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Cleveland Cavaliers stun Raptors 115-84 in Game 1

LORI EWING, THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Wednesday, May 18th, 2016

Cleveland Cavaliers’ Kyrie Irving (2) drives on Toronto Raptors’ Cory Joseph (6) during the second half of Game 1 of the NBA basketball Eastern Conference finals, Tuesday, May 17, 2016, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers made sure Toronto’s introduction to the Eastern Conference finals was not a pleasant one.

James scored 24 points on near perfect shooting, while Kyrie Irving had 27 as the Cavaliers throttled the Raptors 115-84 in Game 1 on Tuesday, Toronto’s first conference finals appearance in franchise history.

James punished the Raptors on 11-for-13 shooting, the four-time NBA MVP looking for most of the night like a man playing against boys.

DeMar DeRozan had 18 points on a solid night, but the rest of the Raptors could do little against a Cavaliers team that thoroughly embarrassed Toronto. Bismack Biyombo had 12 points, while James Johnson finished with 10.

The Raptors hung in with the home team through the opening quarter, but almost as if they’d been toying with Toronto, the Cavaliers then thrust a foot on the throat of the Raptors and held it there until the final, merciful, buzzer.

Cleveland’s 22-point lead in the second quarter became a whopping 28 points by the end of the third, as the Cavs took a 95-67 advantage into the fourth. Raptors coach Dwane Casey waved the virtual white flag with 10 minutes to play, pulling his starters for seldom-used Delon Wright and Jason Thompson.

When Terrence Ross went up for what should have been a spectacular dunk with six minutes left to play, the ball bounced out, an apt metaphor on an ugly night. With three minutes to play, fans erupted into chants of “U-S-A!”

The Cavs outrebounded Toronto 45-23, and clobbered them in the paint 56-36.
Game 2 is Thursday in Cleveland, then the series shifts to the Air Canada Centre for Game 3 on Saturday and Game 4 on Monday.

The Raptors had a 2-1 edge over the Cavs in the regular-season series. But Cleveland has been red-hot in the post-season, making quick work of Detroit and Atlanta in the first two rounds, and relegating the Raptors to the under-dog role.

The Cavaliers’ two sweeps allowed them a nine-day break, while the battle-wearing Raptors arrived in Cleveland to play just two days after finally knocking off Miami in Game 7 of the conference semifinals. They also needed seven games to dispatch Indiana in the first round.

The Cavs hit 77 threes in their four-game sweep of Atlanta. The Raptors, on the other hand, were second last in defending the three in the regular season.

Quicken Loans Arena was awash in gold, with small pockets of Raptors fans. Montreal Canadiens star P.K. Subban had a front row seat, as did UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic.

Raptors coach Dwane Casey had wanted his team to come out “guns a-blazing,” and they did with an early 7-0 lead. Still, DeRozan’s 12 points in the first quarter weren’t enough against the Cavs, who led 33-28 going into the second.

The Cavs promptly found another gear and an Iman Shumpert dunk had them up by 19 just five minutes into the frame. Cleveland went into halftime up 66-44. The Raptors’ deficit tied for the worst in their playoff history.

High schooler says he was kicked off TTC bus, called ‘damn Latino’

ALANNA KELLY | posted Wednesday, May 18th, 2016

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A Toronto student claims he was kicked off a TTC bus and had racist comments said to him after using his Student Identification card to ride the TTC bus. CITYNEWS

High schooler Shakti Sharma was trying to take a TTC bus home Friday night when the bus operator refused to accept his student identification and allegedly hurled a racist slur at him.

Sharma said after he paid his $2 student fare on the 40 Junction bus, the driver said he was a “big high school student,” and demanded proof that he is a high school student.

When Sharma presented his Humberside Collegiate Institute ID, the driver rejected it and told him he needed to produce a TTC card.

“You can get off my bus if you don’t want to cooperate with me,” he recalls the bus driver saying to him.

Sharma said he even offered to pay the adult fare, but the driver pulled over and told him to get off.

“She came to a stop – no one was getting off or on – and said ‘All right, get off my bus,’” Sharma said.

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According to TTC spokesperson Brad Ross, Sharma’s school identification was all he needed to show the driver.

“TTC student cards are no longer issued or required, though operators may ask for proof of age,” Ross said. The guidelines are outlined on the TTC’s website.

As he was walking off the bus, Sharma says the driver said “Damn Latinos.”

Ross said the allegation of racism is a serious concern for the TTC.

“The TTC takes very seriously its obligations around respect and dignity of employees, customers and the public, in addition to fully complying with the Ontario Human Rights Code,” Ross said.

He says the TTC is investigating the allegations.

“There is no place at the TTC for the alleged language or behaviour cited by the customer. We will be investigating this allegation with the seriousness with which it deserves.”

“I am not even Latino, but that shouldn’t even matter,” Sharma said. “Your race should never come into these situations. I have no interest in trying to get anyone fired – it is nothing about that. I would just hope that the TTC employees know their policy.”

4 up-and-coming Toronto neighbourhoods to watch

BT Toronto | posted Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

OLY Toronto Sports Venues

May 17th is National Real Estate Day. This is a day for Canadians to come together and celebrate home ownership. Owning a home is important to Canadians, with 101,299 homes sold last year alone, a 9.2% increase over 2014.

In Toronto specifically, there are various options for potential homeowners, with different communities designed to for different lifestyles. However, buyers are looking to confirm that their home ownership is also an investment for the future. Mark McLean from the Toronto Real Estate Board confirms that real estate is a good investment. Getting into the market sooner than later will work to your favour.

Mark McLean has picked out four neighbourhoods in the Greater Toronto Area that deliver the biggest return on investment.

1. The Canary District

This is a brand new neighbourhood with most residential buildings having opened up in the past year. Condos in this neighbourhood are noted for their clean, modern architecture. The Canary District is also within walking distance of the historic Distillery District, which includes many of Toronto’s best dining and entertainment options.

2. Danforth and Main

This once gritty intersection is now booming! Danforth and Main is an up and coming East end neighborhood with a more residential feel. Many of the side streets are lined with bungalows and homes with backyards, making this a great option for homebuyers looking for extra space.

3. Landsdowne and DuPont

Three years ago, there was not much development in this area of Toronto, however, much has changed in recent years due to what Mark McLean calls the “Brooklyn-effect”. Many Torontonians are choosing this neighbourhood as a more affordable alternative to nearby High Park or Roncesvalles. New condos are being constructed, century homes are being renovated, and tons of restaurants are opening up.

4. West Queensway and Islington

This neighbourhood is sometimes forgotten, due to its lack of proximity to the downtown core. However, many large condos and stacked town-homes are being built. The selling point? This neighbourhood is right off the Gardiner Expressway, which makes buying in this area great for car owners.

Halton police nab driver going 63 km/h above speed limit

CityNews | posted Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

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Halton police have impounded a car after a driver was caught doing 63 km/h above the speed limit on Sunday night.

Police say the driver was pulled over in Oakville, and was clocked at more than twice the legal limit.

A photo of a police radar gun shows a speed of 123 km/h. The speed limit in that area is 60 km/h.

The car will be impounded for seven days. There’s no word yet on charges.

Baby bison euthanized after tourists put it in their car

CNN and News staff | posted Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

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A baby bison had to be euthanized after a pair of tourists put the calf in their car because it seemed cold.

The United States National Park Service issued a warning not to touch wildlife after the incident at Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming last week.

Two park visitors, a father and son, spotted the newborn bison and put him in the trunk of their SUV.

The pair thought the animal was cold and lost, and wanted to reunite him with his herd.

It didn’t go as planned.

“In terms of human safety, this was a dangerous activity because adult animals are very protective of their young and will act aggressively to defend them,” read a message on the Yellowstone Facebook page.

“In addition, interference by people can cause mothers to reject their offspring.”

That’s what happened Monday and the calf had to be put down.

“The bison calf was later euthanized because it was abandoned and causing a dangerous situation by continually approaching people and cars along the roadway,” the park said.

Photo of three bison at Yellowknife National Park. FACEBOOK/Yellowstone National Park.
Photo of three bison at Yellowknife National Park. FACEBOOK/Yellowstone National Park.

Two food recalls: Quaker Harvest quinoa granola bars, Sea Delight tuna steaks

CityNews | posted Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

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Heads-up if you have any of these recalled products in your pantry.

Quaker Canada has recalled certain Quaker Harvest brand Quinoa Granola Bars due to possible listeria contamination.

These include some lots of Harvest Quinoa Yogurt and Fruit Bars with a best before date of Oct. 12, and Harvest Quinoa Chocolate Nut Medley Bars with a best before date of Oct. 16.

Anyone with these products at home should either throw them out or return them to the store for a refund.

So far, no illnesses have been reported.

Meanwhile, Sea Delight brand Tuna Steaks is also being pulled from stores due to concerns it may contain high levels of histamine. They were sold in 340-gram packages.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says high levels of histamine in fish can cause an allergic-type reaction involving burning throat, digestive distress, dizziness, facial swelling and headache.

One illness has been reported with the consumption of this product.

Baby in stable condition after mother shot dead in Etobicoke

The Canadian Press | posted Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

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A premature baby delivered via emergency C-section shortly before its mother died from gunshot wounds is in stable condition, Toronto police said Monday as they appealed to the public for help identifying those responsible for the “outrageous” death.

Police said Candice Rochelle Bobb, of Mississauga, Ont., died late Sunday night when she was shot while returning from watching a basketball game.

They said the 35-year-old woman was in a vehicle in the city’s northwest end with three other people at the time of the shooting. The occupants of the vehicle were not known to police, but officers said the vehicle was the clear target of the shooting.

Bobb, who was five months pregnant, has become Toronto’s 29th homicide victim in a year that’s seen a marked increase of guns on city streets, police said. There were 56 documented homicides in Toronto last year.

Divisional Supt. Ron Taverner said the “outrageous” death comes at a time when police are dealing with a spike in violence for which they have not identified a cause.

“There’s no doubt that there’s obviously more guns on the street. More young people and people in general carrying guns,” Taverner said. “It’s a sad day when we have to come together to talk about a woman being shot and not knowing what it’s about…The outrage in the community is phenomenal.”

Police declined to speculate on the number of shooting suspects they’re seeking in Bobb’s death. They indicated the shots were fired from a vehicle, but did not provide descriptions or details citing the early phase of the investigation.

Police said the shooting occurred around 11:30 p.m. as Bobb and three others were returning from an organized amateur men’s basketball league game.

The shots rang out as the car stopped to drop off one of the people in the car, police said, declining to say whether the person in question was Bobb herself.

Police did not release any information about Bobb’s baby, but data suggests the infant faces a difficult struggle for survival.

The World Health Organization says pre-term birth complications are the leading global cause of death among children under the age of five, leading to a million deaths in 2013.

The WHO said about 15 million children around the world are born before 37 weeks gestation.

Taverner said the latest homicide has been a particular blow for the community.

“We’re all kind of in shock…The whole city is outraged that this can happen. Yes, this woman was pregnant, and hopefully this baby survives, but any shooting is very tragic. Anything where people are going to that level of violence is just disgusting.”

Police are appealing to anyone with information about Bobb’s shooting to come forward.

Toronto Mayor John Tory echoed the call for public assistance, condemning the deadly shooting as a “travesty” and saying no child should enter the world without a mother.

“Violence in any form in this city is unacceptable,” he said in a statement. “There are always affected families, people left without their loved ones, but when bystanders are killed, when pregnant mothers are shot while driving in cars, we must all take action to prevent these tragedies from going unanswered.”

Bench clearing brawl after Bautista gets punched in the face

Schuyler Dixon, The Associated Press | posted Monday, May 16th, 2016

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ARLINGTON, Texas – Rougned Odor’s powerful punch to Jose Bautista’s jaw will be remembered for a long time.

Perhaps it’s a good thing the Rangers and Blue Jays have played for the final time this regular season. As for the playoffs, well, that would be interesting.

A feud simmering since Bautista’s bat flip in last year’s AL Division Series boiled over into a wild brawl that ultimately triggered six of the eight ejections in the Rangers’ 7-6 victory on Sunday.

https://twitter.com/Sid_Seixeiro/status/731973764863426560

“As far as what happened inside the scrum out on the field, there was a lot of things going on,” said Texas manager Jeff Banister, who was making emotional gestures toward nobody in particularly even after the roughly 10 minutes it took for umpires to restore order.

“We could sit here for the next hour and talk about that. But I don’t have that time. I’ve got a bird to catch.”

The Rangers were headed to Oakland, and the Blue Jays back home to Toronto, the site of last year’s emotional meeting in the playoffs. That’s when Bautista capped a wild seventh inning with a clutch three-run homer and the monumental bat flip that angered Texas.

This time, Bautista was upset by getting hit by an eighth-inning pitch from 30-year-old Texas rookie Matt Bush, who got his first major league win two days after his debut — and 12 years after he was the No. 1 overall pick in the draft.

Moments later, Bautista slid hard into Odor on a potential double play and they ended up in a fistfight behind the bag after Odor shoved him.

Players from both teams rushed the field as Odor landed a punch to Bautista’s face, staggering the Toronto slugger and knocking off his batting helmet and sunglasses.

“I was pretty surprised,” Bautista said. “I mean, obviously, that’s the only reason that he got me and he got me pretty good, so I have to give him that. It takes a little bit bigger man to knock me down.”

Odour wasn’t available to reporters after the game.

Bautista, who was kept out of most of the melee by a bear hug from Texas veteran Adrian Beltre, was ejected as a result of the brawl. Same for Odour, Toronto’s Josh Donaldson and Texas bench coach Steve Buechele.

After the field was finally cleared, Blue Jays reliever Jesse Chavez hit Prince Fielder with the next pitch when the game resumed. He was ejected automatically because of the warning issued after Bush hit Bautista.

Blue Jays bench coach Demarlo Hale also was tossed because of Chavez’s pitch because he was filling in for John Gibbons. The manager was ejected in the third inning during an argument, but returned to the field during the brawl.

Crew chief Dale Scott told a pool reporter that Gibbons’ return “will be in the report and Major League Baseball will take care of it.”

“I didn’t want to sit here and drink too much wine,” Gibbons said. “Ya got to go out there. I’m sure the league will say something about that but it’s kind of the manager’s responsibility.”

Toronto first base coach Tim Leiper was ejected in the third inning in a separate dispute before Gibbons was tossed.

“I think it was just two hard-nosed baseball teams that play the game hard,” Banister said. “They like their club. We like our club. I take offence to everybody that thinks this is a game that shouldn’t be played hard, that it shouldn’t be played with emotion and intensity.”

Ian Desmond greeted Chavez (0-1) with a three-run homer with two outs in the seventh, giving Texas a 7-6 lead with a drive to the seats above the tall wall in left field.


Related stories:

Moment of vengeance leads to wild new chapter of Blue Jays-Rangers rivalry


Bush (1-0), whose career was derailed by several alcohol-related incidents, was released from prison in October after serving 3 1/2 years in a drunken-driving case that seriously injured a 72-year-old man on a motorcycle. He pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings.

Bautista’s brawl-triggering slide forced Odor to throw wildly to first on an attempted double play on a grounder by Justin Smoak, but Texas was awarded an inning-ending double play on the Chase Utley rule.

Sam Dyson, who gave up Bautista’s memorable homer in last year’s playoffs, pitched a perfect ninth for his second save.

Gibbons suggested the Rangers were finally retaliating for Bautista’s bat flip in the eighth inning of the last of seven games between the teams this season. Texas beat Toronto in a series for the first time since 2012, but the Blue Jays had a 4-3 edge for the season.

“It was ugly and unfortunate,” Gibbons said. “To me, it was gutless. The other 29 teams, they come at you right away, but to wait until the end, it just sort of tells you something. Everybody is going to say, ‘Oh, it was a one-run game. The ball got away.’ That ain’t going to fly.”

Bautista gave Toronto a 5-2 lead with a three-run double in the sixth. Troy Tulowitzki had three hits and scored two runs.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Blue Jays: LHP Brett Cecil was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a muscle strain in his left arm. RHP Dustin Antolin was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo. Cecil said he felt soreness in his left triceps after a seven-pitch outing in Saturday’s 6-5 loss.

Rangers: RHP Yu Darvish will make his fourth rehab start Tuesday for Double-A Frisco at Midland. Darvish will have a limit of five innings or 75 pitches.

UP NEXT

Blue Jays: LHP J.A. Happ (5-0, 2.05 ERA) starts Monday night’s opener of a three-game series at home against Tampa Bay. Happ has won seven straight decisions and 12 of 13 going back to last season.

Rangers: LHP Derek Holland (3-2, 6.09 ERA) opens a three-game series at Oakland on Monday night coming off two of the worst outings of his career. He gave up 19 hits and 16 runs, 15 earned, in five innings combined against Toronto and the Chicago White Sox. The latter was interrupted by a rain delay of more than an hour.

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