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Sports Report: NIT Championship Tonight At MSG

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NCAA:

The Miami Hurricanes were down to their fourth point guard. They had four freshmen on the court during one stretch, and players found themselves in roles they never filled during the regular season.

And yet it's April and banged-up, short-handed Miami still has a game left. The Hurricanes face Stanford on Thursday at Madison Square Garden for the NIT championship.

Meanwhile the NIT and Madison Square Garden have agreed to a three-year contract extension to keep the tournament at the arena through 2018.

SUNY men’s basketball coaches won’t be traveling to Indiana for the Final Four. New York’s ban on non-essential state-funded travel to Indiana applies to the coaches who are employed by the state.

NBA:

In the NBA, Boston bested Indiana 100-87, Brooklyn edged New York 100-98, Washington topped Philadelphia 106-93, Charlotte won against Detroit 102-78, Milwaukee bested Chicago 95-91, Dallas beat Oklahoma City 135-131, James Harden poured in a career-high 51 points to lead Houston over Sacramento 115-111, Toronto trumped Minnesota 113-99, Utah bested Denver 98-84, the Clippers squeaked by Portland 126-122, and it was New Orleans over the Lakers 113-92.

The Miami Heat have ruled rookie guard Shabazz Napier out for the remainder of the regular season after he underwent surgery to repair a sports hernia yesterday. Napier is the third Heat player to see his season end early. The former Connecticut star who led his team to last year's NCAA championship averaged 5.1 points, 2.5 assists and 2.2 rebounds in his rookie year.

NHL:

Over on the ice, Buffalo beat Toronto 4-3, Philadelphia topped Pittsburgh 4-1, Anaheim bested Edmonton 5-1, and it was San Jose over Colorado 5-1.

MLB:

In baseball spring training, Boston tied Minnesota 4-4, Toronto beat Boston 9-7, Tampa Bay blanked the Yankees 3-0, St. Louis slid past the Mets 5-4, Pittsburgh tied Baltimore 3-3 in 10 innings, Houston slid past Detroit 3-2, Miami blanked Washington 8-0, the Dodgers tied Kansas City 4-4, Oakland beat the Angels 4-1, Arizona shut out Cincinnati 3-0, the White Sox tripled up Seattle 12-4, San Francisco beat Cleveland 5-2, the Cubs beat Milwaukee 11-7, San Diego defeated the White Sox 8-2, and it was Colorado over Texas 10-4.

In need of another healthy infielder by opening day, the New York Yankees have acquired Gregorio Petit from the Houston Astros for cash. New York says Petit will report to major league camp. He batted .278 with two homers and nine RBIs in 37 games with the Astros last season.

Boston Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez will have Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. The Red Sox say Dr. James Andrews will operate today in Gulf Breeze, Florida. Vazquez had been expected to do much of the catching for the Red Sox this season. He was placed on the 60-day disabled list on Monday, when the Red Sox acquired Sandy Leon from the Washington Nationals.

The Mets are working to complete a new contract with Juan Lagares that would guarantee the center fielder $23 million from 2016-19, including a buyout of a $9.5 million option for 2020. The 26-year-old hit .281 with four homers, 47 RBIs and 13 stolen bases last year, when he won his first Gold Glove.

The giant letters that spelled "Yankee Stadium" atop the original Bronx ballpark failed to find a buyer at an auction in New York.

They were estimated to fetch $300,000 to $600,000 at Sotheby's Wednesday.

Yankee legend Reggie Jackson owns the iconic 10-foot-high sign. Mr. October bought the letters after the Yankees' last game at the stadium in 2008.

The letters had adorned the ballpark, which was built in 1923, since 1976. They were there when Jackson hit three consecutive home runs in the sixth game of the 1977 World Series.

The 68-year-old Hall of Famer said he wanted "a new generation to own and enjoy this icon of the Yankees and of New York City."

The letters range from 2 to 10 feet in width, and light up electric blue.

MLS:

The New York Red Bulls have named Jason Baum as their senior director of communications.

The MLS team announced the hiring on Wednesday.

Baum will oversee the daily public relations and media operations. For the past nine years, he oversaw Rutgers' athletic communications, the department's official athletics website (ScarletKnights.com), the online digital network of Rutgers Athletics (RVision) and all broadcast opportunities for the department.

The York, Pennsylvania, native has worked at West Virginia, the University of Maryland and University of Central Florida.

NFL:

A man who sued Aaron Hernandez over being shot in the face in Florida has testified that Hernandez thought he was being followed by helicopters and that he was paranoid about his conversations being recorded. But the judge in Hernandez's Massachusetts murder trial ruled yesterday that Alexander Bradley could not testify before a jury about that.

©2015 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

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