Update on the latest in sports:
Pacers stay hot
UNDATED (AP) — Victor Oladipo (oh-lah-DEE’-poh) continues to round into form since returning from a knee injury on Dec. 12.
Oladipo scored a team-high 22 points on 9 of 19 shooting and contributed four rebounds and five steals as the Indiana Pacers downed Atlanta, 116-108.
Domantas Sabonis and Myles Turner each added 20 for the Pacers, who have won five straight and 12 of 14 to pull within one game of first-place Milwaukee in the NBA’s Central Division.
Indiana joins the Raptors and Bucks as the first teams with 25 wins.
The Hawks lost for just the second time in seven games despite rookie Kevin Huerter, who had season highs of six 3-pointers and 22 points.
Checking out Monday’s other NBA action:
— Stephen Curry scored 34 points and Kevin Durant added 25 in Golden State’s 132-109 blowout over the Suns in Phoenix. The Warriors were 14 for 28 on 3-pointers in beating the Suns for the 17th straight time.
— James Harden posted his fourth straight 40-point game and had a triple-double to boot in leading the Rockets over the Grizzlies, 113-101. Harden finished with 43 points, 10 rebounds and 13 assists while becoming the first player in NBA history to produce at least 35 points and five assists in eight straight games.
— The Spurs won for the 11th time in 13 games by shooting 19-for-25 while erupting for 46 points in the third quarter of a 120-111 triumph over the Celtics. LaMarcus Aldridge scored 32 points and Derrick White had a career-high 22 points as San Antonio won without Rudy Gay because of a sprained left wrist.
— The Thunder were 122-102 winners over Dallas as Russell Westbrook had 32 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists. Paul George added 22 points and Jerami Grant had 16 to help Oklahoma City win for the second time in five games.
— The Pelicans managed to win without Anthony Davis as Julius Randle had 33 points and 11 rebounds in a 123-114 victory against the Timberwolves. Darius Miller scored 13 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter, including his fifth 3-pointer that put New Orleans ahead 115-109 with 1:12 to go.
— Kemba Walker scored 24 points in just 27 minutes of the Hornets’ 13th straight win over the Magic, 125-100. Aaron Gordon scored 14 points and Nikola Vucevic had 12 before leaving the court with a knee injury late in the third quarter.
McCaw joins Cavaliers, Iguodala fined
UNDATED (AP) — Veteran NBA swingman Patrick McCaw officially became a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday after the Golden State Warriors declined to match the Cavs’ two-year, $6 million offer sheet.
McCaw signed the offer sheet last week and practiced with the Cavaliers on Monday.
In other NBA news:
— Warriors forward Andre Iguodala (ihg-woh-DAH’-lah) has been fined $25,000 by the league for heaving a ball into the stands at the end of the first half of Saturday’s game in Portland.
Firings continue as season ends
UNDATED (AP) — Four more NFL head coaches have been shown the door on New Year’s Eve, one day after two others were let go.
The Cincinnati Bengals are parting with Marvin Lewis after 16 seasons and no playoff victories. The decision follows a 5-11 season that included nine losses in the Bengals’ last 11 games.
Lewis leaves as the franchise’s leader in coaching tenure, wins and losses with a record of 131-129-3. But his 0-7 mark in the postseason is the worst in NFL history.
The Denver Broncos fired coach Vance Joseph after the franchise’s first back-to-back seasons of double-digit losses since 1966-67. Joseph had two years and about $6 million left on his contract following a 6-10 campaign.
Denver went 11-21 under Joseph after five straight winning campaigns.
The Miami Dolphins dismissed coach Adam Gase seasons and reassigned executive vice president of football operations Mike Tannenbaum after the team missed the playoffs for the 15th time in 17 years. The Dolphins made the AFC playoffs at 10-6 in Gase’s first season, but they are a combined 13-19 in two years since then.
Steve Wilks was let go after just one year and three wins as head coach of the Arizona Cardinals. It was the franchise’s worst record in 18 years and the poorest in the NFL this season.
Meanwhile, Dan Quinn will remain the Atlanta Falcons’ head coach despite a 7-9 mark this season. Quinn is 36-28 in four years at the post, including a Super Bowl berth in 2016.
In other NFL news:
— Eagles coach Doug Pederson says Nick Foles is “feeling good” and will start at quarterback when the defending Super Bowl champions play the Chicago Bears in an NFC wild-card game next Sunday. Foles left Sunday’s 24-0 win at Washington with a chest injury in the fourth quarter.
— Titans linebacker Brian Orakpo (oh-RAK’-poh) says he’s retiring after 10 NFL seasons. The 32-year-old was the 13th pick overall out of Texas in 2009 by Washington. Orakpo started all 132 games in his career over six seasons with the Redskins and four with Tennessee, finishing with 66 career sacks.
— The Falcons have fired offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian (sahr-KEE’-zee-an), defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel and special teams coordinator Keith Armstrong one day after the end of the team’s first losing season since 2014.
— The Raiders have hired former NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock as their new general manager to work alongside coach Jon Gruden. The team had been searching for a new GM since firing Reggie McKenzie earlier this season.
T25 MEN’S BASKETBALL-SCHEDULE
Cavs crush Marshall
UNDATED (AP) — Fourth-ranked Virginia has given head coach Tony Bennett his 300th career victory.
The Cavaliers are 12-0 this season after Kyle Guy led them to a 100-64 thumping of Marshall. Guy made seven 3-pointers and had career highs of 30 points and eight rebounds.
Ty Jerome and Jay Huff added 14 points each for Virginia, which led 50-25 at intermission before scoring the first 10 of the second half.
The victory kept alive Virginia’s best start to a season since the 2014-15 team won its first 19 games.
Also in top-25 action:
— Rui Hachimura (ROO’-ee hah-chee-MOOR’-ah) dropped in 22 points and seventh-ranked Gonzaga wrapped up its non-conference schedule by crushing Cal State-Bakersfield, 89-54. Brandon Clarke and Zach Norvell Jr. each scored 16 points for the 13-2 Bulldogs.
T25-COLLEGE BASKETBALL POLL
Duke remains No. 1
NEW YORK (AP) — Duke picked up 35 of 64 first-place votes to stay atop The Associated Press men’s basketball poll for the second straight week and fourth week this season.
Second-ranked Michigan claimed nine first-place votes and No. 3 Tennessee took 12. Fourth-ranked Virginia and fifth-ranked Kansas each earned four votes to round out the poll’s top tier.
Nevada, Gonzaga, Michigan State, Florida State and Virginia Tech round out the top 10. Four of the 10 schools are from the ACC.
UCLA fires Steve Alford
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Steve Alford has been fired as UCLA basketball coach after six seasons. The Bruins are mired in a four-game skid that included losses at home to Belmont and Liberty.
Athletic director Dan Guerrero says assistant Murry Bartow will serve as interim coach through the end of the season. UCLA is 7-6 and in danger of missing the NCAA Tournament despite a talented roster that includes sophomore Kris Wilkes and freshman Moses Brown.
Duke loses QB, LB early
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — Duke quarterback Daniel Jones and linebacker Joe Giles-Harris are skipping their senior seasons to enter the NFL draft.
The 6-foot-5 Jones completed nearly 60 percent of his passes while throwing for 8,201 yards and 52 touchdowns in three seasons as the starter.
Giles-Harris averaged more than nine tackles in 34 career games and became the school’s first two-time all-Atlantic Coast Conference linebacker in more than 30 years.
Preds end skid
UNDATED (AP) — A pair of streaks ended at the home of the defending Stanley Cup champions on Monday afternoon. The Nashville Predators stopped their season-worst, six-game losing skid by handing the Washington Capitals their first loss in five contests.
Frederick Gaudreau provided the game-winner while the Predators scored the last four goals in a 6-3 comeback over the Capitals. Ryan Johansen had a goal and two assists to support Pekka Rinne (PEH’-kuh REE’-nay), who turned back 22 shots and was perfect after Nashville spotted the Caps a 3-1 lead in the second period.
Miikka Salomaki (MEE’-kah sah-loh-MAH’-kee), Johansen and Gaudreau scored during a 4:33 span midway through the second to put the Predators ahead.
Elsewhere on NHL ice:
— Brendan Lemieux’s second goal of the night snapped a 3-3 tie with 5:58 remaining in the Jets’ 4-3 win at Edmonton. Brandon Tanev and Blake Wheeler also scored and Connor Hellebuyck (HEH’-leh-buhk) stopped 21 shots as Winnipeg stopped a two-game slide.
— Brayden Point scored 35 seconds into overtime and the Lightning completed a 12-0-1 December by downing the Ducks, 2-1. Nikita Kucherov (KOO’-cheh-rahv) had a goal and an assist and Andrei Vasilevskiy (va-sih-LEHV’-skee) stopped 35 shots in Tampa Bay’s sixth straight win.
— Pierre-Luc Dubois (doo-BWAH’) provided the first two goals while the Blue Jackets scored five times in the third period to beat the Senators, 6-3. Cam Atkinson had a goal and two assists in the final period as Columbus won for the sixth time in seven games.
— Phil Kessel had a goal and two assists in the Penguins’ 3-2 victory against the Wild. Casey DeSmith made 40 saves and Sidney Crosby added a goal and assist as Pittsburgh earned its fourth consecutive road win.
— Philip Danault scored twice before Jeff Petry’s goal 14 seconds into overtime gave the Canadiens a 3-2 decision over Dallas. Antti Niemi (AN’-tee nee-EH’-mee) made 45 saves and was perfect after Radek Faksa and Jamie Benn scored during the Stars’ 24-shot second period.
— The Islanders won their fourth in a row as Robin Lehner (LEH’-nur) stopped 39 shots against his former team to lead a 3-1 victory at Buffalo. Nick Leddy scored three minutes into the game, Brock Nelson provided the eventual game-winner and Ryan Pulock (POO’-lahk) iced the Isles’ seventh win in eight games by scoring an empty-netter.
— Henrik Lundqvist made 37 saves and the Rangers got goals from Mats Zuccarello (zoo-kah-REH’-lah) and Boo Nieves in a 2-1 victory over the Blues. New York had allowed at least four goals in eight of its past 11 games before shutting down St. Louis, sending the Blues to their 11th home loss.
— Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan each had five-point nights as the Flames outscored the Sharks, 8-5. Gaudreau scored twice and Monahan had a career-high five assists after setting up three goals against the Jets two games earlier.
— Dustin Brown scored on a breakaway 56 seconds into overtime to complete the Kings’ 3-2 win at Colorado. The Avalanche tied the game with third-period goals by Nathan MacKinnon and Carl Soderberg before dropping their fifth in a row.
— Rookie Mackenzie Blackwood notched his second straight shutout by handling 25 shots in the Devils’ 4-0 win against the Canucks. New Jersey has won three straight for the first time since its first three games of the season.
— Jonathan Huberdeau (HOO’-bur-doh) scored the long shootout goal in the Panthers’ 4-3 comeback over the Red Wings. Detroit led 3-0 until Jared McCann, Henrik Borgstrom and Jayce Hawryluk tallied in the second period.
— Curtis McElhinney made 22 saves and the Hurricanes scored three times on their first 10 shots to chase Carter Hart in a 3-1 win over the Flyers. Lucas Wallmark, Jordan Martinook and Andrei Svechnikov (SVEHCH’-nih-kahv) scored to help Carolina win for just the second time in six games.
Bowl season grinds on
UNDATED (AP) — The college football bowl games continue, even after the CFP finalists were set.
Trayveon Williams smashed a 30-year-old school record by rushing for 236 yards while scoring three touchdowns in No. 21 Texas A&M’s 52-13 victory against North Carolina State in the Gator Bowl. Kellen Mond completed 14 of 26 passes for 140 yards, with a touchdown and an interception. Mond also ran five times for 85 yards and a score.
Northwestern converted three Utah turnovers into 21 points during the third quarter of a 31-20 Holiday Bowl win over the 20th-ranked Utes. Jared McGee’s 82-yard fumble return for a touchdown highlighted the Wildcats’ 28-point third period that allowed them to finish 9-5. Senior Clayton Thorson became the all-time leading passer for Northwestern, going 21 of 30 for 241 yards for 10,731 career yards.
Taylor Cornelius tied a Liberty Bowl record with four touchdown passes and Kolby Peel made a critical fourth-down stop with 1:01 left as Oklahoma State edged No. 24 Missouri 38-33 in the Liberty Bowl. Chuba Hubbard rushed for 145 yards and a TD for the Cowboys, and Tyron Johnson had seven catches for 141 yards and two scores. Missouri’s Larry Rountree III ran for 204 yards, including a 55-yard touchdown.
Cameron Scarlett scored on a 1-yard run and recovered a fumble in the end zone for a second score to lead Stanford to a 14-13 victory against Pittsburgh in the Sun Bowl. Scarlett had 91 yards on 21 carries in place of tailback Bryce Love, who decided to skip the bowl game to rehab an ankle injury ahead of the NFL draft. The Panthers were led by tailback Darrin Hall, who had 16 carries for 123 yards and a score.
Justin Herbert shook off a sluggish day and threw a touchdown pass to Dillon Mitchell in the fourth quarter to send Oregon past Michigan State, 7-6 in the Redbox Bowl. Herbert passed for 166 yards and extended his streak of consecutive games with a touchdown pass to 28 as the Ducks improved to 9-4. Brian Lewerke bobbled a snap on a field goal attempt and completed 22 of 40 passes for 172 yards with one interception.
Michael Warren ran for a career-high 166 yards and scored the go-ahead touchdown with 1:29 left in the Military Bowl to carry Cincinnati past Virginia Tech, 35-31. Hayden Moore took over for injured starter Desmond Ridder in the first quarter and completed 11 of 25 passes for 120 yards. The outcome gives Cincinnati its third 11-win season and ends the Hokies’ string of 25 straight winning seasons.