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National

  • U.S. to bid on 2024 Olympics

    The U.S. Olympic Committee will try to land the 2024 Olympics and end a 28-year drought without the Summer Games.
    Which city will it pick? Stay tuned.
    After hearing presentations from the four candidates Tuesday — Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington — USOC board members voted to join the race, but not until they have a chance to mull over the candidates during the holidays.
    “It’s a four-way tie,” CEO Scott Blackmun said, not diverging from the federation’s closed-lip policy on this yearlong selection process. “We had great presentations, now we have an opportunity to explore how everyone felt about the presentations. We’ll reflect, come back after the holidays and see what’s in the best interest for the United States.”
    This was the expected move from a federation that lost badly the last two times it bid for the Games — New York for 2012 and Chicago for 2016 — and hasn’t played host to the Summer Olympics since the Atlanta Games in 1996.
    The 2016 Olympics are set for Rio de Janeiro. The 2020 Games, which the United States did not bid for, will be in Tokyo.

  • Blake Griffin charged after scuffle in Vegas

    LAS VEGAS (AP) — Los Angeles Clippers star Blake Griffin is facing a misdemeanor battery charge stemming from a scuffle with a man at a Las Vegas Strip nightclub, according to court records obtained Wednesday.
    The 25-year-old Griffin is due for arraignment Dec. 8 before a Las Vegas justice of the peace on a charge that could get him up to six months in jail if he is convicted. The criminal complaint was filed Friday, and a summons was issued for his appearance in court.
    The Clippers were aware of the complaint, team spokesman Seth Burton said, but had no immediate comment. It wasn’t immediately clear if Griffin had a Las Vegas lawyer handling the case.
    Las Vegas police said last month that they were investigating a man’s claim that Griffin attacked him early Oct. 19.
    The complaint lists the victim as Daniel Schuman. An attempt to reach Schuman by telephone wasn’t immediately successful.
    The celebrity news website TMZ quoted Schuman saying that Griffin grabbed his neck, took his cellphone and slapped him after he took a photo at Tao nightclub at the Venetian resort.
    Griffin and other Clippers players were at the club after playing an exhibition game in Las Vegas against the Denver Nuggets.

  • Kirk gets into his first game Tuesday

    Former Los Alamos basketball player Alex Kirk made his first appearance in a NBA regular season game Tuesday night and scored the first points of his career.
    Kirk, a 2010 graduate of Los Alamos, played in the final 3:06 of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ game at Portland.
    The game didn’t go the Cavaliers’ way — they were blown out by the Trail Blazers 101-82. That loss dropped the Cavaliers to 1-2 on the year.
    Cleveland, which was flat in a season-opening loss to New York last week, managed just 13 points in the fourth quarter.
    Cleveland’s superstar, LeBron James, had another pedestrian outing, finishing with just 11 points on 4 of 12 shooting from the field.
    Kirk sat out all of the season opener against the Knicks and last Friday’s game against Chicago, which was the Cavs’ first win of the 2014-15 season.
    Tuesday, Kirk hit a pair of free throws with under a minute remaining. He finished with two points, his first points at the NBA level.
    Along with his points, Kirk also was credited with his first career assist. He did not get a rebound during his time on the floor, nor did he attempt a shot from the field.

  • Luck, Colts toast Giants' defense

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — The mantra throughout the NFL each week is to look ahead. Considering how ugly the previous week was for Indianapolis, the Colts needed tunnel vision toward Monday night.
    Following an awful performance in a loss to Pittsburgh, the Colts beat the New York Giants 40-24 behind Andrew Luck’s four touchdown passes and an improved performance by a defense that kept Eli Manning off balance.
    With his franchise-record seventh consecutive 300-yard game, Luck led the Colts (6-3) to a lopsided win one week after a 51-34 loss to Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers.
    Unlike the way Roethlisberger toyed with their defense in that game, the Colts didn’t let Manning get going in handing New York (3-5) its third straight defeat.
    “It was great to get back in the win column after a tough one last week,” Luck said.
    Luck hit Coby Fleener for a 32-yard TD in the first half. He had scoring throws of 31 yards to T.Y. Hilton, 40 yards to Reggie Wayne and 2 yards to Dwayne Allen in the third period.
    Adam Vinatieri added four field goals and is perfect on 20 tries this year.

  • Giants win third MLB title in five seasons

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Bruce Bochy is crazy superstitious. It's a little-known fact about the unflappable San Francisco Giants manager.
    Mere mention of anything about a dynasty during the World Series made him uncomfortable. He felt equally uneasy when his name got linked to the best skippers of all-time — those Hall of Famers he well could join someday.
    Bochy doesn't have to worry about a jinx now. After winning its third championship in five seasons, the new label for his team looks as if it will stick.
    "Dynasty" blared the front page of the San Francisco Chronicle on Thursday.
    The Giants closed it out with a 3-2 win in Game 7 at Kansas City on Wednesday night, sealed by Series MVP Madison Bumgarner's five shutout innings as a reliever this time.
    "A lot has to go right. First off, it starts with the talent," Bochy said. "I mean, you need that, which we have. Then you have to deal with a lot of things maybe during the season. Every manager says, 'Hey, we're fine, we have a good chance to get there if we stay healthy.' But that doesn't always happen."
    In a remarkable every-other-year pattern, San Francisco somehow finds its best form in even years. With new faces and old ones, with castoffs and misfits and some key midseason acquisitions.

  • Royals fans fired up for Game 7 tonight

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A couple hundred fans stood behind the Royals dugout for more than a half-hour after the final out, screaming and waving white rally towels.
    Bring on Game 7!
    Yordano Ventura, a 23-year-old rookie pitching with a heavy heart and the initials of late St. Louis outfielder Oscar Taveras on his cap, allowed three hits over seven stifling innings. Kansas City's batters broke open the game with a seven-run second and battered the San Francisco Giants 10-0 Tuesday night to tie the World Series at three games apiece.
    "This is what we all prepared for. This is why we play the game," Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer said.
    As bouncers rolled by infielders and bloops dropped in front of outfielders, the raucous roar at Kauffman Stadium swelled with every hit in the second and then got louder the rest of the night. Lorenzo Cain looped a two-run single — one of eight Royals to get hits in the seven-run burst — and Hosmer chopped a two-run double over shortstop.
    "Guys stepped up in a big way tonight," Cain said.
    Jeremy Guthrie starts Wednesday night for Kansas City and Tim Hudson for San Francisco in a rematch of Game 3, won by Kansas City 3-2. Hudson, 39, will become the oldest Game 7 starter in Series history.

  • Giants on the cusp of another crown

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A 2-foot-tall image of deer in multicolored neon with a bulls-eye on its tail is affixed to a wall in the Kansas City Royals locker room. It hangs between the stalls of Aaron Crow and Tim Collins, and has a “W’’ underneath a crown.
    Pitcher James Shields ordered it custom made, and after wins veterans select a “King of the Game” to flip the switch that lights up the so-called “Texas Heart Shot” while a smoke machine perched atop a refrigerator fills the room with a fog more befitting a night club than a clubhouse.
    Trailing 3-2 to the San Francisco Giants in the World Series, the Royals hope to light up that sign two more times this week. But if they do come back to win their first title in 29 years, it’s unlikely there will be time for their usual clubhouse ceremony given the champagne-fueled chaos.
    “I doubt it. It’s going to be crazy around here if we win both games,” outfielder Lorenzo Cain said Monday.
    Kansas City turns to a 23-year-old rookie to save its season, but not just any 23-year-old rookie: the hardest-throwing starting pitcher in the major leagues.

  • Bumgarner silences Royals to open Series

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — By the time Madison Bumgarner took the mound to throw his first pitch, the San Francisco Giants already held a three-run lead.
    It might as well have been 100 with the way MadBum and this orange-and-black bunch play in the World Series.
    Bumgarner carried a shutout into the seventh inning, Hunter Pence homered early and the Giants showed off their October poise, putting a sudden stop to the Kansas City Royals' perfect postseason roll by romping 7-1 in the Series opener Tuesday night.
    "They've obviously been on a great run. You don't get here without that," Bumgarner said. "I think our team is concentrating on what they need to do, not what the Royals are doing."
    From the get-go, the Giants simply did everything right to win their seventh straight World Series game. There's a reason they're trying for their third title in five years.
    "I can't say I'm surprised by these guys," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.
    The Royals, meanwhile, looked nothing like the fresh team that had become baseball's darlings by starting the playoffs with eight wins in a row — back on the field after a five-day layoff, their pitching, hitting and fielding all deserted them.

  • Did Royals, Giants get rested or rusty?

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Alex Gordon took a big rip at a batting-practice fastball, fouled it off badly into the cage, and ducked when the carom nearly hit him in the head.
    Gordon let out a huge laugh, and so did a bunch of his Kansas City Royals teammates watching Monday’s workout.
    “I can’t believe that just happened, dude,” pitcher James Shields razzed.
    It’ll be more frustrating than funny if those are the same awkward swings the Royals and San Francisco Giants take once the World Series begins.
    Going into Game 1 on Tuesday night at Kauffman Stadium, both teams will deal with a familiar issue this deep in the postseason: Does an extended layoff translate into rest or rust?
    Buster Posey and the Giants zipped through the playoffs, and now will try for their third title in five years. Lorenzo Cain and the Royals zoomed along, reaching the Series for the first time since 1985.
    And then, they all got some time off. Almost an eternity, by October standards.
    The Royals went 8-0 in the AL playoffs, giving them five idle days before Shields starts the opener. San Francisco went 8-2 on the NL side and had four days to relax before Madison Bumgarner pitches.

  • Giants' Ishikawa hits walk-off home run

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — After three years away with four different teams, Travis Ishikawa landed himself a second chance with San Francisco right where he so wanted to be.
    And with one sweet swing, he sent the Giants back to the World Series.
    It was the Shot That Shook the Bay.
    For all the questions about San Francisco’s failures to clear the fences and weird ways they’re winning during their latest special October, the Giants got back to the World Series with the home run. A trio of longballs, in fact.
    Ishikawa made good on the big stage only a few months removed from the minors, hitting the first homer to end an NL Championship Series on a three-run drive that lifted San Francisco to a 6-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.
    “It’s gratifying,” Ishikawa said. “If there’s an organization I’d want to do it for, it would be this one.”
    These every-other-year Giants will face the Royals in an all wild-card World Series.
    A journeyman who began the season with Pittsburgh, Ishikawa connected for the first game-ending home run that sent the Giants into the World Series since perhaps the most famous drive in baseball history — Bobby Thomson’s “Shot Heard ‘Round the World” in a 1951 playoff.