#SportsReport: Nets Down Clippers; Bruins Top Flyers At Lake Tahoe
The Nets picked up their season-high sixth straight win and wrapped up a 5-0 road trip by beating the Clippers, 112-108. James Harden delivered 35 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists as Brooklyn won again without forward Kevin Durant. Kyrie Irving added 28 points and eight assists to the victory, which puts the Nets within a half-game of Philadelphia for the Eastern Conference overall lead.
Checking out Sunday's other NBA action:
The Knicks blew a 21-point lead before pulling out a 103-99 win over the Timberwolves. Julius Randle had 25 points, grabbed 14 rebounds and made the go-ahead free throw with 32 seconds left. RJ Barrett added 21 points for the Knicks in their last game played with no fans at Madison Square Garden.
The Boston Celtics continue to have trouble stringing together victories. The Celtics are back to .500 after coughing up a 24-point lead in the second half of a 120-115 loss at New Orleans. Brandon Ingram highlighted a 31-point performance by hitting a go-ahead 3-pointer with 33.3 second left in OT. Zion Williamson scored 24 of his 28 points after halftime and had 10 rebounds to help the Pelicans win for the second time in seven games. Josh Hart was instrumental in the comeback and delivered 17 points, 10 rebounds, three blocks and a steal. Jayson Tatum had 32 points and nine assists for Boston, which led 79-55 after Tristan Thompson's free throws midway through the third quarter.
The Raptors have a four-game winning streak after Pascal Siakam and Fred VanVleet scored 23 points apiece in a 110-103 decision over the 76ers. Chris Boucher scored 11 of his 17 points in the fourth quarter for Toronto, hitting three 3-point shots while the Raptors opened the period on a 15-8 run to take the lead for keeps. Joel Embiid had 25 points and 17 rebounds for the 76ers, who have dropped four straight road games.
Giannis Antetokounmpo furnished 38 points and 18 rebounds in guiding the Bucks to a 128-115 win against Sacramento. Khris Middleton dropped in 32 to as Milwaukee won its second straight since a five-game losing streak. Tyrese Haliburton scored a team-high 23 points in Sacramento's seventh consecutive loss.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 31 points and nine assists as the Thunder beat the Cavaliers, 117-101 to top a three-game skid. Al Horford had 16 points and eight rebounds and Hamidou Diallo scored 15 points off the bench in Oklahoma City's first win in six road games. Cleveland dropped its 10th in a row despite Jarrett Allen, who furnished 26 points on 11 of 11 shooting while grabbing 17 boards.
The Hawks had lost five of six and eight of 10 before Trae Young and Clint Capela furnished double-doubles in a 123-115 victory against the Nuggets. Young had 35 points and 15 assists, while Capela added 22 points and 10 rebounds. Jamal Murray had 30 points for the Nuggets, who trailed by as many as 22 in their fourth game in six days.
Nikola Vucevic had 37 points and 11 rebounds for the Magic in a 105-96 victory over the Pistons. Vucevic had his seventh 30-point game of the season, two days after his third career triple-double. Evan Fournier added a season-high 29 points for Orlando, which has won three straight for the first time since beginning the season 4-0.
In women's college basketball, Siena defeated Quinnipiac 63-60, and Virginia Tech outscored Syracuse 76-68.
In men's college basketball, Siena edged Niagara 68-66, UAlbany held off Stony Brook 67-59, and Holy Cross took down Army 67-51.
In top-25 men's basketball:
Michigan is a step closer to claiming the Big Ten regular-season title and a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament after winning a matchup of top-5 teams. The third-ranked Wolverines had five players score in double figures in a 92-87 victory over No. 4 Ohio State. Freshman center Hunter Dickinson led the way with 22 points and nine rebounds as Michigan improved to 16-1 overall and 11-1 in the conference. Eli Brooks finished with 17 points and Chaundee Brown came off the bench to add 15 and help the Wolverines overcome Duane Washington Jr.'s career-high 30 points. The Wolverines led by nine with 23 seconds left, but a pair of 3-poin ers from Washington around a layup by CJ Walker layup got the Buckeyes within three points with 3 seconds to go. Brooks sealed the win with a couple of foul shots. EJ Liddell delivered 23 points and 10 rebounds for the Buckeyes, who fell to 18-5 overall and 12-5 in the Big Ten.
Houston bounced back from a loss as Quentin Grimes contributed 20 points and eight rebounds to lead the sixth-ranked Cougars to a 90-52 rout of Cincinnati. Tramon Mark scored 12 points for Houston, which shot 47%, hit 19 of 21 from the line and turned 13 Bearcats turnovers into 22 points. Houston outscored Cincy, 32-7 over the final 11 minutes of the first half to take a 50-26 lead at the break.
Luka Garza became Iowa's all-time scoring leader while providing 23 in the 11th-ranked Hawkeyes' 74-68 victory over Penn State. Garza has 2,126 points for Iowa, breaking the record of 2,116 points set by Roy Marble from 1985-89. Garza also had 11 rebounds for his 10th double-double of the season.
No. 21 Wisconsin coasted to a 68-51 win over Northwestern as Micah Potter scored 19 points, D'Mitrik Trice had 13. Jonathan Davis and Brad Davison added 12 points apiece, helping the Badgers bounce back from consecutive losses to No. 3 Michigan and No. 11 Iowa.
David Pastrnak completed his second hat trick of the season by scoring with 2:56 remaining in the Bruins' 7-3 outdoor win over the Flyers at Lake Tahoe. Charlie Coyle, Trent Frederic and Nick Ritchie scored in a 1:39 span late in the second period to give the Bruins a 6-2 lead. Craig Smith, Brad Marchand, John Moore and Connor Clifton each had two assists in Boston's first win in three games.
The Washington Capitals avoided losing for the sixth time in their last eight games. Alex Ovechkin's power-play goal with 4:04 remaining lifted the Caps past the Devils, 4-3. Ovechkin's tally gave Washington a 4-2 lead, but New Jersey got within a goal when Nikita Gusev beat Craig Anderson with 11.9 seconds left. T.J. Oshie scored twice to end his nine-game goal drought and help Anderson pick up his first start and first victory since March.
Brady Tkachuk's overtime goal gave the Senators just their fifth victory in 20 games this season, 3-2 over the Canadiens. Drake Batherson and Josh Norris also scored a goal for Ottawa, while Matt Murray stopped 30 shots for Ottawa. Corey Perry and Nick Suzuki scored in Montreal's second loss in a row.
Winnipeg's Pierre-Luc Dubois scored 27 seconds into overtime to complete a 4-3 win over the Canucks and a sweep of their two-game set. Dubois finished with two goals and an assist, and Mark Schieffele supplied a goal and two helpers after the Canucks built a 2-0 lead. Vancouver's Elias Pettersson forced the extra period with a goal with 38 seconds left in regulation.
Novak Djokovic continues to creep closer to the all-time men's record for Grand Slams. The top-seeded Djokovic came away with his 18th slam and ninth Australian Open crown with a 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 victory over fourth seed Daniil Medvedev. Djokovic used superb serving, his usual relentless returning and baseline excellence to grab 11 of 13 games in one stretch before ending Medvedev's 20-match winning streak. It's the third consecutive Australian Open trophy for the 33-year-old Serbian and sixth in the last 10 major tournaments overall. He is within two of the men's record of 20 slams shared by Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.
Christopher Bell was brought back to Joe Gibbs Racing this year to fill out the team's roster of drivers. Bell chased down Joey Logano on the winding Daytona road course for his first career Cup victory and a coveted spot in NASCAR's playoffs. Bell was competing in his second race driving for JGR, which loaned him out to Leavine Family Racing last year for his rookie season. Logano had to settle for second after building a decent lead late in the race. Denny Hamlin was third to give Gibbs two cars in the top three. Kurt Busch finished fourth and Keselowski wound up fifth for a decent Team Penske rebound.
Max Homa may not have scripted it this way, but the 30-year-old California has earned a victory in the PGA tournament near his hometown. Homa captured the Genesis Invitational in a one-hole playoff against Tony Finau. The win was secured just minutes after Homa missed a 3-foot birdie putt on 18 to extend the tournament. Homa closed with a 5-under 66 and played the final 26 holes without a bogey for a minus-12 total. Finau recorded his 10th runner-up finish worldwide since his lone victory in the Puerto Rico Open five years ago. Sam Burns closed with a 69 and missed the playoff by one shot after leading the second and third rounds.
Meanwhile, Tiger Woods said he isn't sure if he'll be able to compete in the Masters this spring. Woods said during the CBS broadcast of the Genesis Invitational that he doesn't know when he will return from a fifth back surgery. The former No. 1 player had a microdiscectomy Dec. 23 and says he's a little stiff. When asked if he'll play at Augusta, Woods replied, "God, I hope so."
Center fielder Kevin Pillar and the Mets have finalized a one-year, $5 million contract that adds depth and balance to New York's outfield. Pillar split last season between Boston and Colorado, hitting a combined .288 with six home runs and 26 RBIs in 54 games. The Mets made roster room by designating pitcher Guillermo Heredia for assignment.
In other MLB news:
Colorado Rockies outfielder Ian Desmond has decided to opt out for a second straight season. The Gold Glove center fielder announced on his Instagram account that his "desire to be with my family is greater than my desire to go back and play baseball under these circumstances." No amount of lobbying by Rockies manager Bud Black could persuade the 35-year-old Desmond, who was scheduled to make $8 million this season. Desmond did leave the door open for a possible return by adding "for now" in his post. He vowed to "continue to train and watch how things unfold."
Right-hander Aaron Sanchez has finalized his $4 million, one-year contract with the Giants, giving the team another veteran starter with Johnny Cueto. The 28-year-old Sanchez sat out last year's shortened season while recovering from surgery on his pitching shoulder. He went 5-14 with a 5.89 ERA over 27 starts and 131 1/3 innings for Toronto and Houston in 2018.
Former Dodgers pitcher Stan Williams has died at 84 after being in hospice care due to the effects of cardio-pulmonary illness. The two-time All-Star helped the Dodgers win the 1959 World Series and was part of a powerhouse Los Angeles rotation that included Sandy Koufax, Don Drysdale and Johnny Podres from 1960-62. Known as the "Big Hurt" because of his penchant for pitching inside, Williams had a record of 109-94 and a 3.48 ERA during his 14-year career in the majors.
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