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National

  • Hockey: Bruins force Game 7

    BOSTON (AP) — The Boston Bruins left their home ice for the final time in a jubilant line, waving and clapping back at the adoring Garden crowd. Tim Thomas returned for one last loop as the first star in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup finals, triumphantly waving his stick above his head.
    With three blowout victories at home in the Stanley Cup finals, the Bruins picked a wonderful way to leave town for the last time this season.
    Brad Marchand, Milan Lucic and Andrew Ference scored in the first 8:35 to chase Roberto Luongo from another game in Boston, and the Bruins sent the Stanley Cup finals to a decisive seventh game with a 5-2 victory over the Canucks on Monday night.

  • Basketball: Mavericks top Heat for 1st NBA title--video extra

    MIAMI (AP) — The season began with LeBron James taking his talents to South Beach.

    It ended with Dirk Nowitzki taking the NBA championship trophy there for a late-night celebration.

    Soaked in champagne in their locker room and spraying more around at a Miami Beach club hours later, the Dallas Mavericks not only added at least another year to James' wait for an NBA title, but they got to have the season's biggest — and final — party.

    Jason Terry scored 27 points, Nowitzki scored 21 on his way to MVP honors, and the Mavs topped the Miami Heat 105-95 on Sunday night to win the NBA title in six games.

  • Basketball: Mavs win, move to within one game of title

    DALLAS (AP) — Dirk Nowitzki waited five long years for that elusive third victory over Miami, yet there was only a short celebration when it finally came.
    He briefly thrust both arms in the air, a sea of blue screaming around him, but then quickly walked off the floor.
    To Nowitzki, the real party can’t come until next week.
    “There’s really nothing to celebrate,” he said. “We’re going in there Sunday swinging, like we did today, from the jump, and hopefully steal one Sunday.”
    Nowitzki scored 29 points, driving for the go-ahead dunk with 2:45 remaining, and the Mavericks beat the Heat 112-103 on Thursday night to take a 3-2 series lead.

  • Hockey: Bruins rout Canucks, even series

    BOSTON (AP) — The tattered, kitschy Bruins jacket has been moving around the Boston locker room for the past few months, going to the most valuable player in every victory.
    It belonged to Nathan Horton when he went down with a serious concussion two days earlier in the Stanley Cup finals. He showed up in the Bruins’ locker room Wednesday night, delighting his teammates by putting the jacket on Rich Peverley.
    That strange, old jacket bought on eBay has become the Bruins’ most valuable trophy.
    After two dominant games in Boston, the Bruins are halfway to winning a bigger, shinier prize.

  • Basketball: Ailing Nowitzki lifts Mavs to win

    DALLAS (AP) — Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks have pulled off another stunning comeback, tying the NBA finals at two games each.
    And this time, Nowitzki did it while battling the flu.
    Nowitzki shook off three poor quarters to score 10 of his 21 points in the final period as the Mavericks outscored the Miami Heat 21-9 over the final 10:12 for an 86-83 victory in a memorable Game 4 on Tuesday night.
    The Mavs avoided going down 3-1, a deficit no team has ever overcome in the finals, and guaranteed the series will return to Miami for a Game 6 on Sunday night.
    Game 5 is Thursday in Dallas.
    “We just played with incredible heart and passion,” Dallas center Tyson Chandler said.

  • Basketball: Heat are up, Mavs are down but not out

    DALLAS (AP) — A chance for another championship ahead of him, Dwyane Wade refused to look back.
    No, he said, he doesn’t consider that the Miami Heat should have a 3-0 lead in the NBA finals.
    The margin is 2-1, close on the scoreboard even though it doesn’t feel that way on the floor. The Heat have repeatedly built double-digit cushions against the Dallas Mavericks, and a late collapse in Game 2 is all that’s keeping them from the lead that’s never been blown in an NBA series.
    The Heat insist the game isn’t as easy as Wade and LeBron James are making it look, and the Mavericks refuse to admit they might just be facing a superior foe.

  • Basketball: O’Neal tweets of his upcoming retirement

    BOSTON (AP) — He was a prolific producer of rebounds and record albums. And nicknames, too, as if at 7-foot-1 and 350 pounds he was too big for the simple “Shaq” that made him an instantly recognizable, one-name star in all of his endeavors.
    Shaquille O’Neal had more than 28,000 points and almost 4 million Twitter followers. He appeared in six NBA finals, three times as the MVP.
    A 15-time All-Star, four-time champion and the 2000 NBA Most Valuable Player, the 39-year-old O’Neal announced his retirement on Twitter on Wednesday after spending most of his 19th season on the Boston Celtics bench, in street clothes because of leg injuries.

  • Basketball: James paces Heat as they take Game 1

    MIAMI (AP) — Dwyane Wade’s night began with a hug for his mom. It ended with an embrace from LeBron James.
    Nearby, Chris Bosh held up three fingers.
    No explanation necessary. The Miami Heat are three wins from the reason why the Big Three came together in the first place.
    James scored 24 points for his first win in five NBA finals games, Wade scored 15 of his 22 points in the second half and the Heat beat the Dallas Mavericks 92-84 in Game 1 of the title series on Tuesday night — holding the Western Conference champions to their lowest point total of the playoffs after a dominant defensive showing down the stretch.

  • Tennis: Nadal is into quarters

    PARIS (AP) — Decoding Rafael Nadal’s self-evaluations can be a tricky proposition.
    Listen, for example, to the way the top-seeded Nadal spoke about his game and his mindset after handling 37th-ranked Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia 7-5, 6-3, 6-3 Monday to reach the quarterfinals at the French Open, improve his record there to 42-1 and get closer to tying Bjorn Borg’s record of six championships in Paris.
    Nadal chastised himself for being “too anxious.” He said he needs to “hit the ball with a little bit more conviction.” Looking at the big picture, Nadal insisted: “The thing is, you have to be (a) realist, and today, I’m not playing well enough to win this tournament.”

  • Football: NFL owners pass player safety amendments

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — NFL owners got their major on-field business out of the way quickly Tuesday, leaving them plenty of time to discuss labor strategy.

    The 32 owners voted unanimously to approve rules amendments for player safety that include eliminating a player launching himself into a defenseless opponent. A 15-yard penalty will result for anyone who leaves both feet before contact to spring forward and upward into an opponent and delivers a blow to the helmet with any part of his helmet.