👋 Happy Thursday! Lots of photos in this morning's newsletter. And lots of sports on the telly today.
Photo: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
The St. Louis Blues are Stanley Cup champions. Prior to last night, that sentence had never been written, so let's run it back one more time: The Blues are Stanley Cup champs.
What they're saying:
The bottom line: The Blues made the playoffs every season from 1979 to 2004. And from 2011 to 2017, they were perennial contenders. Yet somehow, those dominant teams never advanced to the Final, let alone lifted the Cup.
Forbes just released their world's highest-paid athletes list, which highlights the top 100 earners over the past year (June 2018 to June 2019).
Tonight is the last game the Warriors will ever play at Oracle Arena. A brief history from NYT's Benjamin Hoffman:
"On Oct. 20, 2006, the Golden State Warriors announced that Oracle, a Bay Area software behemoth, had purchased the naming rights to the team's arena."
"Saddled for 30 years with the moniker Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Arena, the concrete-and-glass temple chugged along with a reputation for boisterous fans and a name so cumbersome that no one quite knew what to call it."
"Enter Larry Ellison's company, which gave the Warriors a modest 10-year deal to call the place the Oracle. It was a corporate name. ... But this one, somehow, was cool. It was not Oracle Arena, at least not to anyone who went there. It was the Oracle, or just Oracle."
"Starting with the 2019-20 season, the Warriors will play across the Bay in San Francisco's Chase Center, a gleaming cash register more suited to a once-in-a-lifetime collection of talent. But it's worth remembering ... that for the majority of the Warriors' 47 seasons in Oakland, the building and its fans were far more impressive than the team on the court."
Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios
Go deeper: Complete guide
No. 7 (109 yards, Par 3): "It is the shortest hole that most of the world's best golfers ever play. ... It is also the place that might require a smooth wedge one day and a hard-punched 5-iron the next." Go deeper.
Nos. 8–10 (Par 4s): Surrounded by breathtaking cliffs and ocean views, these back-to-back-to-back par fours are arguably the toughest trio of holes on the PGA Tour.
No. 18 (543 yards, Par 5): Yeah ... not a bad way to end a round.
Photo: Missy Mikulecky/MLB Photos via Getty Images
Seven years ago today, Matt Cain tossed a perfect game against the Houston Astros — the first perfect game in San Francisco Giants history.
The big picture: Cain is one of just seven pitchers to throw a perfect game this century. It's such a rare accomplishment that the last time someone did it, the No. 1 song in the country was "Call Me Maybe."
"The most polarizing figure in the NBA is not any owner, player, exec or even LeBron James — it's Rich Paul, the King's agent and friend ... Paul's next moves could reshape the entire league, but here's the thing: He and LeBron have bigger plans."
🎲 Roll With It: The Dice Baseball League (The Hardball Times)
"Using player attributes from EA Sports' Triple Play 2002 as a reference, we created personalized 'hitting charts' for over 100 players. We took two dice and their 11 possible outcomes (2-12) and created a reliable baseline to determine baseball's vast array of offensive possibilities."
"For the past decade, many of Smith's reports and predictions have failed to come to fruition. But what would basketball look like if sports media's most prominent talking head were always right?"
Steph Curry has scored at least 30 points in 10 NBA Finals games, which is a lot but still 21 fewer than the all-time leader.
Answer at the bottom.
Ice football was created as part of a German game show, but the creator enjoyed the concept so much that he turned it into a full-fledged competition.
See you tomorrow,
Kendall "Congrats to da Lou" Baker
Trivia Answer: Jerry West