AP Sports

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March 14, 2018
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March 14, 2018
AP Sports



Update on the latest in sports:

Towns leads Wolves to big road win

UNDATED (AP) – Karl-Anthony Towns took a hit to the mouth before giving the Washington Wizards a punch to the gut.

Towns scored a season-high 37 points on 13 of 17 shooting and grabbed 10 rebounds as the Minnesota Timberwolves rallied for a 116-111 win at Washington. The Wizards led by 10 with 10 minutes left before Towns and Andrew Wiggins led a 20-3 run. Towns added a 3-pointer with 29 seconds remaining to put the Wolves ahead by five.

Wiggins finished with 16 points and Nemanja Bjelica (NEH’-man-yah BYEHL-EETS’-kuh) had 17, plus eight rebounds and seven assists.

Minnesota is within two games of the Trail Blazers for third place in the NBA’s Western Conference.

The Wizards drop their second straight and now lead the Southeast Division by two games over Miami.

Checking out Tuesday’s other NBA action:

– Jonas Valanciunas (YOH’-nuhs val-ehn-CHOO’-nuhs) had 26 points and 14 rebounds as the Raptors won their ninth in a row, 116-102 at Brooklyn. Toronto outscored the Nets 59-35 in the second half and won for the 16th time in 17 games to open a four-game lead over Boston in the East.

– Myles Turner hit a pair of clutch free throws with 21.5 seconds left and finished with 25 points as Indiana beat the 76ers 101-98 to stay a half-game ahead of the Cavaliers for the third seed in the East. Thaddeus Young added 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Pacers, who are a season-high 12 games over .500 following their third straight win.

– LeBron James produced 28 points, 13 boards and 11 assists in his 69th career triple-double to highlight the Cavaliers’ wire-to-wire win over the Suns, 129-107. Kyle Korver went 5-for-6 from 3-point range and had 22 points to help Cleveland bounce back from losses to the Clippers and Lakers in Los Angeles.

– Russell Westbrook recorded the 100th triple-double of his career and the Thunder scored 16 straight points in the fourth quarter to beat the Hawks, 119-107. Westbrook scored 32 points, dished out 12 assists and grabbed 12 rebounds in becoming the fourth player with 100 triple-doubles.

– The Pelicans knocked off the Hornets, 119-115 as Anthony Davis contributed 31 points, 14 rebounds and five blocked shots. Jrue Holiday highlighted a 25-point, nine-assist performance with 10 points in the final 2:39, starting with a 3 that put the Pelicans in front.

– The Clippers won for the fifth time in six games as DeAndre Jordan dominated with 29 points and 18 rebounds in a 112-106 decision over the Bulls. Lou Williams contributed 26 points and Tobias Harris added 18 for Los Angeles.

– The Jazz had an easy time getting their seventh consecutive win as Rudy Gobert had 22 points and 12 rebounds in a 110-79 romp over the Pistons. Joe Ingles added 17 points, seven assists and seven rebounds for Utah, which led by 21 after one quarter.

– LaMarcus Aldridge scored 24 points and the Spurs built a 25-point halftime lead in a 108-72 thrashing of the Magic. Patty Mills finished with 13 points as San Antonio won for just the fourth time in 12 games. The Spurs, Jazz and Clippers remain in a virtual tie for the last two Western Conference playoff berths.

– Isaiah Thomas scored 12 of his 23 points in the fourth quarter of the Lakers’ 112-103 win against the Nuggets. Julius Randle and Kyle Kuzma each had 26 points and 13 rebounds for Los Angeles.

– The Mavericks were 110-97 winners at New York behind Harrison Barnes’ 30 points. Rookie Dennis Smith Jr. chipped in 17 points and Yogi Ferrell scored eight of his 10 during a 14-0 run that put Dallas ahead 78-64 in the third quarter.



Radford gets first NCAA tourney win

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) – Radford and St. Bonaventure have advanced to the second round of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

Travis Fields Jr. and Ed Polite Jr. each scored 13 points as the Highlanders beat LIU Brooklyn, 71-61 in an opening-round game at Dayton, Ohio. Carlik Jones added 12 points and 10 rebounds in helping Radford get its first-ever NCAA Tournament win.

The Blackbirds got within a point with five minutes remaining before the Highlanders went on a 9-1 run. Jashaun Agosto had a game-high 16 points for LIU Brooklyn, which is winless in seven trips to the tournament.

Radford next faces top seed Villanova on Thursday.

St. Bonaventure can prepare for a Thursday meeting with No. 6 Florida after stunning UCLA, 65-58. Courtney Stockard returned from a hamstring injury and scored 26 points to help the Bonnies get their first NCAA Tournament win in 48 years.

Jaylen Adams made a jumper and three free throws in the final minute after missing 14 of his first 15 shots.



Hunter to miss NCAA tourney

UNDATED (AP) – Top-ranked and top-seeded Virginia will be without forward De’Andre Hunter for the entire NCAA Tournament because of a broken left wrist suffered during the ACC tourney.

The ACC’s sixth man of the year averaged 9.2 points and 3.5 rebounds in 33 games this season, reaching double figures 16 times and leading the Cavaliers in scoring on six occasions.

Hunter is expected to need 10 to 12 weeks to recover from next Monday’s surgery.



Brees, Saints work out extension

UNDATED (AP) – The New Orleans Saints are hanging onto Drew Brees (breez).

A person familiar with the contract says the quarterback and the Saints have worked out a two-year, $50 million extension, one day before he was due to become a free agent.

Brees has said he wanted to finish his career in New Orleans, where he has played since 2006, won a Super Bowl and led what has been one of the most productive offenses in the NFL since he and coach Sean Payton arrived.

The 39-year-old Brees completed an NFL-record 72 percent of his passes last season for 4,334 yards and 23 touchdowns against eight interceptions. He ranked fourth in the NFL in yards passing and the Saints ranked second in the NFL in total offense.

In other NFL news:

– A person with knowledge of the situation said quarterback Sam Bradford and the Arizona Cardinals have agreed to a one-year, $20 million contract with a 2019 option for $20 million. The No. 1 overall pick in the 2010 draft signed with Minnesota in 2016 and missed most of the season after undergoing surgery to repair a torn meniscus. Bradford has started all 80 of his NFL games for the St. Louis Rams, Philadelphia Eagles and Minnesota, completing 63 percent of his passes for his career.

– The Cardinals have released veteran running back Adrian Peterson, who spent a half-season with the team after opening last year with New Orleans. The seven-time All Pro rushed for 134 yards in a win over Tampa Bay and 159 in a win over San Francisco. Peterson gained 448 yards on 129 carries in six games for Arizona before being sidelined with a neck injury.

– The Packers have cut veteran Jordy Nelson, the third-leading receiver in franchise history and one of Aaron Rodgers’ top targets in the passing game. Nelson had 550 receptions and 69 touchdown catches in 10 seasons in Green Bay, but his production declined last season with Rodgers sidelined much of the year by a collarbone injury. He had 53 receptions for 482 yards and six scores in 2017, a year after winning Comeback Player of the Year honors.

– ESPN reports that Case Keenum plans to sign with the Broncos when free agency opens Wednesday. The 30-year-old Keenum is considered the second-best QB available on the open market. He guided Minnesota to the NFC championship game after replacing an injured Sam Bradford last season.

– Malcolm Butler’s agent says the cornerback and the Titans have agreed to a five-year deal worth more than $60 million, including $30 million guaranteed. Butler spent the past four seasons with the New England Patriots and has eight career interceptions.

– Free agent quarterback Kirk Cousins is predictably the top priority on Minnesota’s offseason shopping list. ESPN says Cousins will visit with the Vikings on Wednesday, although his agent says no decision has been made. The Jets and Cardinals were the other clubs expected to pursue Cousins, who has played consecutive seasons playing for Washington on a franchise tag salary.

– The Giants have agreed to a contract with veteran running back Jonathan Stewart, who was released by the Carolina Panthers after 10 seasons. The 30-year-old Stewart is Carolina’s all-time leading rusher with 7,318 yards, and his 51 rushing touchdowns rank second in team history.

-The Chiefs have agreed to deals with wide receiver Sammy Watkins and linebacker Anthony Hitchens. The 24-year-old Watkins is said to be signing a three-year, $48 million contract with $30 million in guarantees after spending last season with the Los Angeles Rams. Hitchens agreed to a five-year deal that The Kansas City Star reported will be worth about $9 million per year.

– A person familiar with the negotiations says receiver Danny Amendola is discussing a contract offer from the Dolphins and is likely to sign with them when the NFL’s new year begins Wednesday. Former Chiefs receiver Albert Wilson is expected to sign a three-year, $24 million deal with Miami. Wilson and Amendola would replace three-time Pro Bowl receiver Jarvis Landry, whom the Dolphins have agreed to trade to the Cleveland Browns for two draft picks.

– Two people familiar with the deal say tight end Trey Burton has worked out a four-year, $32 million contract with the Bears. Burton threw a touchdown pass to quarterback Nick Foles in Philadelphia’s victory over New England in the Super Bowl.

– The Eagles have released veteran tight end Brent Celek (SHE’-lehk) to save $4 million under the salary cap. Celek was the longest-tenured player on the team, missing only one game in 11 seasons.

– Jaguars receiver Allen Robinson tells ESPN he plans to sign a three-year, $42 million package with the Chicago Bears.

– The Lions have re-signed safety Tavon Wilson, who has started 23 of 25 games the last two years with Detroit.

– A person familiar with the situation confirms to The Associated Press that free agent defensive tackle Star Lotulelei (loh-too-LAY’-lee) has agreed to a five-year contract with the Bills.

– Bills defensive tackle Kyle Williams is putting off retirement by signing a contract to return for a 13th season in Buffalo.

– Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Paul Posluszny (pahs-LOOS’-nee), is retiring from the NFL after 11 seasons.

– Prosecutors say former Raiders cornerback Sean Smith has been sentenced to serve a year in jail after admitting he beat his sister’s boyfriend in July. He was also sentenced to five years of probation and was taken into custody after the court hearing.



Bruins rally with 5-goal 3rd period

UNDATED (AP) – The Boston Bruins put together a late five-goal flurry as they try to wrap up at least a third seed in the NHL’s Eastern Conference playoffs.

David Pastrnak (PAS’-tur-nak) registered a hat trick while the B’s tallied five times over the final 10 minutes to beat the Hurricanes, 6-4 in Carolina. Matt Grzelcyk, Pastrnak and Danton Heinen scored in a span of 77 seconds to turn a 4-1 Bruins deficit into a 4-all tie. Pastrnak’s power-play goal put Boston ahead with 3:30 left before he added an empty-netter to complete his first career hat trick.

Brad Marchand had a goal and two assists for the Bruins, who snapped a three-game road losing streak and moved within four points of Tampa Bay for the Atlantic Division and conference leads.

The Lightning wasted J.T. Miller’s hat trick in a 7-4 loss to the Senators. Mike Hoffman scored twice to help Ottawa complete a sweep of its two-game trip through Florida.

Elsewhere on NHL ice:

– Pekka Rinne (PEH’-kuh REE’-nay) turned back 32 shots as the Predators moved into a tie with the Lightning for the league’s top record by downing the Jets, 3-1. Kevin Fiala, Austin Watson and Viktor Arvidsson scored in the first nine minutes to help Nashville win for the 11th time in 12 games, a hot streak that gives them an eight-point lead over the Jets in the Central Division.

– J.T. Compher registered his first two-goal game and Nathan MacKinnon notched his 33rd of the season as the Avalanche whipped the Wild, 5-1. Semyon Varlamov made 33 saves in helping Colorado pull into a tie with the Stars for the first wild card in the West.

– Mike Smith handled 28 shots and Johnny Gaudreau provided the lone goal as the Flames downed the Oilers, 1-0. Smith picked up his 36th career shutout and Calgary stayed two points behind the Avs for the final Western Conference playoff slot.

– Artturi Lekkonen and Brendan Gallagher scored power-play goals 35 seconds apart in the second period of the Canadiens’ 4-2 win against the Stars. Nikita Scherbak also scored with the man advantage as Montreal prevented Dallas from strengthening its playoff chances.

– Arizona blew a two-goal lead in the last eight minutes of regulation before Clayton Keller and Alex Goligoski (goh-lih-GAHS’-kee) scored shootout goals to lift the Coyotes over the Kings, 4-3. Jeff Carter scored twice in a 5:39 span of the third period to tie the game, allowing Los Angeles move two points ahead of the Ducks for third place in the Pacific Division.



Eichel practices, but return to lineup unknown

UNDATED (AP) – Buffalo Sabres leading scorer Jack Eichel (EYE’-kul) isn’t sure when he’ll be cleared to play.

Eichel has returned to practice after spraining his right ankle a month ago. He says he’d like to start playing as soon as possible, but he adds the timetable will depend on his conditioning level and how his ankle responds to the lengthy on-ice session Tuesday.

Eichel has scored 22 goals and 53 points in 55 games this season.

Also in the NHL

– Penguins goaltender Matt Murray is nearing a return from a concussion that’s sidelined him for two weeks. Coach Mike Sullivan says the team is “encouraged” by Murray’s progress and expects the netminder to travel with the team for its three-game road trip that begins Wednesday in New York.



Cespedes dealing with wrist injury

UNDATED (AP) – Mets outfielder Yoenis Cespedes (yoh-EH’-nehs SEHS’-peh-dehs) was scratched from Tuesday’s exhibition game due to a sore right wrist.

The Mets are awaiting test results on Cespedes, who injured the wrist during a game last Tuesday.

The team also announced that captain David Wright won’t participate in baseball activities for two months because of back and shoulder issues. The 35-year-old Wright has been limited to 75 regular-season games during the past three years.

Also around the majors:

– Pitcher Jake Arrieta donned a Phillies jersey Tuesday for the first time since finalizing his three-year, $75 million contract. He joins a ballclub that hasn’t had a winning season since capturing their fifth straight NL East title in 2011.

AP-WF-03-14-18 1035GMT