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Update on the latest sports

December 15, 2018


Pacers top 76ers to extend win streak

UNDATED (AP) — The 76ers suddenly have dropped two straight in Philadelphia since opening the NBA season with 14 wins in their first 15 home games.

Thaddeus Young poured in 26 points and the Indiana Pacers allowed just 42 points in the second half to erase a 10-point deficit in a 113-101 victory over the Sixers. Domantas Sabonis (sah-BOH’-nihs) contributed 14 points and a team-high 16 rebounds off the bench, and Bojan Bogdanovic finished with three 3-pointers and 18 points.

The Pacers won their sixth in a row and stayed a half-game behind the Central Division-leading Bucks.

The 76ers wasted an exceptional performance by Joel Embiid (joh-EHL’ ehm-BEED’), who finished with 40 points and 21 rebounds. Embiid is the first Sixers player with at least 30 points and 20 rebounds in a game since Charles Barkley on Dec. 7, 1990.

Checking out Friday’s other NBA action:

— Damian Lillard had 24 points and the Trail Blazers snapped a two-game slide with a 128-122 victory over the league-leading Raptors. Zach Collins scored 16 points and Seth Curry added a season-high 13, including three key 3-pointers at the start of the fourth quarter.

— Nikola Jokic scored 24 points and Jamal Murray contributed 19 in the Nuggets’ 109-98 victory over the Thunder. Murray also got into a shoving match with Russell Westbrook after lining up next to each other for a jump ball in the final seconds.

— Klay Thompson nailed a go-ahead, 3-pointer with 38.5 seconds left and finished with 27 points with nine rebounds in the Warriors’ 130-125 win at Sacramento. Stephen Curry finished with 35 points, seven rebounds and six assists, while Kevin Durant added 33 points, eight boards and eight assists. Durant had 13 points in the fourth quarter for the Warriors, who closed the game on a 17-2 run.

— Giannis Antetokounmpo (YAH’-nihs an-teh-toh-KOOM’-poh) matched his career high with 44 points and had 14 rebounds and eight assists as the Bucks topped the Cavaliers, 114-102. Brook Lopez scored 19 points and Eric Bledsoe had 16 to help Milwaukee win without injured starters Khris Middleton and Malcolm Brogdon.

— The Celtics cruised to their eighth straight win as Kyrie Irving delivered 24 points, five assists, five rebounds and four steals in just three quarters of a 129-108 pounding of the Hawks. Irving scored 12 points in the first quarter and helped Boston race to a 23-5 lead.

— Josh Richardson and Kelly Olynyk scored 18 points each as the Heat beat the Grizzlies, 100-97 in Memphis to end a two-game skid. Tyler Johnson finished with 17 points, while Derrick Jones Jr. added 13 points for Miami.

— Emmanuel Mudiay (MOO’-dee-ay) scored 14 of his 34 points in the fourth quarter and had eight assists as the Knicks rallied to beat the Hornets, 126-124 in overtime. Kevin Knox had 20 points for New York, which stormed back from a 21-point deficit and ended a five-game losing streak.

— Spencer Dinwiddie dropped in 27 points and Joe Harris chipped in 19 as the Nets earned their season-high fourth straight victory, 125-118 against the Wizards. Brooklyn scored a season-high 70 points in the first half, 13 days after Washington held the Nets to a season-low 88 points for four quarters.


Another hat trick for Ovi as Caps win again

UNDATED (AP) — Alex Ovechkin (oh-VEHCH’-kihn) must have enjoyed recording his 21st career hat trick so much, he decided to get his 22nd three days later.

Ovechkin leads the NHL with 28 goals after notching his second straight hat trick in the Capitals’ 6-5 win over the Hurricanes. The Washington left wing has nine goals in his last five games and owns a 13-game point streak that matches a career high.

Tom Wilson and Travis Boyd also scored for the Caps, but the defending Stanley Cup champions needed Jakub Vrana’s goal in the sixth round of a shootout to win for the 11th time in 13 games.

Sebastian Aho (AH’-hoh) had two goals and two assists for Carolina.

Elsewhere on NHL ice:

— Mark Scheifele (SHY’-flee) scored the first and last goals in the Jets’ 4-3 win over the Blackhawks. Scheifele has four goals and seven assists during a four-game point streak, with Winnipeg winning each time to take a one-point lead over second-place Nashville in the Central Division.

— Casey DeSmith turned back a career-high 48 shots and Jake Guentzel (GEHNT’-sul) provided the tiebreaking goal in the Penguins’ 5-3 win over the Bruins. DeSmith made 20 saves in the third period, but the Pens needed Guentzel’s 13th goal of the season to go ahead for good after Chris Wagner and David Krejci scored in a 54-second span to tie the game 3-3.

— Ryan O’Reilly scored a short-handed goal 2:05 into overtime to lift the Blues over the Avalanche, 4-3. Colton Parayko (pah-RAY’-koh) tallied twice and Ivan Barbashev also had a goal to support Jake Allen’s 39-save performance.

— The Devils erased a 4-1 deficit and beat the Golden Knights, 5-4 on Nico Hischier’s (HEE’-shurz) goal 41 seconds into overtime. Travis Zajac (ZAY’-jac), Miles Wood, Kyle Palmieri and Brett Sevey also scored as New Jersey handed Vegas just its third loss in 12 games.

— Chris Tierney scored twice and Mark Stone notched the tiebreaking goal midway through the third period of the Senators’ 4-2 win over the Red Wings. Thomas Chabot also scored for Ottawa, and Craig Anderson finished with 23 saves.

— The Oilers got two goals and one assist from Connor McDavid in a 4-1 verdict over the Flyers. Mikko Koskinen turned bac 31 shots and blanked Philadelphia until Jakub Voracek scored midway through the third period.

— The Coyotes’ four-game losing streak is over after Derek Stepan (STEH’-pahn) scored with 32 seconds left on the clock in overtime to complete a 4-3 win over his old team, the New York Rangers. Jordan Oesterle (OH’-stur-lee) , Josh Archibald and Oliver Ekman-Larsson also scored as Arizona rallied from three goals down early in the second period.


Salt Lake City gets go-ahead to bid for Winter Olympics

UNDATED (AP) — Salt Lake City is getting a chance to bid for an upcoming Winter Olympics, which would bring the Games back to the United States for the first time since the Utah City hosted in 2002.

The U.S. Olympic Committee has selected Salt Lake City over Denver and Reno, Nevada, as the country’s next bidder for the Winter Olympics, most likely for 2030. Salt Lake claims it can host again at a lower cost than other candidates with venues from the 2002 Winter Games still in place and many of those upgrade.

One key hurdle for Salt Lake City will be erasing memories of the bidding scandal that marred the buildup to 2002 and resulted in several IOC members losing their positions for taking bribes. However, those games were highly successful for the Americans as the team collected 34 medals after never earning more than 13 in a previous Winter Games.

It’s almost a certain bet the bid will be for 2030, though the USOC left open the possibility of 2026 with just two bidders in the running.


Steelers could have Connor vs. Pats

UNDATED (AP) — The Pittsburgh Steelers could have their top running threat this weekend.

Running back James Connor is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against New England. Conner sat out last Sunday’s loss to Oakland after injuring the ankle in the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Chargers on Dec. 2.

Conner is sixth in the NFL with 909 yards rushing and second with 12 rushing touchdowns.

Meanwhile, Pittsburgh is sticking with Chris Boswell after auditioning other kickers this week. Boswell has missed 11 combined kicks this season, including two field goals against the Raiders. The team brought in former kicker Shaun Suisham (SWEE’-zhuhm) this week to serve as a mentor to help Boswell out of his slump.

In other NFL news:

— The Titans have added quarterback Marcus Mariota (mar-ee-OH’-tah) to the injury report with an abdomen problem. Mariota was limited at practice Friday after not being on the injury report for the previous two practices. Tennessee will be without outside linebacker Brian Orakpo (oh-RAK’-poh), who hurt his elbow in last weekend’s win over Jacksonville.

— Eagles coach Doug Pederson says quarterback Carson Wentz does not require surgery for a stress fracture in his back and the injury could take up to three months to heal. Wentz is listed as “questionable” for Sunday night’s game against the Rams in Los Angeles, but teammates expect reigning Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles to start in his place.

— Giants star receiver Odell Beckham Jr. will miss his second straight game with a quad injury. He didn’t practice the past two days after being limited on Wednesday. Beckham was hurt on the final play of the Giants’ loss to the Eagles in Philadelphia on Nov. 25, but he played against Chicago the following week.

— NFL interception co-leader Xavien Howard is doubtful for the Dolphins’ game Sunday at Minnesota. The cornerback missed last week’s game against New England with a left knee injury and didn’t practice this week.

— The Seahawks will be without one of their three running backs Sunday after rookie Rashaad Penny was ruled out with a knee injury. Penny, linebacker K.J. Wright and safety Maurice Alexander were all listed as out Friday.

— The Jaguars have released veteran safety Barry Church and signed place-kicker Kai Forbath in case Josh Lambo can’t play against Washington on Sunday because of a groin injury. Lambo injured his right groin in practice Thursday.

— Bills running back LeSean McCoy is questionable for Sunday’s game against the Lions due to a hamstring injury suffered against the Jets last Sunday. He missed practice on Wednesday before being limited the past two days.

— The Jets have placed running back Isaiah Crowell on season-ending injured reserve with a toe injury. Crowell has a team-leading 685 yards rushing and six touchdowns.

— Injured Raiders receiver Martavis Bryant has been suspended indefinitely for violating the NFL policy on substance abuse. The NFL says Bryant has violated the terms of his conditional reinstatement in April 2017.

— A person familiar with the move says the NFL has fined umpire Roy Ellison $9,300 and reinstated him from administrative leave after his dispute in Miami with Buffalo Bills defensive end Jerry Hughes. The fine is the amount of one game check for Ellison. Ellison was placed on administrative leave last week.

— Former star Atlanta Falcons lineman Bill Fralic has died at 56. Fralic was named to the Pro Bowl four times and earned All-Pro honors in 1986 and 1987. The NFL named him to its All-Decade Team for the 1980s.


Kentucky’s Snell, Tennessee’s Sapp leaving early for NFL draft

UNDATED (AP) — Kentucky running back Benny Snell Jr. says he’ll skip his senior season to enter the NFL draft, but he plans to play in the team’s upcoming bowl game.

Snell had three straight 1,000-yard rushing seasons for the Wildcats and logged 1,305 yards and 14 touchdowns this year. He is 107 yards away from become the school’s career rushing leader and can break the mark when the 16th-ranked Wildcats face No. 13 Penn State in the Citrus Bowl.

And Tennessee linebacker Quart’e Sapp says he’s bypassing his final season of eligibility to enter the NFL draft.


Birds get a manager

UNDATED (AP) — The Baltimore Orioles have hired Chicago Cubs bench coach Brandon Hyde as their new manager, replacing Buck Showalter.

Hyde worked as Chicago’s bench coach this year under manager Joe Maddon and served in the same capacity for the 2014 Cubs. He becomes the 20th skipper in team history and inherits a team that went a major league-worst 47-115 this year.

In other MLB news:

— A person familiar with the deal says the Chicago White Sox have acquired first baseman Yonder Alonso in a trade with the Indians for minor league outfielder Alex Call. Alonso hit .250 with 23 homers and 83 RBIs in 145 games this year, his only season with the Indians.

— Brewers pitcher Jimmy Nelson has agreed to a one-year, $3.7 million contract after missing all of last season while recovering from shoulder surgery. The 29-year-old right-hander was 12-6 with a 3.49 ERA and 199 strikeouts in 29 starts in 2017 before injury the shoulder Sept. 8.

— The White Sox have picked up a catcher through free agency by working out a one-year, $2.5 million package with James McCann. The 28-year-old McCann hit .220 with eight homers and 39 RBIs in 118 games last season with the Detroit Tigers, who declined to make him a contract offer.

— Jeurys Familia (jeh-REES’ fah-MEEL’-yah) and the Mets have finalized his three-year, $30 million contract, bringing the reliever back to New York. He set a team record with a National League-leading 51 saves in 2016, and he was 8-6 with 18 saves in 24 chances for the Mets and Athletics this year.

— The Tigers have finalized their one-year, $5.25 million pact with shortstop Jordy Mercer. The 32-year-old hit .251 with six homers and 39 RBIs in 117 games for the Pirates this year, down from 14 homers and 58 RBIs in 145 games in 2017.

— The World Series champion Red Sox and the Yankees will open Major League Baseball’s first series in Britain with a night game on June 29 and conclude the next afternoon. The Bosox are the home team in both games.

— The wife of late Yankees owner George Steinbrenner has died. Joan (joh-AN’) Steinbrenner, who held the title of Yankees vice chair, was 83. The team says she died today surrounded by family at her home in Tampa, Florida. A private family service will be held.

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