Update on the latest sports
Celtics top Raptors in OT...Butler scores 28 in Philly home debut
UNDATED (AP) — The Boston Celtics have earned back-to-back victories since their 1-4 road trip, and Friday’s win gets them closer to the NBA’s Atlantic Division lead.
Kyrie (KY’-ree) Irving poured in 17 of his season-high 43 points over the last 8:06 of the fourth quarter before recording an assist on every Boston basket in overtime to lead a 123-116 victory over Toronto. Irving finished with 11 assists to help the Celtics avenge an early-season loss to the first-place Raptors.
Jayson Tatum scored 21 with seven rebounds for the Celtics, who overcame Kawhi (kah-WY’) Leonard’s 31 points and season-high 15 boards.
The Raptors opened the season a league-best 12-1 before losing their last three games, putting them 2 ½ games ahead of Boston and Philadelphia.
The 76ers also moved a game closer to Toronto as Jimmy Butler scored 28 points in his home debut and Joel Embiid (joh-EHL’ ehm-BEED’) had 23 in a 113-107 downing of the Jazz. Butler received a loud ovation during introductions before the four-time All-Star fueled a first-quarter spurt that put the Sixers ahead by 16.
Checking out Friday’s other NBA schedule:
— Eric Bledsoe dropped in 25 points and the Bucks staged a nice comeback in what became a 123-104 rout of the Bulls. Khris Middleton and Giannis Antetokounmpo (YAH’-nihs an-teh-toh-KOOM’-poh) each added 23 points for Milwaukee, which trailed by 22 in the first half but took control by outscoring Chicago 46-17 in the third quarter.
— Andrew Wiggins had a team-high with 23 points and Derrick Rose contributed 17 off the bench as the suddenly hot Timberwolves won their third straight, 112-96 over the Trail Blazers. Robert Covington and Karl-Anthony Towns each had 14 points for the Wolves, who improved to 7-1 at home and 3-0 since trading Butler to Philadelphia on Monday.
— Tyreke Evans drained five 3-pointers and scored a season-high 23 points off the bench in leading the Pacers to a 99-91 victory over the Heat. Bojan (BOY’-ahn) Bogdanovic had 16 points and six rebounds, while Domantas Sabonis added 15 points and 12 boards in a reserve role for Indiana.
— The Nets earned a 115-104 win over the Wizards as Spencer Dinwiddie scored a season-best 25 points and D’Angelo Russell had 23. The Nets had lost five straight in Washington and ended a three-game slide overall.
— Anthony Davis scored a season-high 43 points and grabbed 17 rebounds in sending the Pelicans past the Knicks, 129-124. Julius Randle chipped in 19 points and 11 boards for New Orleans, which overcame an 11-point, fourth quarter deficit.
— Marc Gasol (gah-SAHL’) became the Grizzlies’ all-time leading rebounder by grabbing 15 in a 112-104 decision over the Kings. Rookie Jaren Jackson Jr. scored a season-high 27 points, while Gasol and Mike Conley each added 19 in the win.
Sue Bird joins Nuggets front office
DENVER (AP) — WNBA champion Sue Bird is joining the Denver Nuggets’ front office while continuing her own professional basketball playing career.
Nuggets’ president of basketball operations Tom Connelly said Bird’s new title is basketball operations associate.
Bird recently completed her 16th season in the WNBA with her third championship, all with the Seattle Storm.
Jayhawks knock off Louisiana Tech
UNDATED (AP) — Second-ranked Kansas had a bit of trouble within Louisiana-Lafayette on Friday before improving to 3-0.
Lagerald Vick nailed seven 3-pointers while scoring a career-high 33 points, but the Jayhawks led by just three at halftime before pulling out an 89-76 victory over the Ragin’ Cajuns. Dedric Lawson finished with 19 points and Udoka Azubuike shook off a slow start to finish with 17 and eight rebounds.
In other games involving Top 25 teams:
— Fourth-ranked Virginia slammed Coppin State, 97-40 as De’Andre Hunter scored 20 points. Mamadi Diakite started in place of Jack Salt and added a career-high 18 points on 7 for 9 shooting for the Cavaliers.
— Luke Maye had 15 points to help No. 7 North Carolina crush Tennessee Tech 108-58. Sterling Manley added 13 points for the 4-0 Tar Heels, who shot 55 percent.
— Xavier Sneed scored 16 points to lead five Kansas State players in double figures as the 12th-ranked Wildcats beat Eastern Kentucky, 95-68 to advance to the semifinals of the Paradise Jam tournament.
— Bol Bol had 26 points and nine rebounds to send 13th-ranked Oregon past No. 15 Syracuse, 80-65 in the consolation game of the 2K Classic. Payton Pritchard added 18 points for the 3-1 Ducks.
— Quinndary Weatherspoon scored 21 points and Tyson Carter to highlight 17th-ranked Mississippi State’s 79-51 rout of Long Beach State.
— Ja’vonte Smart scored 16 points, and his late 3-pointer put No. 22 LSU ahead for good in a 74-67 victory over Louisiana Tech.
— It’ll be No. 23 Purdue against No. 16 Virginia Tech for the Charleston Classic championship on Sunday. Carsen Edwards scored 29 points as the Boilermakers rolled past Davidson 79-58. Earlier, Nickeil Alexander-Walker scored 20 points and the Hokies used a 23-2 run before halftime to overpower Northeastern 88-60.
Caps outlast Avs in OT
UNDATED (AP) — The Washington Capitals were able to turn a late penalty by Colorado into their second win in three games.
Nicklas Backstrom notched a power-play goal 22 seconds into overtime to complete the Caps’ 3-2 victory over the Avalanche. Ian Cole was called for holding with 1:09 seconds left in regulation, giving Washington a 4-on-3 situation to start the extra period.
Backstrom also set up Alex Ovechkin’s 13th goal of the season, which put the Capitals ahead 2-1 in the second period.
The Avs gained a point when Colin Wilson tallied with 2:44 remaining in the third.
The Caps played without T.J. Oshie (OH’-shee), Evgeny Kuznetsov (kooz-NEHT’-sahv) and Braden Holtby due to upper-body injuries.
Elsewhere on NHL ice:
— Morgan Rielly’s goal at 3:17 of overtime gave the Maple Leafs a 2-1 win at Anaheim. Patrick Marleau also tallied and Garret Sparks made 38 saves in Toronto’s sixth victory in seven games.
— Ben Bishop turned back 23 shots and Jason Dickson scored 1:34 into overtime as the pair led the Stars’ 1-0 win against the Bruins. Bishop got his 26th career shutout, and Boston netminder Tuukka (TOO’-kah) Rask made 36 saves in his return from a week-long leave of absence for a personal matter.
— The Sabres picked up their fourth straight win by knocking off the Jets, 2-1 on Conor Sheary’s goal in the seventh round of a shootout. Jeff Skinner tied it with a power-play goal in the third period and Carter Hutton stopped 25 shots as Buffalo improved to a surprising 11-6-2.
— Cal Petersen made 34 saves in his first NHL start before stopping Jonathan Toews (tayvz) and Patrick Kane in a shootout to lift the Kings past the Blackhawks, 2-1. Ilya Kovalchuk (KOH’-vul-chuhk) and Anze Kopitar (AHN’-zhay KOH’-pih-tahr) had the shootout goals for Los Angeles after Tyler Toffoli scored in the second period.
— Ryan O’Reilly scored twice and Jake Allen handled 32 shots in the Blues’ 4-1 verdict over the Golden Knights. Brayden Schenn and Oskar Sundqvist also scored for St. Louis, which is 4-0-2 versus Vegas since the Knights entered the league last season.
Strome back in Gotham
UNDATED (AP) — Ryan Strome (strohm) is back in New York after being acquired by the Rangers from Edmonton for fellow forward Ryan Spooner.
The former Islanders draft pick had a goal and an assist in 18 games for the Oilers. He has 59 goals and 103 assists in 358 career NHL games.
Spooner was just as productive for the Blueshirts this season, providing one goal and two points in 16 games.
Also in the NHL:
— Coyotes forward Josh Archibald has been suspended for two games without pay by the NHL for an illegal check to the head of Nashville forward Ryan Hartman on Thursday. The suspension will cost Archibald more than $7,200.
— Penguins forward Matt Cullen has been fined $1,000 by the NHL for a dangerous trip of Lightning forward J.T. Miller in Thursday’s 4-3 loss to Tampa Bay.
Kyle Busch leads title contenders in qualifying for finale
HOMESTEAD, Fla. (AP) — Kyle Busch was the top qualifier among the four drivers vying for the NASCAR Cup championship Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Busch thought he got the jump on the competition with a pole-winning run, but he had to settle for second after being bumped down a spot by teammate Denny Hamlin.
Martin Truex qualified third, Joey Logano will start fifth and Kevin Harvick goes off 12th as they battle Busch for the title.
T25 COLLEGE FOOTBALL-BOISE STATE/NEW MEXICO
Broncos thump Lobos
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — No. 23 Boise State is 9-2 overall this season and 6-1 in the Mountain West following a blowout win at New Mexico.
Sean Modster caught a career-high three touchdown passes and the Broncos took advantage of three turnovers to hammer the Lobos, 45-14. Brett Rypien was an efficient 17 for 27 for 222 yards and the three scores, with Modster accounting for a career-best nine receptions for 129 yards.
Alexander Mattison added 145 yards and a touchdown for Boise, which surrendered just 262 total yards.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL-WILDFIRE POSTPONEMENT
Cal-Stanford Big Game postponed
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) — The annual Big Game between Stanford and California that had been scheduled for Saturday was postponed two weeks because of the unhealthy air quality in the Bay Area resulting from a wildfire some 150 miles to the north.
Cal announced Friday that the game would be played Dec. 1 with a noon kickoff at Memorial Stadium in Berkeley.
This is the just the second postponement since the rivalry began in 1892, and the first since the day after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
Broncos lose Garcia
UNDATED (AP) — Denver Broncos left guard Max Garcia is out for the season because of a torn ACL in his left knee.
Garcia apparently was injured during Thursday’s practice, although he finished the workout and wasn’t listed on the team’s injury report.
The 3-6 Broncos were already was down two starters on the offensive line after losing left guard Ronald Leary last month and center Matt Paradis in their last game.
In other NFL news:
— The Bengals are leaving a slight possibility that receiver A.J. Green could play Sunday at Baltimore even though he hasn’t practiced the last two weeks because of a toe injury. The offense struggled without him during a 51-14 loss to the Saints last week.
— The Jacksonville Jaguars will be down to their fourth left tackle when they take on the Steelers on Sunday. Coach Doug Marrone says former Giants first-round draft pick Ereck Flowers will start in place of Josh Walker, who is listed as doubtful with a foot/ankle injury.
— The Raiders practiced at an off-site facility for a second consecutive day Friday as thick smoke from California’s deadly wildfires blanketed the Bay Area. Much like they did a year ago when similar conditions arose due to fires in Northern California, players and coaches were bused to an indoor gym at the former Alameda Naval Air Station for practices Thursday and Friday.
— The Steelers will be without key starters on their offensive and defensive lines when they face the Jaguars on Sunday. Right tackle Marcus Gilbert will miss his fourth straight game with a knee injury, while defensive end Stephon Tuitt has been ruled out with an elbow injury.
Pearce staying in Beantown
UNDATED (AP) — World Series MVP Steve Pearce is staying with the Boston Red Sox after the journeyman first baseman agreed to a one-year, $6.25 million package.
The 35-year-old Pearce was a free agent after completing a $12.5 million, two-year deal that he got from Toronto in December 2016. He earned an additional $150,000 bonus for his selection as World Series MVP. His new deal also includes award bonuses.
Also in the majors:
— Mike Elias is the Orioles’ new executive vice president and general manager. The 35-year-old heads to Baltimore after working as scouting director and assistant GM in Houston, where he helped transform a last-place team into 2017 World Series champions. Elias replaces executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duqette, who was fired with manager Buck Showalter in October after Baltimore’s dreadful 47-115 season.
Howell maintains lead
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. (AP) — Charles Howell III continues to zero in on his first PGA victory in almost 12 years.
Howell kept bogeys off his card for the second straight day while firing a 6-under 64 for a three-stroke lead over Tour rookie Cameron Champ and Jason Gore. Howell’s 14-under total matches the best 36-hole score of his career.
USA GYMNASTICS-GALIMORE OUT
USA Gymnastics COO quits
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Longtime USA Gymnastics chief operating officer Ron Galimore has resigned, the latest high-profile departure for the embattled organization in the wake of the Larry Nassar scandal.
The move Friday came as USA Gymnastics is facing decertification of its status as the national governing body for the sport amid concerns about its leadership and the way it handled complaints against Nassar.
OHIO STATE-TEAM DOCTOR
Former Ohio State students air claims of sex abuse
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Former students alleging sexual abuse by a former Ohio State University team doctor are pleading with the school’s trustees not to dismiss or minimize victims’ claims.
Seven accusers of Dr. Richard Strauss told trustees Friday his actions have caused them long-term harm. They described abuse during team physicals, while being treated for injuries and during medical exams at the student health center.
They blamed Ohio State for failing to act sooner.