Cavs up 3-0 following huge comeback
UNDATED (AP) - A 25-point halftime lead wasn't enough for the Indiana Pacers against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday.
The Cavaliers are up three games to none in their NBA first-round series after setting a league record for the largest halftime deficit in a playoff victory, a 119-114 win at Indiana. The Cavs were down by 26 in the in the first half and trailed 74-49 at intermission before LeBron James scored 13 of his 41 points in the third quarter.
James also had team highs of 13 rebounds and 12 assists while passing Kobe Bryant for third on the NBA's career playoff scoring list. He also tied another NBA record by winning his 20th consecutive first-round game.
The Pacers wasted Paul George's 36 points, a playoff career-high 15 boards and nine assists.
The Cavs will try to complete the four-game sweep Sunday at Indiana.
Checking out the rest of the NBA action:
- San Antonio had won 10 straight playoff games against Memphis until Mike Conley scored 24 points and had eight assists in the Grizzlies' 105-94 victory against the visiting Spurs. Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph added 21 points apiece for the Grizzlies, who outscored the Spurs 31-17 in the third quarter to get to two games to one in the series. Spurs forward Kawhi (kah-WY') Leonard was held to 18 points after scoring 69 in the first two games.
- Milwaukee owns a 2-1 series lead after Khris Middleton dropped in 20 points and All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo (an-the-tuh-KUHM'-poh) finished with 19 and eight boards in a 104-77 trouncing of Toronto. Greg Monroe added 16 points and seven rebounds for the Bucks, who held DeMar DeRozan without a basket and never looked back after leading by 20 points after the first quarter. The Raptors never recovered after shooting 4-for-18 in the opening period. The series stays in Milwaukee for Game 4 Saturday.
Gobert to miss Jazz-Clippers game Friday
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - The Utah Jazz will be without center Rudy Gobert (goh-BEHR') for Game 3 of their NBA first-round series Friday against the Los Angeles Clippers in Salt Lake City.
Gobert also missed Game 2 after hyperextending his left knee and suffering a bone contusion seconds into the series opener. The NBA Defensive Player of the Year candidate led the league in blocks and defensive win shares.
The Jazz and Clippers split the first two games in Los Angeles.
In other Jazz news, police are investigating an allegation of domestic violence against backup center Jeff Withey. Authorities in Manhattan Beach, California, say a police report had been filed accusing Withey of domestic violence. No charges have been filed.
Brooklyn Nets owner Prokhorov says he's selling 49pc stake
MOSCOW (AP) - Brooklyn Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov has told Russian media he's selling a 49 percent stake in the NBA club.
The Russian billionaire announced his intention to sell a minority stake in December, and now says "49 percent of the Brooklyn shares are up for sale," in comments reported by R-Sport.
He adds that "currently the process is going on and we are looking for a buyer."
Prokhorov took an 80 percent stake in the then-New Jersey Nets in 2010, moved the team to Brooklyn in 2012, and took full ownership in 2015.
Brooklyn went 20-62 this season, which was the worst record in the NBA and its third consecutive season below .500.
The Nets last made the playoffs in 2015, losing to the Atlanta Hawks in the first round.
NHL-STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS-SCHEDULE
Pens close out Jackets...Rangers top Habs in OT
UNDATED (AP) - The defending Stanley Cup champs have advanced to the second round of this year's playoffs, while the 2015 champions are done after one round.
Bryan Rust had a pair of goals and Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 49 shots as the Penguins ousted the Columbus Blue Jackets, 5-2 in Game 5 at Pittsburgh. The Pens were clinging to a 3-2 lead until Sidney Crosby and Scott Wilson scored 51 seconds apart early in the third period.
Phil Kessel also tallied for the Penguins, who will take on either Washington or Toronto in the next round.
Meanwhile, the Nashville Predators have completed what is arguably the biggest series win in team history.
Roman Josi (YOH'-see) scored twice and the Predators used a three-goal third period to close out a four-game sweep of the top-seeded Chicago Blackhawks, 4-1. Nashville went ahead 3-0 after Colton Sissons and Josi scored 1:29 apart midway through the final period.
Pekka Rinne (PEH'-kuh REE'-nay) stopped 30 shots and blanked the Hawks until Jonathan Toews (tayhz) tallied with 5:18 remaining.
The Predators outscored Chicago, 13-3 in their first series sweep.
Elsewhere in the NHL:
- Mika Zibanejad (MEE'-kuh zhih-BAH'-neh-zhahd) scored 14:22 into overtime to give the New York Rangers a 3-2 victory and a 3-2 series lead over the Montreal Canadiens. Henrik Lundqvist stopped 34 shots and blanked the Habs following Brendan Gallagher's power-play goal late in the first period. Jesper Fast (YEHS'-pur fahst) and Brady Skjei (shay) also scored for the Rangers, who can finish off the Atlantic Division leaders on Saturday.
- Edmonton also won in OT as David Desharnais (day-ahr-NAY') scored at 18:15 of the extra session to complete the Oilers' comeback in a 4-3 win against San Jose. Oscar Klefbom tied it with 2:46 left in regulation before Desharnais gave the Oilers a three-games-to-two lead. Mark Letestu (leh-TEST'-too) sparked the Edmonton rally with a late second-period tally after the Sharks went ahead 3-1. Game 6 is Saturday in San Jose.
NHL-SABRES CLEAN HOUSE
Sabres clean house by firing GM Murray and coach Bylsma
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula (peh-GOO'-luh) has decided a house-cleaning was in order after the club missed the playoffs for a team-record sixth consecutive year.
Pegula has fired general manager Tim Murray and head coach Dan Bylsma (BYLZ'-mah) amid questions over player accountability. Pegula reached the decision after spending the past two days holding season-ending meetings with Murray, and some 10 days after Buffalo closed its season by finishing last in the Atlantic Division.
Murray was at his post for three seasons, while Bylsma had a two-year run with the club.
Leafs star among Calder finalists
UNDATED (AP) - The NHL has announced the finalists for the Calder Trophy as the league's rookie of the year. Maple Leafs forward Auston Matthews, Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski and Jets winger Patrik Laine (LY'-nay) are up for the award, which will be presented June 21 in Las Vegas.
Bosox top Jays in extras
UNDATED (AP) - The Boston Red Sox have added to the Toronto Blue Jays' misery.
The Blue Jays are 3-12 after Mookie Betts hit a three-run double in the 10th inning to give the Red Sox a 4-1 win at Toronto. The winning rally came after Kendrys (KEHN'-drees) Morales extended the game with a ninth-inning homer off Boston closer Craig Kimbrel.
Bosox starter Chris Sale had to settle for a no-decision despite striking out 13 over eight shutout innings.
The Blue Jays have dropped each of their first five series, leading to the worst 15-game start in team history.
In other major league finals:
- The Orioles beat the Reds, 2-1 in Cincinnati on J.J. Hardy's RBI single in the top of the 10th. Baltimore starter Wade Miley served up Joey Votto's (VAH'-tohz) homer but combined with two relievers on a two-hitter as the Orioles improved to a major league-best 10-4.
- The Indians have completed a sweep of their rain-shortened, three-game series at Minnesota as Trevor Bauer struck out seven over 6 1/3 innings to lead a 6-2 win over the Twins. Bauer gave up two runs and three hits after entering the game with an 8.44 ERA in two starts this season. Carlos Santana was 3-for-5 with two RBIs to help the defending AL champs improve to 8-7.
- Ryan Zimmerman belted a go-ahead, two-run homer and Stephen Strasburg fanned 10 over seven innings to help Washington complete a three-game sweep of the Braves, 3-2 in Atlanta. R.A. Dickey was the hard-luck loser, yielding just three hits in seven frames.
- Maikel (MY'-kehl) Franco was in a career-worst 0-for-22 slump before hitting an RBI double and a solo homer to lead the Phillies past the Mets, 6-4 in New York. The Mets squandered Neil Walker's three-run blast and lost a series to Philadelphia for just the third time in 18 sets.
- The Brewers lead the majors with 32 homers after slamming three more in a 7-5 win at St. Louis. Jett Bandy and Eric Thames (thaymz) each slammed two-run homers following Travis Shaw's three-run blast. Thames tops the majors with eight home runs after providing the go-ahead shot in the fifth inning.
- Delino DeShields delivered a walk-off single that scored Joey Gallo in the bottom of the 13th to push Texas past Kansas City, 1-0. Gallo's double was the first hit for the Rangers since Jonathan Lucroy's (LOO'-kroyz) leadoff double in the fifth.
- Carlos Beltran hit his first home run since rejoining the Astros and Jake Marisnick also went deep in a 2-1 win against the Angels. Astros closer Chris Devenski gave up Mike Trout's solo homer and a pair of singles before picking up the save for Lance McCullers, who tossed shutout ball over 6 2/3 innings.
- The Rays were 8-1 winners over Detroit as Steven Souza (SOO'-zuh) Jr. fell a single shy of the cycle, delivering a two-run triple and a solo homer. Erasmo (eh-RAS'-moh) Ramirez and two relievers combined on a five-hitter to help Tampa Bay complete a three-game sweep.
- Clayton Richard surrendered nine hits over 6 2/3s but held the Diamondbacks to one run as San Diego earned its second straight win since a five-game skid, 4-1 over Arizona. Wil Myers and Austin Hedges homered to help the Padres gain a split of the four-game set.
- Trevor Plouffe hit a three-run homer in the seventh as Oakland knocked off Seattle, 9-6. A's emergency starter Cesar Valdez pitched in the majors for the first time in nearly seven years, allowing three runs and five hits in four innings.
A Familia face in Mets' bullpen
UNDATED (AP) - Closer Jeurys Familia (jeh-REES' fah-MEEL'-yuh) worked a scoreless inning for the Mets on Thursday, his first appearance following a 15-game suspension for violating Major League Baseball's domestic violence policy.
The suspension cost over $730,000 to Familia, who led the majors with a team-record 51 saves last season.
In other baseball news:
- Red Sox manager John Farrell says pitcher David Price has been dealing with "soreness" in his recovery from an injured left elbow. Price threw on flat ground for the second straight day Thursday and is scheduled to throw a bullpen session in Baltimore on Friday. Price is in the second season of a $217 million, seven-year contract.
- Cardinals infielder Jhonny Peralta (JAH'-nee peh-RAHL'-tah) was put on the 10-day disabled list retroactive to Sunday because of an upper respiratory issue. St. Louis recalled left-hander Tyler Lyons before Thursday night's game against Milwaukee.
- The Blue Jays will recall right-hander Mat Latos (LAY'-tohs) from Triple-A Buffalo to start against the Angels on Friday. Manager John Gibbons says right-hander Casey Lawrence will be called up to face the Angels on Saturday night. Blue Jays right-hander Aaron Sanchez and left-hander J.A. Happ are on the 10-day disabled list.
Tiger Woods has a 4th back surgery
UNDATED (AP) - Tiger Woods will go another year without playing in a major after undergoing a fourth back surgery yesterday to alleviate pain.
The announcement on his website Thursday said typical recovery from a single-level fusion surgery is six months. He went 15 months without competition before making a brief return in December and January.
Raiders would play in Vegas rent-free
LAS VEGAS (AP) - The Oakland Raiders wouldn't pay rent at a proposed tax-funded stadium they want to call home in Las Vegas. That's according to the most recent version of a lease agreement unveiled Thursday during a meeting of the public entity overseeing plans for the $1.9 billion project.
The stadium authority board justified the lack of rent for the Raiders with the investment that the team is making on the 65,000-seat domed stadium. Guests of hotels and other lodging facilities in the Las Vegas area are contributing $750 million through a room tax increase.
Pats-Chiefs matchup to open NFL season
UNDATED (AP) - The NFL has released its 2017 schedule, and it begins with the Super Bowl-champion New England Patriots hosting the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday, Sept. 7.
The Pats earned that honor with their record comeback to beat Atlanta in the Super Bowl. The Chiefs are the defending AFC West champions.
Week 1 of the schedule will conclude Monday, Sept. 11 with New Orleans at Minnesota and the Los Angeles Chargers at Denver. It will be the Chargers' first game as a Los Angeles franchise since 1960.
Week 1 also features a Sunday night matchup between the Dallas Cowboys and visiting New York Giants.
In other NFL news:
- The Raiders have exercised their fifth-year contract option on menacing pass rusher Khalil Mack, presumably keeping him with the team through the 2018 season. The reigning AP Defensive Player of the year had sacks in eight straight games during one stretch last season and finished with 11.
- The Colts have signed inside linebacker Jon Bostic, who has played four seasons in the NFL and was with Detroit last year. The 6-foot, 245-pounder has recorded 140 tackles in 40 NFL games, including 18 starts.
- Bills offensive lineman Cyrus Kouandjio was taken to the hospital for observation after police found him without any pants on in suburban Buffalo field. An Erie County Sheriff's spokesman says deputies were responding to a complaint of a suspicious person when they came upon Kouandjio around 9:30 a.m. Wednesday. The spokesman says the player was cooperative and no charges have been filed.
- A top Massachusetts official says the medical examiner will release Aaron Hernandez's brain to Boston University for research as soon as the investigation into his death is completed. Secretary of Public Safety Dan Bennett says "no one is going to stand in the way of the family's wishes." Hernandez's lawyer has accused the medical examiner of "illegally" holding the brain of the former Patriots tight end. Hernandez was found hanging in his cell early Wednesday at a maximum-security prison where he was serving a life sentence for a 2013 murder.
Grace tops leaderboard
SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Branden Grace is the first-round leader at the PGA's Texas Open in San Antonio.
Grace shot a 6-under 66 that puts him one stroke ahead of Stewart Cink (sihnk), Will MacKenzie, John Huh and Steven Alker.
SOCCER-BUS BOMB ATTACK
BERLIN (AP) - German prosecutors say they believe a 28-year-old German-Russian man suspected of carrying out a bombing attack on the Borussia Dortmund soccer team's bus acted alone.
The suspect was arrested by authorities early Friday morning. Prosecutors say he came to the attention of investigators because he had made "suspicious options purchases" - taken out a five-figure loan to bet on a drop in the clubs' stock on the day of the attack.
The bombing wounded one player.