In the NBA, Washington beat the Knicks 113-110, San Antonio won against Denver 118-104, Minnesota topped the Clippers 104-101, Miami bested Dallas 99-95, and it was Cleveland over Phoenix 118-103.
Sacramento Kings forward Rudy Gay is out for the season after rupturing his left Achilles tendon during Wednesday's game against the Pacers. The Kings say an MRI confirmed that Gay had a full rupture of the tendon and will undergo surgery in the coming days. Gay is the second-leading scorer for the Kings, averaging 18.7 points and 6.3 rebounds per game.
In the NHL, the Rangers beat Toronto 5-2, the Islanders blanked Dallas 3-0, Ottawa shut out Columbus 2-0, Minnesota edged Arizona 4-3, Washington won against St. Louis 7-3, Nashville bested Calgary 4-3, Anaheim topped Colorado 2-1, and it was San Jose over Tampa Bay 2-1.
On Sunday in the NFL playoffs, New England faces Pittsburgh at 6:40 p.m. for the AFC Championship title and Green Bay takes on Atlanta at 3:05 p.m. for the NFC Championship title.
The Oakland Raiders have taken another major step toward a move to Las Vegas. Raiders owner Mark Davis has formally filed for relocation as Oakland fans prepare for the team's second departure from the Bay Area. The NFL confirmed the filing in a statement, saying the application will be reviewed by league staff and stadium and finance committees in the coming weeks. Any relocation to Las Vegas must be approved by three-fourths of NFL team owners.
Meanwhile, Oakland leaders and investors continue their effort to keep the team in place. The Oakland group says it will continue to negotiate with government officials, the team and the NFL to build a $1.25 billion, 55,000-seat stadium in Oakland. The Raiders sought a move to Las Vegas after failing to successfully negotiate a deal for a new stadium in Oakland.
In other NFL news:
— Falcons All-Pro receiver Julio Jones says a sprained toe won't keep him from playing in Sunday's NFC championship game against Green Bay. Jones has missed practice this week but coach Dan Quinn says the receiver will participate Friday on a limited basis, adding that he expects Jones to start Sunday.
— Colts owner Jim Irsay says quarterback Andrew Luck has undergone surgery on his right shoulder and will be ready for the 2017 season. Luck had been bothered by the shoulder the past two seasons.
— The Los Angeles Rams have confirmed the hiring of Wade Phillips as their new defensive coordinator. This will be the 40th NFL season as a coach for Phillips, who has been employed by 10 franchises.
— Rick Dennison has been hired as the Buffalo Bills' offensive coordinator under new head coach Sean McDermott. Dennison has 22 years of NFL coaching experience and spent the last two seasons running the Denver Broncos' offense.
— Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan plans to talk again with the San Francisco 49ers about their head coaching vacancy. Shanahan is the only apparent candidate for the last available head coaching position in the NFL.
President-elect Donald Trump appears to have announced that billionaire New York Jets owner Woody Johnson will become the next ambassador to Great Britain. Trump was speaking at a luncheon in Washington when he introduced a guest as "sitting next to the ambassador Woody Johnson, going to Saint James." Trump said, "Congratulations, Woody."
Former New York Jets sack-dancing star Mark Gastineau says he is suffering from several health issues caused from years of playing football. The 60-year-old Gastineau says during a radio interview Thursday night with Pete McCarthy on 710 WOR Radio in New York that he has been diagnosed with dementia, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease.
Baseball Hall of Fame:
A day after his election to the Hall of Fame, Ivan Rodriguez appeared to deny using steroids during his career. The catcher spoke Wednesday at a news conference alongside fellow inductees Jeff Bagwell and Tim Raines.
Organizers of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar say a British man has died working at a stadium which will be a venue for the event. The organizers say the unnamed 40-year-old man died on Thursday working at Khalifa International Stadium, which is due to stage games up to the quarterfinal stage in 2022. A statement from Qatar said "the relevant authorities have been notified and the next of kin has been informed. An immediate investigation into the cause of this fatality is underway and further details will be released in due course. The Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy shares our deepest condolences with the family for their loss."
Andy Murray didn't let an ankle injury stop him from reaching the fourth round of the Australian Open. The five-time finalist dropped just 10 games in dispatching American Sam Querrey, 6-4, 6-2, 6-4. Murray displayed no side effects from the right ankle injury he sustained during his last match.
Meanwhile, defending women's champion Angelique Kerber finally had an easy match. Kerber won the first eight games of a 6-0, 6-4 win over Kristyna Pliskova. The top-ranked Kerber had been extended to three sets in her first two matches at Melbourne.
Next up for the German is American Coco Vandeweghe, who is in the fourth round of a Grand Slam for the third time following a three-set win over Eugenie Bouchard.
Other third-round winners on the women's side were eighth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova and No. 24 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who knocked off 11th-seed Elina Svitolina.
The Miami Marlins have acquired another starting pitcher to go with newcomer Edinson Volquez. The Marlins picked up Dan Straily from the Reds for three minor leaguers, including highly-regarded pitching prospects Luis Castillo and Austin Brice. Straily comes off his best major league season, going 14-8 with a 3.76 ERA and 162 strikeouts in 34 games for the 2016 Reds. The Marlins now have nine candidates for their starting rotation as the team tries to recover from the death of ace Jose Fernandez.
In other baseball news:
— The Philadelphia Phillies and outfielder Michael Saunders have finalized a one-year, $9 million contract. Saunders hit a career-best 24 homers and batted .253 with 57 RBIs for the Blue Jays last season.
— The Arizona Diamondbacks have signed ex-San Francisco Giant Gregor Blanco to a minor league contract. The 33-year-old outfielder hit .224 with one home run and 18 RBIs, 10 doubles and four triples in 104 games with the Giants last season.
— Free agent right-hander Neftali Feliz has signed a one-year, $5.35 million contract with the Milwaukee Brewers. Feliz appeared in 62 games for the Pirates last season, going 4-2 with two saves and a 3.52 ERA.
Phil Mickelson has made his 2017 PGA debut after recovering from two sports hernia surgeries. Mickelson shot a 4-under 68 in the opening round of the CareerBuilder Challenge at La Quinta Country Club. The 46-year-old Mickelson underwent his second procedure on Dec. 12, two months after tying for eighth in the season-opening Safeway Open. Tour rookie Dominic Bozzelli fired an 8-under 64 on the Stadium Course at PGA West, the most difficult of the three courses used in the event. Former tournament champion Jhonattan Vegas is in a three-way tie for second with Harold Varner III, Hudson Swafford and Patton Kizzire at minus-7.
The top-ranked squash players and defending champions lost in the semifinals of the Tournament of Champions. Mohamed El Shorbagy of Egypt lost to Number 3 Gregory Gaultier of France 12-10, 11-9, 9-11, 4-11, 11-7 Wednesday night. Gaultier took an injury timeout in the fourth game, barely able to move around the glass-enclosed court at Grand Central Terminal, but rallied for the win.
Gaultier will face Number 2 Karim Abdel Gawad of Egypt in Thursday's championship match. Gawad defeated James Willstrop of Britain 11-6, 11-8, 11-6. In the women's final, Number 4 Camille Serme of France will play Number 5 Laura Massaro of Britain. Serme upset top-ranked Nour El Sherbini of Egypt 11-7, 7-11, 11-6, 11-6, and Massaro defeated Number 11 Sarah-Jane Perry 11-6, 11-6, 11-9 in an all-Britain semifinal.
Former UConn basketball coach Dee Rowe has been selected by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame to receive a lifetime achievement award. The school says Rowe will receive the John W. Bunn Award during the Hall of Fame's induction weekend in September along with Michael Goldberg, long-time executive director of the National Basketball Coaches Association. The 87-year-old Rowe followed up a distinguished high school coaching career with 300 collegiate wins at Worcester Academy and at UConn, which he guided to the NCAA regional semifinals in 1976. He stepped down in 1978 to become a fundraiser for UConn. Since his retirement in 1991, Rowe has remained involved with the school as a special adviser for athletics. He also has served as an international ambassador for the game and was an assistant coach for the 1980 U.S. Olympic team, which ended up boycotting the games in Moscow.
In men’s college baskeball, UAlbany beat Binghamton 84-65, Saint Peter’s beat Siena 77-65.
In women’s college basketball, No. 7 Florida State beat Syracuse 77-58.
In the annual Mayor's Cup, the Union men's hockey team beat RPI in overtime 3-2.
The 11th-ranked Oregon Ducks have tied a team record with their 15th consecutive win, but they did it without the services of a Preseason All-American in the second half. Dillon Brooks limped off the court with a left leg injury before the Ducks completed an 86-63 pounding of California. Brooks didn't rejoin his teammates on the bench for the second half. Coach Dana Altman wouldn't confirm that his top player re-injured his surgically-repaired foot. Oregon still improved to 17-2 as Jordan Bell scored a career-high 26 points and Casey Benson added 15 on five 3-pointers. Bell was 11 of 12 from the field to go with six rebounds and four blocked shots.
In other top-25 finals:
— Third-ranked UCLA improved to 19-1 as Isaac Hamilton nailed a career-high nine 3-pointers in scoring 33 points to lead a 102-80 rout of Arizona State. The Bruins hit 16 3-pointers and shot 60 percent from the field.
— Fourth-ranked Gonzaga remains the lone unbeaten team in Division I after Przemek Karnowski scored 19 points on just seven shots in a 88-57 laugher over Santa Clara. Zach Collins had 16 points as the Bulldogs improved to 18-0, extending the best start in team history.
— Deng Adel matched a career high with 18 points and 12th-ranked Louisville improved to 16-3 with a 92-60 trouncing of Clemson. Donovan Mitchell provided all 18 of his points in the first half before the Cardinals outscored the Tigers by 22 after intermission.
— No. 14 Arizona earned its 12th straight win despite blowing most of a 23-point lead over the final 15 minutes of a 73-66 win at Southern California. Lauri Markkanen scored 23 points for the Wildcats, including a rainbow 3-pointer with 33 seconds left.
— Calvin Hermanson scored seven of his 17 points during a 17-4 spurt in the second half that sent No. 23 Saint Mary's past Pacific, 62-50. Jack Landale added 10 points and 10 boards for the Gaels, who gave up most of a 19-point lead before Hermanson led the late run.
— Melo Trimble was 5-for-9 from 3-point range while scoring a team-high 20 points as 25th-ranked Maryland earned an 84-76 road win at Iowa. Trimble hit consecutive treys in the final three minutes after the Terrapins blew a 15-point lead.
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