Nadal\’s Narrow Escape

July 7, 2022

By: Carlos Alvarez

Good Morning,

We’re down to the final eight at Wimbledon, and a busy Wednesday brought highlights and a quarterback trade we’ve been waiting for. Plus, the NHL Draft takes the stage tonight, and the Tour de France is picking up steam. The sports fireworks aren’t done yet…

Letter Rip!



Nadal\’s Narrow Escape


#2 Rafael Nadal, #16 Simona Halep , #17 Elena Rybakina & Nick Kyrgios Into Semis at Wimbledon


And then there were four! Both the men’s and women’s draw at the All England Club are down to the final four contenders, and they’re a mix of familiar stars and a few surprises. #2 Rafael Nadal overcame an early deficit to outlast #11 Taylor Fritz in a five-set epic to reach the semifinals. Nick Kyrgios also kept his surprise run rolling as he punched his way through in straight sets. On the women’s side, it was #16 Simona Halep and #17 Elena Rybakina moving on with the winner likely to face #3 Ons Jabeur for the title.


Wimbledon Highlights (Quarterfinals)

W: #16 S. Halep def. #20 A. Anisimova (6-2, 6-4)

W: #17 E. Rybakina def. A. Tomljanovic (4-6, 6-2, 6-3)

M: #2 R. Nadal def. #11 T. Fritz (3-6, 7-5, 3-6, 7-5, 7-6)

M: N. Kyrgios def. C. Garin (6-4, 6-3, 7-6)


Women’s Semifinals Schedule (Today)

#3 O. Jabeur vs. T. Maria (8:30 am ET)

#16 S. Halep vs. #17 E. Rybakina (9:45 am ET)


Men’s Semifinals Schedule (Tomorrow)

#2 R. Nadal vs. N. Kyrgios (8:30 am ET)

#1 N. Djokovic vs. #9 C. Norrie (8:30 am ET)


Additional Storylines

FOX: Rafael Nadal Ekes Out Win Over Taylor Fritz in Epic Match

CNN: Simona Halep Yet to Drop a Set at Wimbledon After Defeating Amanda Anisimova



Mayfield On The Move


Carolina Panthers Acquire QB Baker Mayfield in Trade With Cleveland Browns


Two of the top three picks from the 2018 draft are now in the same quarterback room. Baker Mayfield — the No. 1 overall pick by the Browns just four years ago — is heading to Carolina for a fifth-round pick in 2024. He’s expected to be the starter, but he’ll likely have to compete with QB Sam Darnold — the No. 3 pick by the Jets in the same draft class.


What It Means for Both Teams

The Browns watched Mayfield deliver some of their best years in recent history. Although he failed to win a Super Bowl in Cleveland, he went 29-30 in four +3,000-yard seasons and took the Browns to the AFC Championship in 2020-21. With Deshaun Watson now in Cleveland, the Browns had no use for the 2017 Heisman Trophy winner. Carolina now has two mid-tier quarterbacks to compete with each other with rookie QB Matt Corral and XFL star P.J. Walker also on the depth chart.


Baker Mayfield Career Stats

Record: 29-30

Yards: 14,125

Touchdowns: 92

Interceptions: 56

Completion: 61.6%


Additional Storylines

CBS Sports: Winners & Losers in Baker Mayfield Trade

SI: Examining the Fallout of the Baker Mayfield Trade



All Rise: No. 30 Was Grand


Aaron Judge Smacks Grand Slam for 30th HR as Yankees Destroy Pirates (16-0)


After a grand slam in a Yankee blowout, Aaron Judge stands tall atop the MLB home run race with 30 dingers before the all-star break. The Yanks blasted the Pirates (16-0) on Wednesday night behind a big night from Judge (3-for-4, HR, 4 RBIs) and a shutout from Luis Severino (6IP, 4H, 3Ks, 0R). Isiah Kiner-Falefa (4-for-6, 3 Runs) and D.J. LeMahieu (3-for-6) also had big nights as New York tallied 22 hits. The Yankees (59-23) are one win from 60, and Judge (30 HRs) is halfway to a 60-HR season with 10 games left before the all-star break. The year of the Yankees continues.


Watch: Judge Blasts Grand Slam for 30th HR


MLB Quick-Hitters


White Sox Walk-Off: Leury Garcia was the hero on Wednesday night for the White Sox, hitting a walk-off single in the 10th to lift Chicago over the Twins (9-8).


Ohtani Magic Again: Shohei Ohtani fanned 10 batters before delivering a key two-run single late to lift the Angels over the Marlins (5-2).


Mets Explode Late: The Mets trailed the Reds in the 9th inning (3-2) before finding the game-tying run to force extras. That’s when they tallied a five-run 10th to run away from Cincinnati (8-3, 10 innings).



NHL Draft Primer


2022 NHL Draft: Tonight (7:00 pm ET)


Hockey fans get an offseason delight as tonight’s NHL Draft takes center stage in Montreal. Round 1 hits tonight before Rounds 2-7 tomorrow. The hometown Canadiens get the No. 1 overall pick, and many expect the Habs to select Canadian Shane Wright — a potential cornerstone piece for the franchise. From there, it’s anyone’s guess. Here’s a look at the top-10 picks and the top-10 prospects for tonight’s draft.


NHL Draft Order

1. Montreal Canadiens

2. New Jersey Devils

3. Arizona Coyotes

4. Seattle Kraken

5. Philadelphia Flyers

6. Columbus Blue Jackets

7. Ottawa Senators

8. Detroit Red Wings

9. Buffalo Sabres

10. Anaheim Ducks

Full 1st Round Order


Top Prospects

1. C Shane Wright (Canada)

2. C Logan Cooley (USA)

3. RW Juraj Slafkovsky (Slovakia)

4. D Simon Nemec (Slovakia)

5. D David Jiricek (Czech Republic)

6. C Matthew Savoie (Canada)

7. LW Cutter Gauthier (USA)

8. C Marco Kasper (Austria)

9. RW Joakim Kemell (Finland)

10. RW Jonathan Lekkerimaki (Sweden)


Additional Storylines

NHL: Top Prospects Dream of Being Picked No. 1 by Canadiens

ESPN+: NHL Mock Draft 2022: Projections for All 32 First-Round Picks



\"🏀\" WNBA: Ionescu’s 30-Point Triple Double

Sabrina Ionescu made WNBA history on Wednesday with the league’s first-ever 30-point triple double (31-13-10) to help the Liberty take down the Aces (116-107).


\"🚴\" CYCLING: Van Aert Leads Tour de France

The Tour de France got underway over the weekend. Simon Clarke captured Stage 5, but Germany’s Wout Van Aert holds the yellow jersey through Wednesday.



\"🏈\" Best Remaining NFL Free Agents

Despite being in the doldrums of the NFL offseason, with the initial waves of free agency already washed to shore, there\’s still plenty of big-name talent lurking on the open market. Here’s where Odell Beckham Jr., Julio Jones and other top targets should land. (CBS Sports)


\"🏀\" NBA Offseason Observations

There’s one potential KD suitor people are sleeping on. Plus, why the Wolves going all in for Rudy Gobert makes sense, my thoughts on the Celtics’ moves, and an early review of summer league’s biggest attraction: Chet Holmgren. (The Ringer)


\"⚽️\" Euro 2022: Women’s Soccer Tournament

The 2022 Women’s European Championship is underway. To get you prepared for the tournament this month, here is a selection of some of the best players and teams. We make some bold predictions about what might unfold throughout July. (ESPN)