Bulls trade Butler to Minnesota for VaVine and Dunn.

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The Bulls have traded Jimmy Butler to the Minnesota Timberwolves in a draft-night trade. Butler was the subject of trade rumors since the season ended and will be reunited with former Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau in Minnesota. The Bulls received the rights to No. 7 pick, forward Lauri Markkanen, and along with guards Zach LaVine and Kris Dunn. The Wolves received the rights to No. 16 pick, center Justin Patton, along with Butler.
Butler had said he didn’t want to be traded, but the Bulls have been wanting to move him for quite some time. Due to this trade, Butler will no longer qualify for the super max contract, but he does get to play on one of the brightest young teams in the NBA. He’ll immediately be the best player in Minnesota while having a chance to grow with their young core.
Going to the Bulls will be rising shooting guard LaVine. LaVine was playing incredible basketball last season before going down with a knee injury. He’s a dead-eye 3-point shooter and can jump out of the gym. If he’s healthy, the Bulls have acquired one of the stronger guards in the NBA.
Minnesota made out great in this trade. To get Butler and still manage to stay in the draft via the No. 16 pick — which turned out to be Justin Patton — is incredible use of their assets. They had to let go of LaVine, but they’ve become a much better team by adding Butler. Minnesota is going to win more games next year and Butler will be why.

ALL-NBA TEAMS–Butler on 3rd Team.

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2016-17 All-NBA First Team

Position Player Team 1st Team 2nd Team 3rd Team Total
Guard James Harden Rockets 100 500
Forward LeBron James Cavaliers 99 1 498
Guard Russell Westbrook Thunder 99 1 498
Forward Kawhi Leonard Spurs 96 3 1 490
Center Anthony Davis Pelicans 45 34 16 343

2016-17 All-NBA Second Team

Position Player Team 1st Team 2nd Team 3rd Team Total
Center Rudy Gobert Jazz 43 38 10 339
Guard Stephen Curry Warriors 1 93 6 290
Forward Giannis Antetokounmpo Bucks 81 15 258
Forward Kevin Durant Warriors 3 66 26 239
Guard Isaiah Thomas Celtics 71 23 236

2016 All-NBA Third Team

Position Player Team 1st Team 2nd Team 3rd Team Total
Forward Draymond Green Warriors 4 21 51 134
Guard John Wall Wizards 19 68 125
Forward Jimmy Butler Bulls 19 45 102
Guard DeMar DeRozan Raptors 4 50 62
Center DeAndre Jordan Clippers 3 7 18 54

Bulls out of misery,, blown out by Celtics

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The Bulls are out of their misery! The Boston Celtics kept reminding each other not to let up as they closed in on a lopsided victory and a trip to the Eastern Conference semifinals.No need to worry about that.Avery Bradley scored 23 points, and the hot-shooting Celtics pounded the Bulls 105-83 to win their first-round series 4-2 on Friday night.The top-seeded Celtics simply torched the Bulls to finish off a tougher-than-anticipated series and advance in the playoffs for the first time since 2012. Boston regrouped after dropping the first two games at home and will meet Washington in the Eastern semifinals. Game 1 is Sunday.

”Once we started to get the game at hand and in control, we all just kept repeating to stay focused, to keep it going, to keep pushing,” Al Horford said. ”We didn’t want to give them any life. We were as focused and we were enjoying the moment.”

Bradley finished one point shy of a playoff career high he set in Game 5. He nailed three 3-pointers and the Celtics hit 16 of 39 from long range.Gerald Green scored 16 in his fourth straight start and Isaiah Thomas had 12 before heading home to Washington state for his sister Chyna’s funeral on Saturday. Her death in a car accident the day before the playoff opener dealt a blow to the Celtics. But Boston rallied around its star player and regrouped when it looked like the series might slip from reach.

”Bigger things than basketball happen and that takes precedent,” coach Brad Stevens said. ”I was really proud of our guys, how they treated each other and how they stuck together. Nobody pointed fingers and we’re a great support network for one another, especially Isaiah. I think they appreciated being counted out.”

Jimmy Butler led the Bulls with 23 points. But the Bulls never really found their rhythm over the final four games with point guard Rajon Rondo sidelined by a broken right thumb.Dwyane Wade shot just 1 of 10 in a two-point effort that could be his final appearance for the Bulls. He has a $23.8 million option on the two-year deal he signed last summer to leave Miami and come home to Chicago.

”The big thing about it is we got off to poor starts in pretty much every game after the first two,” coach Fred Hoiberg said. ”But we found a way to bounce back and make it close.”

Not this time.The Celtics set the tone by hitting 3s on their first three possessions on the way to a 13-point halftime lead. They buried the Bulls in the third, outscoring them 34-18. Things got so lopsided that Thomas gathered his teammates near the baseline late in the quarter and screamed: ”That’s a wrap for these (expletives)!”

”We came out and moved the ball around, we got open looks and they were going down for us,” Bradley said. ”It felt good to be playing Celtic basketball again. We were all smiling and having fun and that’s how it’s supposed to be.”

The Celtics are 5-0 in playoff series against the Bulls. … Boston made 76 3-pointers in the series while Chicago hit 42.

NOTES—The Bulls had 15 turnovers and 13 assists. … Hoiberg said there is no structural damage in Butler’s right knee. He also had this response when asked what soreness means: ”Uh, that it hurts.” … New Bears QB Mitchell Trubisky, the No. 2 pick in the draft, got a rude welcome from the Chicago crowd. He was booed when he was shown on the videoboard in the third quarter.Butler, whose name has come up in trade rumors, on his future with the Bulls: ”I don’t know. Go home and grab some dinner and talk about it with it my guys. Talk to them tomorrow and into two weeks.”

Bradley thought about attending Chyna Thomas’ funeral. That won’t happen with a game on Sunday, but his family will be there.Bradley grew up near Thomas and they’ve known each other since they were youngsters.

NFL DRAFT FIRST ROUND–Bears TRADE UP.

   
 
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1
 

1

Myles Garrett | DE, Texas A&MHeight: 6-4   Weight: 272It was the right pick to take Garrett, but there are concerns. They better hope he´s not Courtney Brown 2.0.

B+
1
 

2

Mitchell Trubisky | QB, North CarolinaHeight: 6-3   Weight: 220Why give up so much to get this guy? It makes no sense. Is he Tom Brady all of the sudden? Bad move.

D
1
 

3

Solomon Thomas | DE, StanfordHeight: 6-3   Weight: 273John Lynch is off to a great start in his first draft. Fleeced the Bears and got his guy. Love this move.

A+
1
 

4

Leonard Fournette | RB, LSUHeight: 6-0   Weight: 240Why? I like the player, hate the position. You don´t take running backs this high.

D
1
 

5

Corey Davis | WR, Western MichiganHeight: 6-3   Weight: 209He´s the best receiver in this draft. I like this pick. Solid. But what about defensive backs?

B+
1
 

6

Jamal Adams | SS, LSUHeight: 6-0   Weight: 214They had to be thrilled this kid fell to them. Great kid at a need spot.

B
1
 

7

Mike Williams | WR, ClemsonHeight: 6-4   Weight: 218I know they need receivers, but I don´t think this kid separates well enough.

C-
1
 

8

Christian McCaffrey | RB, StanfordHeight: 5-11   Weight: 202I like his skill set with the way the game is played, but again, it´s a back in the top 10. Hate that.

D
1
 

9

John Ross | WR, WashingtonHeight: 5-11   Weight: 190I like this pick more than Williams. Why? He can fly. They need help for A.J. Green.

B
1
 

10

Patrick Mahomes II | QB, Texas TechHeight: 6-3   Weight: 230I like the player, who I think is the best QB in this draft, but they gave up a bunch. He better be.

B+
1
 

11

Marshon Lattimore | CB, Ohio StateHeight: 6-0   Weight: 193They stood pat and ended up with the best corner in the draft, who goes to a team that needs one in the worst way.

A
1
 

12

Deshaun Watson | QB, ClemsonHeight: 6-3   Weight: 221That´s a lot to give up to go get him, but they had to do something.

C-
1
 

13

Haason Reddick | OLB, TempleHeight: 6-2   Weight: 251I love this kid. He can play inside, outside, blitz and he´s a tough kid. Love this pick.

A
1
 

14

Derek Barnett | DE, TennesseeHeight: 6-3   Weight: 259Love this pick. They might be getting the best pass rusher in this draft.

A
1
 

15

Malik Hooker | FS, Ohio StateHeight: 6-2   Weight: 205Chuck Pagano just might have gotten his next Ed Reed. The kid has great range in the middle of the field.

A
1
 

16

Marlon Humphrey | CB, AlabamaHeight: 6-0   Weight: 197They need a corner, so I get it. The Alabama connection with Ozzie Newsome helps this pick.

B
1
 

17

Jonathan Allen | DT, AlabamaHeight: 6-3   Weight: 294He´s a top-five talent who fell. This is a heck of a pick.

A
1
 

18

Adoree’ Jackson | CB, Southern CaliforniaHeight: 5-10   Weight: 186They needed a corner, and this is a game-changing player at the position. I also like this kid´s ability as a return man.

B+
1
 

19

O.J. Howard | TE, AlabamaHeight: 6-6   Weight: 251They could have used defensive help, but they took a player who might be the cleanest in this draft.

B+
1
 

20

Garett Bolles | OT, UtahHeight: 6-5   Weight: 297He´s an older player at 25, but he´s a Day 1 starter for them at left tackle — filling a major need.

B
1
 

21

Jarrad Davis | ILB, FloridaHeight: 6-1   Weight: 238This fills a need, and he will add speed to a unit that needs it.

B-
1
 

22

Charles Harris | DE, MissouriHeight: 6-3   Weight: 235This is another pass rusher the scouts liked more than the draftniks. They had to get pass-rush help.

B+
1
 

23

Evan Engram | TE, Ole MissHeight: 6-3   Weight: 234They need a tight end, but I would have gone for an offensive lineman here. He is a good pass catcher.

B
1
 

24

Gareon Conley | CB, Ohio StateHeight: 6-0   Weight: 195There is risk, but it could pay off in a big way. He is a nice cover player, which is what they need.

B-
1
 

25

Jabrill Peppers | SS, MichiganHeight: 5-11   Weight: 213I don´t like this pick at all. Where does he play?

F
1
 

26

Takkarist McKinley | OLB, UCLAHeight: 6-2   Weight: 250Love this pick. This kid has big-time edge-rush ability. He does have medical issues, but should be OK.

A
1
 

27

Tre’Davious White | CB, LSUHeight: 5-11   Weight: 192They had to get a corner and they got one of the best ones in the draft. I like getting him after the trade down.

B+
1
 

28

Taco Charlton | DE, MichiganHeight: 6-6   Weight: 277They need help up front, but this kid flashed at times and did little else.

B-
1
 

29

David Njoku | TE, Miami (Fla.)Height: 6-4   Weight: 246He has pass-catching ability, but he´s raw. Who gets him the ball?

B-
1
 

30

T.J. Watt | OLB, WisconsinHeight: 6-5   Weight: 243I like the pick. He fills a pass-rush need and he is a rising player. Still learning to play the game.

B+
1
 

31

Reuben Foster | ILB, AlabamaHeight: 6-0   Weight: 229He has a Ray Lewis-type of game. Love this pick. Top-10 talent.

A
1
 

32

Ryan Ramczyk | OT, WisconsinHeight: 6-6   Weight: 310I don´t get this pick. Where does he play? Is this the end for Zach Strief?

C+
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Bears swap #3 and three other picks with SF for #2 and take QB Mitch Trubisky

The Mike Glennon era was fun while it lasted.The Bears provided the first stunning moment of the 2017 NFL Draft, aggressively trading up one spot with San Francisco to draft North Carolina quarterback Mitchell Trubisky with the No. 2 overall pick. General manager Ryan Pace, on the hot seat after a 3-13 season, just put all his cards on the table.The 49ers picked up the No. 67 overall pick, the No. 111 pick and a 2018 third-round pick in exchange for moving down just one spot. Glennon, signed to a big free agent contract in March, now looks like a short-term bridge starter before he eventually gives way to Trubisky. Pace confirmed that Glennon remains the starter after the selection on Thursday night.The trade caps a stunning rise for Trubisky, who soared high in this draft process after only starting 13 games in his career at UNC. He impressed scouts by looking the part. He has prototypical size, a quick release, good accuracy and has the athleticism to improvise when the play breaks down. But Trubisky also didn’t show the typical standout traits like a big arm or the ability to go through his reads that usually accompanies a pick this high.It’s safe to say that Trubisky does not enter the league with nearly the same predraft expectations as recent high picks like Jameis Winston, Marcus Mariota, Jared Goff or Carson Wentz. But Trubisky definitely cost the pricetag typical of a franchise quarterback.The Bears need help throughout their roster, yet will have three fewer picks over the next two years because Pace believes in Trubisky so much. The same is clearly not true of Glennon. While Glennon’s much criticized contract in Chicago cost the team “$45 million” over three seasons, a close examination of the deal revealed it was essentially a one-year promise with $18.5 million guaranteed. Only $2.5 million is guaranteed into 2018, and Glennon may no longer be on the team by then if Trubisky develops as hoped this season.This trade puts a lot of pressure on Trubisky and creates an awkward situation for coach John Fox. After winning only nine games in two seasons, Fox will have to manage his desire to save his job with the instinct to get Trubisky playing time.Fox may be worried about the present, but Trubisky is the future. How thrilled is Fox about thius pick? He’s so old school, that’s it’s inconcievable that he’s play a Rookie QB.

Celtics take first series lead after beating Bulls(again)108-97

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BOSTON—The Celtics and Bulls found another thing to argue about after Game 5 of their spirited first-round playoff series: Was Avery Bradley more impressive on offense, or on defense? ”Everyone knows he’s a good defender. Tonight, he got his offensive game going,” Dwyane Wade said after Bradley scored 24 points to lead Boston to a 108-97 victory and a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series.
”You expect him to do what he does defensively, but we gave up 24 points to him tonight. He hurt us offensively tonight more than anything.”
Isaiah Thomas also scored 24 for the Celtics, the top seed in the East. After the road team won each of the first four games, the Celtics won at home in Game 5 to earn a chance to eliminate the Bulls on Friday night in Chicago. A Bulls victory would force the series back to Boston for a decisive Game 7 on Sunday.Al Horford had 21 points, nine assists and seven rebounds for the Celtics. Bradley’s 24 points were a career playoff high, but after watching him hold Bulls star Jimmy Butler to 14 points – and just one foul shot – Celtics coach Brad Stevens praised Bradley’s defense.
”Jimmy Butler’s a hard guy to guard. Dwyane Wade’s a hard guy to guard. You’re not going to stop those guys, but you just try to make it as hard as possible,” Stevens said. ”Avery … has done a really good job.”
Butler, who shot 23 free throws in Game 4 and made 19, was 0 for 1 on Wednesday.
”I was trying to eliminate letting Jimmy Butler get to the free throw line. That was my goal this game, and I feel like I did it,” Bradley said.
Wade had 26 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists. But Wade and Robin Lopez were called for technical fouls 32 seconds apart with just under five minutes left, helping the Celtics to a 20-5 run that turned an 84-84 game into a 15-point Boston lead.The Bulls cut it to nine before Horford got loose for a dunk, Wade missed a 3-pointer and then Horford fed Jae Crowder for a layup that made it 108-95 with 99 seconds to play.Despite the technical fouls, there was little of the tension that characterized Game 4, when Butler and Marcus Smart got in each other’s face on the court and continued the criticism in their postgame comments.The Celtics started slowly on their home court, making just one of their first nine shots to fall behind 12-4. Boston missed its first eight 3-point attempts before making three in a row at the end of the first quarter.

 

NOTES—Before winning the first two games of the series, the Bulls had only won one playoff game in Boston ever – Game 1 of the 2009 first round. … Butler brought the ball down with 6.2 seconds left in the third quarter and hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Bulls an 81-79 lead. … The Bulls had 16 turnovers that led to 23 Boston points. The Celtics only had six turnovers, leading to four Bulls points…..There were at least nine members of the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots in the crowd, and a handful of players from the Boston Bruins as well. … Thomas missed his first four shots and didn’t make a basket until a second-chance 3-pointer with 42 seconds left in the first half. … Gerald Green made his third start, but he played less than 13 minutes and finished with two points after scoring 18 with seven rebounds in Game 4.Rajon Rondo, who was the point guard on the 2008 Celtics team that won the franchise’s record 17th NBA title, did not play for the third straight game because of the broken thumb and strained ligament in his right wrist. He was on the court handling a basketball with his left hand before the game, then sat on the Bulls bench in a suit – this one with sleeves – and cheered on his teammates.The Bulls fell to 0-3 without him in the series, with Wade largely taking over as point guard in Game 5.Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg made waves after Game 4 when he questioned whether Thomas was getting away with carrying the ball when he dribbled.Thomas took exception with the suggestion, saying it was the way he’d dribbled his entire career and was no different than the style of other All-Stars such as LeBron James and Rondo.The final question to Hoiberg Wednesday was whether he’d had spotted any illegal dribbles from Thomas in the Game 5 loss.
”No,” he said, before walking out.

Slow start again does Bulls in as Celtics even up E.Qtr-Finals 2-2.

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Isaiah Thomas scored 33 points, and the Boston Celtics beat the Bulls 104-95 on Sunday to tie their first-round playoff series at 2-all.Boston blew a 20-point lead, but Thomas keyed a third-quarter run that put the Celtics back on top after Bulls briefly went ahead.Gerald Green made four 3-pointers on his way to 18 points, helping the top-seeded Celtics return the favor in the United Center after dropping the first two games at home. Al Horford added 15 points and 12 rebounds.Game 5 is Wednesday in Boston.Jimmy Butler carried the Bulls with 33 points and nine assists. Nikola Mirotic and seldom-used Isaiah Canaan each scored 13 points, but Dwyane Wade finished with just 11.Canaan made his first appearance since April 10, with Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg searching for help at point guard with Rajon Rondo missing his second straight game because of a broken right thumb.The Celtics led by 20 in the second quarter and were still up 10 in the third when the Bulls scored 12 straight. The Bulls went ahead 65-63 on Robin Lopez’s hook shot with 4:35 left in the quarter.Thomas answered with back-to-back layups and scored 10 points in a 12-0 run that gave the Celtics a 75-65 lead, and they withstood a push by the Bulls early in the fourth.With Thomas and Green each scoring 16 in the first half, the Celtics carried a 57-46 lead into the break.Butler led the Bulls with 17 in the half. But the offense struggled in a big way with Rondo unavailable. Jerian Grant started and went to the bench after about five ineffective minutes. Michael Carter-Williams then picked up two quick fouls, forcing the Bulls to go with Canaan in the first quarter.The Celtics, meanwhile, led 41-21 early in the second quarter. But things started to turn after Canaan stole the ball from Marcus Smart and scored on a layup.Smart feigned throwing the ball at Butler. The two came nose to nose, resulting in technical fouls for both players, and the Bulls started to shoot their way back into it.Mirotic hit a pair of 3-pointers and scored eight in the quarter. Bobby Portis cut it to 52-42 with his basket late in the half, and Butler hit two free throws with 22.6 seconds left to make it 57-46.

NOTES—The NBA fined Rondo for attempting to trip Boston Celtics forward Jae Crowder from the bench in Game 3. Crowder jawed at the Bulls’ bench after hitting a jumper and Rondo extended his leg as Crowder walked by….Hoiberg figures to be fined next for his comments about Thomas,claiming the Boston guard carries the ball everytime he dribbles……Thomas was just 1 of 9 on 3-pointers but made 12 of 13 free throws…..Butler made 19 of 23 foul shots after failing to get to the line in Game 3. … Canaan was inactive for the first three games.

Celtics bounced back, beat Bulls who were hurting without injured Rajon Rando

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Al Horford had 18 points and eight rebounds, Isaiah Thomas scored 16 points, and the top-seeded Boston Celtics beat the Bulls 104-87 on Friday night after dropping the first two games of their opening-round series at home.The Celtics pulled away after a 20-point lead shrunk to one early in the third quarter and put themselves in position to tie a series that was in danger of slipping away from them. Game 4 is Sunday in the United Center.Dwyane Wade scored 18 and Jimmy Butler had 14 points on 7-of-21 shooting, and the offense simply didn’t click the way it had been, with Rajon Rondo out indefinitely with a broken right thumb. The Bulls shot about 39 percent and committed 18 turnovers.Thomas, grieving the death of his sister in a car accident last week, rejoined the team after spending time with his family in Tacoma, Washington. He scored eight points in the third quarter, helping the Celtics regain control.Jae Crowder finished with 16 points. Avery Bradley scored 15 and hit four of Boston’s 17 3-pointers.The Celtics’ lead was down to 44-43 early in the third when Thomas hit Horford for an alley-oop dunk and nailed back-to-back 3-pointers. Boston maintained a comfortable edge after that.The Celtics led by 18 after hitting 7 of 11 3-pointers in the first quarter and were up 37-17 early in the second before the Bulls jumped back into it.They had the crowd rocking in the closing minute of the half. Nikola Mirotic nailed a 3, cutting it to 44-41, and pointed toward the sky. Wade then blocked Bradley’s 3, causing a shot-clock violation with 4.7 seconds left, before Butler missed a desperation 3 for the Bulls as time expired.Celtics Coach Brad Stevens shook up the lineup looking for more shooting and athleticism. Gerald Green started over Amir Johnson and had eight points in 21 minutes.The Bulls are 121-50 all-time in home playoff games.Rondo, who was injured in Game 2, will probably be re-evaluated in a week to 10 days. The Bulls said he won’t need surgery.He watched from the sideline and got in on the action to some extent late in the first quarter. Crowder jawed at the Bulls’ bench after hitting a jumper and Rondo extended his leg as he walked by

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NASHVILLE—Pekka Rinne stopped almost every shot he faced. Nashville’s top line was outstanding, and Roman Josi and P.K. Subban keyed a solid defensive performance.The Predators were relentless, all the way to the very end. Way too much for the slumping Blackhawks.Roman Josi scored twice, Rinne had 30 saves and Nashville beat the Hawks 4-1 on Thursday night to complete a surprising sweep of the Western Conference’s top seed.

 
”It’s definitely a great feeling,” Josi said. ”I thought we played a great series. That’s a great team over there. We’ve got a lot of respect for them. They’ve got some world-class players and I thought we played really well in all those four games.”

 
Colton Sissons also scored and Viktor Arvidsson added an empty-net goal as Nashville completed the franchise’s first playoff sweep. Led by Rinne’s shutouts in the first two games, the Predators limited the high-scoring Blackhawks to just three goals in 13 periods.Nashville will face the winner of the St. Louis-Minnesota series in the second round. The Blues have a 3-1 lead heading into Game 5 on Saturday in Minnesota.The Hawks became the first No. 1 seed to lose in the opening round since the Los Angeles Kings knocked off the Vancouver Canucks on their way to the Stanley Cup title in 2012.The Hawks second straight first-round exit followed a regular season in which the Blackhawks went 50-23-9 and recorded 109 points, the second-highest total in franchise history.

 
”Not good enough,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. ”I don’t think anybody exceeded their expectations, didn’t compete to the level that’s necessary. I take that personally as a coach to find the `all-out’ button and didn’t get the job done.”

 
It was the first time a No. 1 seed was swept in the first round since the NHL adopted its current playoff format in 1994. The Blackhawks had the best record in the Campbell Conference and were the Norris Division’s No. 1 seed in 1993 when they got swept by St. Louis in the opening round. That also was the last time the Blackhawks had been swept in a playoff series before Nashville’s dominant performance.

 
”It’s tough enough to lose a series and fall short,” captain Jonathan Toews said. ”It’s a whole different story to lose four straight and get swept like we did.”

 
It was particularly sweet for Nashville after it was eliminated by the Hawks during the Blackhawks’ 2010 and 2015 Stanley Cup title runs. The Blackhawks also had gone 4-1 against the Predators during the regular season.

 
”I feel like 2010 and 2015 we lost against these guys in the first round,” Rinne said. ”Now we’ve had a chance to redeem ourselves, a little payback.”

 
The Predators were billed as Stanley Cup contenders before the season after putting together arguably their most talented roster since the franchise launched in 1998-99. But they struggled through an inconsistent season that left them playing the mighty Blackhawks in the opening round.Now they are living up to their preseason billing – and have a veteran goaltender in peak form.

 
”Anytime we seemed to start to get things going, they found ways to stymie our momentum or our offense,” Toews said.

 
Game 4 was scoreless midway through the second period when Ryan Johansen won a faceoff against Marcus Kruger and passed to Ryan Ellis, who sent it to Josi on his right. Josi fired a slap shot from behind the right circle that got between Corey Crawford’s legs and sneaked into the left corner of the net at 9:41.Nashville extended the lead to 2-0 with a bizarre goal at 8:52 of the third. Sissons fired a shot that bounced off the cage and appeared to end up in the area of Crawford’s blocker before the puck came loose and rolled into the net. Less than 90 seconds later, Josi beat Crawford on a wrist shot.Crawford was exceptional for the first 29 1/2 minutes, but he didn’t get much help in the final part of the game. He finished with 22 stops.In an attempt to create a spark, the Blackhawks altered their lines, and star forward Patrick Kane played almost 24 minutes. They dressed seven defensemen – Michal Kempny made his playoff debut – and nothing worked.The Hawks avoided the shutout when Toews scored at 14:42 of the third for his first postseason goal since Game 4 of the 2015 Stanley Cup Final. Toews had been held without a goal for 12 straight postseason games.Arvidsson wrapped up the sweep with an empty-netter with 1:48 remaining.

 
”We are proud of ourselves,” Sissons said. ”That’s no easy thing to do, sweep the Blackhawks. They have championship-caliber talent over there. We did it in four, so we couldn’t be happier.”

 

NOTES—The Blackhawks also dropped their last four games in the regular season. … Predators forward Craig Smith was scratched after he got hurt in overtime of Game 3. … The Predators brought out more Nashville star power by having Luke Bryan sing the national anthem. John Hiatt performed on a stage behind one of the nets between the second and third periods. Carrie Underwood, who is married to Predators captain Mike Fisher, sang the anthem Monday. … The sellout crowd of 17,326 included Tennessee Titans coach Mike Mularkey and general manager Jon Robinson

BEARS 2017 REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE

SUN 9/10 FALCONS NOON FOX

Sun 9/17 @ Tampa Bay Noon FOX

SUN 9/24 STEELERS NOON CBS

Thu 9/28 @ Green Bay 7:25pm CBS/NFLN

MON 10/9 VIKINGS 7:30PM ESPN

Sun 10/15 @ Baltimore Noon* FOX

SUN 10/22 PANTHERS NOON* FOX

Sun 10/29 @ New Orleans Noon* FOX

Sun 11/5 Bye

SUN 11/12 PACKERS NOON* FOX

SUN 11/19 LIONS NOON* FOX

Sun 11/26 @ Philadelphia Noon* FOX

SUN 12/3 49ERS NOON* CBS

Sun 12/10 @ Cincinnati Noon* FOX

Sat 12/16 @ Detroit 3:30pm NFLN

SUN 12/24 BROWNS NOON CBS

Sun 12/31 @ Minnesota Noon* FOX