NBA PLAYOFFS-FINAL SCORES
Eighth-seeded Sixers moving on...Celtics up next...Nuggets force Game 7
UNDATED (AP)— The Philadelphia 76ers are the fifth No. 8 seed to win a first-round NBA playoff series against a No. 1 seed after dumping the Chicago Bulls 79-78 last night as Andre Iguodala (ihg-woh-DAH'-lah) won it with a couple of free throws with 2.2 seconds left.
Iguodala scored 20 points, and Jrue (zhroo) Holiday and Lou Williams each scored 14. The Sixers won despite getting outrebounded 56-33.
In his second season, coach Doug Collins has led the Sixers to their first winning season in seven years. It's his first playoff series victory since he coached the Michael Jordan Chicago Bulls in 1989.
The Sixers were 2.2 seconds from playing Game 7 in Chicago.
Now, they will pack their bags for a date with Boston in the second round starting Saturday night at TD Garden.
In other NBA playoff series:
— Boston rallied to nip Atlanta 83-80 to eliminate the Hawks in six games. Kevin Garnett had 28 points and 14 rebounds, hitting a jumper to give Boston the lead with 31 seconds left. Paul Pierce added 18 points, seven assists and five rebounds.
— The L.A. Lakers will need to win Game 7 at home Saturday night to advance to the second round in the West. Denver raced out to a 13-0 lead and routed the Lakers 113-96 last night in the Mile High City. Lakers star Kobe Bryant, bothered by a stomach ailment, gave it a go and scored 31 points in 37 minutes before sitting out most of the fourth quarter to rest up for Saturday night. Ty Lawson led five Nuggets in double figures with 32, his career playoff high.
He's No. 6!...Ewing on Bobcats list
UNDATED (AP) — Oklahoma City's James Harden is the winner of the NBA's Sixth Man Award. The Thunder's third-year guard was the highest-scoring reserve in the league, averaging 16.8 points per game.
The Thunder obtained Harden with the third overall pick of the 2009 draft. He set career highs in points, rebounds and assists this season.
In other NBA news:
— The Trail Blazers say forward LaMarcus Aldridge had surgery on his right hip. The arthroscopic procedure repaired a slight labral tear. Aldridge was bothered by the injury late in the season and missed the Blazers' final eight games.
__ People familiar with the situation tell the AP that Orlando assistant coach Patrick Ewing is one of several candidates the Charlotte Bobcats will interview for their head coaching vacancy. The Hall of Fame center is expected to meet with team officials next week.
Strasburg fans 13 Pirates...Hamilton hits No. 15
UNDATED (AP) __ Stephen Strasburg struck out a season-high 13 over six innings and the Washington Nationals snapped a three-game losing streak with a 4-2 win over Pittsburgh. Strasburg improved to 3-0. The fireballer lowered his ERA to 1.64 by overpowering the punchless Pirates.
Roger Bernadina and Adam LaRoche both homered in the sixth off Pittsburgh's Kevin Correia (kohr-AY'-uh) to erase a two-run deficit. Rick Ankiel (an-KEEL') added a solo shot in the eighth for insurance.
Henry Rodriguez pitched the ninth for his seventh save in the only National League game of the night.
Over in the AL:
__ The Orioles became the first American League team to open a game with three straight home runs, and Baltimore added two more long balls against Colby Lewis en route to a 6-5 victory over the Texas Rangers in a doubleheader opener. Ryan Flaherty, J.J. Hardy and Nick Markakis (mar-KAY'-kihs) began the bottom of the first inning with homers to give Baltimore a lead it would not relinquish. The Rangers won the nightcap, 7-3 as Josh Hamilton hit his major league-leading 15th homer.
— CC Sabathia outpitched David Price for the first time in six career matchups between the All-Star lefties, Robinson Cano (kuh-NOH') and Curtis Granderson homered and the New York Yankees beat the Tampa Bay Rays 5-3.
__ Detroit rode an 8-run third inning and held off Oakland 10-6. Miguel Cabrera broke out of a slump with two RBI hits in Detroit's eight-run third. He had been hitless in his last 14 at-bats.
— Henderson Alvarez pitched seven strong innings to win his third straight start for the Toronto Blue Jays, 6-2 over the Minnesota Twins.
__ Cleveland roughed up embattled Boston starter Josh Beckett in an 8-3 loss. Jack Hannahan hit a two-run homer and Jason Kipnis had a solo shot off Beckett, who was already in hot water with Red Sox fans for playing golf last week a day after he was scratched from his scheduled start with a sore lat muscle in his back.
Red Sox pay tribute to late P.A. announcer Beane
BOSTON (AP) — The Boston Red Sox paid tribute to public address announcer Carl Beane on Thursday, a day after he died after having a heart attack while driving.
The American flag in center field flew at half-staff as the Red Sox and Cleveland Indians stood along the baselines for a moment of silence honoring "The Voice of Fenway Park."
The Red Sox also showed a series of still photographs, showing moments from Beane's career and ending with a shot of him in the booth he occupied since 2003, smiling as he gazed down on the field.
The Commodores' song "Night Shift" played during the video tribute, which preceded the moment of silence.
Jays ink Guerrero... Angels lose catcher for 6-8 weeks
UNDATED (AP) — Vladimir Guerrero (guh-REHR'-oh) has agreed to a minor league contract with the Toronto Blue Jays. General manager Alex Anthopoulos cautioned there's no guarantee the 37-year-old will join the big league team. Toronto will send him to extended spring training in Dunedin, Fla., and assess his condition.
Guerrero hit .290 with 13 homers and 63 RBIs in 145 games as a designated hitter for Baltimore last season.
During his 16-year major league career, Guerrero has a .318 batting average with 449 homers, tied for 35th.
In other baseball news:
— Los Angeles Angels catcher Chris Iannetta (eye-uh-NET'-uh) will be out six to eight weeks because of an injury to his right wrist. He'll have surgery Friday. Bobby Wilson is Iannetta's backup.
— The Pirates have placed closer Joel Hanrahan on the bereavement list and recalled reliever Daniel McCutchen from Triple-A Indianapolis. Hanrahan left the team to be with his family following the death of his grandmother. He is expected to return to the Pirates on Sunday.
Denver comes to terms with defensive back...Another Belichick in New England
UNDATED (AP) — The Denver Broncos have agreed to terms with veteran free agent cornerback Drayton Florence, who was released by the Buffalo Bills last week. Florence is a 10th-year pro whose release from the Bills was regarded as a mild surprise. He had 45 starts in 46 games during his three-year stint with Buffalo, but was slated to make $4 million in base salary this season.
In other NFL news:
— The New England Patriots have hired Bill Belichick's son as a coaching assistant, making him the third generation of the family to try his hand as a football coach. The Pats say Steve Belichick will join his father's staff. Bill Belichick's father, also named Steve, was a fullback who played for the Detroit Lions and coached in college, spending 33 years on the staff at Navy.
— More than 60 former NFL players have filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles, joining hundreds of others who claim pro football didn't properly protect its players from concussions. The lead plaintiff is Hall of Famer Art Monk, who played wide receiver for the Washington Redskins from 1980 to 1993 and says he suffered multiple concussions that are causing continuing problems to this day.
— Tampa Bay defensive end Da'Quan Bowers has torn his right Achilles tendon during an offseason workout and will undergo surgery.
— The NFL is looking for potential replacement officials while it negotiates with the officials' association on a new contract. The previous contract expired after last season and another negotiating session is expected later this month.
Poulter and Laird tied at TPC Sawgrass
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Ian Poulter ran off a string of four straight birdies midway through his opening round and is tied with Martin Laird after both shot 7-under-par 65 after the first round of The Players Championship. Blake Adams is one shot back. Kevin Na and Ben Crane are two off the lead.
A week after missing the cut for just the eighth time as a pro, Tiger Woods shot a wildly inconsistent 74 that included three birdies and five bogeys on his card. He will have to play well Friday to avoid missing consecutive cuts for the first time in his career.
NHL PLAYOFFS-OFF DAY
Getting ready for Saturday night
UNDATED (AP) — With all but one first-round playoff series decided, the NHL is taking a couple of days off while the Rangers and Capitals prepare for Game 7 on Saturday evening in New York.
Washington forced the decider with a 2-1 win last night on home ice.
The winner will face the New Jersey Devils in round two.
US gets more time to set roster
UNDATED (AP) — The U.S. men's basketball team has more time to solve the problems caused by its injuries.
The Americans have been granted an extension from the U.S. Olympic Committee and won't have to name their roster until July 8, pushed back from June 18. That will allow them to wait until after the NBA season has ended and after training camp has begun.
USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo said the Americans haven't determined how many players will be invited to camp in Las Vegas, with the first practice set for July 6. There are currently 18 healthy players in the roster pool.
USA, USA, USA!
HELSINKI (AP) — Team USA has posted another victory at the ice hockey world championships in Helsinki.
The Americans broke open a close game with a dominant third period and ended up with a 5-3 victory over Belarus.
Derby-winning trainer in trouble
BALTIMORE (AP) — Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Doug O'Neill could face a suspension in California after one of his horses was found to have an elevated level of total carbon dioxide, an infraction for which he previously has been punished. The California Horse Racing Board is considering the case, which involves "milkshaking," the illegal practice of giving a horse a blend of bicarbonate of soda, sugar and electrolytes. The mixture is designed to reduce fatigue and enhance performance.
O'Neill faces his third total carbon dioxide violation in California and fourth in a career that has spanned 25 years.
Speaking at Pimlico Race Course, where he is overseeing Derby winner I'll Have Another in preparation for the May 19 Preakness, O'Neill adamantly denied the charge.
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) — The USFL is back in business and Hall of Fame receiver Fred Biletnikoff has signed on to be one of the league's advisors on football operations.
The USFL went out of business in 1987 after losing millions of dollars and, despite winning a lawsuit against the NFL, being awarded just $3 in indemnities. The USFL plans to kick off next March in eight cities and play a 14-game season.
They will use players not drafted by the NFL or released by NFL teams, with player and coach contracts owned by the league.
Yankees GM testifies
WASHINGTON (AP) — Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said at the Roger Clemens perjury trial in Washington that in 1999, Clemens asked Cashman for the man who could "push his buttons." He asked for trainer Brian McNamee. A year later McNamee was hired by the Yankees as an assistant strength and conditioning coach, at $30,000, whose only duties were to train Clemens.
McNamee, who is expected to testify next week, has said he injected Clemens with steroids and human growth hormone during the 1998, 2000, and 2001 major league seasons. Clemens is on trial for perjury, based on his testimony to Congress in 2008 that he never used either substance.