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August 25, 2020
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August 25, 2020
AP Sports



Update on the latest sports


Middleton comes alive in 4th quarter; Bucks take 3-1 lead
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) – Khris Middleton finally found his shot this afternoon, and his hot hand put the Milwaukee Bucks in control of their NBA first-round series.
A late flurry from the Bucks forward led a 121-106 victory and a three-games-to-one lead over the Magic.
Missing eight of his nine shots in the first three quarters, Middleton scored 18 of his 21 points in the final period and finished with 10 rebounds. He scored 11 points during an 18-2 run that put Milwaukee ahead by 19.
Middleton was shooting just 28% in the series before getting hot in the final period.
Giannis Antetokounmpo (YAH’-nihs an-the-toh-KOON’-poh) had 31 points, 15 boards and eight assists, shooting 12 of 14 from inside the paint.
Orlando wasted a strong performance by Nikola Vucevic (voo-CHEH’-vihk), who had 31 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists.
Like the Bucks, the Lakers have won three straight since losing Game 1 of their first-round series.
The Lakers jumped out to an apt 24-8 lead on Kobe Bryant Day and dominated the rest of the way in a 135-115 dismantling of the Trail Blazers. LeBron James had 30 points and 10 assists in 28 minutes before heading to the bench for good late in the third quarter.
Anthony Davis added 18 points in 18 minutes for Los Angeles before leaving the game midway through the third with back spasms.
Blazers guard Damian Lillard had 11 points before leaving with a right knee injury in the third. Jusuf Nurkic (YOO’-suhf NUR-kihch) had 20 points and 13 rebounds for Portland.
The Miami Heat have reached the second round for the first time in four years.
Goran Dragic (DRAH’-gihch) scored 23 points as the fifth-seeded Heat completed a first-round sweep of the Pacers, 99-87. Tyler Herro (HEE’-roh) had 16 points and Bam Adebayo (ad-ah-BY’-oh) added 14 with 19 rebounds for Miami.
Victor Oladipo (oh-lah-DEE’-poh) had 25 points and Myles Turner added 22 points and 14 rebounds for the Pacers, who have dropped four straight postseason series to the Heat since 2012.
Miami’s bench outscored Indiana’s depleted reserves 38-3.
Oklahoma City has evened its series with Houston by winning for the second time in three days.
Dennis Schroder (SHROO’-dur) scored a career playoff high 30 points and the Thunder rallied from 15 points down in the third quarter to beat the Rockets, 117-114. Chris Paul scored 26 points and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander added 18 and 12 rebounds for the Thunder, who won despite allowing 23 3-pointers.
Houston made its first eight 3-pointers to start the third quarter. The Rockets led 93-80 until the Thunder closed the third period on a 12-0 run.
James Harden had 32 points, 15 assists and eight rebounds for the Rockets. Eric Gordon scored 23 points and Danuel House added 21 for the Rockets, who continue to play without guard Russell Westbrook because of a quad injury.


Brown fired after sweep
PHILADELPHIA (AP) – The Philadelphia 76ers have fired coach Brett Brown just a day after his seventh season ended in a postseason sweep.
The 76ers were 43-30 this season and had woefully underachieved in a year when they were expected to be serious contenders in the Eastern Conference. Injuries played a key role in their struggles.
The move was expected after the sixth-seeded Sixers were swept by the Boston Celtics.
Brown had guided the 76ers back from the bottom of the NBA. The Sixers failed to win more than 19 games in his first three seasons while management stripped the roster and prepared for a rebuild. But the 76ers made the playoffs the last three years, going 146-91.


Islanders blank Flyers
UNDATED (AP) – The New York Islanders are the lowest seed remaining in the Stanley Cup playoffs, but they were good enough to open their second-round series with a win against the No. 1 Philadelphia Flyers.
Semyon Varlamov (SEHM’-yahn vahr-LAH’-mahv) stopped 29 shots and the Islanders opened their second-round series with a 4-0 win over the Flyers. Varlamov has posted consecutive playoff shutouts after failing to record one since 2011. He is the first Islander to record back-to-back shutouts.
Andy Greene opened the scoring at the 6:06 mark, his first playoff goal in a decade. It remained 1-0 until Jean-Gabriel Pageau (pa-ZHOH’) and Anders Lee scored in the first nine minutes of the third. Devon Toews (deh-VAHN’ tayvz) added an empty-netter shortly after Carter Hart was replaced by an extra attacker with about eight minutes left.
The Dallas Stars made it two straight wins over the Avalanche by rallying for a 4-2 victory.
Dallas trailed 2-0 until Joe Pavelski and Radek Faksa (FAK’-sah) scored power-play goals 43 seconds apart midway through the second period. Alexander Radulov (RAD’-yoo-lahv) notched the tiebreaking goal about five minutes later after contributing two goals and an assist in Game 1 on Sunday.
Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen (MEE’-koh RAN’-tah-nehn) each had a power-play goal and an assist for Colorado. Stars goaltender Anton Khudobin (koo-DOH’-bihn) was otherwise perfect while the Avs outshot Dallas, 41-27.


Grubauer, Johnson out indefinitely
UNDATED (AP) – Colorado Avalanche goaltender Philipp Grubauer and defenseman Erik Johnson are out indefinitely.
Grubauer appeared to pull something three minutes into the second period of the Avs’ second-round opener Saturday night and needed assistance to get off the ice. Johnson left later in the period after a collision with Stars forward Blake Comeau.


Also around the NHL:
– The Red Wings have signed forward Robby Fabbri (FAB’-ree) to a $5.9 million, two-year contract. Fabbri had 32 points in 61 games last season for the league-worst Red Wings.
Jays split with split
UNDATED (AP) – The Toronto Blue Jays have cooled off the Tampa Bay Rays by splitting a four-game set in St. Petersburg.
Randal Grichuk (GRIH’-chuhks) three-run homer gave the Jays a 5-3 lead in the seventh inning of a 6-4 win over the Rays. Lourdes Gurriel (gur-ee-EHL’) Jr. also homered and Thomas Hatch worked two scoreless innings for the win, three days after getting his first big league victory against the Rays.
Tampa Bay got home runs from Yoshi Tsutsugo (YOH’-shee soo-SOO’-goh) and Willy Adames (ah-DAH’-mehs).
The Rays had won 11 of 12 heading into the series.


Elsewhere around the majors:
– Lance Lynn struck out eight while throwing 105 pitches in six workhorse innings to guide the Rangers to a 3-2 win versus the Athletics. Todd Frazier lined a two-run double and Isiah-Kiner Falefa hit a tiebreaking homer as Texas halted an eight-game losing streak.


– Carlos Correa lined a three-run double that broke open a close game before the Astros went on to crush the Angels, 11-4. Kyle Tucker drove in a pair with a homer and a double to help Houston bounce back from a three-game sweep by the Padres.


– The Twins were 3-2 winners over the Indians as Kenta Maeda (mah-EH’-dah) fanned seven while limiting Cleveland to a run and five hits over five innings. Nelson Cruz banged out a solo homer and Miguel Sano (sah-NOH’) added a two-run blast that put Minnesota ahead 3-1 in the sixth.


– Javier Baez drilled a two-run homer and David Bote (BOH’-tee) added a solo shot and four RBIs as the Cubs ripped the Tigers, 9-3. Winning pitcher Alec Mills gave up three runs over seven innings while striking out seven.


– Jack Flaherty made just his second start in 30 days and fired one-hit ball over five shutout innings of the Cardinals’ 9-3 pounding of the Royals. Paul DeJong (deh-YUHNG’) and Paul Goldschmidt drove in three runs apiece, with Goldschmidt hitting a two-run homer.


– Jesus Aguilar (AG’-yoo-lahr) provided a two-run double while the Marlins scored six times in the fourth inning of an 11-8 win against the Nationals. Aguilar had three RBIs and Jon Berti belted a two-run homer and Pablo Lopez held Washington to three unearned runs over five innings.


– The Rockies picked up a 3-2 win over the Diamondbacks as rookie Ryan Castellani gave up just three hits over six innings for his first career win. Trevor Story hit his ninth homer as Colorado stopped a seven-game losing streak and dealt Arizona its sixth consecutive loss.


– Justin Smoak homered and drove in three as the Brewers doubled up the Reds, 4-2 to stop a four-game skid. Omar Narvaez (nahr-VY’-ehz) also went deep against Trevor Bauer, who gave up four runs in as many innings after entering the game 3-0 with a major league-best 0.68 ERA.


Mets resume play Tuesday
UNDATED (AP) – The New York Mets will resume play with a doubleheader against the Marlins on Tuesday.
The Mets are able to resume their schedule after no additional members tested positive for COVID-19 since the team learned of two infections that caused four games to be postponed last week.
The Mets will make up their weekend Subway Series against the crosstown Yankees with doubleheaders on Friday and Sunday at Yankee Stadium and a single game on Sept. 3 at Citi Field.


In other major league news:
– Thursday’s scheduled Astros-Angels game in Houston will be played on Tuesday as part of a doubleheader due to the potential impact that Tropical Storm Laura may have on the Gulf Coast. In addition, Wednesday’s game has been moved to the afternoon.


– Indians manager Terry Francona will miss the club’s three-game series against Minnesota this week while he continues to deal with health issues. Francona underwent another surgery on Friday to address a gastrointestinal condition that has bothered him for nearly a year. First base coach Sandy Alomar Jr. will continue to fill in for the 61-year-old Francona, who has missed 17 games this season.


– The Blue Jays have acquired struggling slugger Daniel Vogelbach from the Seattle Mariners for $100,000. The 27-year-old Vogelbach was a first time All-Star last season but was designated for assignment by the Mariners on Aug. 19 after hitting .094 with two home runs and four RBIs in 18 games this season.


Lab blames 77 false NFL COVID-19 positives on contamination
UNDATED (AP) -The lab used by the NFL for COVID-19 tests says an isolated contamination caused 77 “most likely false positive results.”
In a statement, BioReference Laboratories says the test results on Saturday were contaminated during preparation at its lab in New Jersey.
Eleven teams were affected, and the tests were reexamined and found to be false positives. The lab says all “individuals impacted have been confirmed negative and informed.”


Miami Dolphins to allow up to 13,000 fans at home opener, Ravens won’t
UNDATED (AP) – The Miami Dolphins will allow up to 13,000 socially distancing fans to attend their home opener against Buffalo on Sept. 20. The decision divided political leaders and upset the Bills’ coach.
The Baltimore Ravens won’t have any fans at home games for the first part of the upcoming season because of the coronavirus pandemic. The team had outlined a plan to accommodate a crowd of 7,500, but decided against it “based on the recommendations of public health experts.”


Browns rookie safety Delpit carted off with practice injury
BEREA, Ohio (AP) – Browns rookie safety Grant Delpit was carted off the practice field with a right Achilles’ injury. He’s the latest Cleveland player to go down in what has been a tough training camp so far.
Delpit was seen pounding the ground in frustration before being taken inside the team’s facility.
The second-round pick from national-champion LSU was expected to start this season.
Last week, Browns starting linebacker Mack Wilson sustained a serious knee injury and cornerback Kevin Johnson lacerated his liver when he was fallen on.


In other NFL injury news:
– The Patriots have re-signed veteran Nick Folk, giving rookie fifth-round draft pick Justin Rohrwasser some competition for the job. Folk finished last season as New England’s kicker after Stephen Gostkowski played just four games before going on injured reserve in October. Folk brought steadiness to the job, connecting on 14 of 17 field goals and all 12 of his extra points in seven games.


– Raiders receiver Tyrell Williams will try to play through this season after tearing a labrum in his shoulder during practice last week. Williams finished his first season as a Raider with 42 catches for 651 yards and six TDs but his production waned after the first four weeks due to injuries.


– Seahawks defensive end Branden Jackson was back at the team facility Monday, two days after he suffered a head injury in a team scrimmage. The fifth-year defensive end appeared to collide helmet to helmet with offensive tackle Cedric Ogbuehi and seemed to be unconscious before he landed on the turf.


Clemson tops preseason poll
UNDATED (AP) – Clemson is No. 1 in The Associated Press preseason Top 25. Ohio State was a close No. 2 to Clemson, which starts atop the rankings for the second straight season.
Alabama is No. 3, Georgia is fourth and defending Big 12 champion Oklahoma is fifth. Defending national champion LSU is No. 6.
When the season starts, 53 teams will no longer be eligible for inclusion in the Top 25 because they have postponed their seasons.


Lefty impressive in Tour Champions debut
RIDGEDALE, Mo. (AP) – Phil Mickelson sizzled in his first round on the PGA Tour Champions.
Mickelson had five straight birdies on the back nine and finished with 11 overall in a 10-over 61 that gives him a one-stroke lead over David McKenzie. Lefty decided to make his over-50 debut this week after missing the cut at The Northern Trust and getting eliminated from the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup playoffs.
K.J. Choi was joined in a group at 7 under by Rocco Mediate, Rod Pampling and Tim Petrovic. Choi is playing his second Tour Champions event.



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