The ESPN Daily: The education of Zion Williamson

WEEKEND BINGE READS

Ready for takeoff … You’ve all seen him — the obvious dominance, the seismic dunks, the highlights that will make him millions of dollars in the NBA. But to understand the legend of Zion Williamson, you’ve got to go back to the place where it all started. Mina Kimes spent a day in Zion’s hometown to get the full story. Read More

Why the Celtics failed … Kyrie Irving and the Boston Celtics will have a long time to think about how things all went wrong in their playoff series against the Milwaukee Bucks. It definitely wasn’t supposed to be this way for a team with so much talent, but in truth, it’s possible to see the seeds of their disastrous second round all the way back in the preseason … and it might be the fault of just one player. Read More

Why does Embiid fall down so much? … Weirdly enough, Joel Embiid hits the court at a higher rate than most everyone else his size. We’ve got oodles of theories for why that’s the case, but one tantalizing clue hints at the true reason. Whatever he’s doing, it worked out pretty well for him in Game 6. Read More

THINGS TO CARE ABOUT

The awakening of Georgia Tech … Geoff Collins wants Georgia Tech to be the coolest program in college football, and he’s doing so with the help of Waffle House, clever social media use, and a guy who goes by the name of “Morpheus.” Here’s how Collins is making his dream happen. Read More

The NL is taking over baseball … Competitive strength, entertainment, superstars — it looks an awful lot like the National League has surpassed the American League in every conceivable fashion. Not convinced? Here’s how it all breaks down. Read More

Adam Silver’s hopes for the league … The NBA is adding more and more female referees, but commissioner Adam Silver doesn’t want the league to stop there. Silver wants at least half of the NBA’s referees to be female — and he wants to see the league’s first female head coach as well. Read More

THINGS TO WATCH

OVERHEARD

“I believe it is important to finish what you start. This Saturday, I will be walking with my fellow Kent State graduates.”
–Julian Edelman, on finally graduating from Kent State. Read More

REMEMBER WHEN?

On this date in 1970, Bobby Orr scored an overtime goal in Game 4 against the Blues to bring the Bruins their first Stanley Cup in 29 years. It also resulted in one of the coolest images in sports history, as Orr flew through the air, half in celebration and half as a result of being tripped by Blues defenseman Noel Picard.

WHAT’S ON TONIGHT?

Warriors at Rockets (9 p.m. ET, ESPN): In one way, the Warriors are right where they want to be, up 3-2 after a close Game 5 against the Rockets. Unfortunately, that came at the cost of Kevin Durant’s strained right calf, which will keep him out of the rest of the Western Conference semifinals. That’s a Pyrrhic victory if we ever saw one. You know that’s named after an actual guy? King Pyrrhus of Epirus, who won two battles against the Romans but suffered extremely heavy losses in doing so. Bet you didn’t think you’d learn that in a promo for Game 6, huh?

Berchelt vs. Vargas (Saturday, 10 p.m. ET, ESPN): WBC junior lightweight champion Miguel Berchelt takes on Francisco Vargas in a rematch of their 2017 bout, where Berchelt took the title in an 11th-round TKO victory. The undercard is going to be airing at 6:30 p.m. ET on ESPN+.

UFC 237: Namajunas vs. Andrade (Saturday, 10 p.m. ET, PPV): Rose Namajunas looks to defend her strawweight title against Jessica Andrade at UFC 237. You can also catch the early prelims at 6:15 p.m. ET on ESPN+ and the prelims at 8 on ESPN.

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