#SportsReport: Knicks Top Warriors; Bruins Down Flyers
RJ Barrett had a career-high 28 points and the Knicks matched their longest winning streak of the season at three games by beating the Warriors, 119-104. Julius Randle added 16 points, 17 rebounds and nine assists to help New York continue its much-needed momentum following a five-game losing streak. Golden State guard Stephen Curry scored 30 points with five 3-pointers but shot just 9 of 19.
In other NBA action:
The Los Angeles Lakers have made a successful start to their seven-game road trip by winning for the 12th time in 16 games. LeBron James pumped in a season-high 34 points and the Lakers bounced back from Monday's meltdown against Golden State by downing the Bucks, 113-106 in Milwaukee. The Lakers shot 19 of 37 from 3-point range, with James going 6 of 10 and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope making 7 of 10. Caldwell-Pope finished with 23 points. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 25 points and 12 rebounds for Milwaukee, but he also committed nine turnovers. Jrue Holiday scored 22 points and Khris Middleton finished with 20 for the Bucks, who have dropped two straight since a 9-4 start.
The Jazz made it seven straight wins as Donovan Mitchell poured in a season-best 36 points in their 129-118 downing of the Pelicans. Mike Conley scored 20 points and Jordan Clarkson had 19 for Utah, which has the league's longest active win streak. Joe Ingles made a fast break layup on a feed from Mitchell that capped a 21-2 run to give Utah a 96-80 lead with 4:27 to play in the third quarter.
In NBA news:
The Memphis Grizzlies are the latest NBA team that will have a coronavirus-related extended break from games. The league announced Thursday that Memphis' next three contests will be postponed because of a lack of available players. That decision came one day after the Grizzlies' game at Portland was also called off.
Hornets starting center Cody Zeller is expected to return to action Friday night against the Chicago Bulls after missing four weeks with a broken bone in his left hand. Zeller went through a scrimmage on Wednesday and coach James Borrego has listed him as probable for the game.
The Cavaliers are finalizing a trade to send troubled forward Kevin Porter Jr. to the Houston Rockets for a protected second-round pick. That's according a person familiar with the deal. Porter's days with the Cavs came to an end late last week when he had an outburst in the team's locker room after learning his space had been given to newly acquired forward Taurean Prince.
In women’s college basketball, No. 1 Louisville took down No. 23 Syracuse 67-54, and No. 3 UConn beat No. 25 Tennessee 67-61.
In top-25 men's basketball:
A huge run allowed unranked Indiana to post its most impressive win of the season. The Hoosiers trailed 53-44 before reeling off a 22-3 spurt in an 81-69 victory at fourth-ranked Iowa. The Hawkeyes didn't have a field goal for an 11-minute stretch until Joe Toussaint's layup with 59.6 seconds remaining. Trayce Jackson-Davis scored 23 points despite second-half foul trouble. Rob Phinisee added 18 points for the Hoosiers, who ended the Hawkeyes' five-game winning streak. Luka Garza led Iowa with 28 points and 12 rebounds, his seventh double-double of the season.
Cody Riley scored 13 points and No. 24 UCLA closed on a 7-2 run to pull out a 61-57 victory over California. Riley hit a go-ahead, basket and Jules Bernard followed with a 3-pointer that gave the Bruins a 59-55 lead. Bernard finished with 11 points to help the 12-2 Bruins overcome 14 turnovers.
In college basketball news, Southern California postponed Thursday's men's basketball game against Stanford due to a suspected COVID-19-related issue within the Trojans program. The announcement came within an hour of the scheduled tip in Santa Cruz, California. The Pac-12 will work with both schools to try to reschedule. The game was originally scheduled for Dec. 13, but was called off because of a case of COVID-19 within the USC program.
The Bruins scored four times in the third period before Jake DeBrusk delivered the lone shootout goal to give Boston a 5-4 triumph over the Flyers. The B's didn't take their first lead of the night until Nick Ritchie and Brandon Carlo scored in a 1:56 span late in regulation. James van Riemsdyk provided two goals for Philadelphia, including the tying tally.
In other NHL action:
Jordan Eberle scored twice and Semyon Varlamov stopped 30 shots as the Islanders won for the third time in four games, 4-1 over the Devils. Varlamov hadn't allowed a goal in seven periods this season until Nathan Bastian beat him 2:10 in the second. Mathew Barzal had a goal and two assists for New York, and Brock Nelson capped the scoring with a power-play goal.
The Tampa Bay Lightning have continued their perfect start to the season. Brayden Point scored 1:56 into overtime to complete the Lightning's 3-2 victory over the Blue Jackets. Tampa Bay took a 2-1 lead on goals by Blake Coleman and Mathieu Joseph 1:23 apart late in the second period. Columbus picked up a point courtesy of Nick Foligno's power-play goal 47 seconds into the third. Andre Vasilevskiy stopped 23 shots for the Lightning, who have outscored their opponents 13-5 win winning their first three games. Joonas Korpisalo handled 34 shots for the Jackets.
Adrian Kempe's goal with 3:50 remaining was the winner as the Kings rallied from a two-goal deficit to beat the Avalanche, 4-2. Drew Doughty and Gabriel Vilardi also scored against Hunter Miska, who was making his first NHL start. Mikko Rantanen and Nathan MacKinnon each had a goal and an assist for Colorado.
The Canadiens rolled to a 7-3 win at Vancouver to become the first team in 46 years to collect at least one point in its first five road games. Joel Armia had two goals and two assists to back Jake Allen, who needed to stop 14 shots in his 150th career victory. Tyler Toffoli had two more goals and an assist just a day after recording a hat trick against the Canucks.
The Jets are 3-1 after Nikolaj Ehlers and Mark Scheifele each had a goal and an assist in a 4-1 verdict over the Senators. Connor Hellebuyck stopped 28 shots and blanked Ottawa before Chris Tierney tallied with 2:57 remaining. Adam Lowry and Blake Wheeler also scored for Winnipeg.
In NHL news, the Washington Capitals will be without three-time NHL MVP Alex Ovechkin and three other prominent players for at least the next four games because of COVID-19 protocols. That announcement comes from coach Peter Laviolette and leaves the Caps without the quartet for two games each against the Sabres and Islanders. Ovechkin was placed on the league's unavailable list Wednesday along with center Evgeny Kuznetsov, goaltender Ilya Samsonov and defenseman Dmitry Orlov. Laviolette indicated there was a positive virus test and the league did contact tracing. Washington was fined $100,000 for breaking pandemic protocol for the players being in a hotel room together unmasked.
The Philadelphia Eagles appear to have found their next head coach. Two people familiar with the decision say the Eagles will hire Nick Sirianni, who has served as the Colts' offensive coordinator since 2018. He worked under Indianapolis coach Frank Reich, who was offensive coordinator in Philadelphia when the Eagles won the Super Bowl three years ago. The 39-year-old Sirianni previously served as an assistant coach with the Chiefs and Chargers. The Eagles fired Doug Pederson following a 4-11-1 season, less than three years after he led the team to the franchise's only Super Bowl title.
In other NFL news:
Patrick Mahomes is giving strong indication that he'll be the Kansas City Chiefs' starting quarterback for the AFC championship game Sunday against Buffalo. The 2018 NFL MVP took the majority of first-team reps in practice Thursday, even though he remains in the NFL's concussion protocol. Mahomes was initially listed as a full participant when he returned to practice Wednesday, but the Chiefs quickly corrected his status to limited because he remains in the protocol. He must be cleared by team physicians and an independent neural consult before the reigning Super Bowl MVP can be a full participant in practice or play in a game.
The Steelers have signed former Washington quarterback Dwayne Haskins to a futures contract, giving the 23-year-old a second chance after he flamed out in the nation's capital in less than two seasons. 15th overall pick in the 2019 draft was ineffective on the field and a disruption off it, getting fined $40,000 and losing his captaincy for breaking COVID-19 rules by partying with several people without a mask. The signing comes as the Steelers await word on whether Ben Roethlisberger will return for an 18th season with the team.
The Rams have hired Raheem Morris to be their new defensive coordinator. He replaces Brandon Staley, who became the Chargers' head coach last weekend. Morris finished last season as the Atlanta Falcons' interim head coach, going 4-7 as Dan Quinn's temporary replacement.
The Jaguars have hired Trent Baalke as general manager, removing the interim tag from his title and pairing him with new coach Urban Meyer. Baalke served as Jacksonville's director of pro personnel in 2020, returning to a front-office role for the first time since San Francisco fired him and coach Chip Kelly following the 2016 season.
The Packers have brought back veteran defensive back Tramon Williams and added him to their practice squad. The 37-year-old Williams played for the Packers from 2007-14 and from 2018-19.
The Vikings say offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak has retired after a 36-year career as an NFL player, coach and adviser. The Vikings ranked fourth in the league in total yards and tied for sixth in offensive touchdowns in their only season with Kubiak in charge of the offense. The decision was expected and will force head coach Mike Zimmer to hire a sixth offensive coordinator in six seasons.
Former Green Bay general manager Ted Thompson has died at 68 less than two years after being diagnosed with an autonomic nerve disorder. Thompson's 13-year run as Green Bay Packers general manager included their 2010 Super Bowl championship season. He drafted many notable players on the current roster, including two-time MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
Notre Dame's football program is on NCAA probation until next January. The school admitted to recruiting violations in 2019 in which a now-former assistant had an impermissible in-person meeting with one prospect and sent impermissible text messages to another. Official recruiting visits will be reduced from 56 to 55 to this year and there will be cuts in number of days prospects can make unofficial campus visits.
A person familiar with the deal tells The Associated Press that catcher Jason Castro has agreed to a two-year, $7 million contract with the Houston Astros, pending completion of a successful physical. This will be Castro's second stint with the team. He was selected in the first round of the 2008 amateur draft by the Astros and spent his first six MLB seasons with the team.
Also, utilityman Daniel Robertson has agreed to a one-year, $900,000 package with the Brewers, a deal that allows him to earn an additional $400,000 in performance bonuses. Robertson batted .333 with no homers and two RBIs in 17 games with the Giants last season while making appearances at shortstop, second base, third base and the outfield.
Spanish tennis player Paula Badosa says she has tested positive for COVID-19 while in quarantine in Australia, where she was preparing for Australian Open. The 23-year-old reached the fourth round at last year's French Open. Badosa was among the 72 tennis players who have been placed under a stricter lockdown and are not allowed to leave their hotel rooms at all for two weeks after being on a flight with someone who tested positive upon arrival in Melbourne.
Brandon Hagy is the first-round leader of The American Express. Hagy racked up 10 birdies in an 8-under 64 that puts him one stroke ahead of Byeong Hun An. He had three streaks of three straight birdies, just three days after replacing Jon Rahm in the field. An made seven birdies without a bogey in his 65. Max Homa, Martin Laird and Si Woo Kim shot 66.
A GOP-backed bill in Montana that would ban Transgender kids from playing on school sports teams for the gender with which they identify has advanced. It's one of more than a dozen states where lawmakers are proposing restrictions on athletics or gender-confirming health care for trans minors this year. The proposals run counter to an executive order signed by Democratic President Joe Biden during his first day in office prohibiting discrimination based on gender identity in school sports and elsewhere.
© The Associated Press 2021. All Rights Reserved.