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January 3, 2020
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January 3, 2020
AP Sports




Update on the latest sports




Heat stifle Raptors


UNDATED (AP) – The Miami Heat remain unbeaten this season in games following a loss.
Bam Adebayo delivered 15 points and 14 rebounds as the NBA’s Southeast Division leaders silenced the visiting Raptors, 84-76. Tyler Herro (HEE’-roh) and Goran Dragic (DRAH’-gihch) each scored 13 for Miami, which is 2-0 against the Raptors this season and 9-0 after a loss.


Toronto shot just 31.5% and was 6 of 42 from 3-point range. Serge Ibaka (ih-BAH’-kah) had 19 points and 10 rebounds for Toronto.


Checking out Thursday’s other NBA action:


– Michael Porter Jr. scored a career-high 25 points and Jamal Murray added 22 in leading the Nuggets to their third win in four games, 124-116 over the Pacers. Nikola Jokic (nee-KOH’-lah YOH’-kihch) provided 12 of his 22 points in the fourth quarter and finished with seven rebounds as Denver dealt Indiana its fourth loss in six games.


– Montrezl (MAHN’-trehz) Harrell scored 23 points and Lou Williams chipped in with 22 points while the Clippers were completing a 126-112 win against Detroit. The Clippers finished without Paul George, who scored 12 points before missing the second half with a tight left hamstring.


– Dallas avoided its first three-game losing streak of the season as Luka Doncic (DAHN’-chihch) scored 15 of his 31 points in the fourth quarter of the Mavericks’ 123-111 victory over the Nets. Seth Curry finished with 25 points to help the Mavs win without injured starters Kristaps Porzingis (KRIHS’-tahps pohr-ZIHN’-gihs) and Tim Hardaway Jr.


– Bojan (BOY’-ahn) Bogdanovic contributed 19 points and the Jazz won for the 10th time in 12 games by downing the Bulls, 102-98. Rudy Gobert (goh-BEHR’) added 17 points and 12 rebounds for Utah, which went on a 24-4 run in the third quarter.


– Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 25 points and the Thunder overcame 30 points by DeMar DeRozan to beat the Spurs for the first time in their last 10 meetings, 109-103. Chris Paul had 10 of his 16 points in the final quarter to help Oklahoma City win its fourth straight.


– Devonte’ Graham nailed a tiebreaking 3-pointer with 26 seconds left to push the Hornets past the Cavaliers, 109-106. Terry Rozier led the Hornets with 30 points and Graham furnished all 16 of his points in the second half as Charlotte ended a six-game skid.


– The Timberwolves were 99-84 winners over the Warriors as Shabazz Napier and Robert Covington each scored 20 points for Minnesota. The Wolves ripped off an 18-3 run in the first quarter and led by as many as 22 before allowing a season low for points.


– The Kings’ eight-game slide is over after De’Aaron Fox scored 10 of his 27 points in the final five minutes of a 128-123 downing of the Grizzlies. Buddy Hield (heeld) had 26 points and seven rebounds for Sacramento, which trailed by 20 in the opening half.




Williamson returns to practice


UNDATED (AP) – Zion Williamson returned to practice with the New Orleans Pelicans on Thursday for the first time since he had arthroscopic knee surgery shortly before the season.


The first player taken in last year’s NBA draft said he “felt really good out there,” but cannot say when he’ll make his regular-season debut. Williamson said he first must pass “assessments” by team medical staff before the decision can rest solely with him.


Coach Alvin Gentry said Williamson participated fully in the on-court work, but the practice wasn’t particularly strenuous.


Williamson played in four preseason games before his injury, averaging 23.3 points and 6.5 rebounds. He had surgery in mid-October.


In other NBA news:


– The Magic could spend at least two months without forward Jonathan Isaac because of a knee injury suffered in Wednesday’s win over Washington. Test showed an injury to the posterior lateral corner of his left knee as well as a bone bruise, leaving the Magic without a sparkplug who is averaging career highs of 12 points, 6.9 rebounds, 2.4 blocks and 1.6 steals this season. The Magic say he won’t be re-evaluated for at least eight weeks, and that surgery may still be an option.


– Kings center Dewayne Dedmon has been fined $50,000 by the league for public comments about wanting a trade, in violation of the collective bargaining agreement. Dedmon told The Sacramento Bee on Sunday that he hasn’t been playing and wants to go were his talents are appreciated. The NBA calls the comment detrimental to the league.




Buffs surprise Ducks


UNDATED (AP) – Colorado isn’t listed in the current AP men’s basketball poll, but the Buffaloes have managed to go 2-1 versus ranked teams this season.


Colorado is 12-2 overall this season after McKinley Wright IV scored 11 of his 21 points in the final 5 minutes of the Buffaloes’ 74-65 victory against fourth-ranked Oregon. Tyler Bey added 15 points and grabbed 14 rebounds to help the Buffs improve to 9-0 all-time against the Ducks in Boulder.


The Buffaloes held Oregon to 3 of 18 shooting from 3-point range and built a 15-point lead early in the second half.


Payton Pritchard had 21 points for the Ducks, who are 11-3 after dropping their Pac-12 opener.


In other top-25 finals:


– Gonzaga picked up its seventh straight win as Killian Tillie had 22 points and Corey Kispert added 18 in an 85-72 decision over Portland. Ryan Woolridge had 15 points for the top-ranked Bulldogs, who are 15-1 after winning their West Coast Conference opener.


– Cassius Winston had 21 points and 14th-ranked Michigan State improved to 3-0 in the Big Ten Conference with a 76-56 drubbing of Illinois. Xavier Tillman had 19 points, seven rebounds, six assists and four blocks in the Spartans’ sixth consecutive win.


– Obi Toppin dropped in 20 points and No. 20 Dayton scored 18 straight in the first half to take control in an 84-58 rout of La Salle. Jalen Crutcher had 15 points and Ryan Mikesell scored 11 for the 12-2 Flyers.




Sharks cool off Penguins


UNDATED (AP) – The Pittsburgh Penguins were cooled off by a San Jose Sharks squad that had lost 11 of its previous 13 games.


Brent Burns notched a power-play goal 2:02 into overtime to send the Sharks past the Pens, 3-2 in Pittsburgh. Tomas Hertl and Logan Couture had first-period goals to put San Jose ahead, 2-1. The Penguins tied it on Patric Hornqvist’s second goal of the night, getting past Aaron Dell with 51 seconds left in the middle stanza.


Dell finished with 36 saves as the Sharks handed the Penguins just their second loss in nine games.
Elsewhere on NHL ice:


– Nazem Kadri (NA’-zehm KA’-dree) scored twice and Nathan MacKinnon provided a goal and three assists as the Avalanche ended a four-game home winless skid, 7-3 over the Blues. Rookie defenseman Cale Makar added a power-play goal and an assist for the Avalanche, who also ended a six-game losing streak to St. Louis.


– Pierre-Luc Dubois scored 52 seconds into overtime to send the Blue Jackets to their seventh win in nine games, 2-1 over the Bruins. Elvis Merzlikins stopped 25 shots and Sonny Milano also tallied to help Columbus overcome David Pastrnak’s (PAHS’-tur-nahks) league-leading 30th goal for Boston.


– P.K. Subban (SOO’-ban) and Nico Hischier (HEE’-shur) beat Semyon Varlamov (SEHM’-yahn vahr-LAH’-mahv) in a 2:36 span bridging the second and third periods to rally the Devils past the Islanders, 2-1. Mackenzie Blackwood stopped 29 shots and blanked New York after Brock Nelson scored 7:33 into the second period to put the Isles ahead. New York has dropped its last four home games.


– Evgenii Dadonov (dah-DAH’-nahv) furnished two goals and an assist as the Panthers doubled up the Senators, 6-3. Jonathan Huberdeau (HOO’-bur-doh) had a goal and an assist in Florida’s sixth victory in eight games.


– The Lightning own a five-game winning streak after Andrei Vasilevskiy (va-sih-LEHV’-skee) stopped 38 shots in a 2-1 decision over the Canadiens. Anthony Cirelli and Nikita Kucherov (KOO’-cheh-rahv) tallied to help Vasilevskiy improve to 10-1-2 all-time against Montreal.


– William Nylander (NEE’-lan-dur) had two goals and an assist as the Maple Leafs beat the Jets, 6-3 to extend their point streak to nine games. Kasperi Kapanen (kas-PEHR’-ee KAP’-ah-nehn) had a goal and assist in support of Frederik Andersen, who stopped 45 shots in helping Toronto move to 8-0-1 in its last nine.


– Jack Eichel (EYE’-kul) scored on a penalty shot 1:09 into overtime to complete the Sabres’ comeback in a 3-2 victory over the Oilers. Sam Reinhart and Curtis Lazar also scored for Buffalo, which fell behind 2-0 just seven minutes in before ending a four-game losing streak.


– Johnny Gaudreau opened the scoring and then set up Sean Monahan’s winning goal midway through the second period as the Flames knocked off the Rangers, 4-3 to end a five-game home losing streak. Mikael Backlund scored while Calgary was killing a 5-3 situation, although the Rangers followed that with power-play goals from Jacob Trouba (TROO’-bah) and Filip Chytil (HEE’-tul).


– Christian Dvorak triggered a three-goal third period by scoring in the opening minute to ignite the Coyotes’ 4-2 win over the Ducks. Brad Richardson followed with his second goal and Carl Soderberg had his 12th a minute later.



– Max Pacioretty (pash-uh-REH’-tee) scored twice while the Golden Knights erupted for four goals in the first period of a 5-4 win against the Flyers. Shea Theodore, Pacioretty and Jon Merrill beat Carter Hart in a 2:45 span of the opening frame to help Vegas improve to 3-0 on its seven-game homestand.


– Adam Gaudette scored the tiebreaking goal with 4:11 remaining to give the Canucks a 7-5 verdict over the Blackhawks. Bo Horvat had two goals and an assist, and J.T. Miller collected four points with three assists to help Vancouver win its sixth in a row, the team’s longest victory streak since December 2013.




Sabres move Scandella, get Frolik


BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) – The Buffalo Sabres have worked out two trades that free up cap space while opening room on their crowded blueline.


The Sabres shipped defenseman Marco Scandella to the Canadiens and picked up Michael Frolik (froh-LEEK’) from the Flames. Buffalo also acquired a fourth-round draft pick from Montreal and sent it to Calgary.


Frolik has just five goals and five assists in 38 games with the Flames this year after scoring 15 or more eight times in 12 NHL seasons. Scandella can become a free agent this July as he plays out the final year of a five-year, $20 million contract.




Yankees’ German gets 81-game ban


UNDATED (AP) – Domingo German (hehr-MAHN’) won’t pitch off a major league mound until June.
The New York Yankees starting hurler will miss the first 63 games of the upcoming season as part of an 81-game ban for violating Major League Baseball’s domestic violence policy.


German was put on administrative leave on Sept. 19 while MLB investigated an alleged domestic violence incident involving his girlfriend, with whom he has at least one child. He missed the final nine games of the 2019 regular season and all nine of New York’s postseason games. Those missed games will count toward his ban.


The right-hander was the Yankees’ winningest pitcher last season, going 18-4 with a 4.03 ERA in 24 starts and three relief appearances.


German’s ban is the longest levied by MLB under its domestic violence policy for a player who was not formally charged. He has agreed not to appeal the punishment.


In other MLB news:


– The White Sox and Cuban outfielder Luis Robert have agreed to a six-year, $50 million contract. The 22-year-old Robert has hit .312 over three minor league seasons, including 32 home runs, 92 RBIs, 108 runs and 36 stolen bases last season.


– The Red Sox have signed catcher Kevin Plawecki to a $900,000 contract for this year and designated first baseman/outfielder Sam Travis for assignment to make space on the 40-man roster. The 28-year-old Plawecki is a five-year big league veteran with the New York Mets and Cleveland Indians. He’s a career .218 hitter and batted .222 with three homers, 17 RBIs and a .629 OPS in 59 games with Cleveland last season.




Wayne, Polamalu among HOF finalists


UNDATED The 15 modern-era player finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2020 have been announced, and the list includes first-year eligible players Troy Polamalu (poh-lah-MAH’-loo) and Reggie Wayne.


LeRoy Butler, Torry Holt, Sam Mills, Zach Thomas and Bryant Young are first-time finalists who previously have been eligible for the Hall.


The other player finalists are Steve Atwater, Tony Boselli, Isaac Bruce and Alan Faneca (FAN’-eh-kah), along with Steve Hutchinson, Edgerrin James, John Lynch and Richard Seymour.


In other NFL news:


– The Titans are getting back cornerback Adoree’ Jackson in time for their AFC wild-card game Saturday against the Patriots. Jackson has practiced all week and is listed as available in their injury report. Jackson had missed the past four games after hurting a foot in a win Dec. 1 at Indianapolis.


– San Francisco linebacker Kwon Alexander has returned to practice for the first time since tearing his pectoral muscle midway through the season. The Niners opened up the three-week practice window for Alexander to be activated from injured reserve in the playoffs. He has not been cleared yet for contact.


– Former Bengals quarterback, offensive coordinator and head coach Sam Wyche (wysh) has died of melanoma at age 74, according to the team. One of the Bengals’ original quarterbacks, Wyche coached the Bengals to their second Super Bowl during the 1988 season by using a no-huddle offense that forced the league to change its substitution rules. He played three seasons with Cincinnati, throwing for 12 touchdowns with eight interceptions.




Cincinnati, Tennessee get bowl wins


UNDATED (AP) – No. 23 Cincinnati has capped its 11-3 season by taking the Birmingham Bowl.


Desmond Ridder ran for 105 yards and three touchdowns while also throwing a scoring pass as the Bearcats blew out Boston College, 38-6. Cincinnati outgained the Eagles, 459-164 in reaching 11 wins for the second straight season and fourth in program history.


Michael Warren Jr. had 105 yards rushing for the Bearcats.


BC scored its only points on special teams as Mike Palmer blocked a field goal and Brandon Sebastian scooped it up and returned it 67 yards in the third quarter.


In Thursday’s other bowl game:


– Tennessee scored two touchdowns in a late 30-second span to erase a double-digit deficit before holding off Indiana, 23-22 in the Gator Bowl. The Hossiers led 22-9 before Quavaris Crouch scored on a 1-yard plunge and Eric Gray recovered a surprise onside kick that barely went the mandatory 10 yards. Gray scored from 16 yards out a few plays later to put the Vols on top for good.




Kmet leaving South Bend


SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) – Cole Kmet is the latest Notre Dame player to give up his final year of eligibility to enter the NFL draft.


Kmet initially said in November that he intended to return before announcing on Twitter that he was turning pro. He joins running back Tony Jones Jr. and safety Alohi Gilman in making themselves available for the April draft. Quarterback Ian Book will return to Notre Dame next season.




Finns beat US in world quarters


OSTRAVA, Czech Republic (AP) – The United States has been eliminated from medal contention in the world junior hockey championship by falling to Finland, 1-0 in the quarterfinals.


Joonas Oden scored a power-play goal with 15:37 remaining to give the Finns a victory in a rematch of last year’s final.


Finland will take on Canada in the semifinals on Saturday, with Sweden facing Russia.




Kyrgios serves up funds for Australia at debut of ATP Cup


BRISBANE, Australia (AP) – Nick Kyrgios (KEER’-ee-ohs) served 20 aces in a win that cost him $4,000 in local currency and helped set up Australia’s opening ATP Cup win over Germany.


It was all for a cause. Kyrgios, so often considered the bad boy of tennis for his emotional behavior and outbursts, promised to donate 200 Australian dollars – $140 U.S. – for every ace he serves this month to go toward the recovery effort from the wildfires that have devastated large parts of Australia, leaving at least 19 people dead and 1,400 homes destroyed.


Kyrgios devised the cash for aces idea earlier in the week, and inspired other fundraising efforts from other players and from organizers of the ATP Cup and the Australian Open. He said he was lifted by the crowd, and motivated by the plight of people struggling in parts of the country impacted by the fires, including his hometown of Canberra (KAN’-behr-uh). A tournament had to be relocated from the Australian capital to Victoria state earlier Friday because of the proximity of the fires.



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