#SportsReport: Nets defeat Kings; Thunder best Knicks
Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva says she’s happy but worn out after a grueling doping hearing ended with her being allowed to skate at the Beijing Games.
The 15-year-old tells Russian state broadcaster Channel One that the past few days have been very difficult for her. Valieva is the favorite for the gold medal in the women’s competition.
Valieva’s lawyers say she failed a doping test before the Olympics because of contamination from medication her grandfather was taking.
There won’t be a medal ceremony if Valieva finishes in the top three because the International Olympic Committee is concerned she could still be banned over a failed drug test from Dec. 25. That test was not revealed until after she won team gold with the Russian Olympic Committee last week.
Also in Beijing:
Eileen Gu took home another medal with a second-place finish in the women’s ski slopestyle competition. That means she could still become the first action-sports athlete to capture three medals at the same Winter Games. Gu’s bid for another gold medal was thwarted by Mathilde Gremaud of Switzerland.
Su Yiming gave host China its second gold medal, matching Eileen Gu with a stunning show in front of fans and winning the country’s first top prize in Olympic snowboarding.
— Anna Gasser of Austria has won her second straight Olympic gold medal in women’s snowboarding big air. The 30-year-old Gasser held off a field with an average age of 21, including slopestyle winner Zoi Sadowski Synnott of New Zealand. Sadowski Synnott took silver Tuesday.
The defending Olympic champion U.S. men’s curling team beat Switzerland 7-4 and moved within reach of a playoff berth. John Shuster’s team is in fourth place after its fourth win, with remaining matches against the two bottom teams in the standings.
The Brooklyn Nets’ 11-game losing streak is over, thanks in part to one of their newcomers.
Seth Curry scored 23 points in his Nets debut, a 109-85 rout of the Kings. Curry was one of five Nets who finished in double figures. Bruce Brown set season-highs with 19 points, six assists, and five steals. LaMarcus Aldridge finished with 19 points, Cam Thomas added 14 off the bench and Andre Drummond contributed 11 in his first game for Brooklyn.
Curry, Drummond and Ben Simmons were acquired in the deal that sent James Harden to the 76ers. Coach Steve Nash says Simmons’ Nets debut won’t be immediate.
Checking out Monday’s other NBA action:
Anfernee Simons scored 31 points and the Trail Blazers capitalized on the absence of Giannis Antetokounmpo to beat the Bucks, 122-107 for their third straight victory. Simons has averaged 30 points and has shot 18 of 39 from 3-point range during this winning streak. Antetokounmpo didn’t play for the Bucks due to a sore left ankle.
DeMar DeRozan scored 19 of his 40 points in the fourth quarter of the Bulls’ fourth straight victory, 120-109 over the Spurs. It was DeRozan’s seventh straight game with at least 30 points, extending his career high. Nikola Vucevic had 25 points and 16 rebounds for Chicago, while Coby White made five 3-pointers and finished with 24 points.
Terance Mann provided 14 of his season-high 25 points while the Clippers outscored the Warriors, 33-19 in the third quarter of a 119-104 decision over Golden State. Mann was 6 of 7 from the field in the third before finishing with seven rebounds and six assists. Reggie Jackson added 19 points and Ivica Zubac had 18 with eight rebounds for the winners.
With Rudy Gobert back in the lineup, Donovan Mitchell scored 30 points. Bojan Bogdanovic added 22 in leading the Jazz to a 135-101 thrashing of the Rockets. Gobert had 14 points and seven rebounds before receiving his second technical foul and an automatic ejection midway through the final period.
The Nuggets were 121-111 winners over the Magic as Nikola Jokic furnished 26 points to lead six Denver players in double figures. Jeff Green and Will Barton added 17 points apiece and Bryn Forbes had 16 for Denver. Bones Hyland chipped in 14 points as the Nuggets won for the fourth time in five games since a three-game skid.
CJ McCollum delivered 23 points and the Pelicans shot a season-best 58.4% to defeat the Raptors, 120-90. Brandon Ingram had 10 points and 11 rebounds and eight assists in just 29 minutes, leaving him two short of his first triple-double. Jonas Valanciunas had 18 points and nine rebounds in the rout.
Josh Giddey had a triple-double of 28 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds to lead the Thunder’s 127-123 overtime victory against the Knicks. Tre Mann added 30 points and Darius Bazley chipped in 23 as Oklahoma City stopped a five-game losing streak. New York wasted an 11-point, second-half deficit and Julius Randle’s triple-double of 30 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists in the Knicks’ ninth loss in 11 games.
Kyle Kuzma scored 17 of his 23 points in the third quarter of the Wizards’ 103-94 victory against the Pistons. Deni Avdija had 12 points and a career-high 15 rebounds as Washington sent Detroit to its eighth straight loss. Saddiq Bey led the Pistons with 24 points.
Cleveland Cavaliers center Jarrett Allen will replace James Harden at this year’s All-Star Game.
Allen is an All-Star for the first time and will join teammate Darius Garland for this year’s event in Cleveland, giving the Cavs two All-Stars for the first time since 2018.
Harden is dealing with a left hamstring issue that is delaying his debut with the Philadelphia 76ers after being traded by the Brooklyn Nets. Harden was chosen by coaches as an All-Star reserve.
Also in the NBA:
Bulls guard Zach LaVine is slated to visit with doctors in Los Angeles on Tuesday, looking for more answers about periodic soreness in his surgically repaired left knee. LaVine is missing his second straight game tonight as the Bulls host the Spurs, Coach Billy Donovan said LaVine also will miss Wednesday night’s matchup with Sacramento.
— Tyreke Evans is eligible to return to the NBA after being reinstated by the league and the National Basketball Players Association. The fourth player taken in the 2009 draft by Sacramento was dismissed and disqualified from the league in 2019 for testing positive for a prohibited substance under the NBA/NBPA Anti-Drug Program. Evans will become an unrestricted free agent Friday, meaning he can negotiate a contract with any team.
Sixth-ranked Kansas wore throwback jerseys from its 1921-22 season, but those jerseys did nothing to slow down the Jayhawks.
Ochai Agbaji scored 20 points and the Jayhawks saw all five starters score in double figures in a 76-62 victory over Oklahoma State. Kansas pulled away late in the first half and never was threatened in the second.
Christian Braun provided 16 points, Dajuan Harris and David McCormack with 12 points each, and Jalen Wilson with 11. McCormack also had 12 rebounds for his sixth double-double of the season.
Gonzaga has reclaimed the No. 1 ranking in The Associated Press men’s college basketball poll.
The Bulldogs earned 56 of 60 first-place votes to swap places with Auburn, which had spent the past three weeks at No. 1. The Tigers fell to No. 2 after losing at Arkansas.
This is the Zags’ third stint at No. 1 this season.
Providence climbed to No. 8 for its highest ranking since January 2016.
Wyoming, Arkansas and Alabama were the week’s new additions. The No. 22 Cowboys are in the poll for the first time since 2015.
In men’s college basketball, Marist defeated Niagara, 77-70. On the women’s side, Manhattan bested Siena, 69-61.
A two-goal deficit did little to cool off the Minnesota Wild on Monday.
The Wild earned a 7-4 win over the Red Wings as rookie Matt Boldy recorded his first career hat trick and had an assist. The Wings led 2-0 until Boldy scored twice in a 2:05 span of the first period. He completed his hat trick in the second period with his second power-play goal of the night.
Kirill Kaprizov has two goals and an assist, and Mats Zuccarello set up three tallies for Minnesota.
The Wild are 11-1-1 since Jan. 6 and have won six in a row at home.
Elsewhere on NHL ice:
The Oilers posted a 3-0 win at San Jose behind Stuart Skinner, who made 20 saves in his first career shutout. Connor McDavid, Darnell Nurse and Warren Foegele did the scoring and Evan Bouchard had two assists. Former Shark Evander Kane returned to San Jose for the first time with the Oilers and was booed every time he touched the puck.
Toronto won for the first time in three games as Mitch Marner scored once and added two assists in a 6-2 rout of the Kraken. Marner became the second player from the 2015 draft to reach 400 career points, joining Connor McDavid. Michael Bunting had a goal and an assist to support Jack Campbell’s 23-save performance.
Alex DeBrincat scored his 28th goal midway through the third period to push the Blackhawks past the Jets, 3-1. Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist, and Brandon Hagel added an empty-netter. Marc-Andre Fleury made 30 saves for the Blackhawks, who have won twice in their last six games.
The Calgary Flames have acquired forward Tyler Toffoli from the Montreal Canadiens for two players and two draft picks.
Toffoli has nine goals and 26 points in 37 games this season. The 29-year-old Toronto native has appeared in 614 career NHL games with Montreal, Los Angeles and Vancouver, recording 182 goals and 370 points.
Montreal receives forward Tyler Pitlick, prospect Emil Heineman, a first-round pick in the 2022 NHL draft and a fifth-round selection next year.
In other NHL news:
Jack Eichel will make his debut with the Golden Knights on Wednesday. It will be his first action following his trade from Buffalo and subsequent artificial disk replacement surgery on his neck in November. The 25-year-old was cleared for full contact last week and will return in time to face the league’s hottest team, the Avalanche.
Novak Djokovic said in an interview broadcast Tuesday that he is prepared to skip the French Open and Wimbledon if vaccination against the coronavirus is required for him to play.
Speaking to the BBC, the 20-time Grand Slam champion said he is not vaccinated and added that missing the next two majors, where he is the defending champion, and other tournaments is “the price that I am willing to pay.”
An attorney for Bob Baffert believes the Hall of Famer trainer and embattled Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit “will be fully exonerated” after stating to Kentucky racing stewards that the colt’s failed drug test for a steroid resulted from a prescribed topical salve rather than an injection.
Medina Spirit’s derby win is in jeopardy following the failed postrace drug test last May. Churchill Downs has suspended Baffert for two years following the latest in a recent series of failed tests by his horses. Representatives for Baffert and the horse met Monday with Kentucky Horse Racing Association stewards and contended there was no violation because state rules allow the use of topical salves.
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