Cavs sweep out Hawks
CLEVELAND (AP) — The Cleveland Cavaliers are in the NBA Finals for the first time in eight years after completing a four-game sweep in the Eastern Conference finals.
LeBron James scored 15 of his 23 points while the Cavaliers were building a 17-point halftime lead in a 118-88 thrashing of the Atlanta Hawks. James is heading to the NBA Finals for the fifth straight year as he tries to help the city of Cleveland claim its first championship since the 1964 Browns won the NFL title.
Kyrie Irving was effective after missing the previous two games with tendinitis in his left knee, contributing 16 points and five assists in less than 22 minutes.
The Cavs shot 13-for-31 from 3-point range, with J.R. Smith going 4-for-10 in scoring 18 points. Kristan Thompson furnished 16 points and 11 boards in the rout.
Jeff Teague (teeg) scored 17 and Paul Millsap 16 for Atlanta.
No suspension for Howard
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard will not be suspended for Game 5 of the Western Conference finals against the Golden State Warriors after the NBA decided to uphold his flagrant 1 foul.
NBA President of Basketball Operations Rod Thorn says in a statement Tuesday night that Howard was trying to free himself from Andrew Bogut when Howard “recklessly hit him in the face with an open hand.” Thorn says the contact was deemed unnecessary by game officials and the league doesn’t “see a reason to modify that call.”
The Warriors lead the series 3-1.
Surgery for Korver
CLEVELAND (AP) — Atlanta Hawks guard Kyle Korver will have surgery on the right ankle he injured in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals.
Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer did not say what damage Korver has in his ankle. There is no timetable for his return.
The NBA’s best 3-point shooter in the regular season was injured when he was scrambling for a loose ball and his ankle was rolled on by Cleveland’s Matthew Dellavedova.
Korver made 221 3-pointers this season, helping the Hawks win 60 games and get to the conference finals for the first time since 1993-94.
Brassard leaders Rangers’ survival
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — The New York Rangers have forced another Game 7 in the Stanley Cup playoffs by improving to 4-0 when facing elimination this year.
Derick Brassard recorded a hat trick and had two assists as the Rangers thumped the Lightning 7-3 at Tampa to stretch the Eastern Conference finals to the limit. Brassard put the Blueshirts ahead to stay 3:36 into the game before tallying twice in the Rangers’ five-goal assault in the third period.
It was the Rangers’ first playoff hat trick since Michael Nylander (NEE’-lan-dur) had three against the Atlanta Thrashers more than eight years ago.
Rick Nash and J.T. Miller each had a goal and three assists to back Henrik Lundqvist, who finished with 36 saves. Miller, James Sheppard and Brassard scored during a 4:12 span to put New York in front 5-1 less than 7 ½ minutes into the final period.
Nikita Kucherov (KOO’-cheh-rahv) had two goals for the Lightning, who were trying to wrap up their second Stanley Cup finals appearance.
Game 7 in Friday at Madison Square Garden.
New deal for the bench coach
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The St. Louis Blues and head coach Ken Hitchcock have agreed to a one-year contract.
The decision comes a month after the Blues were eliminated in the Western Conference quarterfinals following a successful run to the Central Division title. Hitchcock has led the Blues to the playoffs in each of his four seasons with the team, but the Blues have won just one playoff round in that span.
Soccer’s governing body raided
ZURICH (AP) — The reputation of FIFA (FEE’-fuh), the governing body of soccer worldwide, for corruption has reignited spectacularly two days before a presidential election expected to give Sepp Blatter four more years at the head of world soccer.
Dawn raids by Swiss federal authorities on FIFA headquarters and a luxury hotel in Zurich supported separate federal cases in the United States and Switzerland. The U.S. probe relates to racketeering, money laundering and kickbacks in marketing deals for soccer tournaments in the U.S., Brazil and across Latin America.
Two of FIFA’s eight vice presidents and a new member of its executive committee were among officials arrested in Zurich.
The Swiss investigation is about wrongdoing in the controversial 2018-2022 World Cup bidding contests which gave hosting rights to Russia and Qatar.
FIFA, meanwhile, said Friday’s presidential election would go ahead as planned with Sepp Blatter going for a fifth term. Blatter was not named in either investigation.
FIFA also ruled out a revote of the World Cups won by Russia in 2018 and Qatar (GUH’-tur) in 2022.
Yankees enjoying Royal treatment
UNDATED (AP) — The Kansas City Royals have their first three-game losing streak of the season after falling in Yankee Stadium for the second straight day.
Adam Warren combined with three relievers on a four-hitter as the Yankees beat the Royals 5-1. Warren limited the Royals to two hits in 6 1/3 innings, including Paulo Orlando’s homer in the sixth.
Mark Teixeira (the-SHEHR’-uh) hit a two-run homer and a two-run double for the Yanks, who’ve outscored Kansas City 19-2 in the first two games of the series after losing 10 of their previous 11 games.
Also in the majors:
— Madison Bumgarner is 5-1 in his last six starts after giving up three runs and four hits in six innings of San Francisco’s 6-3 win at Milwaukee. Matt Duffy, Hunter Pence and Brandon Belt hit home runs and Santiago Casilla earned his 13th save to help the Giants win for the 10th time in 12 games.
— Clayton Kershaw struck out 10 and allowed just four hits in seven innings of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 8-0 pounding of Atlanta. Adrian Gonzalez has 1,001 career RBIS after socking a two-run homer.
— David Price yielded just five hits in seven innings of Detroit’s 1-0 verdict over Oakland. Anthony Gose (gohs) had two of the Tigers’ six hits and scored the lone run on a sacrifice fly by Rajai Davis in the first inning.
— Matt Kemp laced a three-run double with two out in the 10th before scoring an insurance run in San Diego’s 4-0 win over the Angels at Anaheim. The Padres’ bullpen worked four hitless innings of relief after Odrisamer Despaigne (oh-DREE-sah-mer deh-SPAHN’-yay) allowed five hits in six frames.
— Kyle Seager hit a grand slam in the eighth inning and a game-winning home run in the 10th to lift Seattle over Tampa Bay, 7-6. Seager stretched his hitting streak to 12 games by going 3-for-5 with six RBIs as the Mariners handed the Rays their fourth straight loss.
— Texas enjoys a seven-game winning streak after Mitch Moreland unloaded a tiebreaking homer in the eighth inning of a 4-3 victory at Cleveland. Prince Fielder smacked a three-run homer for the Rangers, giving him five home runs and 15 RBIs in his last five games.
— St. Louis beat Arizona 6-4 as Randal Grichuk (GRIH’-chuhk) and Jhonny Peralta (JAH’-nee peh-RAHL’-tah) drove in two runs apiece to help Jaime Garcia earn his first victory in nearly a year. Garcia gave up three runs over six innings for the Cardinals, who are a major league-best 30-16.
— Minnesota was a 2-1 winner against Boston behind the pitching of Mike Pelfrey, who held the Red Sox to a run and five hits in seven innings. Trevor Plouffe and Kurt Suzuki each doubled home a run in the first inning as the Twins won their fourth in a row to climb within one game of the AL Central lead.
— Cincinnati’s nine-game losing streak is over after Skip Schumaker delivered a walk-off double in the bottom of the ninth to lift the Reds past Colorado 2-1. Marlon Byrd scored both Cincinnati runs.
— Neal Walker belted a two-run homer and Jeff Locke scattered four hits in 5 2/3 scoreless innings as Pittsburgh earned its fifth consecutive win, 5-1 against Miami. The Marlins are 2-7 under new manager Dan Jennings.
— Washington had won 20 of 25 before the Chicago Cubs beat the Nationals 3-2 on Addison Russell’s RBI double in the bottom of the ninth. Bryce Harper hit his 17th homer for the Nats, but Dexter Fowler went deep for the Cubs before Kris Bryant smashed a game-tying solo shot in the eighth.
— Jason Castro doubled home the tiebreaking run in the seventh before Luis Valbuena added a two-run single in the eighth to give Houston breathing room in a 4-1 verdict over Baltimore. Scott Feldman held the Orioles to a run and four hits in six innings as the Astros improved to an American League-leading 30-17.
— Josh Donaldson’s second homer of the night was a three-run blast in the bottom of the ninth to give Toronto a 10-9 comeback over the Chicago White Sox. Donaldson was 4-for-4 with four RBIs and five runs scored, while Jose Bautista drove in five runs in the Blue Jays’ third consecutive win.
— The New York Mets blew a 3-0 lead before Wilmer Flores drove in the tying and winning runs to lead a 5-4 triumph over Philadelphia. Flores ended it with an RBI single in the bottom of the 10th after lifting a sacrifice fly in the eighth.
Cueto has inflamed elbow
CINCINNATI (AP) — Reds starter Johnny Cueto (KWAY’-toh) will miss at least one more start after an MRI found inflammation but no major damage in his pitching elbow.
Manager Bryan Price said Cueto will throw in the next few days and see how the elbow feels. Cueto is in the final year of his contract and hasn’t been able to reach a deal with the Reds.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The Arizona Diamondbacks placed rookie reliever Enrique Burgos on the 15-day disabled list with right shoulder tendinitis, a day after he allowed hits to each of the two batters he faced.
Burgos had 25 strikeouts in 13 appearances over 13 2/3 innings, leading major league relievers with 16.46 strikeouts per nine innings. Lefty Vidal Nuno was recalled from Triple-A Reno to replace Burgos, who is 0-2 with a 4.61 ERA.
FRENCH OPEN-DAY 3
Big names in action
PARIS (AP) — Rafael Nadal (rah-fay-ehl nah-DAHL’) is off and running at the French Open. The nine-time champ won his opening match in straight sets, defeating an 18-year old wild-card entry from France who was ranked 296th. Nadal has won 67 of his 68 career matches in the French Open, including the last 36 in a row.
Top-seed Novak Djokovic (NOH’-vak JOH’-kuh-vich) won his opener in straight sets as well. Americans John Isner (IHZ’-nur) and Jack Sock advanced. Sock pulled off a first round upset with a straight-sets win over 10th-seed Grigor Dimitrov (GREE’-gohr DIH’-mih-trahv).
On the women’s side top-seed Serena Williams was a winner in her first match as were two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova (kuh-VIHT’-oh-vuh) and two-time U.S. Open runner-up Caroline Wozniacki (wohz-nee-AK’-ee).
UNDATED (AP) — Off season acquisition Ndamukong Suh (ehn-DAHM’-uh-kehn soo) showed up at Miami’s first organized team activities. The star defensive tackle drew attention after failing to attend the Dolphins’ offseason training sessions in recent weeks. Both the OTAs and training sessions are optional, but attendance is strongly encouraged. Suh signed a six-year, $114 million contact with the Dolphins.
Elsewhere, Chris Clemons was a no-show for the start of Jacksonville’s OTAs. The defensive end was the only member of the team missing. Clemons skipped last year’s sessions and the season before that when he was with Seattle.
Nine members of the Kansas City Chiefs decided to forego the start of the team’s OTAs. Among the missing was All-Pro outside linebacker Justin Houston, who has yet to sign a non-exclusive franchise tender. He’s seeking a long-term contract.
San Diego safety Eric Weddle is looking for a long-term deal and he skipped the opening day of the Chargers sessions.
‘Huskers Miles get extension
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska men’s basketball coach Tim Miles has had his contract extended one year through the 2019-20 season. No financial terms were released.
The Cornhuskers finished fourth in the Big Ten in 2013-14 and went to the NCAA tournament. Nebraska slipped to 13-18 last season, giving Miles a 47-49 record in three seasons at the school.