The Rock spent Easter chasing his daughter around in a Pikachu costume

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is many things: actor, wrestler, singer, person who can get away with accidentally hitting someone’s car, and just a general badass. But the most important thing is he’s a father who’s willing to get silly for his kid. So here’s The Rock dressed up as Pikachu for Easter.

Here’s the caption he wrote on Instagram:

The first time Jasmine’s favorite character, Pikachu came to visit her months ago she was only crawling. For Easter Sunday @laurenhashianofficial and I thought, Pikachu should make a special visit once again. Well, Pikachu didn’t account for the fact that now Jazzy RUNS and for 2hrs straight she wants to play her new favorite game, “I run away and you chase me Pikachu. And you’re not allowed to take a break until I go night night”. At the end of the vid you can hear her yell, “Peekyu” because she can’t say, Pikachu. I’m tired, today’s my only day off, it’s 118 degrees in this costume and Hobbs keep trying to p*ss on my leg. And I luv every minute of it. Bring it on. It’s what daddy’s do. Happy Easter to you guys and enjoy your families.

Thank you for giving us joy through this video, Dwayne.

Read more

NBA mock draft 2017: The Knicks get lucky and land the No. 1 pick

Markelle Fultz goes to the Knicks in our latest mock draft.

Phil Jackson wants a fresh start for the Knicks. If the ping-pong balls in the NBA draft lottery bounce like they did for this mock draft, he’ll get his wish.

We’re using ESPN’s lottery machine to randomize the draft order for every mock leading up the lottery on May 16. Last week, the Lakers landed the No. 1 spot. This time, the Knicks cash in a 5.4 percent chance at the top pick.

This exercise shows just how much a little lottery luck can change the future of a franchise. The Lakers fell to No. 6 on the lottery machine this time, which means their pick conveyed to the Philadelphia 76ers. In this mock, the Sixers now have two top-six selections, while the Lakers lose this year’s pick plus another first rounder in 2019.

For more on the 2017 NBA Draft, check out our running list of who’s in, who’s out and who’s still on the fence. We miss you, Miles Bridges and Robert Williams. Let’s mock!

1. New York Knicks – Markelle Fultz, PG, Washington

Landing in New York would be a major change of pace for Fultz. He’s been flying under the radar about as much as a future No. 1 overall pick can over the last few years.

Fultz was a late riser as a recruit who couldn’t even make varsity as a sophomore at D.C. powerhouse DeMatha Catholic. Once he ascended to five-star status as a junior, he picked the Washington Huskies over all of the blue bloods. Washington finished 9-22, missed the NCAA tournament and played most of their games while the rest of the country was asleep.

It’s a safe bet that Fultz will be able to make the adjustment. He’s the total package as a point guard and should be a future superstar. Pairing him with Kristaps Porzingis would be trouble for the rest of the league. The Knicks deserve to catch a break once every three decades.

2. Orlando Magic – Lonzo Ball, PG, UCLA

The Magic have been joyless and terrible since trading Dwight Howard in 2012. Can one player really change that? If anyone is up to it, it’s Lonzo Ball.

Throw Evan Fournier and Mario Hezonja on the wings, Aaron Gordon at the four and Bismack Biyombo at the five, and suddenly Orlando looks like a team that could push the tempo and put shooting around the perimeter. That’s how Ball played at UCLA. It worked wonders for the Bruins.

3. Philadelphia 76ers – Josh Jackson, SF, Kansas

The Sixers have needed a two-way wing for years. Jackson is the best one in the draft. He does his best work defensively, but he should also thrive getting out in transition next to Ben Simmons. Basketball-wise, the big question will be his jump shot. It doesn’t look pretty, but Jackson hit a hot streak at the end of the year that boosted his three-point percentage up to a respectable 37.8.

NBA teams will have to investigate a troubling episode where he allegedly attacked a teammate’s ex-girlfriend’s car.

4. Boston Celtics – Jonathan Isaac, SF, Florida State

Falling to No. 4 would be the worst case scenario for Boston. If it happens, swinging for the fences with Isaac would be an interesting move.

The 6’10 wing from Florida State looks like the highest upside player on the board. He projects as a great, versatile defender with a burgeoning offensive skill set. If his jumper is for real, the Celtics will have a perfect power forward for the modern NBA.

5. Phoenix Suns – Jayson Tatum, SF, Duke

The popular sentiment is that Ball is the most polarizing talent in the draft, but Tatum is a close second. He was considered a top-2 recruit from the moment his class started being evaluated, but he showed some holes in his skill set even during a productive freshman year at Duke. Namely: who does he defend and how deep is his shooting range?

Still: there’s never been a better time to be a versatile 6’8 wing in the league. It’s easy to think Tatum has a high floor even if his ceiling isn’t as high as others in this range.

6. Philadelphia 76ers – Malik Monk, SG, Kentucky

The Sixers need shooters around Ben Simmons and Monk is possibly the best shooter in the class. If Philly ends up with two picks in this range, he’s an easy selection alongside a player with a more complete skill set like Jackson.

7. Minnesota Timberwolves – Lauri Markkanen, PF, Arizona

The Wolves would be in a tough spot if the board broke this way. They don’t need a point guard with Kris Dunn and Ricky Rubio on the roster, so De’Aaron Fox and Dennis Smith Jr. don’t fit. Miles Bridges might have worked here as an explosive wing, but he opted to go back to school. Same goes for Texas A&M power forward Robert Williams.

Markkanen comes with major question marks about his defense, but he’s an incredible shooter at 7-feet tall. He and Karl-Anthony Towns would form a unique front line in Minnesota.

8. Sacramento Kings – De’Aaron Fox, PG, Kentucky

Fox turned in the signature performance of the season when he dropped 39 points on Lonzo Ball in Kentucky’s Sweet 16 victory over UCLA. His game is defined by speed: from the moment he enters the NBA, Fox will be one of the fastest players in the league. He’s aggressive on both ends of the floor and a thrill to watch when he’s cooking. The only question is his jump shot.

9. Dallas Mavericks – Dennis Smith, PG, NC State

Smith is talented enough to go in the top five. If he falls to No. 9, the Mavs will have a steal.

The NC State freshman is an ultra athletic lead guard who has drawn comparisons to Eric Bledsoe. Please watch him drop 32 points in a win over Duke in January.

10. Sacramento Kings – OG Anunoby, SF, Indiana

The Kings have already invested a lot of first round picks in the front court with Willie Cauley-Stein, Skal Labissiere and Georgios Papagiannis. Buddy Hield — big like Klay and shoots like Steph! — will be entrenched at off-guard. After taking a point guard in Fox with their first pick, the Kings need a wing.

Picking Anunoby requires a leap of faith. He tore his ACL in January, and didn’t have the breakout offensive season many expected before that. Still, he projects as the best and most versatile defender in this class if he’s healthy. His defensive upside and athleticism is worth the risk.

11. Charlotte Hornets – Frank Ntilikina, PG, France

We had Miles Bridges pegged at this pick last week. So much for that. Ntilikina — still only 18 years old — works for Charlotte too because he has the length to defend either backcourt spot and shoot from three.

12. Detroit Pistons – Zach Collins, C, Gonzaga

Two years ago, Collins was the third string center at Las Vegas’ Bishop Gorman High School behind Chase Jeter and Stephen Zimmerman. Now he’s a certified lottery pick after breaking out in the Final Four for Gonzaga. Stan Van Gundy loves a versatile big man and Collins fits that profile.

13. Denver Nuggets – Justin Jackson, SF, North Carolina

It seems like there’s a fringe first rounder who decides to go back to school and turns himself into a lottery pick every year. Last season, it was Buddy Hield. This year, it’s Justin Jackson. Both players led their teams to the Final Four, but Jackson’s North Carolina Tar Heels finished the job by winning the national title.

Jackson was always a three-point shot away from turning into a first rounder. He found it as a junior and it changed everything for his NBA hopes.

14. Miami Heat – Jarrett Allen, C, Texas

Allen has quick feet and long arms. He might not be an instant impact rookie, but the Heat are in a position to draft a player with the best long-term potential. Allen fits the billing.

15. Chicago Bulls – Donovan Mitchell, SG, Louisville

Mitchell has the most interesting stay-or-go decision in the draft. If he goes back to Louisville for his junior season, the Cards will be a top-five team in the preseason polls and a trendy pick to make the Final Four. This spot would be on the optimistic side of his draft projection, but the Bulls could use an athlete and defender of his caliber.

16. Portland Trail Blazers – Isaiah Hartenstein, PF, Germany

The Blazers got a chance to see what Hartenstein looked like on the Moda Center floor at the Nike Hoop Summit, where he scored 10 points for the World team. He’s a big body and fluid athlete with a nice face-up game.

17. Indiana Pacers – T.J. Leaf, PF, UCLA

The Pacers have been looking for a shooter at the four for two years now. Pairing Leaf with a young center in Myles Turner would give the Pacers great front court spacing for years to come.

18. Milwaukee Bucks – D.J. Wilson, PF/C, Michigan

Wilson is projected at No. 34 on DraftExpress right now, but I’m sticking with my wildest first round prediction. Here’s what I wrote last week:

No one has Wilson rated this highly, but that didn’t stop the Bucks from drafting Giannis Antetokounmpo and Thon Maker. At 6’10, 240 pounds, Wilson hit 41 threes (at 37.5 percent) and blocked 51 shots for Michigan as a junior. If Milwaukee is looking for an insurance policy for Jabari Parker, Wilson might be worth a shot.

19. Portland Trail Blazers – Terrance Ferguson, SG, Adelaide (NBL)

Ferguson hit six threes at the Moda Center last year in the Nike Hoop Summit. Portland could use a bigger wing and more shooting. Ferguson would be a steal if he falls this far.

20. Atlanta Hawks – Justin Patton, C, Creighton

The Hawks are in prime position to groom a young center behind Dwight Howard. Patton projects as a two-way big man with good speed and a soft touch around the rim. He exploded on the college scene this season after being hit with a redshirt last year as a true freshman at Creighton.

21. Oklahoma City Thunder – Luke Kennard, SG, Duke

Kennard is a ruthless scorer who ascended from a role player to No. 1 option as a sophomore at Duke this year. He’d add some much added shooting to OKC’s perimeter.

22. Brooklyn Nets – Harry Giles, PF, Duke

Giles is the hardest player to project in this class. The former No. 1 overall recruit has an unfortunate history of knee injuries and it slowed him down this year at Duke. Drafting him is essentially a medical decision at this point.

23. Utah Jazz – Rodions Kurucs, SG, Barcelona II

Kurucs is a draft-and-stash option at a premium position who combines size (6’8) and shooting. He could go higher than this.

24. Toronto Raptors – Ivan Rabb, PF, Cal

Rabb hurt his draft stock by deciding to go back to Cal for his sophomore season. He still projects as a quality role player in the front court with a soft touch around the basket.

25. Orlando Magic – Tyler Lydon, PF, Syracuse

The Magic have needed shooting in the front court for years. Lydon didn’t get a ton of attention as a sophomore for a Syracuse team that missed the NCAA tournament, but he has first round talent.

26. Portland Trail Blazers – Devin Robinson, SF, Florida

Robinson is an elite athlete with a high defensive ceiling. His NBA success will likely come down to his jump shot. He made major strides as a junior at Florida this past season, hitting 39.1 percent of his shots from deep.

27. Nets – Jawun Evans, PG, Oklahoma State

Evans led the country’s most efficient offense as a sophomore at Oklahoma State. He’s short (6-foot) but can shoot, pass and dribble while providing pesky perimeter defense.

28. Lakers – John Collins, PF, Wake Forest

Collins put up 19.2 points and 9.8 rebounds this season on 62.2 percent shooting from the floor as a sophomore at Wake Forest. The man can score the ball. His defense is a question mark. He could go 10 spots higher than this.

29. Spurs – Jonathan Jeanne, C, France

Jeanne is a long big man who projects as a rim protector. When in doubt, give the Spurs an international player.

30. Jazz – Wesley Iwundu, SF, Kansas State

A big wing defender with a good feel for the game, Iwundu’s NBA chances depend on his jump shot.

Read more

Another Kyle Lowry playoff failure would put the Raptors’ future in doubt

If Toronto falls flat in the first round, Toronto might have second thoughts about continuing with the status quo at the price it’ll cost.

Kyle Lowry isn’t known for his hot starts in NBA playoff runs. He was famously abysmal during the Raptors’ cardiac series against the Pacers in the first round a year ago (31 percent shooting, 14 points per game) before showing out against the Heat and Cavaliers. He stayed true to form on Saturday, shooting 2-11 as Toronto lost by 14 to the Milwaukee Bucks.

That was just one game, not seven. And Toronto did win its first two series last season despite losing Game 1 at home. But unless Lowry gets back on track quickly, this could be a different story.

The Raptors weren’t facing a player of Giannis Antetokounmpo’s caliber last season. Toronto wasn’t facing such a strange, idiosyncratic defense. The Raptors can absolutely lose this series if Lowry doesn’t get Toronto’s usually excellent offense on track immediately.

Lowry has a valid excuse for his poor play: he just returned to action after February surgery on his wrist. He’s allowed to be rusty. He’s allowed to adjust his game as necessary. But Antetokounmpo, the Bucks, nor fate will go easy on him because he’s recovering from injury. That’s not how basketball works.

The basketball world is watching how the Bucks and fate treat Lowry in this series mighty closely.

Lowry is a free agent this offseason. (He has a player option for $12 million for the 2017-18 season, but that’s $12-20 million under his market value. He’ll be a free agent.)

The Raptors will want to re-sign him without question. Lowry has been integral to the franchise’s best era in 15 years (maybe ever), and the point guard market is quite limited beyond Chris Paul. Cory Joseph is a good NBA back-up point guard, but he doesn’t inspire confidence as a starter for a team seeking title contention.

Plus, Lowry is very close to DeMar DeRozan, who the Raptors signed to a $139 million contract last summer.

The question is whether Lowry’s salary demands will meet the Raptors’ comfort level.

That was also a question a year ago as DeRozan became a free agent. Toronto offered a historically large contract (one subsequently superseded by the Grizzlies’ contract with Mike Conley). There’s a difference here, though: DeRozan was 26 years old and on the rise as a top-flight scorer. Lowry is 31 with a speckled injury history.

Again, without question, the Raptors will want to re-sign Lowry. But will the Raptors be willing to spend what Lowry wants? DeRozan signed for just less than the max, but he still had something to prove and can expect another massive contract when this one ends, if all goes according to plan.

This will be Lowry’s last huge contract in all likelihood, and Lowry hasn’t actually had a deal befitting of his contributions to date in the NBA. Lowry signed a 4-year, $48 million deal with Toronto in 2014, when he was at roughly the same stage of his career that DeRozan had been a year ago when he signed the $139 million deal. In discrete terms, $48 million — which is actually $36 million since Lowry will decline his player option — is generational wealth. But it’s not $139 million. That’s the kind of dough Lowry is looking for now.

Will Toronto pay it? What if the Raptors bow out to Giannis and the Bucks as Lowry continues to struggle? Will Toronto and Lowry come close on contract terms?

While the huge DeRozan contract indicates the Raptors are willing to invest heavily in this core, DeRozan and Lowry are at different stages of their careers. On top of that, an early exit from the playoffs would represent a serious regression. Toronto won 56 games and made the conference finals a year ago. The Raptors claimed 51 games this season, and not making it back to East finals would be a real disappointment. It’s quite different to invest in a rising status quo rather than in one that is declining.

Raptors president Masai Ujiri is too smart to base such a major decision on one game or one series. But the Raptors’ Game 1 woes are microcosms of the team’s repeated failure to grasp its potential at every opportunity. If Ujiri decides that has become part of the roster’s DNA, it’ll be difficult to invest more than $100 million in Lowry this summer.

Just about every game in the playoffs has a lot riding on the results of its first-round series. That’s especially true for the Raptors as well. Failure here could remake the identity of the team and put an All-Star point guard in play in free agency.

Everyone’s paying attention to Toronto now.

Read more

NHL playoff scores 2017: Henrik Lundqvist can’t save the Rangers from themselves

New York needs to help their goalie.

Henrik Lundqvist is getting no help.

The Rangers’ inability to score on home-ice in the playoffs goes back a long way. The last Ranger to score at even-strength on home ice in the playoffs was Dominic Moore in 2015 before Brady Skjei ended that lonely streak with New York’s only goal on Sunday.

The Montreal Canadiens out-chanced and out-shot the Rangers all night, leading to a result that even Lundqvist’s heroics couldn’t prevent: a 2-1 series deficit with some hope fading. How cruel would it be for the Rangers to watch their playoff window close with Lundqvist truly carrying the team on his back?

Scores

Blues 3, Wild 1
Penguins 5, Blue Jackets 4 (OT)
Canadiens 3, Rangers 1
Oilers 1, Sharks 0

Three Angry Fight Things We Learned

1.. Cam Talbot is stymying the Sharks

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Edmonton Oilers at San Jose SharksJohn Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

Raise your hand if you looked at the Sharks and Blackhawks a week ago and said, “Yeah, I bet those two will be the first Western teams to get shutout in consecutive playoff games.” Pekka Rinne doing that against the ‘Hawks is plausible; the man has a reputation, after all.

But Talbot has continued to justify the Oilers’ acquisition of him, following up a terrific season with an equally-impressive first round. After a 23-save shutout in San Jose, the Oilers are up 2-1.

2. The Wild are in trouble

Minnesota Wild v St Louis Blues - Game ThreePhoto by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

Maybe that month of poor play was too much to hope for a turnaround. Minnesota dropped Game 3 in St. Louis, falling behind 3-0 in the series. The Blues look more than a match for the Wild, making a four-game comeback seem pretty unlikely.

3. Jake Guenztal had himself a night

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Pittsburgh Penguins at Columbus Blue JacketsRussell LaBounty-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh wouldn’t have reached the Stanley Cup Final, let alone won it, without young players coming out of nowhere to score timely goals. Conor Sheary and Bryan Rust come to mind.

So. Hello, Jake Guentzel. The kid scored twice in regulation, including the go-ahead goal in the third, before completing the hat trick with the overtime game-winner.

Impact Moment

Uh, how about the impact of the puck hitting Zach Werenski’s face?

nope nope nope

Conn Smythe Watch

  • Welcome to the conversation, Cam Talbot.
  • Jake Guentzel joins because he now leads the playoffs with four goals.
  • Evgeni Malkin has to be the leader, though. Or Alexander Radulov.
Read more

NBA playoff schedule 2017: Game times, TV coverage, and live stream info for Monday

A two-game slate of No. 2 vs. No. 7 matchups headline NBA Monday.

With each opening game of the playoffs in tow, the stage has been set for the first round. Now, fans are treated to a delightful duo of No. 2 vs. No. 7 matchups on Monday that will influence the way both series pan out.

Coming up first is an Eastern Conference showdown between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Indiana Pacers.

The Cavs survived Game 1, 109-108, after Paul George gave up the ball on the final possession, never to get it back. He let it be known he wants to take the shot with the game on the line from here on out, and Indiana will look to swing the series back into its favor in Game 2.

Out West, the Memphis Grizzlies will attempt to shake off a 29-point bludgeoning at the hands of the San Antonio Spurs. The Grizzlies enjoyed one of the best games of Marc Gasol’s career, but the Spanish big man had no help in the second half. Equally, Memphis had no answer for Kawhi Leonard, who tied his postseason high with 32 points.

It won’t be easy for either seven seed to pull off the upset, but if they don’t, they run the risk of getting swept before they know it.

Here’s how you can watch each of Monday’s games on TV or online.

No. 2 Cleveland Cavaliers vs. No. 7 Indiana Pacers | Game 2

Time: 7 p.m. ET

Where: Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland

Channel: TNT, Fox Sport Ohio

Live stream: TNT Drama

No. 2 San Antonio Spurs vs. No. 7 Memphis Grizzlies | Game 2

Time: 9:30 p.m. ET

Where: AT&T Center, San Antonio

Channel: TNT, Fox Sports Southwest

Live stream: TNT Drama

Read more

2017 NFL mock draft: Sidney Jones to Indianapolis Colts

The slide of the talented but injured Washington cornerback is over.

The NFL draft is all about risk and reward, and sometimes the greater the risk the better the reward. In the SB Nation NFL writers mock draft, Stephen Reed of Stampede Blue is back up for the Indianapolis Colts and hopes the risk will pay off.

46. Indianapolis Colts: Sidney Jones, CB, Washington

Reed: Realistically, this pick came down to how much and what kind of risk the Colts are willing to take with a second-round pick. They could go for an off-field risk and take OLB Tim Williams or RB Joe Mixon, both great values at this point in the draft at positions of need, or an injury risk in CB Sidney Jones. As Stampede Blue writer Matt Danely pointed out in his article, Four Draft Prospects Who Won’t be on the Colts Board, it’s unlikely either Williams or Mixon are selected by the Colts. I doubt Chris Ballard risks taking Williams after multiple failed drug tests at Alabama. I doubt Ballard risks the PR backlash of taking Mixon.

The Sidney Jones situation is different. As we all know, Jones tore his Achilles and requires at least another four to five months of rehab. However, he didn’t have any injury concerns during his lengthy career at Washington. Additionally, an Achilles injury is not the career ender it once was. Players like Terrell Suggs and Steve Smith both came back from it and produced at a high level. In general, major injuries haven’t deterred teams from taking high-quality players early.

As for Jones’ ability, the tape speaks for itself. He consistently displayed the capability to be a lockdown, press-man corner. The perfect fit for Chuck Pagano’s defense. Jones has natural coverage skills with great anticipation and field awareness. In the pass-happy Pac-12, teams simply avoided his side of the field. Prior to his injury, Jones was considered one of the top corners in this draft and likely a top-20 pick. If he returns even close to form, this is an absolute steal for Ballard and the Colts at another position of significant need. Given how players recover from this type of injury, I’ll take my risk with the hard-working Jones over the off-field concerns of the other two.

Quick question for Dan, do you guys give out a “Mock Draft GM of the Year” award for this? If so, Stampede Blue might be the runaway winner. I kid, of course … well, kind of. Ha! Thanks again and I hope everyone enjoys the rest of this mock and the actual draft.

Analysis: We’ve never given out a top mock GM award, but if I did it might be Brandon Lee Gowton of Bleeding Green Nation, who got Reuben Foster and Marlon Humphrey for the Eagles. Reed would come in second for his picks of Jones and Alabama defensive lineman Jonathan Allen. The values are obviously good, but there are risks with both.

Taking Jones and Allen makes this a swing-for-the-fences draft for the Colts. These two picks truly represent boom or bust. If they boom, Allen is a top-five overall player and Jones plays as good or better than any cornerback in the draft this year. If it’s a bust, Allen’s shoulder issues are real and Jones is slow to recover from an Achilles tear. It’s quite a gamble to take two players with injury questions in the top two rounds.

If Jones can come back healthy, he’s exactly the type of cornerback the Colts need. He’s comfortable playing man and dropping into zone coverage, and he has good hands for the position.

Dan’s top five players remaining

  • 26. Tim Williams, LB, Alabama
  • 37. Carl Lawson, DE, Auburn
  • 39. Teez Tabor, CB, Florida
  • 41. Alvin Kamara, RB, Tennessee
  • 43. Dan Feeney, G, Indiana

Colts picks

  • 1-15: Jonathan Allen, DL, Alabama
  • 2-46: Sidney Jones, CB, Washington

Coming up at noon ET Kyle Barber of Baltimore Beatdown is back to make the second-round pick for the Ravens.

Read more