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Miami viced: UConn continues magical run to title game with 72-59 win over Hurricanes

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HOUSTON – No tournament opponent has been able to get within single digits of the UConn men’s basketball team. In a hard-fought Final Four battle against Miami on Saturday in Houston’s NRG Stadium, the Huskies prevailed, 72-59, to advance to the program’s fifth-ever national championship game on Monday night.

Adama Sanogo led the ...Read more

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Pelicans hand Clippers second straight loss despite Kawhi Leonard's 40 points

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NEW ORLEANS — When the Clippers signed Kawhi Leonard in a landmark free-agency acquisition four years ago, the significance was obvious for all to see. A franchise beleaguered by a woeful record in high-stress moments now had their stone-faced closer, a two-time NBA Finals most valuable player whose pulse seemed to rarely rise above resting. ...Read more

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Miami Sadness: Hurricanes fall to UConn in Final Four semifinals of NCAA Tournament

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HOUSTON — The buzz around the University of Miami team hotel was palpable for days leading up to the Hurricanes’ Final Four game against Connecticut late Saturday night.

Thousands of fans and former players spanning all the eras, milled around the lobby, marveling at how a program that didn’t even exist in the mid-’80s and then held ...Read more

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Jimmy Butler's 35 help Heat survive Luka Doncic's 42 in 129-122 victory over Mavericks

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MIAMI — For extended stretches Saturday night at Miami-Dade Arena, defense was optional, which for the Dallas Mavericks has become the story of a season gone sour.

For extended stretches Saturday night, the Miami Heat found themselves nearly as defenseless.

Finally, a stand was made, one that snapped a three-game losing streak and moved the ...Read more

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Dave Hyde: Florida Atlantic's fairy tale run ends in reality of San Diego State buzzer-beater

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HOUSTON — San Diego State’s Lamont Butler took a dribble left, put up the shot just before the final buzzer, and that’s the thing about living the dream like Florida Atlantic this time of year. Sometimes the other team is living the same dream. Sometimes the magic is on their side for one final shot, too.

Butler’s jump shot went through...Read more

Bryce Miller: Lamont Butler's final shot at Final Four ensures San Diego State's 'thrill ride' continues

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HOUSTON — Thrill rides often come without dependable brakes. Just when you’re cruising, the wind in your hair, buzzing around all those exhilarating hairpin corners, heart pounding, it careens off course.

The thing about special drives like that is the painful finality of things when emotions crash headlong into the guardrail.

San Diego ...Read more

Tom Krasovic: Lamont Butler joins select group of San Diego sports heroes -- and sets off a city-wide celebration

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Did that black-and-red stunner really happen?

With 1.2 seconds left in San Diego State’s first Final Four game, did Lamont Butler vault upward from the Houston hardwood, soaring … soaring … to create a clean shot?

He did.

And with the Aztecs down one point, did Butler’s 17-foot flick from the right elbow swish, a tenth of a second ...Read more

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Butler does it! San Diego State guard's buzzer-beater sinks FAU, puts Aztecs in national title game.

Sports / Basketball /

HOUSTON — San Diego State coach Brian Dutcher just stood there while the net danced and pandemonium erupted around him. Players charged onto the court and jumped on Lamont Butler, first Aguek Arop, then Darrion Trammell, then Elijah Saunder off the bench, maybe the fastest a 6-foot-8, 240-pound human has ever moved.

An assistant coach jumped ...Read more

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Cason Wallace declares for NBA draft. What's next for Kentucky at the point guard spot?

Sports / Basketball /

LEXINGTON, Ky. — As expected, Cason Wallace’s first season as a Kentucky Wildcat will be his last.

Wallace — a 6-foot-4 guard from Dallas — has declared for the 2023 NBA draft and intends to keep his name in the pool, foregoing his final three years of college basketball eligibility.

“This season was fun. It had its ups and downs but...Read more

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Heat icon Dwyane Wade named to Hall of Fame Class of 2023: 'This is basketball heaven'

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MIAMI — From the moment he walked off the court at Barclays Center in Brooklyn on April 10, 2019, with a career-ending triple-double, this moment Saturday in Houston at the NCAA Final Four was inevitable.

Miami Heat icon Dwyane Wade has been unanimously selected as a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, with enshrinement ...Read more

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Padres remain meek at plate, waste Nick Martinez's strong effort in loss to Rockies

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SAN DIEGO — Not all that often has there been a collection of hitters at the top of one team’s lineup like Xander Bogaerts, Juan Soto and Manny Machado.

Eventually, it will matter.

And it will matter on a night like Friday, when a pitcher like Nick Martinez deserved better than he got from the defenders behind him and the hitters ...Read more

Down four starters, Nuggets nearly pull off 27-point comeback vs. Suns

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DENVER — Technically, the Denver Nuggets lost.

But Phoenix’s 100-93 win on Friday evening couldn’t have felt great for the victors.

Denver, which was missing four starters, cut a 27-point lead to just four on multiple occasions in the fourth quarter and nearly snatched their most improbable win of the season. On the second night of a ...Read more

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Warriors rally past Spurs with fourth-quarter surge

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SAN FRANCISCO — Two days after overcoming a 20-point deficit to stun the New Orleans Pelicans, the Golden State Warriors faltered early again Friday night, but overcame the slow, sloppy start against the San Antonio Spurs to pull out a 130-115 victory.

Stephen Curry scored 33 points, Klay Thompson had 31 and Jordan Poole added another 27 off ...Read more

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Pistons lose battle of teams with worst records, fall to Rockets, 121-115

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Friday's slate of NBA games included several matchups with playoff implications, but there was a battle between the teams with the worst records in the league being held in Houston.

Both franchises will be in line this summer to secure a top-five pick to add to their young rosters, but their latest meeting was about coming away with a victory. ...Read more

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Jalen Brunson leads Knicks past Cavs in potential playoff preview

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CLEVELAND — If this was a preview of a first-round playoff matchup, expect a mountain of points and a thrilling battle of guards.

Jalen Brunson won his matchup against Donovan Mitchell and the Knicks outlasted the Cavaliers on Friday night, 130-116, running away in the fourth quarter in their first game without injured Julius Randle.

...Read more

Sixers hold off Raptors, 117-110, as postseason rotation could be materializing

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PHILADELPHIA — One would assume the 76ers’ playoff rotation has been decided.

The team had its full complement of players available Wednesday night, and went with a telling 10-man rotation. Then Tobias Harris missed Friday’s 117-110 victory over the Toronto Raptors with a non-COVID illness. That led to sixth-man De’Anthony Melton ...Read more

Lakers beat Timberwolves to improve record above .500 for first time this season

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MINNEAPOLIS — Anthony Davis writhed in pain in the paint across from his team’s bench, everything feeling like it was about to fall apart again in Minnesota.

A season ago, Davis suffered a knee injury here that helped submarine the team’s season. Friday, it was his left ankle that twisted, the Lakers' recent momentum strained.

Yet after...Read more

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Celtics shake off travel woes, hold off Jazz for hard-fought victory

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BOSTON — Less than 24 hours after one of their best wins of the season, the Celtics could have made excuses.

Travel issues made the Celtics stay an extra night in Milwaukee after their blowout win over the Bucks, and they didn’t land in Boston until about six hours before tip-off for their game against the Jazz. The visitors’ top players ...Read more

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Clippers falter after halftime without Kawhi Leonard and lose to Grizzlies

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — To reach the Memphis locker room after his pregame warmup Friday, the Grizzlies’ Luke Kennard had to first pass by a Clippers bench populated by a few of his former assistant coaches. Stopping to chat, Kennard playfully asked whether the Clippers, whose suffocating defense two nights earlier limited him to attempt three 3-...Read more

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Ahead of Sixers' tilt, Raptors coach Nick Nurse opens up about uncertain future, Toronto turmoil

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PHILADELPHIA — On paper, the Toronto Raptors were supposed to join the 76ers as one of this season’s Eastern Conference’s elite teams.

The Raptors’ season, however, has been a difficult one for their coach, Nick Nurse, from a number of standpoints.

“Early on, [Toronto] had some pretty serious injuries with some key guys,” Nurse ...Read more