chair Helen Manning said. “The Athletics Canada family sends their thoughts and sympathy to her family at this sad time.”

Bailey’s medal-winning relay team members, Marita Payne, Angella Taylor-Issajenko and France Gareau, also paid tribute to her in a statement.

“We are in shock and deeply saddened by the sudden passing of our teammate, Angela Bailey,” said the statement. “Our deepest condolences go out to Angela’s family and close friends. She was a tremendous competitor on the track and we will always cherish the memories we made together. Rest peacefully our friend.”

Doug Clement, a former Olympic team doctor and a middle-distance track coach in the 1980s when Bailey was competing, said he recalled seeing and speaking with her at events.

“She stood out as a strong personality,” he said from Vancouver. “She stood out as the sort of person who was athletically and academically gifted. I would say she stood out as being a very vital person, a strong competitor.”

Bailey also won three silver medals in 4×100 relays at the Commonwealth Games in 1978, 1982 and 1986.

She set the Canadian 100m record in July 1987 in Hungary and earlier that year also won bronze in the 60m at the World Indoor Championships.

Bailey also holds Canada’s indoor track record for the 200m at 23.32 seconds.

She also competed in the 4×100 relay and 100m events at the 1988 Games in Seoul.

Bailey was part of the 1980 Canadian team that did not compete in the Moscow Games because of an international boycott.

Bailey earned a law degree from Queen’s University in 1996 and was called to the Bar of Ontario in 2003.

She was inducted into the Mississauga Sports Hall of Fame in 1993 and the Athletics Ontario Hall of Fame in 2014.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 2, 2021.

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Canada's soccer captain consoled her American club teammate after the USWNT lost its shot at Olympic gold – Insider

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  • The US Women’s National Team lost to Canada in their Tokyo Olympics semifinal match.
  • Canada is now guaranteed a gold or silver medal, while the USWNT can secure bronze at best.
  • Canadian star Christine Sinclair consoled her club teammate, USWNT’s Lindsey Horan, after the upset.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Canada’s women’s national soccer team pulled off one of the biggest upsets in its history at the Tokyo Olympics on Monday, besting the US Women’s National Team for the first time in upwards of 20 years.

But at the conclusion of the semifinal match, Canadian team captain Christine Sinclair didn’t immediately begin celebrating with her squad. Instead, Sinclair — the all-time leading goal scorer (man or woman) in the history of international soccer — made her way across the field to USWNT midfielder Lindsey Horan. The two are teammates on the Portland Thorns, and Sinclair wrapped Horan in a tight hug.

Canada's Christine Sinclair hugs Lindsey Horan of the US Women's National Team.

Canada’s Christine Sinclair hugs Lindsey Horan of the US Women’s National Team.

Naomi Baker/Getty Images


Sinclair, who’s 38 and serves as the Thorns captain, appears in photos to give an animated pep talk to a visibly distraught Horan. The 27-year-old is a star in her own right, but she struggled when her national team needed her most.

Though Horan has won a World Cup for the United States, she has now gone to the Olympics and fallen short of the gold twice in a row.

Christine Sinclair comforts Lindsey Horan.

Canada’s Christine Sinclair comforts USWNT star Lindsey Horan.

REUTERS/Edgar Su


The USWNT still has a shot at a bronze medal, though — they’ll take on Australia for a spot on the podium Thursday at 4 a.m. ET. If they win, Horan will be one of many American stars on the team to earn their first Olympics hardware, since the USWNT unexpectedly walked away empty-handed from Rio in 2016.

Sinclair, meanwhile, is guaranteed her best-ever result in Tokyo after participating in four Olympic Games over her career. She’s twice earned bronze medals — in London and Brazil — but now she’ll take home either silver or gold, depending on the result of Thursday’s match against Sweden.

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