#SportsReport: NCAA Tournament Coming Back To Albany

Apr 19, 2017

NHL:

In the Stanley Cup playoffs, the Rangers edged Montreal 2-1 to tie the series at 2 games apiece, Columbus skated by Pittsburgh 5-4 to narrow the gap in the series 3-1, and it was San Jose over Edmonton 7-0 to tie the series at 2 games apiece. The Bruins start game 4 tonight when they play Ottawa in Boston at 7:30 p.m. The Senators lead the series 2-1.

Rick Nash and Jesper Fast scored, Henrik Lundqvist made 23 saves and the New York Rangers beat the Montreal Canadiens 2-1 last night to even their first-round playoff series at two games apiece. New York's win also ended a six-game losing streak at home in the playoffs going back to the 2015 Eastern Conference Final.

NBA:

In the NBA, Chicago beat Boston 111-97 to extend their lead in the series to 2 games-to-none, Toronto topped Milwaukee 106-100 to tie the series 1-1, and the Clippers tied the series at 1 game apiece after downing Utah 99-91.

Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant is listed as questionable for Game 2 of their NBA first-round series against Portland on Wednesday.

Durant missed Tuesday's practice because of a strained left calf. He recently returned to the lineup after sitting out 19 games with knee and leg injuries. He provided 32 points and 10 rebounds in the Warriors' 121-109 win over the Trail Blazers on Sunday. The Warriors also list Shaun Livingston as questionable for Game 2 with a sprained right index finger and bruised hand, while forward Matt Barnes is questionable with a sprained right ankle and foot. The Trail Blazers will be without center Jusuf Nurkic again due to a nondisplaced fracture in his right leg that sidelined him the final seven regular-season games and Sunday's series opener.

Gonzaga basketball star Nigel Williams-Goss has decided to skip his senior season and enter the NBA draft after leading the Bulldogs to their first appearance in the NCAA Final Four. Williams-Goss led the Zags in scoring at 16.8 points a game as the team went 37-2. The West Coast Conference player of the year will hire an agent, precluding his return to school. And junior forward Jordan Bell has become the latest Oregon player to declare for the NBA Draft, joining teammates Dillon Brooks and Tyler Dorsey. Bell says he plans to hire an agent, which would end his eligibility after he averaged a career-high 10.9 points and 8.8 rebounds a game this past season.

MLB:

In Major League Baseball, Boston edged Toronto 8-7, the White Sox won against the Yankees 4-1, and Philadelphia beat the Mets 6-2 in 10 innings.

Brian Johnson earned his first major league win after being called up from the minors earlier in the day, Mookie Betts hit his first home run of the season and the Boston Red Sox hung on to beat the Toronto Blue Jays 8-7 last night for their season-high fourth straight victory. Johnson, promoted yesterday morning from Triple-A Pawtucket, gave up four runs and seven hits and struck out six in five innings.

Phillies right-hander Clay Buchholz has had surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon in his right forearm, and could miss the rest of the season. The 32-year-old was placed on the 10-day disabled list retroactive to April 15th prior to the club's series opener against the New York Mets.

The Pittsburgh Pirates will be without their Gold Glove center fielder for about half the season. Starling Marte has received an 80-game suspension from Major League Baseball after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug. MLB said Marte tested positive for the steroid Nandrolone and will be eligible to return in mid-July. Baseball's new drug agreement also means Marte is ineligible to play in the 2017 postseason if the Pirates advance.

Also in the majors:

— Giants manager Bruce Bochy has undergone a minor heart procedure that will force him to miss the team's two-game series against the Royals. Bochy has a history of heart issues and had been complaining of discomfort in recent days. He told bench coach Ron Wotus on Sunday night that he was planning to go in for an exam Monday, and wound up having a procedure called an ablation to fix a heart rhythm problem.

— The Blue Jays have placed left-hander J.A. Happ on the 10-day disabled list due to a sore elbow. Happ underwent an MRI that revealed by structural damage, leaving manager John Gibbons optimistic that Happ can return at the end of his DL stint or shortly after. Happ is 0-3 with a 4.50 ERA after winning 20 games last season.

NCAA:

With major renovations to the downtown Times Union Center nearly complete, the city of Albany secured a long-awaited booking on Tuesday. The NCAA announced that the Division I men’s basketball tournament will return to the county-owned arena in three years for the first time since 2003.  Albany’s first- and second-round games are slated for March 19 and 21st, 2020. Albany was also selected to host a 2019 Division I women’s basketball tournament regional.

The NCAA has awarded men's basketball tournament games in 2020 and 2021 along with several other championship events to North Carolina. The decision comes after the state repealed elements of a law that limited protections for LGBT people and put it at risk of being passed over as a host for future events. The governing body announced decisions Tuesday for events through 2022, two weeks after the NCAA said it had "reluctantly" agreed to consider North Carolina again for hosting duties. It had stripped North Carolina of NCAA men's basketball games and six other championship events this season and said it could relocate more if there wasn't a change in the "bathroom bill."

NFL:

The New England Patriots have signed cornerback Malcolm Butler, the hero of their fourth Super Bowl victory, to a restricted free agent tender. The $3.91 million agreement makes him eligible to be traded. He visited the New Orleans Saints, but they declined to make an offer that would have required them to compensate New England with a first-round draft pick.

A person with direct knowledge of the move confirms to The Associated Press that the Buffalo Bills risk losing running back Mike Gillislee to their AFC East rival New England Patriots. The person says Gillislee signed the Patriots' two-year, $6.4 million offer sheet, putting the Bills in a position to match the contract to retain the restricted free agent. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the Patriots have not announced the move.

Boston Marathon:

Adidas has apologized for sending out a marketing email praising customers it said "survived" this year's Boston Marathon. The subject line of the email sent yesterday by Adidas Running read: "Congrats, you survived the Boston Marathon!" On social media, customers quickly reminded the company about the real survivors of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.

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