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  • AP source: Kings, Koufos agree to 4-year, million deal

    July 5, 2015

    A day after locking up a pair of guards, the Sacramento Kings invested in their front court.Center Kosta Koufos agreed to a million, four-year contract with the Kings on Saturday night, a person with knowledge of the deal said.The person, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because contracts can't be completed until the NBA's moratorium on free agency ends Thursday, said the fourth year is a player option.

  • Suns find another reason to dislike the Spurs

    July 4, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) The Phoenix Suns vaulted from long shots to finalists in the bid to land coveted free agent LaMarcus Aldridge.But finishing as runner-up to the team the Suns' fans love to hate, the San Antonio Spurs, left a hollow ring to the team's concerted efforts to climb from mediocrity to relevance in the tough Western Conference.

  • Durant: 'I can't wait to play the game I love again'

    July 4, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Kevin Durant says next summer can wait.Next season is his only priority at this point.The Oklahoma City star - limited to 27 games last season because of injuries - was at the NBA summer league games in Orlando on Saturday, and said he would be ready for next season and he hasn't thought about the summer of 2016 when he likely will be the biggest domino in a free-agent class that already seems certain to earn incredibly large deals as the league's salary cap skyrockets.

  • AP sources: Pelicans bring back Cunningham on 3-year deal

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) People familiar with the negotiations say the New Orleans Pelicans and forward Dante Cunningham have agreed on a three-year contract extension worth about million.The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity on Saturday because the free-agent contract, which cannot officially be signed until July 9, has not been announced.

  • Hammon says she's thankful for chance to coach summer Spurs

    July 4, 2015

    Becky Hammon had known for some time that she was going to be coaching San Antonio's summer league team in Las Vegas.When her phone blew up Friday, she knew the secret was out.Hammon spoke out for the first time Saturday about the history-making move by the Spurs, who have given the former WNBA star player the chance to become the first woman who'll serve as a head coach in an NBA summer league. She'll lead San Antonio's entry in the Las Vegas league - the biggest of the three NBA summer showcases - starting next weekend.

  • AP source: Magic agree to new 4-year deal with Tobias Harris

    July 4, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) A person with knowledge of the details says Tobias Harris has agreed to sign a new contract to remain with the Orlando Magic.The person says the deal for Harris - a restricted free agent - is for four years and million. The person spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because contract can't be officially signed until next week.

  • For NBA rookies, summer league merely first step

    July 4, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Barely a year ago, Justise Winslow and Myles Turner were high school players.Being in the NBA now hasn't seemed to faze either of them.Summer league play started Saturday, and for Winslow and Turner - both still teenagers, neither turning 20 until next March - it might have been considered by some onlookers as a significant first step in their transitions to NBA life. But the rookies who knew plenty of eyes were on them were both trying to make it seem like business as usual.

  • LaMarcus Aldridge chooses the San Antonio Spurs

    July 4, 2015

    LaMarcus Aldridge got the answers he needed from the San Antonio Spurs.And the Spurs apparently got the answer they wanted.Ending a frantic few days of courtship - and perhaps cementing the Spurs as the preseason favorites to win yet another NBA title - Aldridge announced Saturday that he will sign with San Antonio and align with Tim Duncan and Kawhi Leonard to form what would figure to be among the league's most-formidable frontcourts.

  • NBA summer referees wearing headsets, will use replay

    July 4, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Referees in the NBA summer leagues will be wearing headsets and replay reviews will be used during games.The policies were revealed Saturday when Miami and Indiana met in the first summer league game of the season. Referees will stay in touch with the help of earpieces and microphones.

  • AP source: Derrick Williams agrees to 2 years with Knicks

    July 3, 2015

    Derrick Williams is headed to New York looking for another chance to fulfill the promise he once showed.A person with direct knowledge of the deal tells The Associated Press that the former No. 2 overall draft pick has agreed to terms with the Knicks on a two-year deal worth million. The person requested anonymity because the deal has not been announced.

  • Rockets bringing back spark plugs Brewer, Beverley

    July 3, 2015

    Daryl Morey didn't let the market dry up while he was waiting to hear from another star free agent about coming to Houston.The Rockets general manager locked up two important role players from last year's team on Friday, reaching agreements with swingman Corey Brewer and point guard Patrick Beverley to keep them in Houston.

  • AP sources: Kings agree to deals with Rondo, Belinelli

    July 3, 2015

    After missing targets at the start of free agency, the Sacramento Kings finally filled out their backcourt Friday.Whether the team can find a way to blend its talent together remains a topic for debate.The Kings reached agreements with point guard Rajon Rondo and shooting guard Marco Belinelli, securing the two positions the team coveted most this summer.

  • AP Sources: Kings, agree to deals with Rondo, Belinelli

    July 3, 2015

    After missing targets at the start of free agency, the Sacramento Kings finally filled out their backcourt Friday.The Kings reached agreements with point guard Rajon Rondo and shooting guard Marco Belinelli, securing the two positions the team coveted most this summer.

  • Wizards agree to .1M, 1-year deal with SG Gary Neal

    July 3, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Free-agent shooting guard Gary Neal has agreed to a .1 million, one-year contract with the Washington Wizards.Agent David Bauman says Neal wanted to join a playoff team after finishing last season with the league-worst Minnesota Timberwolves.

  • With Dragic and Wade back, Heat moving forward

    July 3, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) On the first day of free agency, Goran Dragic committed to return.On the second, Dwyane Wade said he was coming back.On the third, the Miami Heat could finally exhale - a little, anyway.It was back to business for the Heat on Friday, when the team's summer-league club wrapped up a five-session, three-day training camp of sorts in Miami before heading to Orlando and the start of offseason play on Saturday. While team officials - prohibited by league rule from talking about the commitments until the NBA moratorium ends July 9 - remained silent, players said they were thrilled that Miami's primary pieces of free-agent business are complete.

  • Hammon to become 1st female head coach of NBA summer league

    July 3, 2015

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) Becky Hammon is about to become the first woman to serve as the head coach of an NBA summer league team.San Antonio announced Friday that Hammon will lead the Spurs during summer league play in Las Vegas. She is entering her second season as an assistant coach for the Spurs, who will have video coordinator Will Hardy handle the head-coach duties for a summer-league entry in Utah.

  • AP source: Knicks agree to deal with center Robin Lopez

    July 3, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Robin Lopez is joining the Knicks, turning New York's NBA rivalry into a family affair.Lopez agreed to sign with the Knicks on Friday, a person with knowledge of the details said, and will play just across town from twin brother and Brooklyn Nets center, Brook.

  • AP sources: Mavericks, DeAndre Jordan agree to 4-year deal

    July 3, 2015

    DALLAS (AP) DeAndre Jordan has chosen the Mavericks over the Los Angeles Clippers in what turned into a tense boom-or-bust wait for Dallas in pursuit of the free-agent center.Two people familiar with the deal tell The Associated Press that the NBA rebound leader agreed to terms Friday. One said the deal was worth million over four years. The people spoke on condition of anonymity because no deals can be completed and signed until Thursday.

  • NBA transitions from free agency fury to summer league games

    July 3, 2015

    NBA teams are now turning their attention to youngsters and player development with summer leagues set to tip off after executives and owners around the league agreed to shell out millions of dollars to veteran free agents this week in an attempt to improve their immediate lot.

  • AP Source: Kings, Marco Belinelli agree to 3-year, M deal

    July 3, 2015

    The Sacramento Kings and guard Marco Belinelli have agreed to a million, three-year contract, a person with knowledge of the deal said Friday.The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because contracts can't be completed until the moratorium on free agency ends Thursday. ESPN first reported the agreement.

  • AP source: Matthews, Mavs reach agreement on 4-year contract

    July 3, 2015

    DALLAS (AP) Free agent guard Wesley Matthews and the Mavericks have agreed on a four-year deal with financial terms that will depend on whether center DeAndre Jordan decides to join him in Dallas.A person with knowledge of the deal says Matthews and the Mavericks reached an agreement in principle late Thursday night and will wait on the decision from Jordan, who is apparently choosing between the Mavericks and his original team, the Los Angeles Clippers.

  • AP source: Wizards agree to acquire Bucks' Dudley for pick

    July 2, 2015

    Moving on after learning they'll lose Paul Pierce as a free agent, the Washington Wizards agreed to acquire forward Jared Dudley from the Milwaukee Bucks for a future second-round draft pick.A person familiar with the negotiations between the Wizards and Bucks described the deal to The Associated Press on Thursday night on condition of anonymity, because it can't become official until July 9, per NBA rules.

  • AP Interview: Wade chooses to stay with Heat

    July 2, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) After 12 years with the Miami Heat, Dwyane Wade needed a reminder of how much the franchise valued him.Once he found out, any chance of him leaving vanished.Wade accepted a million, one-year deal on Thursday to stay with the Heat next season, ending his latest foray into free agency and wrapping up a weeks-long saga that had him seriously wondering about leaving for the first time. A pair of conversations, first with Heat CEO Nick Arison and then another with managing general partner Micky Arison, reminded Wade of what he meant to the team and from there it was a matter of just making numbers work.

  • Vasquez embracing fresh start with Bucks

    July 2, 2015

    ST. FRANCIS, Wis. (AP) Greivis Vasquez always thought he might end up in Milwaukee. It just took a little longer than he anticipated.Coming out of the University of Maryland, Vasquez worked out twice for the Milwaukee Bucks prior to the 2010 NBA Draft, but the Bucks used their first-round pick on center Larry Sanders while Vasquez eventually landed in Memphis, which took him 28th overall.

  • Indiana's million deal is perfect fit for Monta Ellis

    July 2, 2015

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) The Indiana Pacers got the shooting guard they coveted.Monta Ellis' family found the welcoming community it wanted -- and the 29-year-old got the million he was chasing.After hitting the trifecta Thursday by agreeing to a four-year deal that includes a player option for the final year, Ellis and the Pacers will now work together to bring Indiana that elusive NBA title. League rules prohibit the contract from being signed until July 9, but Ellis just couldn't wait that long to make a decision.

  • Cavs center Mozgov has arthroscopic knee surgery

    July 2, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cleveland Cavaliers center Timofey Mozgov has undergone successful right knee arthroscopic surgery and the team says he'll be out about six weeks.The Cavaliers say Mozgov had the procedure Wednesday at the Cleveland Clinic Marymount Surgicenter.

  • AP Source: Blazers reach 5-year 0M-plus deal with Lillard

    July 3, 2015

    When Damian Lillard agreed to a new maximum contract extension with the Trail Blazers on Thursday, it may have been the beginning of a changing of the guard in Portland.Lillard agreed to terms on a five-year contract worth more than 0 million, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been announced.

  • AP Source: Wade chooses to stay with Heat

    July 2, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) Dwyane Wade is staying with the Miami Heat.Wade informed the Heat on Thursday that he will accept their one-year offer to re-sign for million for next season, said a person familiar with the negotiations. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because no NBA deals can be finalized this summer until July 9.

  • AP Source: Suns send 3 to Detroit for pick

    July 3, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) The Phoenix Suns have traded Marcus Morris, Danny Granger and Reggie Bullock to the Detroit Pistons for a future draft pick, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press. The move was very likely a bid to clear salary space to sign free agent LaMarcus Aldridge.

  • AP Source: Heat now among clubs meeting with Aldridge

    July 2, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) A person with knowledge of the negotiations says LaMarcus Aldridge and the Miami Heat have spoken about his future plans, and that a formal conversation is scheduled for Thursday night.The person says Heat President Pat Riley is to meet with Aldridge in Los Angeles. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because neither side have publicly announced the meeting.

  • Magic taking slow approach with 5th overall pick Hezonja

    July 2, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) If Orlando Magic draft pick Mario Hezonja had it his way he'd hop headfirst into the NBA fire.The Croatian-born 20-year-old would skip straight from his just a just concluded full season with FC Barcelona in the Euroleague, to playing in every game during Orlando's upcoming summer league, to probably working out every day until training camp.

  • Spurs' Tim Duncan tells paper: 'I'll be back on the court'

    July 2, 2015

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) Tim Duncan is returning to San Antonio for a 19th season.Duncan tells the San Antonio Express-News that ''I'll be on the court next year.'' Until Duncan made his announcement Thursday, there was speculation that he could call it a career after the Spurs lost to the Los Angeles Clippers in a thrilling seven-game series in the first round of the playoffs.

  • Warriors make moves in front office, new training program

    July 2, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Golden State Warriors have promoted Larry Harris to director of player personnel and hired Lachlan Penfold as head of physical performance and sports medicine.The Warriors announced the moves Thursday.Harris has served as a scout and consultant for the Warriors the past six seasons, evaluating college and professional players for the draft and free agency. He spent the previous 19 years in various roles with the Milwaukee Bucks, including as general manager from 2003 to 2008.

  • Agent: Ed Davis agrees to 3-year, M deal with Blazers

    July 2, 2015

    Ed Davis is leaving Los Angeles for the Portland Trail Blazers. Now, like most of the rest of the league, he's waiting for LaMarcus Aldridge to make a decision and determine just how big Davis' role will be in his new home.Davis agreed to terms on a three-year, million deal with the Blazers on Thursday, agent David Bauman of Relativity Sports said.

  • AP Source: Pacers give Monta Ellis 4 years, million

    July 2, 2015

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) The Indiana Pacers got the shooting guard they wanted.Monta Ellis has agreed to terms with the Pacers on a four-year deal worth million, a person with direct knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press on Thursday. The deal includes a player option for the final year. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been announced. The contract cannot be signed until July 9.

  • Bucks land free agent big man Greg Monroe

    July 2, 2015

    As one of the most coveted big men on the free agent market, Greg Monroe had his choice of destinations.The big-market Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks wanted him. So did the Portland Trail Blazers.In the end, Monroe wanted the best chance to reach the playoffs for the first time in his career. For the first time in a long time, the Milwaukee Bucks provided the surest bet on that front.

  • AP Source: Bucks land free agent big man Greg Monroe

    July 2, 2015

    The Milwaukee Bucks have landed their big man.A person with knowledge of the situation tells The Associated Press that that free agent center Greg Monroe has chosen the Milwaukee Bucks over other big-market suitors like the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers. The person spoke Thursday on condition of anonymity because the agreement has not been officially announced.

  • AP source: Pelicans, Asik agree on 5-year contract

    July 2, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) The New Orleans Pelicans and center Omer Asik have agreed on a five-year contract worth a minimum of million and rising up to million if incentives and benchmarks are met, said a person familiar with the negotiations.The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the club and Asik have not publicly discussed the contract, which under league rules cannot be signed until July 9. The team will have the option of voiding the final year of the deal.

  • AP source: Arron Afflalo, Knicks agree on 2-year deal

    July 2, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Arron Afflalo is about to team up with Carmelo Anthony again.A person with knowledge of the negotiations tells The Associated Press that Afflalo has accepted a two-year, million offer from the New York Knicks. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because no NBA deals can be completed before July 9.

  • AP Source: Kings trade Stauskas, Thompson, Landry to 76ers

    July 2, 2015

    The Sacramento Kings have agreed to send Nik Stauskas, Jason Thompson and Carl Landry to the Philadelphia 76ers as part of a salary-shedding move to pursue free agents, a person with knowledge of the trade told The Associated Press on Wednesday night.

  • Warriors, Draymond Green agree to 5-year, M deal

    July 2, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) No need to seek out an offer sheet in restricted free agency. Draymond Green is coming back to the Golden State Warriors on his own terms.Green announced on Bleacher Report's Uninterrupted website Wednesday night he has agreed to a five-year deal with the Warriors. A person with knowledge of the agreement told The Associated Press the contract is worth about million.

  • Cavaliers break the bank on Day 1 of free agency

    July 1, 2015

    Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert promised LeBron James he would do whatever it took financially to surround him with a team capable of ending the city's 51-year championship drought.On the first day of free agency, Gilbert spent nearly a quarter of a billion dollars to back that up. All without addressing James' contract yet.

  • AP Source: Cavs bring back Shumpert for 4 years, million

    July 1, 2015

    A person with knowledge of the situation tells The Associated Press that Iman Shumpert has agreed to terms on a four-year, million contract that will keep him in Cleveland.Shumpert and the Cavaliers came to agreement on Wednesday evening. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the deal has not been announced. A contract cannot be signed until July 9.

  • AP Source: Paul Pierce going to Clippers on 3-year deal

    July 1, 2015

    Paul Pierce and Doc Rivers are reuniting.A person with knowledge of the negotiations tells The Associated Press that Pierce has agreed to a three-year, million deal to join the Los Angeles Clippers. The person spoke on condition of anonymity Wednesday because no contracts can be finalized until July 9 per NBA rules.

  • AP source: Hawks reach agreement to re-sign Paul Millsap

    July 1, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Paul Millsap became an All-Star in his first two years with Atlanta and helped lead the Hawks to their first Eastern Conference finals.He's back for at least two more years on a new contract which doubles his annual pay.The Hawks have reached an agreement to re-sign Millsap, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The person requested anonymity because the deal can't be finalized until July 9.

  • AP Source: Grizzlies agree to terms with Brandan Wright

    July 1, 2015

    The Memphis Grizzlies have agreed to terms with free-agent forward Brandan Wright, a person familiar with the situation said.The person spoke on the condition of anonymity Wednesday because the deal hasn't been formally announced. Yahoo Sports first reported the deal.

  • Love stays, Chandler moves, dollars fly in NBA free agency

    July 1, 2015

    Kevin Love has unfinished business in Cleveland and Tyson Chandler will be conducting his in Phoenix.The first full day of NBA free agency featured skyrocketing salaries and a flurry of moves, though no decision yet from LaMarcus Aldridge. Players and teams agreed to more than billion worth of deals.

  • AP sources: Suns add Chandler, lock up Knight

    July 1, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) The Phoenix Suns took care of their top offseason priority by bringing back Brandon Knight and added veteran frontcourt leadership in the form of Tyson Chandler.Knight agreed to a five-year, million deal, people with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

  • AP Source: Celtics, Amir Johnson agree to million deal

    July 1, 2015

    A person with knowledge of the details says the Boston Celtics have landed Amir Johnson with a two-year deal worth million.The veteran power forward agreed to leave Toronto and stay within the Atlantic Division on Wednesday. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because no deals can be signed yet.

  • AP Source: Bulls reach 5-year, M deal with Jimmy Butler

    July 1, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Jimmy Butler bet on himself and won big.Butler agreed to terms Wednesday on a five-year maximum contract that could be worth million and includes a player option for the final year, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been finalized. The total value of the contract could wind up being a little higher depending on the salary cap figure for next season, which will be set on July 9.

  • Kevin Love staying in Cleveland with LeBron and Cavs

    July 1, 2015

    After all the speculation and intrigue surrounding Kevin Love's foray into the free agent market, the star power forward ended up right where he said he would all along - in Cleveland.Love announced in The Players Tribune on Wednesday that after his uneven first season ended with a serious shoulder injury, he is coming back to help LeBron James finish what they started together last season.

  • AP source: Hawks finalizing deal for Spurs' Splitter

    July 1, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) A person with knowledge of the deals says the Atlanta Hawks are finalizing a trade for San Antonio Spurs center Tiago Splitter.The person says the Spurs and Hawks have agreed on the trade but the remainder of the deal is being finalized. The person spoke to The Associated Press on Wednesday on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been announced.

  • Study: NBA diversity again leads pro sports leagues

    July 1, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The NBA again sets the standard for diversity among major professional sports leagues.According to a report released Wednesday by the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport, the NBA received an A-plus grade for racial hiring and B-plus for gender hiring on its annual report card. Its overall grade of A was its seventh in a row.

  • Agent: Pelicans, center Alexis Ajinca agree on 4-year deal

    July 1, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) The New Orleans Pelicans and 7-foot center Alexis Ajinca agreed on a four-year, .2 million extension on Wednesday.The 27-year-old Ajinca's new contract was confirmed by his agent, Mark Bartelstein, in an email to The Associated Press on the first full day of the NBA's 2015 free-agency period.

  • Kevin Love pens piece saying he's staying in Cleveland

    July 1, 2015

    Kevin Love is staying in Cleveland and it's going to be for the long term.Love issued a statement through The Players Tribune on Wednesday announcing that he would be returning to Cleveland next season. A person with knowledge of the agreement tells The Associated Press that Love will get a five-year max contract worth more than 0 million. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because details have not been released. No NBA contract can be signed until July 9.

  • DeMarre Carroll says he's heading to the Raptors

    July 1, 2015

    When DeMarre Carroll's left knee buckled in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals, the breakout season that put him on the precipice of a big payday nearly went right down the drain.Like anything else that has gotten in his way, Carroll didn't let that stop him.

  • Thad Young says he's staying in Brooklyn with Nets

    July 1, 2015

    Free agent forward Thaddeus Young says he's staying in Brooklyn with the Nets.Young tweeted Wednesday morning that he is ''extremely happy'' to continue his career with the Nets. A person with knowledge of the deal tells The Associated Press the two sides have agreed to terms on a four-year contract worth million. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been announced. No NBA contracts can be signed until July 9.

  • AP Source: Guard Goran Dragic, Heat agree on 5-year deal

    July 1, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) Goran Dragic plays quickly and decides quickly.The Miami Heat are pleased about both.Dragic wasted little time in accepting a five-year deal that will ultimately be worth between -90 million to remain with the Heat, the sides coming to an agreement in principle only a few hours after the NBA's free agency shopping period opened Wednesday. A person with knowledge of the negotiations confirmed the terms to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal cannot be finalized until July 9 per league rules.

  • AP Source: Dunleavy stays with Bulls, agrees to 3-year deal

    July 1, 2015

    A person with knowledge of the negotiations says Mike Dunleavy and the Chicago Bulls have agreed on a new three-year, million contract.The person confirmed the deal Wednesday to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because no contracts can be signed until July 9. Yahoo Sports first reported the agreement, and Dunleavy later confirmed it to the Chicago Tribune.

  • AP Source: Spurs, Danny Green agree on 4 years, million

    July 1, 2015

    When the San Antonio Spurs turned their eyes toward prized free agent LaMarcus Aldridge, it seemed to be a signal Danny Green might have to leave the franchise that helped turn him into one of the best two-way shooting guards in the league.Not so fast.

  • AP Source: Bucks give Middleton 5 years, million

    July 1, 2015

    Khris Middleton was a little-known second-round draft pick when he broke into the NBA with the Detroit Pistons in 2012.Three years later, the versatile forward has become an integral part of a Milwaukee Bucks team on the rise in the Eastern Conference.

  • AP Source: Leonard, Spurs agree on parameters of 5-year deal

    July 1, 2015

    Kawhi Leonard is going to be a fixture for the San Antonio Spurs for years to come.Leonard agreed to the basic parameters of a five-year contract to stay with the Spurs early Wednesday, a deal that could be worth million according to a person with direct knowledge of the agreement. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the contract cannot be finalized until July 9, per NBA rules.

  • AP Source: Trail Blazers give Aminu 4 years, million

    July 1, 2015

    The Portland Trail Blazers appear to be entering a period of change, so one of general manager Neil Olshey's first calls during free agency went to a familiar face.The Blazers quickly agreed with veteran Al-Farouq Aminu, reuniting the defensive-minded forward with the man who drafted him with the Los Angeles Clippers in 2011.

  • AP source: Anthony Davis, Pelicans agree to max extension

    July 1, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans have agreed on a five-year extension worth more than 0 million.Davis tweeted: ''NOLA, I am here to stay! Just getting started'' shortly after free agency opened late Tuesday night, and a person with knowledge of the details confirmed the agreement to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal cannot yet be signed.

  • Big names, big markets in pursuit as NBA free agency opens

    July 1, 2015

    Big names, big bucks and big markets in pursuit.NBA free agency opened with Anthony Davis agreeing and Kawhi Leonard agreeing to max contract extensions to stay where they are, and the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks among the teams looking for a dominant inside force of their own.

  • Hawks' Korver has 'loose bodies' removed from elbow

    June 30, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta Hawks guard Kyle Korver is expected to be ready for the start of training camp following surgery to remove loose bodies in his right elbow.The Hawks say Tuesday's surgery was performed in New York by Dr. David Altchek.It is the third surgery since March for the 34-year-old Korver, the team's starting shooting guard and 3-point specialist. He had surgery for a broken nose three months ago, and earlier this month surgeons repaired ligament damage in his right ankle.

  • AP source: Jared Dudley staying in Milwaukee next season

    June 30, 2015

    Jared Dudley has decided to return to the Milwaukee Bucks for the final year of his contract.A person with direct knowledge of the decision tells The Associated Press that the veteran forward exercised his player option for .25 million on Tuesday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the move has not been officially announced.

  • Pero Antic leaving Hawks for return to Europe

    June 30, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Pero Antic is returning to Europe following two seasons with the Atlanta Hawks, most spent as a backup power forward and center.The 6-foot-11 Antic, born in Skopje, Yugoslavia, has signed a two-year deal with Fenerbahce of the Euroleague. The team announced the signing.

  • Cavs give offers to Thompson, Dellavedova, Shumpert

    June 30, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Tristan Thompson, Matthew Dellavedova and Iman Shumpert all received qualifying offers from Cleveland on Tuesday, meaning the Cavaliers can match any offers those players get from other clubs this summer.All the moves were expected. The Cavs had indicated they want each to return next season.

  • MSG names CAA partner David "Doc" O'Connor as CEO

    June 30, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Madison Square Garden named long-time talent agency executive David ''Doc'' O'Connor as its next chief executive.O'Connor, a managing partner at Creative Artists Agency in New York, takes over for Tad Smith, who was hired to lead the auction house Sotheby's.

  • Celtics' Stevens finally gets shot to coach NCAA hero Hunter

    June 30, 2015

    WALTHAM, Mass. (AP) Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens knew all about R.J. Hunter long before he hit one of the biggest shots of last season's NCAA Tournament.If Stevens had his way, Hunter would have played for Butler instead of for his father, Ron, at Georgia State. And there would have been no memorable scene of dad tumbling off his stool after his son's 3-pointer clinched a stunning upset of Baylor in March.

  • Thunder deal Luke Ridnour, his 4th trade in less than a week

    June 30, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Luke Ridnour may be in need of a rest - or a good travel agent - after being traded for the fourth time in less than a week.The Oklahoma City Thunder sent the veteran guard and cash to the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday in exchange for a trade exception and the rights to forward Tomislav Zubcic.

  • Stephen Curry overtakes LeBron James for NBA's top jersey

    June 30, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Stephen Curry has surpassed LeBron James for the most popular jersey in the NBA.The Golden State Warriors star and league MVP topped the list of jersey sales in the NBA for the first time Tuesday. With teammates Klay Thompson ranking fifth and Draymond Green at No. 15, the Warriors also led the team-merchandise sales list during the playoffs.

  • Thunder send guard Luke Ridnour to Toronto for Zubcic

    June 30, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The Oklahoma City Thunder have sent Luke Ridnour and cash to the Toronto Raptors in exchange for a trade exception and the rights to forward Tomislav Zubcic.The Thunder will have one year to exercise the trade exception.Ridnour averaged 4.0 points per game for Orlando last season. He has played for five teams in 12 years, and has a career scoring average of 9.3 points per game.

  • Knicks thinking big, looking for some size in free agency

    June 30, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The New York Knicks will be thinking big in free agency.As in a big man, that is. The Knicks need plenty of help after their worst season ever, but they know where it needs to start.''I don't think it's any secret we need to get some size up front. I think that'll be a big focus for us,'' Knicks coach Derek Fisher said.

  • Korver to have 3rd surgery since March, this time on elbow

    June 29, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Hawks guard Kyle Korver will undergo his third surgery since March when a specialist removes loose bodies from his right elbow on Tuesday.Korver had surgery for a broken nose three months ago and earlier this month surgeons repaired ligament damage in his right ankle.

  • Newcomers Henderson, Plumlee, Vonleh introduced by Blazers

    June 29, 2015

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) On the first day in his new NBA city, Gerald Henderson was asked Monday about his impressions of Portland. Before he was able to answer, Trail Blazers general manager Neil Olshey mentioned the city's recent naked bicycle race.Henderson's eyes widened.

  • Lakers' Nance was 'terrified' of Kobe's response to tweet

    June 29, 2015

    EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) Larry Nance Jr.'s elation at getting drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers lasted about two minutes before he was reminded of a tweet he sent out in 2012 criticizing Kobe Bryant.Nance was overjoyed when Bryant said he wasn't bothered.

  • Here Mavs go again, pursuing big names in free agency

    June 29, 2015

    DALLAS (AP) Dirk Nowitzki is getting to know this drill pretty well: depleted Dallas roster, big names in free agency, no idea how the starting lineup will look in four months.Here the Mavericks go again, trying to sign a cornerstone but now with time running short to build a championship contender around a 37-year-old star who's getting ready for his 18th season. Free agency opens at 11 p.m. Central time Tuesday.

  • Russell ready to restore Lakers glory alongside Nance, Brown

    June 29, 2015

    EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) D'Angelo Russell was the No. 2 pick in the NBA draft, and he chose the No. 1 jersey with the Los Angeles Lakers.The point guard from Ohio State clearly isn't trying to hide from those enormous expectations resting on his 19-year-old shoulders.

  • Budenholzer hopes Hardaway helps Hawks keep Millsap, Carroll

    June 29, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Now that he's added Tim Hardaway Jr., Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer has narrowed his focus on re-signing All-Star forward Paul Millsap and starting guard DeMarre Carroll.NBA teams can begin negotiating with free agents at 12 a.m. Wednesday, and Budenholzer believes the acquisition of Hardaway will help convince Millsap and Carroll to stay in Atlanta.

  • Wade elects to become free agent, may leave Heat

    June 29, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) The relationship between Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat is about to be tested like never before, and the most accomplished player in franchise history may soon have a new home.Wade will become a free agent Wednesday, electing to pass on a .1 million option for next season and see what he's worth on the open market. His decision was announced Monday afternoon by a spokesperson in a 61-word press release, after both Wade and his agent Henry Thomas did not respond to requests for comment.

  • Magic waive Gordon; draft pick Hezonja completes buyout

    June 29, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The Orlando Magic have lost one player and will soon pick up another.General manager Rob Hennigan said Monday the team waived guard Ben Gordon and learned draft pick Mario Hezonja had completed a buyout with European club FC Barcelona.

  • Chicago Bulls introduce first round pick Bobby Portis

    June 29, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Growing up, Bobby Portis got accustomed to being the last player picked. So he prided himself on being the one who out-worked everyone else.Now, the Chicago Bulls first-round draft pick and the reigning SEC Player of the Year is ready to do it again.

  • Veteran guard Hinrich returning to Chicago Bulls

    June 29, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls say guard Kirk Hinrich has exercised his player option and will return next season.Terms were not disclosed in Monday's announcement.A 12-year NBA veteran, the 34-year old Hinrich has played in 833 regular-season games and averaged 11.4 points, five assists, three rebounds and 1.15 steals per game. He also has played in 65 playoff games.

  • Grizzlies' Martin says he has stress fracture in his foot

    June 29, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Memphis Grizzlies first-round draft pick Jarell Martin says he has a stress fracture in his foot that will prevent him from playing in any summer league games.Martin and second-round pick Andrew Harrison were introduced Monday. Martin says he ''overworked my body'' throughout the pre-draft process.

  • Warriors exercise Speights' contract option for next season

    June 29, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Golden State Warriors have begun the process of keeping their championship roster intact.The Warriors exercised their .8 million option Monday on reserve big man Marreese Speights for next season. The team had until Tuesday to pick up the final year on Speights' contract or he would become a free agent.

  • Luol Deng staying with Heat, opts-in for .1 million

    June 29, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) Luol Deng has elected to stay with the Miami Heat next season, using his opt-in clause on a .1 million deal.Deng averaged 14.0 points with the Heat last season, starting all 72 games in which he appeared. He shot 47 percent from the field, his best showing there in seven years, and made 36 percent of his tries from 3-point range.

  • Athletes adjusting to cameras all over arenas, stadiums

    June 29, 2015

    When LeBron James pulls into the parking lot at Quicken Loans Arena, there are cameras waiting.They follow him into the arena, record him walking down the hall to the locker room. They are there when he's changing into his uniform. They are there in the huddles during timeouts and there during the halftime meetings as coach David Blatt details adjustments for the second half.

  • AP Source: LeBron James bypasses option, becomes free agent

    June 28, 2015

    For the third time in six seasons, LeBron James is an unrestricted free agent.The difference this time is he has no plans to move again.The Cleveland star will not exercise a .6 million option on his contract for next season, a person with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press on Sunday. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because neither the Cavaliers nor James were publicly discussing the process.

  • Heat decline Beasley's option, making him free agent

    June 28, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) Michael Beasley's third stint with the Miami Heat has ended.The Heat have declined their .3 million option to keep Beasley for next season, and the No. 2 pick in the 2008 draft will officially become a free agent on Wednesday.Beasley averaged 8.8 points in 24 games with Miami last season after returning from China. He was also with the Heat from 2008 through 2010, plus was part of the 2013-14 team that went to the NBA Finals.

  • Johnson's suit catches eyes at Pistons' news conference

    June 27, 2015

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) Stanley Johnson had already brought attention to himself when - after being selected by the Detroit Pistons with the eighth pick - he declared himself to be the best player in the draft.Then there was his introductory news conference at the Palace on Saturday, when he showed up wearing a gaudy pink suit.

  • Murray State's Cameron Payne, Oklahoma City seem a good fit

    June 27, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) In an NBA draft full of stars from the likes of Kentucky, Duke and Wisconsin, Cameron Payne's pedigree enticed the Oklahoma City Thunder.Payne drew little interest out of high school in Memphis, Tenn. He then starred at Murray State in the Ohio Valley Conference - a school and league not accustomed to national attention.

  • Paul Pierce opts out of contract with Wizards

    June 27, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Paul Pierce is opting out of the final year of his contract with the Wizards and will become a free agent Wednesday.The veteran small forward signed a two-year deal with Washington last summer that included a reported .5 million player option for the 2015-16 season.

  • Pierce opts out of contract with Wizards

    June 27, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Wizards forward Paul Pierce is opting out of the final year of his contract and will become a free agent Wednesday.Pierce signed a two-year deal with Washington last summer that included a reported .5 million player option for the 2015-16 season.

  • 76ers' Okafor fan of Curry, but titles go through big men

    June 27, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) Jahlil Okafor is a fan of Steph Curry and enjoyed watching the MVP lead the guard-heavy Golden State Warriors to an NBA championship.He still thinks the best road to a title is through the big man.That's what makes the 6-foot-11 center out of Duke glad to join the Philadelphia 76ers, a team that already features young, potential stars Nerlens Noel and Joel Embiid.

  • Bhamara forces basketball to front page of Indian newspapers

    June 27, 2015

    NEW DELHI (AP) It is a rare day in India when basketball makes the front page of newspapers, yet Satnam Singh Bhamara achieved that feat when he became the first Indian to be drafted to the NBA this week.The 7'2'' (2.15-meter) 19-year-old was selected by the Dallas Mavericks and local media celebrated.

  • Jazz show off draft picks, but growth must come from within

    June 26, 2015

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) The last 48 hours have been all about the draft picks for the Utah Jazz as the team introduced former Kentucky forward Trey Lyles and Boston College Olivier Hanlan during a Friday news conference.The future of the organization and its immediate playoff hopes, however, are all about those already under contract.

  • Suns' Booker sure doesn't talk like an 18-year-old

    June 26, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) Devin Booker was almost finished with his introductory news conference on Friday, patiently, confidently, concisely answering one question after another, a performance that belied his age.At 18, the youngest player in his draft class, the Kentucky guard impressed the Phoenix Suns with a lot more than his sweet jump shot. And he won't turn 19 until Oct. 30.

  • Chasson Randle to join Warriors' summer league team

    June 26, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Former Stanford guard Chasson Randle has agreed to join the Golden State Warriors for the NBA's Las Vegas summer league.Randle was a two-time All-Pac-12 first-team selection in four years at Stanford. He scored a school-record 2,375 points, helping the Cardinal win two NIT championships and reach the NCAA Tournament's Sweet 16 in 2014.

  • Nets' Brook Lopez opts to become free agent

    June 26, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Brooklyn Nets center Brook Lopez has opted out of the final year of his contract and will become a free agent.Coming off a strong season in his return from injury, Lopez chose Friday to bypass the .7 million he would have earned next season and will be able to talk to other teams on July 1.

  • Harvey Pollack remembered fondly at funeral

    June 26, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) Hundreds of mourners packed a Philadelphia funeral home Friday to honor Harvey Pollack, the longtime NBA employee and statistics icon who died Tuesday at the age of 93.Friends, family and colleagues described a man who loved basketball, statistics and, most of all, his family. Pollack began his career in 1946 with the Philadelphia Warriors and worked the last 28 years as the 76ers' director of statistical information.

  • Wizards rookie Oubre filled with confidence

    June 26, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Basketball fans are enamored with the idea of native son Kevin Durant playing for the Washington Wizards starting in 2016. Starting this fall, Kelly Oubre Jr. begins his rookie campaign in Washington as a draft-day trade landed the Kansas product with the Wizards.

  • Embiid's return to 76ers from broken right foot uncertain

    June 26, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) Jahlil Okafor's could get a solo turn as the next big man to put the 76ers' fate on his 6-foot-11 frame.Joel Embiid would still like a try to lead them on his own two feet. But his future with the franchise remains very much in doubt.

  • Clifford likes Hornets new look after trades, draft

    June 26, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Charlotte Hornets' roster has a vastly different look than it did two weeks ago. And third-year coach Steve Clifford said that's a good thing.''I think we have improved ourselves greatly,'' Clifford said Friday.The Hornets have made three trades, luring Nicolas Batum, Spencer Hawes and Jeremy Lamb to Charlotte and selected 7-foot-1 forward/center Frank Kaminsky from Wisconsin with the ninth pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night.

  • Knicks hope turnaround starts with 7-foot newcomer Porzingis

    June 26, 2015

    GREENBURGH, N.Y. (AP) The New York Knicks were midway through a miserable season when Phil Jackson received a text that started shaping their future.A team official watching a game in Spain delivered a report Jackson couldn't ignore.''I just saw a person we must consider for our first draft pick,'' Jackson said Friday of the message from Clarence Gaines.

  • Nuggets pick Mudiay ready to step into lineup

    June 26, 2015

    DENVER (AP) Emmanuel Mudiay says he's ready to step into the Denver Nuggets' lineup and help lead the franchise to its first championship.It's not the biggest challenge the 19-year-old has faced in his young life, but it's one that he's ready to tackle.

  • Towns and Tyus arrive, Bjelica coming next to Timberwolves

    June 26, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Jacqueline Cruz-Towns sat on a bench in the Minnesota Timberwolves' sparkling new practice facility, proudly wearing a Wolves hat on her head and a big smile on her face as she recalled a pre-draft visit her son Karl-Anthony made to Minneapolis last week.

  • Big nights for the biggest markets in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) From coast to coast, the NBA draft was a big night for the biggest markets.The Los Angeles Lakers tabbed their next potential superstar in D'Angelo Russell. The New York Knicks landed a pair of players in the first round, selecting Kristaps Porzingis and later acquiring the rights to Notre Dame guard Jerian Grant.

  • Suns send 2nd-round pick Andrew Harrison to Grizzlies

    June 26, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) The Phoenix Suns have traded second-round pick Andrew Harrison to the Memphis Grizzlies for forward-center Jon Leuer.For an instant, the Suns appeared to have added a fifth Kentucky guard to their roster on Thursday night. But it was just a quick stop before going on to the Grizzlies. The Suns announced the trade later Thursday.

  • Clippers end up with 56th pick, tab Branden Dawson

    June 26, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) The Los Angeles Clippers began the day without a pick in the NBA draft, but they got one anyway. They paid the New Orleans Pelicans for the 56th pick, then selected Michigan State forward Branden Dawson late Thursday night.''One of the things we had talked about for some time was looking to buy in to the second round because we didn't have a pick in this draft,'' general manager Dave Wohl said. ''We focused on a couple of guys, and Dawson was still there in the second round. He was one of the guys we really loved, so we were able to do a deal with New Orleans and buy their pick and draft him.''

  • Cavaliers make draft deal, learn J.R. Smith now a free agent

    June 26, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Not only did the Cavaliers not pick first in the NBA draft, they traded their only first-rounder this year.Amazing what winning - and having LeBron James around - will do.Expected to use the No. 24 overall pick to address their need for a backup point guard, the Cavs took Duke guard Tyus Jones and quickly traded him to Minnesota for two second-round picks - Nos. 31 and 36 - and a second-round selection in 2019.

  • LA Lakers grab D'Angelo Russell with 2nd pick in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) The Los Angeles Lakers are betting D'Angelo Russell is ready for Showtime.The Lakers chose Russell with the second pick in the NBA draft on Thursday, bypassing big man Jahlil Okafor to grab the Ohio State guard with the potential for greatness.

  • Joy in Minnesota after Timberwolves take Towns, Tyus

    June 26, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) More than 8,000 Minnesota Timberwolves fans filed into Target Center on Thursday night, knowing that Karl-Anthony Towns was coming. They hoped Tyus Jones might be sticking around, too.For once the Timberwolves gave their long-suffering fans exactly what they wanted.

  • Blazers select forward Hollis-Jefferson, trade him

    June 26, 2015

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) The Portland Trail Blazers continued a retooling of their roster Thursday night when they selected Arizona forward Rondae Hollis-Jefferson with the 23rd pick of the NBA draft then sent him to Brooklyn as part of a four-player deal.

  • Hawks draft power forward Agravanis late in 2nd round

    June 26, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The Atlanta Hawks have drafted power forward Dimitrios Agravanis of Greece with the 59th overall pick of the NBA draft.General manager Wes Wilcox said that the 6-foot-10, 229-pound Agravanis will spend next season overseas.Agravanis was the Hawks' second draft pick of the night. Atlanta traded the 15th pick to Washington and the 19th pick to New York and acquired Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr.

  • Hawks draft shooting guard Eriksson in 2nd round

    June 26, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The Atlanta Hawks have drafted shooting guard Marcus Eriksson of Sweden with the 50th pick of the NBA draft.General manager Wes Wilcox said that Eriksson missed last season with a torn knee ligament and is still under contract with Barcelona.

  • The Latest: Can't wait for history? Winners, losers in draft

    June 26, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):1:01 a.m.History will judge. For those who can't wait, here's the winners and losers from Thursday night's NBA draft.Winners:Team: Minnesota Timberwolves. No, seriously. Last year they fleeced Cleveland to get Andrew Wiggins in a trade for Kevin Love. By taking Karl-Anthony Towns with the top overall pick, they added an equally potent inside threat.

  • Pelicans trade rights to 56th pick Michigan State F Dawson

    June 26, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) The New Orleans Pelicans traded the rights Thursday night to its only NBA draft pick.The Pelicans selected power forward Branden Dawson from Michigan State with the 56th pick before they sent his rights to the Los Angeles Clippers for cash, team officials said.

  • The Latest: Singh 1st India-born player picked in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):12:40 a.m.Satnam Singh is the first player born in India to be selected in the NBA draft. He's headed to Texas after the Dallas Mavericks took him with the 52nd pick.The 7-foot-2 Singh, who wears a size-22 basketball sneaker, has spent the last five seasons playing at IMG Academy in Florida. He came to the U.S. from India when he was 14.

  • Bucks deal UCLA's Powell, pick to Raptors for Vasquez

    June 26, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) The Milwaukee Bucks made a draft-night deal for a veteran point guard, trading UCLA shooting guard Norman Powell and a first-round pick in 2017 to the Toronto Raptors in exchange for backup guard Greivis Vasquez.The Bucks finalized the deal shortly after they made Powell the 46th overall pick in the second round Thursday night.

  • Pelicans sell rights to 56th pick Michigan State F Dawson

    June 26, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) The New Orleans Pelicans sold the rights Thursday night to its only NBA draft pick.The Pelicans selected power forward Branden Dawson from Michigan State with the 56th pick before team officials said they moved him to a team they didn't name.

  • Nuggets select PG Radicevic with 57th pick in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    DENVER (AP) The Denver Nuggets selected point guard Nikola Radicevic with the 57th pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night.Radicevic, 21, from Serbia, was the second point guard the Nuggets picked in the draft. They selected Emmanuel Mudiay in the first round, with the seventh-overall pick.

  • 76ers select Serbian forward Mitrovic with 60th pick

    June 26, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) The Philadelphia 76ers have selected international prospect Luka Mitrovic with the 60th pick of the draft.Mitrovic was the last of five second-round picks held by the Sixers. The Sixers drafted international prospect Willy Hernangomez with the 35th pick, took Bowling Green forward Richaun Holmes, international prospect Arturas Gudaitis with the 47th overall pick and North Carolina forward J.P. Tokoto at 58.

  • Hornets trade 2nd round pick Juan Vaulet to Nets

    June 26, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) General manager Rich Cho said the Charlotte Hornets have traded swingman Juan Vaulet from Argentina to the Brooklyn Nets for two future second round picks in 2018 and 2019.Vaulet was the 39th overall pick in Thursday night's NBA draft.

  • 76ers draft North Carolina's Tokoto with 58th pick

    June 26, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) The Philadelphia 76ers have drafted North Carolina forward J.P. Tokoto with the 58th pick.Tokoto was the fourth of five scheduled second-round picks held by the Sixers. The Sixers drafted international prospect Willy Hernangomez with the 35th pick, took Bowling Green forward Richaun Holmes and international prospect Arturas Gudaitis with the 47th overall pick.

  • Clippers sit out draft with no picks

    June 26, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) The Los Angeles Clippers were on the outside looking in on draft day.This was the first time in the 45-year history of the franchise that the Clippers did not have a pick in any round of the NBA draft, and the fifth time they didn't have a first-round selection since relocating from San Diego to Los Angeles in 1984.

  • Magic draft scoring swingman in Croatia's Hezonja

    June 26, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The Orlando Magic don't believe they made a leap of faith by taking Croatia's Mario Hezonja with the fifth overall pick in Thursday's NBA draft.They've had their eye on him for a while now.''He's been on the radar the last four or five years,'' Magic general manager Rob Hennigan said. ''We feel very confident in our evaluation of him.''

  • Celtics take guard Thornton with their fourth pick of draft

    June 26, 2015

    BOSTON (AP) The Boston Celtics have chosen guard Marcus Thornton of William & Mary with their fourth and final pick of the NBA draft.The 6-foot-4 Thornton averaged 17.2 points per game in his four college seasons, capped by a 20-point average last season. Boston took him with the 45th overall pick.

  • Cavaliers trade with Minnesota, make 3 picks in second round

    June 26, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Not only did the Cavaliers not pick first in the NBA draft, they traded their only first-rounder this year.Amazing what winning - and having LeBron James around - will do.Expected to use the No. 24 overall pick to address their need for a backup point guard, the Cavs took Duke guard Tyus Jones and quickly traded him to Minnesota for two second-round picks - Nos. 31 and 36 - and a future second rounder.

  • Timberwolves acquire hometown kid Jones from Cavs

    June 26, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The Minnesota Timberwolves have acquired hometown kid Tyus Jones from the Cleveland Cavaliers for two second-round draft picks this year and another one in 2019.The Cavaliers chose Jones, the Duke point guard, with the 24th overall selection. But they shipped the Apple Valley, Minnesota, native to the Wolves for pick Nos. 31 and 36 and the 2019 second-rounder.

  • AP Source: Bucks deal Powell, pick to Raptors for Vasquez

    June 26, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) A person familiar with the decision tells The Associated Press that the Milwaukee Bucks have traded UCLA shooting guard Norman Powell and a first-round pick in 2017 to the Toronto Raptors in exchange for backup guard Greivis Vasquez.The person spoke Thursday night on condition of anonymity after the Bucks made Powell the 46th overall pick in the second round.

  • Cavs select St. John's guard Sir'Dominic Pointer in draft

    June 26, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) The Cleveland Cavaliers selected St. John's swingman Sir'Dominic Pointer with the No. 53 pick in the NBA draft, the team's third pick of the second round.Pointer averaged 13.7 points 7.7 rebounds last season and was named the Big East's co-defensive player of the year as a senior. The 6-foot-6 Pointer was also the league's most improved player.

  • Pelicans take F Dawson from Michigan State with 56th pick

    June 26, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) New Orleans Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry had to wait until late in the second round of Thursday night's NBA draft before putting his initial fingerprint on the franchise.The Pelicans selected forward Branden Dawson from Michigan State with the 56th overall pick, Gentry's first since being named coach on May 30.

  • AP Source: Suns send 2nd-round pick Harrison to Grizzlies

    June 26, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) A person with knowledge of the deal says the Phoenix Suns have traded second-round pick Andrew Harrison to the Memphis Grizzlies for forward-center Jon Leuer.For an instant, the Suns appeared to have added a fifth Kentucky guard to their roster. But it was just a quick stop before going on to the Grizzlies.

  • Magic draft Eastern Washington's Harvey 51st in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The Orlando Magic have selected Eastern Washington guard Tyler Harvey with the 51st pick in the NBA draft.It was Orlando's second pick on Thursday night. The Magic selected Croatia's Mario Hezonja with the fifth overall pick in the first round.

  • Celtics take guards Rozier, Hunter in 1st round of NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    BOSTON (AP) The price was too steep for the Boston Celtics to trade for a better draft pick. Now it will be an uphill climb for all four of their choices to make the team.Especially at the guard position.The Celtics added three players - Terry Rozier of Louisville, R.J. Hunter of Georgia State and Marcus Thornton of William & Mary - to an already full backcourt. They did add to a position of need by taking shot-blocking forward Jordan Mickey of Louisiana State.

  • The Latest: Harrisons separated at birth, now by the draft

    June 26, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):12:01 a.m.Andrew Harrison, half of Kentucky's starting backcourt the last two seasons and identical twin brother of Aaron - the other half - got to go first.Andrew was the fifth Wildcat taken in Thursday night's NBA draft, by Phoenix with the 44th pick overall. After another teammate, Dakari Johnson, went 48th to the Thunder, his brother was the only one of the seven Wildcats who entered the draft still waiting for a call - and the clock is ticking.

  • Thunder take Dakari Johnson with 48th pick

    June 26, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The Thunder selected Kentucky center Dakari Johnson with the 48th pick in the NBA draft Thursday.The 7-footer averaged 6.4 points and 4.6 rebounds per game as a sophomore and helped the Wildcats win their first 38 games. He shot 51 percent from the field and averaged nearly a block in 16 minutes per game.

  • Cavs trade with Minnesota, select 2 forwards in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Not only did the Cavaliers not pick first in the NBA draft, they traded their only first-rounder this year.Amazing what winning - and having LeBron James around - will do.Expected to use the No. 24 overall pick to address their need for a backup point guard, the Cavs took Duke guard Tyus Jones and quickly traded him to Minnesota for two second-round picks - Nos. 31 and 36 - and a future second rounder.

  • Wizards take Iowa's Aaron White in 2nd round of NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) The Washington Wizards selected Iowa power forward Aaron White with the 49th overall pick in the NBA draft Thursday night.White is 6-foot-9 and 220 pounds and averaged 16.4 points and 7.3 rebounds as a senior in college.He adds some bulk to the Wizards, who traded up in the first round to get Kansas small forward Kelly Oubre.

  • 76ers draft international prospect Gudaitis in 2nd round

    June 25, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) The Philadelphia 76ers have selected international prospect Arturas Gudaitis with the 47th overall pick of the NBA draft.Gudaitis was the third of five scheduled second-round picks held by the Sixers. The Sixers drafted international prospect Willy Hernangomez with the 35th pick and took Bowling Green forward Richaun Holmes with the 37th pick of the NBA draft.

  • AP source: Knicks get rights to Hernangomez from 76ers

    June 25, 2015

    GREENBURGH, N.Y. (AP) A New York Knicks official says the team has acquired draft rights to Spanish center Guillermo Hernangomez from the Philadelphia 76ers in a trade.The official spoke on condition of anonymity Thursday night because the trade had not been finalized by the NBA. The official says Philadelphia received two future second round picks.

  • Hornets take Juan Vaulet with 39th pick in the NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Charlotte Hornets have selected swingman Juan Vaulet from Argentina with the 39th overall pick in the NBA draft.The 6-foot-6, 200-pound Vaulet is the first player to be drafted from Argentina since Carlos Delfino in 2003.He is the first player to be selected directly from the Argentina League since Jorge Gonzalez, a 7-foot-7, 400-pound center who was taken by the Hawks.

  • Pacers take Oregon guard Joseph Young at No. 43

    June 25, 2015

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) The Indiana Pacers have selected Oregon guard Joseph Young with the 43rd overall pick in the NBA draft.Young, who was named the Pac-12 Player of the Year last year, averaged 20.7 points and 3.8 assists last season.Young played the last two seasons at Oregon after transferring from Houston in 2013.

  • The Latest: Warriors coach doesn't know 'any of these guys'

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):11:45 p.m.The highlight of Round 2 so far is the multi-colored blazer the appropriately named Rakeem Christmas of Syracuse wore.The first senior taken in the NBA draft this year will wind up in Cleveland. But just keeping track of who's headed where is wearing some folks out, including the coach of the NBA champion Warriors, as this tweet from one of the team's beat writers, Diamond Leung, noted:

  • Pistons draft Villanova's Hilliard in 2nd round

    June 25, 2015

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) The Detroit Pistons have drafted Villanova guard Darrun Hilliard in the second round of Thursday night's NBA draft.Hilliard played four seasons at Villanova, and he averaged 14.3 points in each of the last two years. The 6-foot-6 Hilliard shot 39 percent from 3-point range last season.

  • Utah Jazz select Olivier Hanlan with No. 42 pick

    June 25, 2015

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) The Utah Jazz have selected Olivier Hanlan with the No. 42 pick of the NBA draft. The team used its first second-round pick on the 6-foot-4, 186-pound guard from Boston College after taking Kentucky forward Trey Lyles with the No. 12 overall pick.

  • Heat take Richardson with 40th pick in NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) The Miami Heat picked Tennessee shooting guard Josh Richardson with the 40th pick of Thursday night's NBA draft.Richardson was a four-year college player and averaged 16.0 points as a senior for the Volunteers. He shot 36 percent from 3-point range this past season and had some of his best games against ranked teams - averaging 17.5 points in six contests as a senior against teams that were holding down spots in the AP Top 25.

  • Celtics get shot blocker, draft Mickey in 2nd round

    June 25, 2015

    BOSTON (AP) The Boston Celtics have drafted shot-blocking forward Jordan Mickey of Louisiana State in the second round of the NBA draft.The 6-foot-7 Mickey led the nation with 3.64 blocks per game last season while averaging 15.4 points and 9.9 rebounds.

  • 76ers select Richaun Holmes with 37th pick in NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) The Philadelphia 76ers have selected Bowling Green forward Richaun Holmes with the 37th pick of the NBA draft.Holmes was the second of five scheduled second-round picks held by the Sixers. The Sixers drafted international prospect Willy Hernangomez with the 35th pick. The Sixers selected Duke center Jahlil Okafor with the third pick of the draft.

  • Cavs get rights to Syracuse's Rakeem Christmas in 2nd round

    June 25, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) The Cleveland Cavaliers acquired the rights to Syracuse forward Rakeem Christmas following a trade with Minnesota in the NBA draft.With the No. 24 overall pick, the Cavs took Duke point guard Tyus Jones and dealt him to the Timberwolves for the Nos. 31 and 36 picks, a person familiar with the package told the Associated Press on Thursday night. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been officially announced.

  • Mavs get Anderson from Virginia, Carlisle alma mater, at 21

    June 26, 2015

    DALLAS (AP) Justin Anderson offered enough of what Dallas wanted for the Mavericks to stay put with their first-round pick in the NBA draft for the first time in nine years.Plus, he's from coach Rick Carlisle's alma mater, Virginia.''Obviously comes from a great institution,'' Carlisle said with a wry smile. ''Well-educated.''

  • LA Lakers pick Stanford shooter Anthony Brown with 34th pick

    June 25, 2015

    EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) The Los Angeles Lakers selected Stanford's Anthony Brown with their second-round pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night.The Lakers added Brown to No. 2 pick D'Angelo Russell and No. 27 selection Larry Nance Jr. in a busy draft.

  • The Latest: Lanky commissioner stands tall during NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):11:20 p.m.Adam Silver is that rare commissioner who's actually tall enough (6-foot-3) to look some of his league's future employees in the eye.He handled tributes to the late Harvey Pollock, the NBA's innovative, long-time statistician, and player-turned-general manager-turned league executive Rod Thorn with elan.

  • Rockets select Harrell With the 32nd pick in the draft

    June 25, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) The Houston Rockets have selected Louisville forward Montrezl Harrell with the 32nd overall pick in the draft.The 6-foot-8 Harrell averaged 11.6 points and 6.9 rebounds in a three-year career at Louisville. This season he averaged 15.7 points and 9.2 rebounds - both career highs.

  • Cavaliers acquire rights to Turkey's Osman

    June 25, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) The Cleveland Cavaliers will get the rights to Turkish forward Cedi Osman after picking him No. 31 pick in the NBA draft with a selection acquired from Minnesota.Cleveland selected Duke point guard Tyus Jones earlier Thursday night and traded him to the Timberwolves for the Nos. 31 and 36 picks, a person familiar with the move told the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been officially announced.

  • Pistons take Stanley Johnson of Arizona with No. 8 pick

    June 26, 2015

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) As the NBA draft approached, it became clear to Stan Van Gundy that he might end up taking Arizona's Stanley Johnson with the eighth pick.So he was blunt with Sean Miller, Johnson's college coach.''I talked to him three times about him, the last time, yesterday, to just say, `Hey look, we're going to take your guy. Now, I can't get screwed on this,''' Van Gundy said. ''He just went through it again, same thing. He said, `Look, he's the kind of guy, you're going to practice for two and a half hours, and you're going to end up having to throw him out of the gym at the end. He wants it badly. He's going to be in there all the time.'''

  • Celtics draft shooting guard Hunter with 28th overall pick

    June 25, 2015

    BOSTON (AP) The Boston Celtics have drafted shooting guard R.J. Hunter of Georgia State with their second pick in the first round of the NBA draft.Hunter is known for his 3-point basket with 2.7 seconds left that gave No. 14 Georgia State a 57-56 win over No. 3 Baylor in this year's NCAA Tournament. His coach and father, Ron Hunter, fell from his stool during the play while coaching with an Achilles tendon injury.

  • Warriors draft UCLA's Kevon Looney

    June 26, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) There are varying reports about the severity of Kevon Looney's hip injury. None of them were enough to dissuade the Golden State Warriors from selecting the 19-year-old UCLA freshman with their first-round draft pick.Given the tremendous depth on Golden State's roster, Looney will have plenty of time to get his health right while acclimating to the pros.

  • Nets take McCullough at No. 29

    June 26, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Chris McCullough didn't have a chance to showcase his basketball talents as the NBA draft approached. The Brooklyn Nets liked enough of what they saw and heard from the Syracuse freshman to take him with the 29th pick of the first round of the NBA draft.

  • The Latest: Round 1 of draft done, how 'bout those shoes?

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):10:58Sum up Round 1 of the NBA draft this way:Four Kentucky Wildcats, three internationals (if you count Emmanuel Mudiay) and the same number of trades, two Dukies, one mid-major (Cameron Payne of Murray State) and one very sharp pair of shoes (Kelly Oubre's spike-covered white slip-ons).

  • Grizzlies select LSU forward Jarell Martin with 25th pick

    June 26, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Memphis Grizzlies general manager Chris Wallace is a longtime friend of former LSU basketball coach Dale Brown. Their association played a role in the Grizzlies selecting LSU forward Jarell Martin with their first-round pick in the NBA draft Thursday night.

  • LA Lakers select Wyoming's Larry Nance Jr. with 27th pick

    June 26, 2015

    EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) The Los Angeles Lakers chose Larry Nance Jr. with the 27th overall pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night, only to learn the Wyoming forward sent out a critical tweet about Kobe Bryant three years ago.Nance has since deleted the tweet, which was widely shared on social media immediately after the Lakers selected Nance with their second first-round pick.

  • Spurs take Serbian C Milutinov at No. 26 in draft

    June 26, 2015

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) Eighteen years to the day after selecting Tim Duncan, the San Antonio Spurs chose another former swimmer in the first round of the NBA draft.The Spurs selected 7-footer Nikola Milutinov of Serbia with the 26th selection Thursday night.

  • Knicks trade Hardaway to Hawks for Grant rights

    June 25, 2015

    GREENBURGH, N.Y. (AP) The New York Knicks have traded Tim Hardaway Jr. to the Atlanta Hawks for the rights to Notre Dame point guard Jerian Grant.Grant was selected with the 19th pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night, in a spot the Washington Wizards traded to the Hawks along with two future second-round picks to move up four slots for rights to Kansas guard Kelly Oubre.

  • Cavs select Duke's Jones, trade him to Minnesota for 2 picks

    June 25, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Not only did the Cavaliers not pick first overall this season in the NBA draft, they even traded their only first-round pick.Amazing what winning will do.The Cavs used the No. 24 overall pick to take Duke point guard Tyus Jones, then traded him to Minnesota for two second-round picks, a person familiar with the move told the Associated Press on Thursday night. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been officially announced.

  • Hawks acquire Hardaway Jr. in draft-night trade with Knicks

    June 26, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) As names started coming off his draft board, Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer didn't see a player who excited him at the 15th or the 19th spot.So the newly minted team president of basketball operations waited for an offer that made sense. When the New York Knicks called to say Tim Hardaway Jr. was available for the 19th overall pick, the Hawks were in.

  • AP Source: Timberwolves acquire hometown kid Jones from Cavs

    June 25, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) A person with knowledge of the deal tells The Associated Press that the Minnesota Timberwolves have acquired hometown kid Tyus Jones from the Cleveland Cavaliers for two second-round draft picks.The Cavaliers chose Jones, the Duke point guard, with the 24th overall selection. But they shipped the Apple Valley, Minnesota, native to the Wolves for pick Nos. 31 and 36. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the trade had not been officially announced.

  • Blazers used 23rd pick to select forward Hollis-Jefferson

    June 25, 2015

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) The Portland Trail Blazers took another step in what figures to be an extremely busy offseason Thursday night when they selected Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, a 6-foot-7 small forward from Arizona, with the 23rd pick of the NBA draft.

  • Rockets take Wisconsin's Sam Dekker with 18th pick in draft

    June 26, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) When Sam Dekker gets back home after his trip to New York for the NBA draft he might throw out some of the winter clothes he's had to wear for most of his life.Dekker, who was born and spent his whole life in Wisconsin, is heading to sunny and snow-free Houston after the Rockets selected the Badgers forward with the 18th overall pick in the draft on Thursday night.

  • Chicago Bulls take Arkansas' Bobby Portis with 22nd pick

    June 26, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls figured Arkansas power forward Bobby Portis would be gone by the time they picked. Once their turn came, the decision was easy.The Bulls chose Portis with the 22nd overall pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night, adding the SEC Player of the Year to their front court.

  • The Latest: Pint-sized star makes big splash at NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):10:15 p.m.Not all the fashionistas at Barclays Center for the NBA draft are of the very tall variety.Moziah Bridges, 13, provided some style commentary on ESPN. The teen makes and sells bow ties, appearing on ''Shark Tank'' last year in search of investors. He now runs a 0,000 company and was especially pleased that No. 6 pick Willie Cauley-Stein donned one of his creations for the draft.

  • Raptors select Utah guard Delon Wright with 20th pick

    June 26, 2015

    TORONTO (AP) The Toronto Raptors selected Utah guard Delon Wright with the 20th pick in the NBA draft Thursday night.The Raptors traded backup guard Greivis Vasquez to Milwaukee for UCLA shooting guard Norman Powell - selected 46th overall by the Bucks - and a first-round pick in 2017, a person familiar with the move told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity after the Bucks drafted Powell.

  • Bulls take Arkansas' Portis with 22nd pick

    June 25, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls have taken Arkansas power forward Bobby Portis with the 22nd pick in the NBA draft.The Bull are adding the SEC Player of the Year to a front line with a banged up Taj Gibson and Joakim Noah along with the aging Pau Gasol.

  • AP sources: Knicks trade Hardaway to Hawks for Grant rights

    June 25, 2015

    GREENBURGH, N.Y. (AP) Two team officials familiar with the deal say The New York Knicks have traded Tim Hardaway Jr. to the Atlanta Hawks for the rights to Notre Dame point guard Jerian Grant.Grant was selected with the 19th pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night, in a spot the Washington Wizards traded to the Hawks along with two future second-round picks to move up four slots for rights to Kansas guard Kelly Oubre.

  • Mavs select Virginia's Justin Anderson No. 21 overall

    June 25, 2015

    DALLAS (AP) The Mavericks took Virginia's Justin Anderson with the 21st pick in the NBA draft Thursday night, trying to bolster their perimeter shooting and defense with a player from Dallas coach Rick Carlisle's alma mater.The 6-foot-6 Anderson projects as a shooting guard or small forward, putting him a similar mold of Chandler Parsons, one of just two returning starters for the Mavericks along with aging star Dirk Nowitzki.

  • The Latest: Oubre and his shoes traded on NBA draft night

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):9:55 p.m.Gotta be the shoes!Kansas freshman Kelly Oubre showed off some original, spike-covered, white slip-ons after he was taken with the 15th overall pick in the draft.

  • The Latest: Hornets' pick Kaminsky has some 'splainin' to do

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):9:45 p.m.Frank Kaminsky, the Hornets' top pick in the NBA draft, may have some `splainin' to do.In May, 2014, while announcing he'd return to Wisconsin for his senior season, Kaminsky cited attendance at Charlotte games - they were still the ''Bobcats'' at the time - as an example why he was in no rush to reach the NBA.

  • Rockets select Wisconsin's Dekker with 18th pick in draft

    June 25, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) The Houston Rockets have selected Wisconsin forward Sam Dekker with the 18th overall pick in the NBA draft.The 6-foot-9 Dekker averaged 12.1 points and 5 rebounds in a three-year career at Wisconsin where the team reached the NCAA Final Four twice, including the title game this season. He's a good outside shooter and made 142 3-pointers in his college career.

  • Bucks take UNLV guard Rashad Vaughn at No. 17 in draft

    June 26, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) While the Milwaukee Bucks are much improved, they are far from a finished product.General manager John Hammond knew outside shooting was one of the main pieces he was missing, so he made a move Thursday night to address it by taking UNLV shooting guard Rashad Vaughn with the No. 17 overall pick in the NBA draft.

  • The Latest: Kentucky coach Calipari all smiles at NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):9:35 p.m.Kentucky coach John Calipari is one of the busiest men at the NBA draft, and he says it's all about the kids.When Devin Booker went to Phoenix at No. 13, it marked four Wildcats taken in the lottery during a single draft. It tied the record set by North Carolina 10 years ago.

  • Celtics take Louisville guard Rozier in 1st rd of NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    BOSTON (AP) The Boston Celtics made a surprise pick in the first round of the NBA draft Thursday night when they took guard Terry Rozier from Louisville with the 16th pick.At 6-feet-1 and 190 pounds, Rozier lacks bulk like several of Boston's other guards, including 6-3 Avery Bradley and 5-9 Isaiah Thomas. Rozier averaged 17.1 points per game as a sophomore last season but hit only 41 percent of his shots.

  • Wizards get Kansas SF Oubre in draft-day trade with Hawks

    June 26, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) From his spike-covered shoes to his initial interviews as an NBA draftee, Kelly Oubre sure made quite a first impression.On the basketball court, the Washington Wizards are willing to be patient with the 19-year-old Oubre.Washington moved up four spots in the first round to get the Kansas freshman in a trade with the Atlanta Hawks, who selected Oubre with the 15th overall pick Thursday night.

  • Thunder take Cameron Payne with No. 14 pick in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Cameron Payne can't wait to challenge Russell Westbrook.The Thunder selected Payne with the No. 14 overall pick in the NBA draft on Thursday. The Murray State point guard will get to test himself in practice against Westbrook, the reigning NBA scoring champion and one of the league's best athletes.

  • Thunder take Cameron Payne with No. 14 pick

    June 25, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The Thunder selected Murray State point guard Cameron Payne with the No. 14 overall pick in the NBA Draft on Thursday.Payne averaged 20.2 points and 6.0 assists per game as a sophomore last season. He shot 46 percent from the field and 38 percent from 3-point range. He'll back up Russell Westbrook.

  • The Latest: Top pick Towns says Minnesota headed to playoffs

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):9:07 p.m.An estimated 10,000 people filed into Target Center to watch the long-suffering Timberwolves make the first overall pick in the NBA draft, and they didn't go home disappointed.

  • Suns select Kentucky guard Booker at No. 13 overall

    June 26, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) The Phoenix Suns turned to an 18-year-old sharpshooter with the No. 13 pick in the NBA draft.Devin Booker came off the bench for national champion Kentucky as something of a designated shooter.''We just feel that he's the best shooter in the draft,'' Suns coach Jeff Hornacek said, ''and that's obviously something we need.''

  • Joy and optimism in Minnesota after Timberwolves take Towns

    June 25, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The Minnesota Timberwolves started their draft night with a bang, grabbing Kentucky big man Karl-Anthony Towns with the first No. 1 overall pick in the history of the long-suffering franchise.The night only got better from there for their success-starved fans as Minnesota traded back up into the first round to nab hometown high school legend Tyus Jones at No. 24, according to a person with knowledge of the deal.

  • The Latest: MJ good picking uniforms. Players? Not so much.

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):9 p.m.If you're counting, Frank Kaminski is the eighth player that owner Michael Jordan has a hand in selecting. To say it's an undistinguished group is an understatement.

  • Utah Jazz select Kentucky forward Trey Lyles

    June 26, 2015

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Trey Lyles certainly wasn't a ''sexy'' pick for the Utah Jazz at No. 12.He's not a knock-down shooter like former Kentucky teammate Devin Booker, who went No. 13 to the Suns. He wasn't the college player of the year like Wisconsin's Frank Kaminsky (No. 9) or a high-risk, high-reward player like Kelly Oubre (No. 15).

  • Pacers go big, take Myles Turner 11th in the NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) The Indiana Pacers granted Myles Turner's wish to play in the basketball-crazed Hoosier state.The Pacers selected the Texas big man with the 11th overall pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night and he needed time to compose himself at the draft site in New York before giving Commissioner Adam Silver a big hug on stage.

  • Justise Winslow snared by Miami Heat with No. 10 pick

    June 26, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) Justise Winslow won a national championship in his lone season at Duke. He's helped USA Basketball win international gold medals in each of the last three years. He scored more than 3,000 points in high school.The Miami Heat think his winning track will continue at the next level.

  • Hornets take Wisconsin's Kaminsky with 9th pick

    June 26, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) Frank Kaminsky grew up in the Chicago area, the walls of his bedroom decorated with posters of Michael Jordan.He wanted to be like Mike.Now he'll get a chance to play basketball for the NBA legend.The Jordan-owned Charlotte Hornets selected Kaminsky with the ninth overall pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night, marking the third straight year the team has selected a Big Ten power forward with its first pick.

  • The Latest: Knicks' Phil Jackson goes foreign instead of Zen

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):8:38 p.m.Phil Jackson's philosophy as a coach was to under promise and over deliver. As the Knicks mastermind, he's taken the opposite tack.Getting picked No. 4 pick in the NBA draft already made Kristaps Porzingis, a 7-1 Latvian by way of Spain's pro league, a marked man. The locals let him know about that.

  • Pistons take Arizona's Johnson with No. 8 pick in draft

    June 25, 2015

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) The Detroit Pistons selected Arizona forward Stanley Johnson with the eighth pick in the NBA draft Thursday night.Johnson played one season for the Wildcats, averaging 13.9 points and 6.6 rebounds in 2014-15. He could fill a need for the Pistons, who have said the only opening in their starting lineup is at small forward.

  • Nuggets select guard Mudiay 7th in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    DENVER (AP) Denver Nuggets general manager Tim Connelly failed in several attempts to watch Emmanuel Mudiay play in person.That didn't stop him from picking the young point guard in the first round of the NBA draft on Thursday.The Nuggets selected Mudiay with the seventh overall pick, giving Connelly a player he coveted from afar.

  • Kings take Cauley-Stein with 6th overall pick in draft

    June 26, 2015

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) The Sacramento Kings hope they found their defensive stopper when they drafted Kentucky big man Willie Cauley-Stein. Tranquility in the organization could still be a work in progress.The Kings capped a tumultuous week filled with reports about the status of coach George Karl and star player DeMarcus Cousins by using the sixth pick on one of the top defenders in the draft Thursday night.

  • Magic take Croatia's Hezonja with 5th pick in NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The Orlando Magic don't believe they made a leap of faith by taking Croatia's Mario Hezonja with the fifth overall pick in Thursday's NBA draft.They've had their eye on him for a while now.''He's been on the radar the last four or five years,'' Magic general manager Rob Hennigan said. ''We feel very confident in our evaluation of him.''

  • The Latest: NBA draft starts big, goes small, then big again

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):8:10 p.m.Well, that didn't take long.The Lakers pulled off the first surprise, albeit a somewhat mild one, and went small with D'Angelo Russell out of Ohio State, arguably the most dynamic player available. He's not short on wattage, either. Good thing, since he'll be cast as the understudy to LA's current star, 37-year-old Kobe Bryant.

  • Knicks select Latvian forward Porzingis 4th in NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    GREENBURGH, N.Y. (AP) In his first offseason leading the New York Knicks, Phil Jackson came up short trying to land Pau Gasol. Jackson may have landed his multifaceted forward a year later with Kristaps Porzingis of Latvia.The Knicks selected the 6-foot-11 forward with the fourth pick of the NBA draft on Thursday night.

  • 76ers take Duke's Okafor with 3rd pick in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) The Philadelphia 76ers were thinking big yet again on draft night, selecting Duke center Jahlil Okafor with the third pick on Thursday night.Okafor, 6-foot-11, 270-pounds, joins a frontcourt already stocked with Nerlens Noel and Joel Embiid. Embiid was the No. 3 pick last year and missed the entire season with a broken right foot.

  • LA Lakers pick D'Angelo Russell 2nd overall in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) The Los Angeles Lakers are betting D'Angelo Russell is ready for Showtime.The Lakers chose Russell with the second pick in the NBA draft on Thursday, bypassing big man Jahlil Okafor to grab the Ohio State guard with the potential for greatness.

  • The Latest: It's On! Fashion Fight at the NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):7:46 p.m.The NBA draft does not have a real catwalk. It's hard to make a fashion statement while strolling across the stage to shake Commissioner Adam Silver's hand and put on a ball cap.

  • Timberwolves select Towns with No. 1 pick in NBA draft

    June 26, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The Minnesota Timberwolves got their man in the middle. The Lakers got a playmaking partner for Kobe Bryant.Knicks fans just got mad - though not for long.Minnesota selected Kentucky's Karl-Anthony Towns with the first pick in the NBA draft on Thursday night, the first of three straight freshmen chosen before New York chose Latvian forward Kristaps Porzingis, triggering loud, long boos from their fans inside Barclays Center.

  • The Latest: Minnesota takes Towns No. 1 in NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):7:37 p.m.The Timberwolves surprised exactly no one by making Karl-Anthony Towns the No. 1 pick. They were the only team he worked out for.Towns was asked about the club so many times on TV shows last week it seemed like he was promoting a sitcom.

  • Minnesota Timberwolves select Kentucky center Karl-Anthony Towns with first pick in NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Minnesota Timberwolves select Kentucky center Karl-Anthony Towns with first pick in NBA draft.

  • The Latest: Color clash with too much red in green room

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):7:15 p.m.Red, or some shade of it, appears to be the ''in'' color this year.So much so that the green room at the NBA draft is starting to look like a Vegas card table. There was Ohio State's D'Angelo Russell in Buckeye red ... er crimson. Jahlil Okafor and Kristaps Porzingis went with maroon.

  • 'An old soul': Towns' family thinks he'll adjust to NBA

    June 25, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) With only hours to go before Thursday's NBA draft, the mother of Karl-Anthony Towns slid on a brand new pair of black stilettos, smoothed out her loose, fancy pantsuit in the lucky shade of Kentucky Blue and spoke confidently of her youngest child's ability to navigate what's to come in the big time.

  • The Latest: Bigs might go 1st, guards next in NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    The Latest from the NBA draft at Barclays Center in New York (All times local):6:30 p.m.New Magic coach Scott Skiles is already working the media, with an assist from his wife, Kim.When members of the media arrived for the draft night they found a tray with homemade cookies from the Skiles.

  • Grant Hill hoping to help bring success to Hawks

    June 25, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Grant Hill always wondered why the Atlanta Hawks struggled to attract big-name free agents.Now the seven-time NBA All-Star faces a challenge to help make that happen.Hill was introduced as vice chair of the Hawks on Thursday, one day after the franchise and arena rights were purchased for 0 million. Hill has a stake in the new ownership group, led by billionaire Tony Ressler, which hopes to make the Hawks a consistent winner.

  • Chicago Bulls hire Pete Myers as assistant

    June 25, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls have hired Pete Myers for a second stint as an assistant coach.Myers played for the Bulls in the 1980s and 1990s and spent 12 seasons with Chicago as an assistant coach and scout. He also spent three seasons as an assistant coach for Golden State (2011-14).

  • Grizzlies acquire Matt Barnes from Charlotte Hornets

    June 25, 2015

    The Memphis Grizzlies acquired forward Matt Barnes from the Charlotte Hornets for guard Luke Ridnour, who later was sent to Oklahoma City.The Grizzlies announced the trade Thursday, and the Thunder said shortly after they had acquired Ridnour and a conditional 2016 second-round draft pick from Charlotte for guard Jeremy Lamb.

  • AP source: Grizzlies acquire Matt Barnes from Hornets

    June 25, 2015

    A person familiar with the situation says the Memphis Grizzlies have acquired forward Matt Barnes from the Charlotte Hornets for guard Luke Ridnour.The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday because the trade hasn't been announced. The deal was first reported by Yahoo Sports.

  • Okafor, others get their answers Thursday in NBA draft

    June 25, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Jahlil Okafor's wait is almost over.The NBA draft is Thursday night, and the Duke big man will be one of the top picks. He said Wednesday he wished he already knew his destination.''I'd be able to sleep better at night if I did. I have no idea,'' he said. ''It's been a long process, a lot of fun, but I'm ready for it to be over with so I'll know where I'm going to be playing.''

  • Hornets to send Henderson, Vonleh to Blazers for Batum

    June 24, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Charlotte Hornets continue to revamp their roster after a disappointing season in which they didn't shoot the ball well and failed to make the playoffs.The Hornets acquired wing Nicolas Batum from the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday night in exchange for guard Gerald Henderson and power forward Noah Vonleh.

  • AP Source: Hornets to send Henderson to Blazers for Batum

    June 24, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Charlotte Hornets have agreed to a trade that will send guard Gerald Henderson and power forward Noah Vonleh to the Portland Trail Blazers for small forward Nicolas Batum, a person familiar with the situation said Wednesday night.

  • Benson's daughter, grandchildren appeal competency ruling

    June 24, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) The daughter and grandchildren of Tom Benson are appealing last week's ruling that found the Saints and Pelicans owner mentally competent to make his own business decisions.The appeal from daughter Renee Benson and her children, Rita LeBlanc and Ryan LeBlanc, was filed Wednesday.

  • Hawks show off new uniforms as new ownership group moves in

    June 24, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The Hawks are coming off their best season in Atlanta - and that's not all.Guard Kyle Korver thinks it's about to get even better now that the team has new owners, a new front office and new uniforms.With coach Mike Budenholzer the new president of basketball operations, Korver believes the Hawks have a good chance to move past the Eastern Conference finals next season.

  • Towns, Okafor and good lesser-known players top NBA draft

    June 24, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Karl-Anthony Towns hoisted a child high up toward his shoulders, letting the youngster at an NBA community service event feel what it was like to rock the rim with a dunk.Next up for Towns might be trying to help lift the Minnesota Timberwolves.

  • Do Spurs finally need help from the NBA draft?

    June 24, 2015

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) The San Antonio Spurs could use some help from the NBA draft.That's big news for a team that has essentially made minor tweaks to its roster each offseason for the better part of the past decade.The Spurs enter Thursday's draft with only five players under contract and a number of unanswered questions for coach Gregg Popovich and general manager R.C. Buford.

  • Pistons need small forward but want to be flexible in draft

    June 24, 2015

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) Stan Van Gundy wants to keep expectations reasonable as the Detroit Pistons prepare to make yet another mid-level lottery pick.''I've looked at it all the way as: We're going to fill the starting positions for next year via trades and free agency. We weren't looking at the draft,'' Van Gundy said. ''If you pick the guy at (number) eight and he comes in and wins the job, more power to him. But we're not putting that kind of pressure on that guy or on ourselves.''

  • Magic trade Ridnour to Grizzlies for rights to Timma

    June 24, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The Orlando Magic have agreed to send reserve point guard Luke Ridnour to the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for the rights to forward Janis Timma.Both teams announced the deal Wednesday. The trade was first reported by Yahoo! Sports.

  • Tony Ressler announced as Hawks' main owner

    June 24, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The NBA board of governors has unanimously approved the sale of the Atlanta Hawks to an ownership group led by billionaire Tony Ressler.Along with the operating rights to Philips Arena, the Hawks were sold for 0 million. The NBA announced Wednesday's sale closing.

  • For Mavs, draft again shaping up as prelude to free agency

    June 24, 2015

    DALLAS (AP) Once again, draft night is shaping up as a prelude to free agency for the Mavericks.Dallas has the 21st pick in the second round Thursday night, and three openings in the starting lineup after finding out for sure on the eve of the draft that guard Monta Ellis will opt out of the final year of his contract and become a free agent.

  • LA Lakers' history says they'll find a great with No. 2 pick

    June 24, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) With 16 championships and a decades-long history of winning, the Los Angeles Lakers hardly ever get a shot at the NBA draft's elite talent.Yet whenever they do, they've made an extraordinary choice.The Lakers have the No. 2 overall selection Thursday, sitting behind only Minnesota with their highest pick in 33 years. After winning 21 games in the franchise's worst season, Los Angeles survived the possibility of losing the pick in the lottery and secured the right to choose a foundation player for its rebuilding effort.

  • Saunders, Timberwolves ready to shine on NBA draft night

    June 24, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Flip Saunders was in the Minnesota Timberwolves front office in 1995 when they drafted a teenager named Kevin Garnett, ushering in an era of respectability for the franchise.He was the coach a year later when a draft-night trade brought Stephon Marbury to the team, forming a dynamic tandem with Garnett that finally pushed the Wolves into the playoffs for the first time in the franchise's eight years in the league.

  • Point of draft: For Bulls, could be finding Rose's backup

    June 24, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls own the 22nd pick in Thursday's draft. And with a deep pool of guards, adding a backup for Derrick Rose could be the way to go.Then again, they could use a shooter. And a big man isn't out of the question, either.About the only certainty right now for the Bulls is this: It's already been a noteworthy offseason.

  • AP source: Kevin Love opts out of contract with Cavs

    June 24, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Kevin Love is about to find out how much the league values him, and how much the Cavaliers want him.The power forward opted out of the final year of his contract and will be a free agent on July 1, a person familiar with the decision told the Associated Press. Love, who had a deal worth .7 million next season, informed the Cavs on Wednesday, said the person who spoke on condition because the team is not commenting on its free agency plans.

  • Rebounding big man, shooter among Bucks' draft needs

    June 24, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) The only certainty for Milwaukee Bucks general manager John Hammond going into Thursday's NBA draft is that there will be a lot uncertainty.''Yeah, I have no idea what's going to happen leading up to the draft,'' Hammond said this week.

  • Donovan adds unique perspective to Thunder draft prep

    June 24, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The Thunder franchise has compiled an impressive list of draft-night success stories under general manager Sam Presti. Now, Oklahoma City has an additional weapon heading into Thursday's event: new coach Billy Donovan's extensive knowledge of college players.

  • Ellis declining option with Mavs, will become free agent

    June 24, 2015

    DALLAS (AP) Monta Ellis is declining the player option for the final year of his contract with the Dallas Mavericks and will become an unrestricted free agent.The guard's agent, Jeff Fried, said Wednesday the decision ''wasn't about Dallas as much as it was about what's best for Monta.''

  • AP source: Magic trade Ridnour for Grizzlies' Timma rights

    June 24, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) A person familiar with the deal says The Orlando Magic have agreed to send reserve point guard Luke Ridnour to the Memphis Grizzlies in exchange for the rights to forward Janis Timma.The person spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because the deal has not officially been announced. The trade was first reported by Yahoo Sports.

  • 76ers seek cornerstone player with No. 3 pick in NBA draft

    June 24, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) The Philadelphia 76ers have scanned the scouting reports, conducted their interviews and watched all the film.They have found the one bond that links all the top players available for Thursday's draft: D'Angelo Russell, Jahlil Okafor, Karl-Anthony Towns and others all appear healthy.

  • List of Kentucky players taken in NBA draft under Calipari

    June 24, 2015

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) John Calipari's Kentucky teams have featured 19 NBA draft picks in his six seasons at the university and could have seven more taken on Thursday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.Below is a list of Kentucky players selected in the NBA draft picks during Calipari's tenure:

  • Biggest Kentucky group to date preparing for NBA draft

    June 24, 2015

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) John Calipari and his Kentucky pipeline to the NBA will have yet another major impact on the league's annual draft.It's nothing new, but Thursday night could be record-setting - even for the Wildcats.Calipari's first Kentucky team in 2010 featured five first-round NBA draft picks, including No. 1 overall selection John Wall. Six Wildcats turned pro after their 2012 NCAA championship, with Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist going 1-2 in a parade of four first-rounders.

  • Pollack, last original employee of NBA's 1st season, dies

    June 23, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) Harvey Pollack, the last original employee of the NBA's inaugural season to still be working in the league, has died. He was 93.Pollack died on Tuesday. Pollack worked for the Philadelphia 76ers at the time of his death, spending the past 28 years as the team's director of statistical information.

  • Cavs pick up 2016 option for Mozgov, other decisions ahead

    June 23, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Cavaliers made their first move of the summer, the easiest one.As expected, the team picked up the million option on center Timofey Mozgov's contract for next season on Tuesday.There was never a doubt the Cavs would bring back the 7-foot-1 center, acquired in a January trade from Denver in exchange for two first-round draft picks.

  • No. 4 pick, cap space, give Jackson tools to rebuild Knicks

    June 23, 2015

    GREENBURGH, N.Y. (AP) Had Phil Jackson been discussing his six championships with Chicago, nobody would argue.If he meant the five more he won coaching the Lakers, he'd have been correct.But when he said Tuesday he did a ''great job,'' he was referring to last season, his first as president of basketball operations for the New York Knicks.

  • Grizzlies' draft options center around Marc Gasol's decision

    June 23, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Not knowing what All-Star center Marc Gasol will do as a free agent leaves the Memphis Grizzlies facing a variety of options of what they could do in the NBA Draft.Their ongoing search for a long-range shooter continues and now they might be in the market for their first center in years with Gasol determined to explore free agency and backup Kosta Koufos also hitting the market July 1.

  • Cavs pick up M 2016 option for center Timofey Mozgov

    June 23, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Cavaliers have picked up center Timofey Mozgov's million contract option for next season.Mozgov was acquired by Cleveland in a trade from Denver for two first-round draft picks in January. The 7-foot-1 Mozgov averaged 10.6 points and 6.9 rebounds in 45 starts for the Cavs, who were desperate for a rim-protecting big man after losing Anderson Varejao to a season-ending Achilles injury.

  • Charlotte Hornets to host NBA All-Star game in 2017

    June 23, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) Michael Jordan vowed to restore interest in the Charlotte Hornets when he took over as the franchise's majority owner in 2010.That has included bringing the team's name back to the city and now he has the NBA bringing its All-Star game back to Charlotte.

  • NBA pipeline from Europe getting bigger, deeper and stronger

    June 23, 2015

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) When Pacers forward Damjan Rudez returned to the Basketball Without Borders camp earlier this month, there were some noticeable changes.The long, gangly European kids he competed with and against in 2003 had been replaced by bigger, stronger, more polished teenagers.

  • Gentry aims to bring Pelicans victory parade down Canal St.

    June 22, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) Alvin Gentry apologized for a raspy voice during his introductory news conference Monday as coach of the New Orleans Pelicans.It has been, after all, just a few days since he spent nearly three weeks coaching in the NBA Finals, where he was an assistant for the champion Golden State Warriors.

  • With Parker on mend, Bucks could add to frontcourt in draft

    June 22, 2015

    ST. FRANCIS, Wis. (AP) The most important first-round draft pick to suit up for the Bucks this fall will be the lottery selection that played a little more than a quarter of a season in Milwaukee.Forward Jabari Parker is on the mend from a left knee injury that ended his rookie year after 25 games.

  • Karl-Anthony Towns says there is 'no promise' from T-Wolves

    June 22, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Karl-Anthony Towns has heard his name connected to the Timberwolves for the upcoming NBA draft for more than a month now, with the Kentucky big man seemingly destined to land in Minnesota on Thursday night.Even after a report surfaced Monday that the Timberwolves have already informed Towns that he will be the No. 1 overall pick, he wasn't taking anything for granted.

  • AP Sources: Hornets to host NBA All-Star game in 2017

    June 22, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Charlotte Hornets won the bid to host the NBA All-Star game in 2017, people familiar with the situation said Monday.The people spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because an announcement has not been made. The Hornets have scheduled a press conference for Tuesday that will include NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, team owner Michael Jordan and Charlotte Mayor Dan Clodfelter.

  • Van Gundy says Pistons not optimistic about keeping Monroe

    June 22, 2015

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) Stan Van Gundy concedes the Detroit Pistons are ''not entirely optimistic'' about bringing Greg Monroe back this offseason.Van Gundy, Detroit's coach and team president, says the door isn't closed, but Monroe can test the open market this offseason as an unrestricted free agent.

  • Nets' Young opts out; GM King says he wants to keep him

    June 22, 2015

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) Thaddeus Young has informed the Brooklyn Nets he will become a free agent, and general manager Billy King says they want to keep the forward and center Brook Lopez.Young told the Nets on Monday, bypassing the .2 million he would have made next season in the final year of his contract. King says the Nets were expecting the decision.

  • Atlanta Hawks announce GM Danny Ferry 'stepping down'

    June 22, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Danny Ferry officially stepped down as general manager of the Atlanta Hawks on Monday and said having to watch the team's most successful season from a distance was ''bittersweet.''Ferry, 48, spoke publicly Monday for the first time since going on indefinite leave in August following racially inflammatory comments about then-free agent Luol Deng.

  • Investigation finds no evidence of bias by Ferry

    June 20, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) An independent investigation has found former Atlanta Hawks general manager Danny Ferry was not motivated by racial bias in making statements which ultimately ended his time with the team.A letter summarizing the investigation by the Atlanta law firm Alston & Bird was obtained Saturday by The Associated Press, as was a letter from Hawks co-owner Todd Foreman to Ferry.

  • Clippers coach Doc Rivers' mother dies in Illinois

    June 20, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) The mother of Los Angeles Clippers coach Doc Rivers has died in Illinois.The Clippers say Bettye Rivers died Friday. The team didn't release a cause of death or Bettye Rivers' age.Clippers guard Austin Rivers, who is Doc's son and Bettye's grandson, posted a photo of the trio on his Instagram account.

  • Potential top pick Karl-Anthony Towns works out for Wolves

    June 20, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Kentucky big man Karl-Anthony Towns worked out for the Minnesota Timberwolves on Saturday, less than a week before the Wolves pick first in the NBA draft.Towns arrived in the Twin Cities on Friday night. He took a tour of the Wolves' new million practice facility and dined with owner Glen Taylor, President Flip Saunders and several other team officials.

  • AP source: Hawks reach buyout agreement with GM Danny Ferry

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The Atlanta Hawks have agreed to a buyout of the final two years of general manager Danny Ferry's contract, a person with knowledge of the agreement told The Associated Press on Friday.The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the agreement has not been announced. The person said the buyout will be paid by the current ownership group, which has a deal to sell the team for 0 million to a group led by billionaire businessman Antony Ressler.

  • Charles Barkley's mother, Charcey Glenn, dies in Alabama

    July 4, 2015

    LEEDS, Ala. (AP) The mother of NBA great Charles Barkley, Charcey Glenn, has died at her home in Alabama.The Jefferson County Medical Examiner's Office says Glenn died Friday in her hometown of Leeds, east of Birmingham. She was 73.Deputy medical examiner Derrick Perryman says a report lists the cause of death as kidney failure, and Barkley as the next of kin.

  • Parade, large rally celebrate NBA champion Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The streets of Oakland were awash in yellow and blue as hundreds of thousands of fans watched and cheered the Golden State Warriors victory parade, which has been 40 years in the making.In a rare moment of glory, Oakland - a city that usually makes news for crime, corruption, protests and violence- shined in the national spotlight.

  • 3 shot blocks away from Golden State Warriors celebration

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Three people shot five blocks from the NBA championship celebration for the Golden State Warriors in Oakland are in stable condition.Police say they received a call shortly after noon Friday and found three male victims with gunshot wounds.

  • Utah Jazz work out Dekker, miss out on Hollis-Jefferson

    July 4, 2015

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Sam Dekker was a little disappointed after his workout with the Utah Jazz on Friday. Vice president of player personnel Walt Perrin was, too.All those feelings had nothing to do with the way Dekker performed. The disappointment centered on a lost opportunity.

  • Parade celebrating NBA champion Warriors winding down

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The streets of Oakland are awash in yellow and blue as hundreds of thousands of fans watch and cheer the Golden State Warriors victory parade, which has been 40 years in the making.In a rare moment of glory, Oakland - a city that usually makes news for crime, corruption, protests and violence- shined in the national spotlight.

  • Parade celebrating NBA champion Warriors kicks off

    July 4, 2015

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) The streets of Oakland, California, are awash in yellow and blue as hundreds of thousands of fans continue to watch and cheer the Golden State Warriors victory parade, which has been 40 years in the making.In a rare moment of glory, Oakland - a city that usually makes news for crime, corruption, protests and violence- shined in the national spotlight.

  • Bulls' Taj Gibson has ankle surgery

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Chicago Bulls forward Taj Gibson has had arthroscopic surgery on his left ankle.The Bulls said Friday he will need about four months to resume full basketball activities. That puts in question his status for training camp and even the start of the season.

  • NBA champion Warriors and their fans get ready to rally

    July 4, 2015

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) In a rare moment of glory, Oakland will shine in the national spotlight as the Golden State Warriors parade through the city with their NBA championship trophy.Oakland usually makes news for crime, corruption, protests and violence. But on Friday, thousands of blue-and-gold-clad fans will flood downtown to see Warriors players, fresh from beating LeBron James' Cleveland Cavaliers, aloft six floats heading down a 2-mile parade route.

  • Hornets won't pass over talent to get a shooter in NBA draft

    July 4, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) General manager Rich Cho said while the Charlotte Hornets need a perimeter shooter, it doesn't necessarily guarantee they'll take one with the ninth pick in next week's NBA draft.The Hornets plan to draft the best player available, regardless of whether that is a point guard, power forward or center.

  • Warriors and fans gear up for victory parade in Oakland

    July 4, 2015

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) In a rare moment of glory, Oakland will shine in the national spotlight Friday as the Golden State Warriors parade through the city with their NBA championship trophy.Oakland usually makes news for crime, corruption, protests and violence.

  • Judge rules Saints, Pelicans owner Benson is competent

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson - and the current power structure he has set up - have cleared a crucial legal hurdle in a struggle for control of the NFL and NBA teams.A judge ruled Thursday that the 87-year-old Benson remains competent to run his nearly billion business empire as he sees fit. The ruling means Benson's decision to oust his daughter and her two children from ownership positions with the sports franchises will stand.

  • Warriors believe more titles could be in their future

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The parade is not until Friday. The Golden State Warriors are already looking ahead to what could be a promising future.And with their young core under contract and MVP Stephen Curry just entering his prime, the Warriors believe their first NBA championship in 40 years could be the start of many more.

  • Pelicans' Gordon exercises final year option of contract

    July 4, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) New Orleans Pelicans guard Eric Gordon has exercised the final-year option in his contract, which will pay him about .5 million next season.The 26-year-old Gordon, whose decision was announced by the Pelicans on Thursday, could have become a free agent next month under the terms of a four-year, million contract he signed in 2012.

  • Cavs coach says bond with LeBron 'more than meets the eye'

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Even after guiding a team wrecked by injuries to the NBA Finals in his first season, Cleveland Cavaliers coach David Blatt can't escape a narrative that's shadowed him for months.His relationship with superstar LeBron James remains a trendy, touchy topic.

  • NBA sees retail, digital records from NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA Finals, which produced record viewership for ABC, also gave the league its best results in retail and digital categories.The league says that Wednesday, the day after Golden State's title-winning victory over Cleveland in Game 6, was the highest-selling day in NBAStore.com history, with a triple-digit increase over the record set in 2010 during the Lakers-Celtics finals.

  • Grizzlies' Jeff Green exercises option for 15-16 season

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Grizzlies forward Jeff Green has exercised his player option keeping him with Memphis for the 2015-16 season.General manager Chris Wallace announced Green's decision Thursday.The 6-foot-9, 235-pound Green averaged 16 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 78 games this season with Boston and Memphis. The Grizzlies acquired him in a three-team trade Jan. 12, and he averaged 13.1 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 45 games with Memphis. Green shot a team-best 39.8 percent from 3-point range after the All-Star break.

  • LA Clippers unveil new logos during daylong publicity blitz

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Coach Doc Rivers shook every hand and smiled for every selfie while he worked the huge line of Los Angeles Clippers fans stretching down the block outside Pink's, the beloved Hollywood hot dog stand, on a sizzling summer Thursday.''Thanks for the support, really!'' Rivers shouted at the fans holding aloft red T-shirts bearing the Clippers' new logos.

  • Judge rules Saints, Pelicans owner Benson is competent

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson remains competent to run his business empire, a civil judge ruled Thursday as he dismissed accusations by Benson's estranged heirs who've been ousted from ownership positions with the clubs.

  • Danny Granger exercises .17 million option with Suns

    July 4, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) Danny Granger has exercised his one-year, .17 million option with the Phoenix Suns.The 32-year-old forward came to the Suns in the trade that sent Goran Dragic to Miami but he never played a game for Phoenix because of a knee injury.Granger, a 10-year NBA veteran, played in 30 games last season with the Heat, averaging 6.3 points per game.

  • Timberwolves open shiny new downtown practice center

    July 4, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor stood at the podium and used the words ''gold standard'' and ''radical departure from the norm'' to describe the team's glimmering new practice facility, as NBA Commissioner Adam Silver nodded his head in agreement.

  • With draft approaching, Kidd likes Bucks' possibilities

    July 4, 2015

    KOHLER, Wis. (AP) Posing for pictures with Rory McIlroy, smiling Milwaukee Bucks coach Jason Kidd looked as if he was eagerly awaiting a chance to go 18 holes with one of the world's best golfers.Basketball, though, is always a hot topic with Kidd, even in a fieldstone barn overlooking a picturesque golf course along Lake Michigan.

  • Warriors return to Bay Area as NBA champions

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Stephen Curry came off the plane, lifted the Larry O'Brien Trophy as he walked down the mobile staircase and let the gold award shine in the California sun.For the first time in 40 years, the NBA champions are back in the Bay Area.

  • Obama phones coaches of Warriors, Blackhawks with congrats

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) President Barack Obama has phoned the coaches of the Golden State Warriors and the Chicago Blackhawks to congratulate the teams on winning the NBA Finals and the Stanley Cup.The White House says Obama told Warriors' Coach Steve Kerr it was exciting to see the team's perseverance in winning in its first title in 40 years. He singled out Stephen Curry and Andre Igoudala for praise.

  • NBA Finals draw best TV rating since series moved to ABC

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) This year's NBA Finals have drawn their highest TV rating since the series moved to ABC in 2003.The Golden State Warriors' six-game win over the Cleveland Cavaliers averaged an 11.6 rating. ESPN said Wednesday that the more than 19.9 million viewers were up 30 percent from last year's five-game series between the Spurs and Heat.

  • Timberwolves open shiny new downtown practice facility

    July 4, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The Minnesota Timberwolves held a grand opening for their shiny new downtown practice facility on Wednesday, hoping that it can help end a decade of futility in the NBA.NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and WNBA President Laurel Richie attended the ceremony. The Wolves partnered with the Mayo Clinic to build the million facility just across the street from Target Center. It was paid for entirely with private funding.

  • Bulls hire Boylen as Hoiberg's top assistant

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls have hired Jim Boylen as new coach Fred Hoiberg's top assistant.Boylen has 29 years of coaching experience - 17 in the NBA. He will serve as Chicago's associate head coach.He spent the past two seasons on Gregg Popovich's staff in San Antonio and was the coach at the University of Utah for four years, leading the Utes to a 69-60 record and the 2009 NCAA Tournament. Boylen was also an assistant with the Houston Rockets, Golden State Warriors, Milwaukee Bucks, Indiana Pacers and Michigan State.

  • Guard Gerald Henderson picks up option, remains with Hornets

    July 4, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) Guard Gerald Henderson has exercised his player option for the 2015-16 season and will remain with the Charlotte Hornets.Henderson is set to make million in the final year of his contract.The news comes two days after the team traded guard Lance Stephenson to the Los Angeles Clippers for center Spencer Hawes and forward Matt Barnes.

  • Plenty of changes could come to the NBA, and quickly

    July 4, 2015

    Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors will get their championship rings. LeBron James will try yet again to end Cleveland's epic title drought. And barring a most unlikely change of heart, Kobe Bryant's illustrious NBA career will end.That's just a smidge of what awaits next season.

  • Deep and versatile, Warriors show how to build a champion

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Andre Iguodala was more than just a key player on a team that beat LeBron James and Cleveland.Turns out he used to beat up on Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.''We beat the first unit more times than they beat us, and I think it was by a landslide,'' Iguodala said.

  • Warriors fans celebrate NBA title with street party

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Warriors' fans honked their horns and danced in streets throughout the San Francisco Bay Area to celebrate their team's first NBA title in 40 years.The party began as soon as the Golden State Warriors beat the Cleveland Cavaliers to claim the title in six games Tuesday night.

  • Cavs fans must wait again for next year after finals loss

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Frustration and disappointment could be heard in the murmurs and shouts from Cleveland Cavaliers fans who watched the decisive Game 6 of the NBA finals until the bitter end in a plaza outside the city's downtown arena.But even as their long-held hopes for a title in any major professional sport once again slipped away Tuesday night, this time to the ultra-talented Golden State Warriors, fans clung to the belief that with the Cavaliers' LeBron James leading the way, next year - next season - that a shiny championship trophy might find a home in Cleveland after five decades of futility.

  • LeBron can't deliver title to Cleveland despite great effort

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) LeBron James pulled off his sunglasses, and there was no hiding the hurt in his eyes.He had given everything he had, the best player turning into a better teammate, and it wasn't enough.''If I could have gave more, I would have done it, but I gave everything I had,'' he said Tuesday after Cleveland's 105-97 loss to Golden State in Game 6 of the NBA Finals.

  • The Latest: Warriors' Iguodala voted MVP of NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):12:12 a.m.Golden State's Andre Iguodala has been voted NBA Finals MVP.Iguodala didn't start a game all season until Steve Kerr inserted him into the lineup in Game 4 after the Warriors trailed 2-1.

  • The Latest: Warriors win NBA title, beat Cavaliers 105-97

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):11:59 p.m.The Golden State Warriors have won their first NBA championship since 1975, beating the Cleveland Cavaliers 105-97 in Game 6.Stephen Curry and Andre Iguodala each had 25 points for the Warriors, who won the final three games after Cleveland had taken a 2-1 lead.

  • Golden State Warriors win 1st NBA championship since 1975, beat Cleveland Cavaliers 105-97

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Golden State Warriors win 1st NBA championship since 1975, beat Cleveland Cavaliers 105-97.

  • The Latest: Curry, Warriors holding off Cavaliers' rally

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):11:31 p.m.The Cleveland Cavaliers are trying to come back and the MVP won't let them.Stephen Curry has delivered two timely 3-pointers to keep Cleveland from building momentum as it tries to force a Game 7.

  • The Latest: LeBron James, Cavaliers cut into Warriors' lead

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):11:17 p.m.Cavs coach David Blatt set the stage for what it will take for his team to make an amazing comeback and force a Game 7.He tells ABC's Doris Burke they need to ''play a great quarter on defense, make our free throws and hope our shots go down.''

  • The Latest: Warriors lead Cavs 73-61 heading to 4th quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):---11:12 p.m.Time for the fourth quarter, the one that has belonged to the Warriors in this series.And unless Cleveland flips that script in a big way, its season is over.Golden State has a 73-61 lead, forcing the Cavs to do what the Warriors have done in the last few games.

  • The Latest: Warriors in control, moving closer to title

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):11:07 p.m.Cavaliers coach David Blatt can sense the Warriors ceasing control.In the last timeout, all Blatt was prodding and urging his worn-out team to make one last run.Blatt kept saying, ''There's a lot of game left. Don't put your heads down.''

  • The Latest: Warriors build another double-digit lead

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):10:55 p.m.It took them falling behind, but the Warriors have finally started playing as they did in the first quarter.Golden State has responded quickly after Cleveland took the lead by scoring nine straight points, and was back up by double digits with 5:11 remaining in the third quarter.

  • The Latest: Mozgov, Cavs battle back to take lead in Game 6

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):10:40Cavaliers coach David Blatt decided to stick with Timofey Mozgov in Game 6 and it's paying off for Cleveland.When Mozgov made the first basket of the second half, Cleveland had come all the way back to tie it at 45. Tristan Thompson followed with a basket to put the Cavaliers in the lead.

  • The Latest: Warriors cling to 45-43 halftime lead vs. Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):10:28 p.m.Where's Delly?Matthew Dellavedova was the darling of the finals in the first three games, stepping in for the injured Kyrie Irving and hounding Stephen Curry.But he seems to have hit a wall over the past couple of games, and David Blatt only played him 13 minutes in the first half. Dellavedova was scoreless on 0-for-1 shooting.

  • The Latest: Warriors still holding off surging Cavaliers

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):10:15 p.m.LeBron James has surpassed the 5,000-point milestone in playoff scoring.With his 12th point Tuesday, James became just the sixth player to reach that number. It came when his 3-pointer with 2:04 left in the first half gave him 14 points for the night.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers cut into Warriors' lead in 2nd quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):9:53 p.m.Cavaliers fans were told between quarters that there was no reason to panic, that this was no time to be quiet.Then they were given reason to cheer.A good start to the second quarter got Cleveland back into the game after Golden State built a double-digit lead. The Cavaliers went back to a big lineup and were beating up the Warriors on the backboards.

  • The Latest: Warriors jump on Cavs early in 1st quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):9:40 p.m.Small-ball is winning big again so far for the Warriors.Getting open looks all over the floor with its quickness and ball movement, Golden State has built a 28-15 lead after one quarter of Game 6.

  • The Latest: LeBron tells Cavs: 'There ain't no tomorrow'

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):9:26 p.m.LeBron James had a simple message for his Cavaliers before Game 6. As his teammates gathered around him, the man who carried him there tried to capture the desperation they needed to have.

  • The Latest: Warriors, Cavs tip off Game 6 of NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):9:10 p.m.Timofey Mozgov remains in the starting lineup for the Cavaliers. Let's see how long he gets to stay on the floor now that Game 6 has tipped off.The 7-foot-1 center spent almost all of Game 5 on the bench as Cavaliers coach David Blatt went with a small lineup to match up with the one the Warriors were using. Mozgov started but was pulled early and limited to just 9 minutes in that one.

  • The Latest: Kerr would like to see games start earlier

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):9:01 p.m.Just passing 9 p.m., a late time to start a game.Steve Kerr knows it.His pregame press conference included a plea to NBA officials to begin the games earlier and cut down on all the waiting time the teams have to endure.

  • The Latest: Kevin Love spotted ducking into weight room

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):8:50 p.m.About 20 minutes before game time, the Cavaliers' in-arena host urged fans to put on their wine jerseys.The Cavaliers' official colors are wine and gold, so the giveaway T-shirts hanging over the seats in the arena were a maroon color.

  • The Latest: Warriors, Cavs putting in work during playoffs

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):8:05 p.m.The Warriors and Cavaliers are paying the price to try and win the NBA title.NBA teams that didn't make the playoffs have been on vacation for exactly two months.Tuesday's Game 6 will be the Cavaliers 20th game since their regular-season finale on April 15. The 102nd game of the season will tie the franchise record set in 2006-07, when they were swept by San Antonio in their only other NBA Finals appearance.

  • The Latest: LeBron not interested in MVP, wants to win title

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Latest from Game 6 of the NBA Finals (all times local):7:43 p.m.Only one trophy matters to LeBron James.After posting historic statistics through the first five games of the NBA Finals, there is a growing sense that James could be named the series MVP even if the Cavaliers don't beat Golden State for the championship. Jerry West is the only player to win MVP honors in the finals with a losing team, doing it with the Los Angeles Lakers in 1969.

  • New game, team options next season on NBA League Pass

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) NBA fans can purchase single games and individual team packages next season as expanded NBA League Pass options.The league says Tuesday the current full season plan will still be available, but the new options will provide new alternatives.

  • Trades, draft crucial for building Detroit Pistons

    July 4, 2015

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) Stan Van Gundy is now entering season two of his attempt to bring the Detroit Pistons back to prominence, and at this point the easiest way to acquire help may be by targeting players who aren't on the open market.''I think free agency is a little bit of a crapshoot. Guys, they're out there picking a team. A lot of teams are chasing them,'' Van Gundy said. ''You never know what's going to happen, and so, we said coming in that as much as we would go out and try to be players in free agency, great path for us to building a team is through ... the draft and trades.''

  • Michael Malone plans to run uptempo offense with Nuggets

    July 4, 2015

    DENVER (AP) Michael Malone wants his team to run. The front office wants his team to run. His players certainly want his team to run.So, the Denver Nuggets are going to run.Now here come the conditions: The uptempo pace has to be with efficiency and only as a reward for doing all the little things first, such as rebounding and playing stingy defense.

  • Top 2 picks could meet in NBA Summer League opener

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The top two picks in the draft could meet on the opening day of the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas.The Minnesota Timberwolves and Los Angeles Lakers, who own the first two choices, will play July 10 when the Summer League tips off.The start of the 11-day schedule also includes a matchup between Golden State and Cleveland, the teams playing in the NBA Finals.

  • Sacramento Kings' future arena to be called Golden 1 Center

    July 4, 2015

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) The Sacramento Kings and Golden 1 Credit Union have reached an agreement on a naming rights deal for the NBA team's future arena.Under a 20-year partnership announced Tuesday, the arena in downtown Sacramento will be called the Golden 1 Center. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

  • Kerr knows what the Warriors face in Game 6 of NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Steve Kerr's players had never been to the NBA Finals, so only he knows what the Golden State Warriors face in Game 6.They can win a championship, the franchise's first since 1975, with a victory in Cleveland. But that means containing LeBron James, which the Warriors have hardly done, and beating a Cavaliers team that will be desperate to make the series go the distance.

  • Hornets trade Stephenson to Clippers for Hawes, Barnes

    July 4, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Lance Stephenson experiment is over in Charlotte.The Hornets gave up on the struggling guard Monday, trading him to the Los Angeles Clippers in exchange for center Spencer Hawes and forward Matt Barnes.The Hornets gave Stephenson a three-year, million contract last summer figuring he would bring some needed playoff experience, but he never produced as the team hoped he would.

  • Nuggets hire Michael Malone as next head coach

    July 4, 2015

    DENVER (AP) The Denver Nuggets took 105 days to find their new head coach. Now that they've agreed to a deal with Michael Malone, they're off and running.Or are they?Malone is a no-nonsense, defensive-minded coach, not exactly the fast-paced tactician many expected them to go after to capitalize on the mile-high altitude.

  • LeBron confident Cavs can hold off Warriors, force Game 7

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Wearing a leather Cavaliers cap and a steely look, LeBron James used his postgame platform to proclaim that he's ''the best player in the world.''It's not as if his greatness was in dispute after five dominant games of these NBA Finals. James has shown no one challenges his on-court supremacy. However, while his game and confidence soar, James knows he must do even more, if possible, to stop Cleveland's inspiring postseason from crashing.

  • AP sources: Michael Malone agrees to coach Nuggets

    July 4, 2015

    DENVER (AP) The Denver Nuggets took 105 days to find their new head coach. Now that they've agreed to a deal with Michael Malone, they're off and running.Or are they?Malone is a no-nonsense, defensive-minded coach, not exactly the fast-paced tactician many expected them to go after to capitalize on the mile-high altitude.

  • With Heat future uncertain, Wade studying up on business

    July 4, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) Dwyane Wade has a tough business decision to make in the next couple weeks, a choice between remaining under contract with the Miami Heat or declaring free agency and possibly changing teams for the first time in his professional life.Time will tell if a few days studying at Harvard will help with that decision.

  • Al Jefferson exercises contract option, staying with Hornets

    July 4, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Hornets have announced center Al Jefferson has exercised the third-year option on his contract and will remain with the team next season.The 11-year NBA veteran will make .5 million in the final year of his deal.The 6-foot-10, 289-pound Jefferson said after the regular season he planned to remain with the Hornets because there was ''unfinished business'' to attend to after the Charlotte failed to make the playoffs.

  • NBA Finals Game 5 draws best rating since 2004

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA Finals' Game 5 has drawn its highest television rating in more than a decade.The Golden State Warriors' 104-91 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday night to take a 3-2 series lead averaged an 11.6 rating on ABC. That's the best since the Pistons-Lakers Game 5 in 2004; that was a clincher, which traditionally draws larger audiences.

  • AP source: Michael Malone agrees to coach Nuggets

    July 4, 2015

    DENVER (AP) A person familiar with the decision says the Denver Nuggets have reached an agreement to make Michael Malone their new coach.The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Monday because the hiring has yet to be announced.

  • Up 3-2 in NBA Finals, Warriors expect Cavs' punch in Game 6

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Stephen Curry received treatment for dehydration following Game 5 of the NBA Finals, a little worn out after carrying Golden State to the brink of its first championship in 40 years.The Warriors will need him at his best Tuesday, knowing what's coming from LeBron James in Cleveland.

  • Cavs waste James' stellar Game 5 in 104-91 loss to Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) LeBron James soaked his tired feet in an ice bath, had ice wrapped around both knees and his back as he sat smiling in Cleveland's locker room after a second straight loss in the NBA Finals.While the Cavaliers' chances at winning it all are dwindling, James' confidence is not.

  • The Latest: Curry leads Warriors to 104-91 win against Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:8:05 p.m.The yellow confetti has finished falling, but fans are lingering in their seats long after the end of Game 5, aware they may not see another game at Oracle Arena this season.The Warriors have a 3-2 lead after their 104-91 victory behind 37 points from Stephen Curry. They can win the title with a victory Tuesday in Cleveland, and if not, they will get another chance Friday night in Game 7.

  • The Latest: Stephen Curry coming up big again for Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:7:35 p.m. PDTThere's very few prettier sights than a Stephen Curry 3-pointer - and few louder sounds than when it goes in at rocking Oracle Arena.And when Curry made one to give Golden State a 96-86 lead with 2:43 to play, the deafening crowd reaction lasted well into the timeout that it forced Cleveland to take.

  • The Latest: LeBron has triple-double, Warriors still leading

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:7:25 p.m. PDTLeBron James is once again doing it all for the Cavaliers.The King has another triple-double, in what appears will be another close finish in the NBA Finals.Cleveland tied Golden State at 75-all after James assisted on Iman Shumpert's 3-pointer from the corner. James had made a 3-pointer on the Cavaliers' previous basket as they quickly wiped out a six-point deficit.

  • The Latest: Cavs battle back to tie Game 5 in 4th quarter

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:7:15 p.m. PDTWarriors coach Steve Kerr says defending the Cavaliers in Game 5 is a dual challenge - the combination of LeBron James being great again and Cleveland's shooters still being a concern.

  • The Latest: Curry, Warriors regain lead in small-ball finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:7;10 p.m. PDTThe Cavaliers hung in OK without LeBron James this time, and Golden State's lead is just 73-67 headed to the fourth quarter.James went to the bench for a rest late in the period, and the game got away from the Cavs when he sat in the second half last game. He was on the bench to start the fourth quarter in Game 4 and the Warriors quickly pushed their lead into double digits en route to a 103-82 victory.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers go small, start Smith in 2nd half

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:6:40 p.m. PDTThe Cavaliers are starting the second half with J.R. Smith and center Timofey Mozgov on the bench.Mozgov started the game but played just 5 minutes in the first half as Cleveland went to its bench to counter the small lineup used by the Warriors.

  • The Latest: Warriors lead Cavaliers 51-50 at halftime

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:6:21 p.m. PDTNow that's good basketball.It's hard to get much better than the first half of Game 5.Golden State leads Cleveland 51-50 after Harrison Barnes' three-point play with 3.2 seconds left. He slammed down a follow dunk of Stephen Curry's miss while getting fouled by LeBron James.

  • The Latest: Curry, LeBron both taking, making tough shots

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:6 p.m. PDTStephen Curry is hitting from behind arc. LeBron James is scoring from just about everywhere.The NBA Finals' biggest stars are both playing well for one of the few times in the series. James had 17 points, seven rebounds and six assists at the midway point of the second quarter. He has scored or assisted on the Cavs' last 13 baskets.

  • The Latest: JR Smith off to great start with 14 points

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:5:45 p.m. PDTDavid Blatt offered a simple answer when asked by ABC's Doris Burke after the first quarter what J.R. Smith making shots means to the general mood of the Cavaliers.''Makes everybody happy,'' Blatt said, after Smith made a pair of 3-pointers in the opening quarter.

  • The Latest: Cavs, Warriors tied at 22 after 1st quarter

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:5:40 p.m. PDTAt center for the Cleveland Cavaliers: LeBron James.With small-ball making a big impact at the NBA Finals, James ended up as Cleveland's de facto man in the middle after center Timofey Mozgov and power forward Tristan Thompson went to the bench early.

  • The Latest: JR Smith off to eventful start vs. Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:5:30 p.m. PDTTwo 3-pointers and one flagrant foul in an eventful first few minutes for J.R. Smith.Ice cold in the NBA Finals, Smith came off the bench and hit two quick 3-point attempts after going 0 for 8 from behind the arc in Game 4.

  • The Latest: Warriors, Cavaliers tip off Game 5 of the finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:5:12 p.m. PDTThe Cavaliers sure look ready to get started.A couple of players were even walking back to the bench area and taking off their warmup tops before the national anthem was even finished. LeBron James was dancing from side to side, unable to stand still.

  • The Latest: Warriors sticking with small lineup for Game 5

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:5 p.m. PDTNo changes in the starting lineups from Game 4.The Warriors are sticking with Andre Iguodala starting in a small lineup after he started for the first time all season in their 103-82 victory Thursday in Cleveland.

  • The Latest: LeBron on verge of passing another Jordan record

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:4:50 p.m. PDTLeBron James will surpass Michael Jordan tonight - at least in one postseason category.James will move past Jordan into 10th place on the career list in postseason minutes played once he plays 5 minutes. Jordan, a six-time champion, played 7,474 minutes in the playoffs.

  • The Latest: Steve Kerr mum on Warriors' starting lineup

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:---4:15 p.m.Before Game 4, he lied. Before Game 5, Steve Kerr didn't say much at all.In a practically Popovich-ian pregame press conference, Kerr had two one-word answers, and another that lasted all of four words - and that's only because he repeated the same two words.

  • The Latest: Curry off to bad start, misses 'hallway' shots

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 5 of the NBA Finals:---4:05 p.m. PDTStephen Curry is off to a rough start - he missed all five of his pregame ''hallway'' shots.Curry airballed his first attempt, twice hit the front of the rim, then the side of the backboard and the back rim on last try. Curry stayed to sign autographs for fans crowding the stands around the tunnel before heading to Golden State's locker room.

  • Warriors expect better play at home in Game 5 of NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) When the NBA returned to a 2-2-1-1-1 format for the NBA Finals, it swung the advantage in Game 5 back to the higher-seeded team.Under the system that was used for about three decades, the middle three games were hosted by the team with the worse record. Had that not been changed before the 2013-14 season, Sunday's game would have been in Cleveland.

  • Warriors believe they've found formula to beat James, Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The media crush that descended upon the Golden State Warriors' practice facility Saturday forced Stephen Curry to shoot on the far court, where a billboard that honors the 1974-75 championship team hangs on the wall.As if Curry and the Warriors needed a reminder, the giant yellow sign served as a symbolic notice: Never has another title been so close.

  • In a tied NBA Finals, James ready for whatever Cavs need

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) LeBron James casually swished a jumper from the corner, an otherwise ordinary shot with a higher degree of difficulty given the backpack hanging over his shoulders.In the NBA Finals, James might have to carry something much heavier than a backpack.

  • Jazz work out Myles Turner, Trey Lyles

    July 4, 2015

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) The Utah Jazz are looking for shooting and front-court depth. Myles Turner and Trey Lyles think they can help.The Jazz worked out Turner and Lyles on Saturday in preparation for the upcoming NBA draft. The pair was part of the second of two groups.

  • Nuggets officially bring on board D'Alessandro

    July 4, 2015

    DENVER (AP) The Denver Nuggets officially announced the hiring of Pete D'Alessandro as the senior vice president of business and team operations.President Josh Kroenke said in a release Friday that he looks forward to D'Alessandro's assistance in ''creating additional synergy between our business and team operations to help take our organization to another level on and off the playing floor.''

  • Draft prospect Rashad Vaughn returns to Minn. for 2 workouts

    July 4, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Rashad Vaughn has been crisscrossing the country over the last month, joining dozens of NBA draft prospects at workout after workout while hoping to solidify his status as a first-round selection.The schedule has been so dizzying that there are days when it takes some time for him to remember what city he is in, let alone where he was the night before. But when Vaughn finally got the chance to come home to Minneapolis for a few days, he made sure to include a stop at the Ronald McDonald House to spend some time on the court with children who are facing serious illnesses.

  • NBA Finals Game 4 draws best rating since 2004

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA Finals' Game 4 has drawn its highest television rating in more than a decade.The Golden State Warriors' 103-82 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night to even the series at 2-2 averaged an 11.7 rating on ABC. That's the best since the Pistons-Lakers series in 2004.

  • Some extra exposure for LeBron James

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) His team getting clobbered in the NBA Finals and his head bloodied in a collision with a camera was bad enough for LeBron James. Now he's trapped in the endless online loop of the moment he got caught with his pants down on national television.

  • Trial of Saints, Pelicans owner ends, ruling pending

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson emerged from an eight-day trial on Friday predicting he would maintain control of his teams, despite arguments by his recently estranged heirs that he is unfit to do so.''I already know the decision,'' Benson said, basing his assessment on state Civil District Judge Kern Reese's countenance as Reese informed both sides he would rule within a week. ''I could tell by his face.''

  • After 40 years, Warriors fans believe title wait almost over

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Gary Liss still has the ticket from Game 2 of the 1975 NBA Finals in his wallet. The seat cost just , but watching the Golden State Warriors win the title remains a priceless memory.''World champions? That's a hard thing to do,'' said Liss, who has been a season-ticket holder since the Warriors moved from Philadelphia in 1962.

  • Warriors get mad, get even with Cavaliers in NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Weaving his way toward Golden State's locker room, where the Warriors were packing for home, Stephen Curry had to handle one last double-team.Two Cavaliers fans wanted a photo with him.''Gotta be quick,'' Curry said, pausing and smiling for the group selfie.

  • LeBron's 'slight' headache a big deal in the NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) LeBron James called it a ''slight'' headache, though nothing involving the game's best player is ever minor.So when James got a cut on his head after falling into a TV camera during Game 4 of the NBA Finals, it led to questions about everything from how the NBA treats head injuries to whether someone taking pictures should be close enough to cause one.

  • After Warriors tie up NBA Finals, Cavs look in need of rest

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Golden State Warriors looked like the NBA's best team. The Cleveland Cavaliers looked like a tired one.Game 4 was the first blowout of the NBA Finals, with Golden State pulling away for a 103-82 victory Thursday that tied the series at 2-2.

  • Bloodied and beaten, LeBron has off night in Game 4 loss

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) LeBron James was bloodied and later beaten.When he pulled on his warmup jersey to signal the end of his night, there were still about three minutes remaining.He had nothing going in the fourth quarter, anyway.James was shut out in the period and slowed for the first time in the NBA Finals, as Golden State beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 103-82 on Thursday to even the series 2-2.

  • Warriors even NBA Finals, beat Cavaliers 103-82 in Game 4

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Stephen Curry shook off Iman Shumpert with a dribble, stepped back behind the line and splashed a 3-pointer that seemed to submerge a mute button on rocking and rolling Quicken Loans Arena.Curry clenched both fists, slapped his chest and yelled, ''C'mon!''

  • Cameras inadvertently show more of LeBron than anyone wants

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) LeBron James may need to call Janet Jackson to get some advice on how to handle wardrobe malfunctions.Moments before Game 4 of the NBA Finals began on Thursday night, James inadvertently exposed himself to millions watching on live television. As James was getting ready to take the court, an ABC camera moved in for a close-up.

  • The Latest: Warriors rebound, rout Cavs 103-82, even finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---11:55Andre Iguodala will get a lot of attention for battling LeBron James.But that's nothing new for the Warriors' forward.''We've been going against each other for a decade,'' he told ABC's Doris Burke after helping the Warriors rout the Cavaliers 1023-82 and even the NBA Finals at 2-2. ''We've had some really good battles. He's the best player in the world for a reason.

  • The Latest: Iguodala more than holding his own vs. LeBron

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---11:40 p.m.Andre Iguodala's biggest role for Golden State has been defending LeBron James.On Thursday, he was outscoring him. And, ABC analyst Jeff Van Gundy said, even outplaying him.James called it a night with 3:06 left after not scoring in the fourth quarter, leaving him with 20 points on 7-of-22 shooting. At that point, Iguodala had 22 points.

  • The Latest: Iguodala getting it done, Warriors extend lead

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---11:31 p.m.LeBron James had to rest at some point, and Golden State capitalized when he did.The Warriors made the first two baskets of the fourth quarter while James was sitting, pushing their lead back into double digits after the Cavaliers had cut it to six after three.

  • The Latest: Cavs rally, but Warriors lead after 3 quarters

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---11:10 p.m.With 10 points in the third quarter, LeBron James helped Cleveland cut Golden State's lead to 76-70 entering the final period.The Warriors led by 15 early in the quarter but Cleveland had it down to three before Stephen Curry made a 3-pointer for the last basket.

  • The Latest: LeBron sparks Cavs, cut into Warriors' big lead

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---11:03 p.m.The short-handed Cavaliers are asking quite a lot from LeBron James and Matthew Dellavedova during the series, with each of them piling up the minutes.Dellavedova spent time in the hospital after Game 3 due to the serious cramping and James has a history of cramping up as well.

  • The Latest: Warriors still in control early in 3rd quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---10:45 p.m.Matthew Dellavedova has shaken off his rough first half.Then he asked to take a seat.The point guard made 3-pointers for Cleveland's first two baskets of the second half, providing some sorely needed offense as the Cavaliers tried to stay close in Game 4.

  • The Latest: Warriors leading Cavaliers 54-42 at halftime

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---10:35When LeBron James cut his head while tumbling into a courtside television camera, questions immediately came up about the NBA's concussion protocol. The standards require players who suffer head injuries to be taken back to the locker room and evaluated to try to determine if he suffered a concussion.

  • The Latest: James has cut on his head, falls on photographer

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---10:01 p.m.LeBron James took a bad tumble in the second quarter, cutting his head after crashing into photographers behind the baseline.James was fouled by Andrew Bogut on a baseline drive and fell backward, with his head hitting a camera. He remained down for a couple of minutes before getting up holding a towel over his head to stop the bleeding coming from the cut in the back.

  • The Latest: Warriors still leading early in the 2nd quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---9:44 p.m.Warriors coach Steve Ker's decision to switch his starting lineup with Andre Iguodala replacing Andrew Bogut is paying off.''It was faster. We got the pace going and we got the floor spread,'' Kerr told ABC's Doris Burke. ''But we gotta rebound. We know we're at a disadvantage size-wise. We have to scrap.''

  • The Latest: Warriors leading 31-24 after 1st quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---9:38 p.m.That's two straight 30-plus point quarters for the Warriors after they were struggling to crack 20.Golden State leads 31-24 after closing the period with a 14-4 spurt. Andre Iguolada, a late addition to the starting lineup, provided nine points.

  • The Latest: Warriors able to take 1st lead since Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---9:27 p.m.The Golden State Warriors have succeeded in speeding up the game.By going to a smaller lineup with Andre Iguodala starting and center Andrew Bogut sitting, the Warriors have more ball handling and shooting on the floor.

  • The Latest: LeBron: Cavs have no room for error vs. Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---9:20 p.m.LeBron James had a simple message for his teammates before their biggest game yet.Stay desperate,'' ABC's cameras showed James telling his team in the huddle before taking the court. ''Every game for us is a Game 7. We have zero room for error.''

  • The Latest: Game 4 tips off, Warriors go to small lineup

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---9:15 p.m.Game 4 of the NBA Finals has started, with the Warriors trying to avoid a 3-1 hole that no team has overcome in this round.Coach Steve Kerr said earlier Thursday that it wasn't a do-or-die game until you have three losses. But since teams with a 3-1 lead are 32-0 in the NBA Finals, this felt pretty close to one.

  • The Latest: Dellavedova must-see TV in native Australia

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---9:03 p.m.Walk around Quicken Loans Arena - or just about anywhere in Cleveland - and it won't be long before you find someone in a LeBron James jersey.Matthew Dellavedova's No. 8 is much harder to find. But fans are apparently looking for it in a big way.

  • The Latest: Kerr makes late lineup change: Iguodala starting

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---8:57 p.m.Steve Kerr changed his mind - and his starting lineup.Shortly after saying the Golden State Warriors would stick with their same starting five, the Warriors decided to insert Andre Iguodala as a forward, move Draymond Green to center and put Andrew Bogut on the bench.

  • The Latest: Warriors sticking with same starting lineup

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---8:50 p.m.Same starting lineup for the Warriors, but watch for changes in rotation and tactics.Coach Steve Kerr was tightlipped about his plans, but struggling Andrew Bogut is still the starting center but David Lee will get additional playing time after his strong finish to Game 4.

  • The Latest: WWE stars at Game 4 hoping Cavs can pin Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---8:34 p.m.WWE in the house!With the Warriors on the ropes, WWE stars The Miz and Dolph Ziggler were hanging out courtside before Game 4, taking pictures with fans before posing for more at halfcourt and filming promo spots in the hallways for wrestling federation's live TV show, Raw.

  • The Latest: Smith rolls in on hands-free motorized vehicle

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---8:15 p.m.Respect.LeBron James has it, and he knows Jim Brown has earned it.Brown led the Browns to the 1964 NFL title - the last championship for one of the city's three major sports franchises - and he was in the stands for Game 3.

  • The Latest: Joey Crawford officiating his 50th finals game

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 4 of the NBA Finals:---7:55 p.m.One of the most recognizable faces on the court tonight to many NBA fans won't be wearing a Warriors or Cavaliers uniform.It will Joey Crawford, officiating his 50th NBA Finals game - most among active referees.

  • Estate lawyer, psychiatrist testify in Benson trial

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) The estate lawyer who helped Tom Benson oust his daughter and her two children from ownership positions with the New Orleans Saints and Pelicans concluded his testimony Thursday in a trial examining Benson's mental soundness.The closed trial, which could decide who ultimately takes control of New Orleans' NFL and NBA teams long-term, is expected to conclude Friday after what will be the eighth day of testimony. A ruling, however, is not expected from the bench, a civil court spokesman said. Rather, state Civil District Judge Kern Reese is expected to issue a written ruling for which there is no definite timeline.

  • NBA star Anthony brings new pro soccer team to Puerto Rico

    July 4, 2015

    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) NBA star Carmelo Anthony announced Thursday that he is bringing a professional soccer team to Puerto Rico for the first time in three years.The new club, called Puerto Rico FC, will begin playing in the Division II North American Soccer League in fall 2016.

  • Pistons acquire veteran forward Ilyasova from Bucks

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) The Detroit Pistons have acquired veteran Ersan Ilyasova from the Milwaukee Bucks, adding a long-range shooter to their frontcourt.Detroit sent forwards Caron Butler and Shawne Williams to Milwaukee in the trade announced Thursday.Butler returns to the Bucks for a second time in his career, after having been traded to Milwaukee from Phoenix before the 2013-14 season. But Butler and Williams might be most valuable to Milwaukee now for their expiring contracts.

  • Cavs guard Dellavedova set for Game 4 after hospitalization

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers guard Matthew Dellavedova says he's recovered after being hospitalized for dehydration and will not have his minutes restricted in Game 4 of the NBA Finals.Dellavedova has been stretching, adding fluids, eating properly and getting massages since being admitted to Cleveland Clinic following Game 3. Dellavedova scored 20 points in 38 minutes and played to exhaustion in Cleveland's win over Golden State on Tuesday night.

  • Down 2-1 to Cavs, Warriors face 'urgent' NBA Finals Game 4

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Golden State Warriors haven't lost three straight games all season, and doing so now would force them to make the greatest comeback in NBA Finals history.Teams with a 3-1 lead are 32-0 in the finals, according to information provided to the league by Elias. So the Warriors don't have to be reminded of the importance of Game 4 against Cleveland on Thursday night.

  • NBA Finals Game 3 draws best rating since move to ABC

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA Finals' Game 3 has drawn its highest television rating since the series moved to ABC in 2003.The Cleveland Cavaliers' win over the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night averaged an 11.1 rating.ESPN said Wednesday that the nearly 18.8 million viewers were up 29 percent from the almost 14.6 million for last year's Game 3 between the San Antonio Spurs and Miami Heat.

  • Wife of Saints, Pelicans owner testifies in competency trial

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) Gayle Benson, a former interior decorator now first in line to inherit New Orleans' NFL and NBA franchises, was called Wednesday to testify in a trial examining husband Tom Benson's mentally competency.Benson chose his wife as his primary successor and disowned relatives who'd previously been in line to take over his business empire.

  • LeBron, Cavs fighting fatigue, injuries in NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) His eyes were slits, barely open. LeBron James looked as if he could nod off at any second, drop his head on the table and take a much-deserved nap.Carrying a team, along with the hopes of a city desperate for a championship is exhausting.

  • Nike to become NBA's uniform provider in 2017-18

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA says Nike will become the league's official uniform provider beginning with the 2017-18 season.The league said Wednesday it had agreed on an eight-year deal with Nike, which will become the first apparel partner to have its logo appear on NBA uniforms.

  • Warriors confident of another comeback in the NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) All things considered, the Golden State Warriors would rather have been golfing.That's what some players did the last time they found themselves in this situation, when they were getting outmuscled and even outhustled, banged and beaten by a bigger team.

  • Philadelphia 76ers stop using corporate name of home arena

    July 4, 2015

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) The Philadelphia 76ers have 86ed the corporate name to their home arena.The Sixers have decided to stop referring to the Wells Fargo Center by name in all news releases and on the team website because the financial institution chose not to become a business partner with the basketball franchise.

  • Suns' Lon Babby moves to senior adviser's role

    July 4, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) Lon Babby is leaving his position as president for basketball operations for the Phoenix Suns to become a senior adviser for the organization.The Suns said in a news release that Ryan McDonough would head the basketball operations department from his current position of general manager.

  • Cavs point guard Irving calls kneecap injury 'a freak play'

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Kyrie Irving doesn't regret a single move. Not playing on a sore knee, and not the one that ended his season.Wearing a cast and using crutches, Irving spoke to reporters Wednesday for the first time since breaking his left kneecap last week in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, an injury that seemed to doom the Cavaliers' title hopes.

  • Cavs' Dellavedova out of hospital, ready for Game 4

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Matthew Dellavedova walked into the interview room double-fisted - with two cups of water.After being hospitalized with dehydration after exhausting himself during Game 3 of the NBA Finals, the hustling guard was upright - a good sign for the Cavaliers.

  • Warriors' Green has back spasms, expected to play in Game 4

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Golden State forward Draymond Green is battling back spasms but is expected to play in Game 4 of the NBA Finals.Coach Steve Kerr says Green is getting treatment Wednesday and will be evaluated each day, but ''should be OK'' for Thursday's game.

  • AP Source: Kings GM Pete D'Alessandro returning to Nuggets

    July 4, 2015

    Sacramento Kings general manager Pete D'Alessandro has accepted a front-office position in Denver, a person familiar with the decision said Wednesday.The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the teams have not formally announced the move. D'Alessandro is expected to work in a support role under Josh Kroenke, the president of the NBA's Denver Nuggets and NHL's Colorado Avalanche.

  • Cavs guard Matthew Dellavedova out of hospital

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cavaliers guard Matthew Dellavedova has been released from the hospital after being treated for dehydration following Game 3 of the NBA Finals.The scrappy guard, who has emerged as an unlikely star during this postseason, was sent to the Cleveland Clinic after experiencing severe cramping following the Cavs' 96-91 win over Golden State on Tuesday night.

  • Cavs guard Matthew Dellavedova hospitalized with cramps

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The banged-up Cavaliers have yet another bruise - or two.Scrappy guard Matthew Dellavedova, who has emerged as an unlikely star during this postseason, was hospitalized early Wednesday after suffering from severe cramps after Game 3 of the NBA Finals.

  • Cavaliers have the lead but work to do in the NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The lead in the NBA Finals belongs to Cleveland, though some momentum may be with the Warriors.So LeBron James celebrated the victory but fretted the finish after Golden State finally looked like the NBA's best team in a fourth-quarter flurry, before the Cavaliers held on for a 96-91 victory and a 2-1 lead in the NBA Finals.

  • Cavs guard Matthew Dellavedova hospitalized with cramps

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The banged-up Cavaliers have yet another bruise - or two.Scrappy guard Matthew Dellavedova, who has emerged as an unlikely star during this postseason, was hospitalized early Wednesday after suffering from severe cramps after Game 3 of the NBA Finals.

  • The Latest: Kobe: Cavs playing like 'life is on the line'

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---12:30 a.m.Kobe Bryant has weighed in on the NBA Finals.''Cavs playing as if their life is on the line,'' Bryant wrote on Twitter after Game 3, getting retweeted more than 10,000 times within the first six minutes of its posting. ''G.S playing as if they have more (NBA Finals) down the line.''

  • LeBron, Cavaliurs survive Warriors comeback win Game 3 96-91

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) LeBron James came home last summer to win a championship - one like no other.He's two wins away.Pushed by a crowd howling to see Cleveland's 51-year title drought end, James scored 40 points, his new sidekick Matthew Dellavedova added 20 and the Cavaliers survived Golden State's furious fourth-quarter comeback led by Stephen Curry for a 96-91 win over the Warriors on Tuesday night to take a 2-1 lead in the NBA Finals.

  • LeBron, Cavaliers survive Warriors comeback win Game 3 96-91

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) LeBron James came home last summer to win a championship - one like no other.He's two wins away.Pushed by a crowd howling to see Cleveland's 51-year title drought end, James scored 40 points, his new sidekick Matthew Dellavedova added 20 and the Cavaliers survived Golden State's furious fourth-quarter comeback led by Stephen Curry for a 96-91 win over the Warriors on Tuesday night to take a 2-1 lead in the NBA Finals.

  • The Latest: Cavs beat Warriors 96-91, take 2-1 series lead

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---11:58 p.m.LeBron James had another huge game, and addressed what many Cleveland fans are wondering: Can he keep it up.''I don't know if I can continue to put up these type of numbers but I know I'll continue to lead these guys every single night,'' James said after the game.

  • The Latest: Explosive Warriors cut into Cavs' lead

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---11:15 p.m.Steve Kerr told his team they were too good to hang their heads. And they didn't.With a big surge to open the fourth quarter, the Warriors are back in the game.Down 20 points late in the third, the Warriors opened the fourth with eight straight to trim Cleveland's lead into single digits, and had it down to a three-point deficit with more than 5 minutes to play.

  • The Latest: Warriors in trouble, Cavaliers in control

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---11 p.m.Cavs coach David Blatt has no secrets about what his team is doing to frustrate Golden State's high-powered offense.''There's no need to get too complex about it,'' Blatt told ABC's Doris Burke as Game 3 was getting ready to go into the fourth quarter. ''We're just up-and-in guys, making every shot a tough one, a contested one. Making them work.''

  • The Latest: Cavaliers extend lead early in 3rd quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---10:34 p.m.If Stephen Curry is worried about his shot, you couldn't tell from his halftime itinerary.Rather than come out early for some extra work, Curry didn't come back onto the floor until there were under 2 minutes remaining in the break. He then attempted just two shots before heading to the Warriors' bench.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers leads Warriors 44-37 in Game 3

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---10:23 p.m.Thirty-seven points.That's a season-low in first-half scoring for Golden State, which averages 56 first-half points per game .But the concerns probably run deeper than that for the Warriors - the first three games of the finals are the first time all season that Golden State has been under 50 points at the break in back-to-back-to-back games.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers' Iman Shumpert returns to the game

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---9:58 p.m.Iman Shumpert has returned to the game with 5:31 to play in the first half wearing black sleeves under his jersey.Shumpert went to the locker room in the first quarter with a shoulder injury, hit in the same shoulder that he had dislocated earlier this season, causing him to miss six weeks.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers' JR Smith gets off to quick start

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---9:50 p.m.J.R. Smith can get hot as quickly as anyone, and maybe this is the night it happens.Smith made two jumpers early in the second quarter, including a 3-pointer, and his first three shots of the game to give him seven points in his first 9 minutes.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers holding onto lead in the 2nd quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---9:45 p.m.Golden State coach Steve Kerr thought his team ''weathered the storm'' in the first quarter of Game 3.''We knew the crowd would be loud and we're in a good spot right now,'' Kerr told ABC's Doris Burke in the televised between-quarters interview.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers lead 24-20 at the end of 1st quarter

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---9:38The Cavaliers have the lead but potentially another injury after the first quarter.Cleveland leads 24-20 behind six points apiece from LeBron James and Tristan Thompson. But Iman Shumpert went to the locker room with a few minutes left in the period with an injured left shoulder after running into Draymond Green on a pick.

  • The Latest: Shumpert appears to have injured his shoulder

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---9:32 p.m.Iman Shumpert has gone to the locker room with an apparent shoulder injury for the already short-handed Cavaliers.Shumpert was hurt after running into a pick set by Golden State's Draymond Green in the first quarter. Shumpert arrived in Cleveland in January still rehabbing a shoulder injury from his time with the Knicks.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers controlling things early in Game 3

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---Stephen Curry made his first 3-point attempt after a miserable Game 2, but otherwise everything was going Cleveland's way early in Game 3.LeBron James was attacking the rim and Matthew Dellavedova followed his strong finish with a good start in this one, his second basket of the game sending the Warriors into a timeout with chants of ''Delly! Delly!'' once again filling parts of Quicken Loans Arena.

  • The Latest: King James bows to Cleveland great Jim Brown

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---9:20 p.m.Even the King pays homage to other royalty.Just before tip-off of Game 3, what did LeBron James do? Bowed in respect toward a fan in the jam-packed stands.That fan just happened to be Cleveland Browns legend Jim Brown.

  • The Latest: Game time: LeBron scores first points of Game 3

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---9:11 p.m.After eight long years, an NBA Finals game has tipped off again in Cleveland.LeBron James challenged his home fans to be loud and they are delivering. Every James appearance on huge overhead videoboard draws a louder roar than the last, culminated by his introduction at the end of the starting lineups.

  • The Latest: LeBron's display of emotion new even for Wade

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---9:05 p.m.This crowd is delirious, and Game 3 hasn't started.When the Cavaliers took the floor, 20,000 fans inside Quicken Loans Arena, most of them wearing wine-colored T-shirts, erupted in cheers.

  • The Latest: NBA Finals star in the building: Riley Curry

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---8:35 p.m.Golden State's biggest star, well its cutest one, has arrived.Riley Curry, the adorable 2-year-old daughter of Warriors guard Stephen Curry, walked into Quicken Loans Arena along with her grandparents about an hour before Game 3 started.

  • The Latest: Steve Kerr smiling, laughing but wants to win

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The latest from Game 3 of the NBA Finals:---8:30 p.m.Steve Kerr smiles a lot during NBA Finals press conferences. Even laughs a few times. Quite unlike Gregg Popovich, the Spurs coach who usually can't wait to get his media duties over.

  • The Latest: Cleveland fans 'confident' heading into Game 3

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Biggest game since 1997.That was the consensus among Cleveland fans, who have waited 51 years for either the Cavaliers, Indians or Browns to win a championship.The streets outside Quicken Loans Arena were packed with fans in the hours leading up to tip-off for Game 3 as the Cavs hosted their first NBA Finals matchup since 2007, when Cleveland was swept in four games by San Antonio.

  • Westbrook Frames, NBA team up for new luxury glasses series

    July 4, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Westbrook Frames, a company that Thunder All-Star guard Russell Westbrook co-owns, has partnered with the NBA to launch a new series.The initial release includes frames for seven teams - Cleveland, Boston, Los Angeles Clippers, Miami, New York, Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets. They are available on the Westbrook Frames website for 5.

  • Curry's popularity prompts Davidson SID to change number

    July 4, 2015

    DAVIDSON, N.C. (AP) Stephen Curry is one of the most popular players in the NBA.You don't have to remind Davidson College sports information director Joey Beeler, who has been forced to change his office phone number after being besieged in recent weeks by calls from young children wanting to meet the NBA's Most Valuable Player and his daughter Riley.

  • Son of Danny Ainge to play basketball at Utah State

    July 4, 2015

    LOGAN, Utah (AP) The son of Boston Celtics executive and former BYU star Danny Ainge has committed to play at Utah State.Coach Tim Duryea said Tuesday that Utah State has signed Crew Ainge to its 2015-16 basketball class.The 5-foot-11 Ainge played point guard at Kimball Union Academy in New Hampshire. He will not play this season due to an LDS Church mission, but is scheduled to return for the 2017-18 season. Ainge is planning to go through the Utah State summer program with the team before leaving for his mission in August.

  • Cavaliers-Warriors matchup draws big audience for ABC

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) A strong start to the NBA Finals - at least from a television viewer's standpoint - is working to ABC's advantage.The Cleveland Cavaliers' series-tying win over the Golden State Warriors on Sunday reached more than 19 million viewers, easily the most-watched television event of the week. The Nielsen company said the opening game of the series earlier in the week drew 17.8 million TV viewers.

  • Bucks hoping season's momentum carries over to a new arena

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) Jabari Parker just got to town, and he doesn't want to leave.It's now up to legislators to determine just how much they want the young forward and the rest of the Bucks to stick around in Milwaukee.Following a surprisingly successful season, the team is one step closer to getting a new home after political leaders last week announced a 0 million financing deal for a downtown arena. The next hurdle could be more momentous than making the playoffs: getting approval from the state Legislature and Milwaukee Common Council.

  • Beal, Faried, Ibaka to play in NBA's Africa game

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal and forward Kenneth Faried of the Denver Nuggets will play in the NBA's exhibition game in South Africa this summer.Serge Ibaka of the Oklahoma City Thunder and Gorgui Dieng of the Minnesota Timberwolves also will take part in the Aug. 1 game in Johannesburg, the league says Tuesday.

  • Westbrook Frames, NBA team up for new luxury frames series

    July 4, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Westbrook Frames, a company that Thunder All-Star guard Russell Westbrook co-owns, has partnered with the NBA to launch a new series.The initial release includes frames for seven teams - Cleveland, Boston, Los Angeles Clippers, Miami, New York, Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets. They are available on the Westbrook Frames website for 5.

  • With series tied, what to watch in Game 3 of the NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) For the sixth consecutive year, the NBA Finals are tied after two games.Sometimes that means a long series is coming, such as when Miami and San Antonio went the distance before LeBron James' magnificent Game 7 gave the Heat the title in 2013.

  • Kobe Bryant to offer Game 3 analysis for livestream in China

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Kobe Bryant, who has won five NBA championships, will be part of Sina's pregame and postgame livestream of Game 3 of the NBA Finals in China.The Lakers superstar will provide analysis before and after Tuesday night's game, joining host Huang Shuo remotely from Los Angeles.

  • NBA Finals Game 2 draws best rating since 2004

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA Finals' Game 2 has drawn its highest television rating in more than a decade.The short-handed Cleveland Cavaliers' overtime victory over the Golden State Warriors on Sunday night to even the series at 1-1 averaged a 10.5 rating on ABC. That's the best since the Pistons-Lakers series in 2004.

  • LeBron, Cavs recover after beating Warriors, tying Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Once LeBron James tied up the NBA Finals with another one of his virtuoso postseason performances, his legs were in knots.He needed ice, treatment and rest. He wasn't the only one.After a pair of entertaining, exhausting, drama-filled overtime games at Golden State, everyone - players, fans, even the refs - needed a day to take a breather and recover before the Cavaliers and Warriors resume a series getting stellar TV ratings and shifting to Quicken Loans Arena for Game 3 on Tuesday night.

  • LeBron has Cleveland believing a championship is near

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) High above downtown, there's no visible evidence of a painful 51-year professional sports championship drought - the longest for any major U.S. city.Atop Terminal Tower, 42 stories over revitalized Cleveland, heartbreak and curses don't exist. Just a spectacular view.

  • Rascal Flatts, Usher to perform NBA Finals national anthems

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Country group Rascal Flatts and eight-time Grammy winner Usher will perform the national anthem before the NBA Finals games in Cleveland.Rascal Flatts will have the honors before Game 3 on Tuesday night. Gary LeVox and Jay DeMarcus, members of the trio that has sold nearly 23 million albums and had 15 No. 1 songs, are from Ohio. Joe Don Rooney is the third member.

  • After Game 2 win in NBA Finals, LeBron looks forward to home

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) LeBron James is headed back home to Ohio. And if that seemed like a big deal last July, he can't wait to hear how it sounds in June.Shortly after helping Cleveland pull out a 95-93 overtime victory over Golden State on Sunday night in Game 2 of the NBA Finals with 39 points, 16 rebounds and 11 assists, James challenged the fans in Cleveland to be as noisy as the ones at Oracle Arena.

  • Curry's shot goes missing for Warriors in Game 2 loss

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Cleveland wasn't the only team missing a crucial component in Game 2 of the NBA Finals. While Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving was back in Ohio recovering from knee surgery, the Golden State Warriors have no idea where Stephen Curry's shot went.

  • The Latest: Cavs even NBA Finals, beat Warriors 95-93 in OT

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---8:20 p.m. PDTLeBron James had 39 points, 16 rebounds and 11 assists, and the Cleveland Cavaliers tied the NBA Finals at one game apiece with a 95-93 overtime victory over the Golden State Warriors.

  • The Latest: Warriors-Cavaliers heading to overtime - again

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---8:01 p.m. PDTNever.That was the last time LeBron James took 69 shots in a two-game span.James' 31st shot Sunday night bounced off the rim as time expired, the Cavs and Warriors are in overtime for the second straight game - a first for the NBA Finals.

  • The Latest: LeBron James closing in on triple-double

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---7:20 p.m. PDTLeBron James needed to be special in this game, and he is. He's doing a little of everything and is is on the verge of another postseason triple-double.With about 7 minutes to play in Game 2, he was up to 30 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists. He has one triple-double in these playoffs and 12 in his career.

  • The Latest: Cavs lead, both teams struggling offensively

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---7:13 p.m. PDTThe Warriors have 59 points after three quarters, which isn't very Warriors-like at all. In fact, it's a season-low - at the worst time, too.''We're trying. We're trying to get the pace going a little bit,'' Warriors coach Steve Kerr told ABC's Doris Burke in the televised interview entering the fourth quarter. ''Haven't had much flow tonight at all.''

  • The Latest: Cavaliers clinging to 2-point lead in 2nd half

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---6:40 p.m. PDTLeBron James got the first basket, and the second half has started.The Cavaliers' lead actually grew by a point during the break. A basket by Klay Thompson was changed from a 3-pointer to a 2 after a video review, taking what was a 47-46 lead on the scoreboard to 47-45.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers lead Warriors 47-45 at halftime

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---6:27 p.m. PDTWith no Kyrie Irving, LeBron James knows he has do more for the Cavaliers to win.And he is.For just the second time in his NBA career, the four-time MVP finished a first half with at least 20 points, six assists and six rebounds. He also did it against Philadelphia on Nov. 21, 2009.

  • The Latest: Cavaliers making Warriors pay for going small

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---6:05 p.m. PDTThe Cavaliers are making the Warriors pay for playing small-ball.On their first possession after Golden State removed center Andrew Bogut and left forwards Harrison Barnes and Draymond Green as their biggest players, LeBron James threw the ball inside to 7-foot-1 center Timofey Mozgov, who was fouled.

  • The Latest: Klay Thompson returns, still in good groove

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---5:55 p.m. PDTKlay Thompson is back on the floor and back in a groove in the second quarter.After having to go to the bench because of fouls following his quick start, he returned to open the second and made his first three shots, including a 3-pointer. That gave him 16 points in just about 10 minutes of playing time.

  • The Latest: James, Cavs battle back, Game 2 tied at 20

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---5:45 p.m. PDTLeBron James took 10 shots and scored half of Cleveland's 20 points, which shouldn't be surprising given the decimated state of the Cavaliers' roster.''We know we need a big game from him,'' Cavs coach David Blatt told ABC's Doris Burke in a televised interview after the first quarter. ''And he's up to the task.''

  • The Latest: Barbosa sparks Warriors but Cavaliers respond

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---5:40 p.m. PDTLeandro Barbosa picked up right where Klay Thompson left off.Entering the game early because of Thompson's foul trouble, Barbosa made his first two shots, including a 3-pointer from the corner after a behind-the-back pass from Stephen Curry.

  • The Latest: Klay Thompson gets off early, then has to sit

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---5:25 p.m. PDTA quick start, and then a quick exit for Klay Thompson.The Warriors All-Star guard scored nine points on 4-of-6 shooting in the first 5 minutes, but then had to go to bench after picking up a second foul.

  • The Latest: Carlos Santana gets Game 2 started

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---5:10 p.m. PDTForget the Warriors and Cavaliers. The best teamwork at Game 2 of the NBA Finals might come from the Santanas.Ten-time Grammy winner Carlos Santana and his wife, drummer, Cindy Blackman Santana, performed a rocking national anthem together before the game.

  • The Latest: Kerr takes inspiration from American Pharoah

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---4:55 p.m. PDTHorse racing's 37-year championship drought ended Saturday. Can a 40-year one in the NBA be next?Steve Kerr sure hopes so.He said he took some inspiration from American Pharoah's victory in the Belmont Stakes, which made him the first Triple Crown winner since 1978.

  • The Latest: Cavs' Dellavedova starting in place of Irving

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---7:50 p.m. PDTMatthew Dellavedova is getting the start in place on injured Kyrie Irving as expected for the Cleveland Cavaliers.Cavs coach David Blatt went with the same lineup that won Games 2 and 3 of the Eastern Conference finals when Irving was out with an injured knee with Dellavedova starting in the backcourt with Iman Shumpert.

  • The Latest: LeBron: Irving's absence tough blow for Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---7:35 p.m. PDTABC's opening to ''NBA Countdown'' on Sunday night had some powerful sound from LeBron James, who missed a potentially game-winning shot in the final seconds of regulation of Game 1 of the NBA Finals.

  • The Latest: Warriors' fans start early with some tailgating

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 2 of the NBA Finals:---4:20 p.m. PDTAll was quiet in the Warriors locker room before Game 2.Most players were in the trainer's room getting tapped up or on the floor warming up. A replay of the series opener was showing on the big TV at the center of the room for those who passed through.

  • Mike Breen sets announcing record in calling 10th NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Mike Breen recalls the riveting Game 7s, still marvels at some memorable performances.It's a lot of NBA Finals basketball to think about - more than anyone else who has sat in his center court seat.While Stephen Curry and LeBron James are squaring off for the title, the guy describing the action on ABC is making history of his own.

  • Bucks unveil new uniforms, capping busy week for franchise

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) The Bucks are giving their uniforms a cleaner look while adding a blue stripe on the inside of the collar to emphasize what the franchise calls the workmanlike mindset of the team and region.The uniform incorporates Milwaukee team colors updated earlier this year. Red is out while cream is in, joining green as a base color.

  • NBA Finals go on, with Warriors seeming even bigger favorite

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The NBA Finals hyped as LeBron James vs. Stephen Curry now seems like James against the Golden State Warriors.The Cavaliers are down another important player, with Kyrie Irving having surgery Saturday back in Cleveland to repair his fractured left kneecap.

  • Iguodala's willingness to come off bench helps key Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Andre Iguodala's impressive resume heading into this season featured an Olympic gold medal, All-Star appearance and first-team All-NBA defensive team honors.One of the few things Iguodala hadn't done since entering the league as a first-round draft pick in 2004 was come into the game off the bench.

  • Cavs guard Irving has surgery on broken kneecap

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Kyrie Irving didn't waste a moment in starting his recovery for next season, rushing back from the NBA Finals to have surgery on his left knee.The Cavaliers' All-Star guard was in the operating room on Saturday to repair the broken kneecap he suffered in Game 1, an injury that will make it even tougher for Cleveland to try and win a title.

  • Cavs guard Irving undergoes surgery on broken kneecap

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cavaliers All-Star guard Kyrie Irving has undergone surgery to repair his broken kneecap, an injury sustained in Game 1 of the NBA Finals.The team says Irving had the operation on Saturday at the Cleveland Clinic. The surgery was performed by team physician, Dr. Richard Parker with two other doctors assisting. The team says Irving will need 3-to-4 months before he can resume ''basketball activity,''

  • Carlos Santana, wife to perform NBA Finals national anthem

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Ten-time Grammy Award winner Carlos Santana and his wife, Cindy Blackman Santana, will perform the national anthem Sunday before Game 2 of the NBA Finals.With the Golden State Warriors leading the Cleveland Cavaliers 1-0, the Santanas have ties to both local regions.

  • Saints, Pelicans president testifies in Benson trial

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) Attorneys for Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson began calling their witnesses Friday in the 87-year-old billionaire's mental competency trial, starting with a top sports executive.Dennis Lauscha, who serves as president of New Orleans' NFL and NBA clubs, politely declined to make any comments as he emerged from the closed courtroom following about four hours of testimony.

  • Cavs' Irving has fractured kneecap, out for 3-4 months

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Cleveland Cavaliers finished off Chicago and swept past Atlanta, even when Kyrie Irving wasn't available.Now they have to find their way past the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals without him.Irving has a fractured left kneecap and will have surgery that could sideline him for three to four months, the Cavaliers said Friday.

  • Warriors content to let LeBron James try to carry Cavaliers

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors assistant coach Ron Adams, who has designed defenses for more than four decades, looks at defending LeBron James as an equation.Finding a solution goes beyond points, assists or any common metric. Instead, the 67-year-old Adams approaches the problem like this: add up what the Warriors are willing to give up to the Cleveland Cavaliers as a whole - forget about what James does individually - and subtract it from the number of points Golden State expects to produce.

  • Mark Cuban's gift to provide Hoosiers with new video center

    July 4, 2015

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) As Mark Cuban looked for ways to help the Dallas Mavericks gain a competitive advantage in the NBA, the Indiana University graduate thought his alma mater should get in on the ground floor.On Friday, the school announced that Cuban had made a million donation for a state-of-the-art technology center that will benefit students, fans and, of course, his beloved Hoosiers.

  • NBA Finals Game 1 draws best rating since move to ABC

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA Finals' Game 1 has drawn its highest television rating since the series moved to ABC in 2003.The Golden State Warriors' overtime victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night averaged a 10.6 rating.ESPN said Friday that the nearly 17.8 million viewers were up 21 percent from the almost 14.7 million for last year's opener between the San Antonio Spurs and Miami Heat.

  • Cavs' Irving has fractured knee cap, out for 3-4 months

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving has a fractured left knee cap and will have surgery that will end his season.The Cavaliers said Friday that an MRI exam at Stanford Sports Medicine Clinic revealed the injury and that Irving's projected recovery time was three to four months.

  • Cavs' Irving being evaluated, no word on NBA Finals Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving is being evaluated and there is no word yet on his availability for Game 2 of the NBA Finals.Irving limped off the court with an injured left knee during overtime of Cleveland's 108-100 loss to Golden State on Thursday night. He left the arena on crutches, and Cavs coach David Blatt says he heard Irving was still on crutches Friday morning.

  • Hoiberg praises Otzelberger in last Iowa State presser

    July 4, 2015

    AMES, Iowa (AP) Former Iowa State coach Fred Hoiberg on Friday dismissed the idea that he recently rehired top assistant T.J. Otzelberger to be his eventual successor.But Hoiberg thinks Otzelberger will make a great coach someday.Whether that opportunity comes with the Cyclones next season should be known soon.

  • Sports agent Tellem joining business that includes Pistons

    July 4, 2015

    AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) Sports agent Arn Tellem is joining the company that includes the Detroit Pistons as vice chairman.The hiring was announced Friday by Tom Gores, who owns the Pistons and Palace Sports & Entertainment. Gores says in a statement that Tellem ''can be a catalyst for change in the community'' and described his move to Palace is ''a big win for Detroit.''

  • Heat star Dwyane Wade surprises South Florida graduate

    July 4, 2015

    DAVIE, Fla. (AP) Basketball star Dwyane Wade made a surprise appearance at a South Florida high school's graduation, thanks to some persistent work on social media by one of the graduates.Wade took a selfie with Western High School senior Negeen Fallahzedeh during the ceremony and posted it to Instagram on Thursday night.

  • 'Next man up' for Cavs, but do they have enough next men?

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Kyrie Irving left Oracle Arena on crutches, with tests coming Friday to determine the severity of his left knee injury.If he can't go in Game 2 of the NBA Finals on Sunday, the Cleveland Cavaliers will have to figure out how to replace one of the best point guards in the NBA.

  • Cavs lose Game 1 of finals, Kyrie Irving to injury

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The frustration on Kyrie Irving's face was evident as he spoke to the media and then buried his head in his hands.After using the eight-day break to heal his ailing body, Irving looked like his usual self again before limping off the court with yet another injury to his left knee in overtime of the Cleveland Cavaliers' 108-100 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Thursday night in Game 1 of the NBA Finals.

  • The Latest: Cavs' Irving being evaluated by team doctors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---9:25 p.m. PDTKyrie Irving is being evaluated by Cavaliers team doctors after limping off the floor with 2 minutes left in overtime.Coach David Blatt said right now he can't provide any specifics on Irving's injury because the team doesn't know yet. He added he didn't think the injury was caused by any contact.

  • Cavs get 44 from James, lose Irving to injury in Game 1 loss

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Even LeBron James' highest-scoring game in his NBA Finals career wasn't enough for the Cleveland Cavaliers against the NBA's top team.James scored 44 points but missed a potential winner at the end of regulation and the Cavaliers lost Game 1 to the Golden State Warriors 108-100 on Thursday night.

  • The Latest: Warriors win Game 1 of NBA Finals, 108-100

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---9 p.m. PDTStephen Curry scored 26 points, including the first four of overtime, and the Golden State Warriors overcame LeBron James' 44 points for a 108-100 victory Thursday night over the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 1 of the NBA Finals.

  • The Latest: Warriors closing in on taking Game 1

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---8:50 p.m. PDTWarriors fans are starting to sense a victory.Golden State raced to a 7-0 start to overtime, getting four free throws from Stephen Curry before Harrison Barnes' 3-pointer with 2:02 left.

  • The Latest: LeBron, Curry battle going down to the wire

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---8:37 p.m. PDTOvertime!LeBron James missed a late jumper, Iman Shumpert was just off before the buzzer, and Cleveland and Golden State went to overtime tied at 98 in Game 1.James had 42 points, his most ever in the NBA Finals. Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson had combined for 43 on the other side.

  • The Latest: Kerr more focused on Warriors, not LeBron

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---8:10 p.m. PDTLeBron James' ability to knock down jumpers has turned him into a nightmare for Warriors coach Steve Kerr. He acknowledged what everyone in the league knows in his interview with Doris Burke before the fourth quarter began: There isn't a whole anyone can do when James' shot is falling.

  • The Latest: LeBron could be headed for 14-point game

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---8:02 p.m. PDTAnother 40-point game against the Warriors may be in reach for LeBron James. It might be necessary, too.He's up to 31 after three quarters, though his turnover at the end of the period led to Andre Iguodala's fast-break dunk that tied it at 73-all going to the fourth.

  • The Latest: Irving not bothered by foot, knee injuries

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---7:40 p.m. PDTWhatever concerns Cavaliers fans had about Kyrie Irving's health should be eased with the way he's playing.Irving's foot and knee injuries haven't slowed him at all so far, as he's been able to attack the basket and essentially match fellow All-Star point guard Stephen Curry.

  • The Latest: An emotional tribute to the late Stuart Scott

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---7:30 PDTThe celebration of basketball that is the NBA Finals broadcast grew somber toward the end of ABC's halftime show with an emotional tribute to Stuart Scott, ESPN's extremely popular sportscaster who lost a long battle with cancer about five months ago.

  • The Latest: Stephen Curry comes alive, Warriors rally

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---7:15 p.m. PDTStephen Curry is showing why he is this year's MVP.With a pair of his trademark long-range jumpers, he sparked a Warriors rally that helped Golden State battle back from a 14-poimt deficit and take the lead - and turn the game around.

  • The Latest: LeBron's fast start gives Cavs' 'confidence'

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---9:50 p.m.The Cavaliers have plenty of finals rookies on this squad, including coach David Blatt.LeBron James, of course, has been here plenty before, playing in his fifth straight finals. In his interview with ABC's Doris Burke after James scored 12 points to get the Cavaliers off to a fast start, Blatt said his aggressiveness helped the newbies ease into the game.

  • The Latest: LeBron off to good start, Cavs lead 29-19

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---6:43 p.m. PDTLeBron James had his highest-scoring opening quarter ever in Game 1 of the NBA Finals.James scored 12 points on 4-for-9 shooting as he came out aggressively against Harrison Barnes and the Warriors defense. That surpassed the eight he scored in the first quarter of the 2011 finals against Dallas and marked his most shots ever in the first quarter of Game 1 in six trips to the finals.

  • The Latest: Barnes gets 1st shot at defending LeBron

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---6:30 p.m. PDTHarrison Barnes got the first crack at defending LeBron James, and it may not be long before the Warriors have to try someone else.James has started 3 of 5 from the field, making a couple of long jumpers before adding another basket inside.

  • The Latest: NBA Finals underway, LeBron picks up 1st foul

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---6:10 p.m. PDTThe NBA Finals are underway.After an eight-day break from basketball, the Warriors and Cavaliers tipped off Game 1 in front of a raucous sellout crowd at Oracle Arena. Fans turned the arena into a sea of golden-yellow shirts again as they watched the Warriors play in the finals for the first time since winning the title in 1975.

  • Silver: No suggestion of corruption in world basketball

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said Thursday there has been ''absolutely no suggestion'' of any wrongdoing with basketball's international governing body like the scandal that has rocked soccer.Speaking before Game 1 of the NBA Finals, Silver expressed his confidence in FIBA, noting that the NBA has a seat on its board.

  • The Latest: Quiet locker room: Warriors get 'minds right'

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---5:55 p.m. PDTThere was a calm in the Warriors' locker room as the players were getting ready for Game 1. It was relatively quiet. Players were getting dressed or getting taped up in the trainer's room.

  • The Latest: Iman Shumpert's pregame meal: Chicken fingers

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---5:40 p.m. PDTThe Cavaliers weren't exactly on a health kick in the minutes leading up to Game 1 of the finals.Cleveland guard Iman Shumpert's pregame meal of choice was a plate of chicken fingers and fries from a concession stand. As he ate his meal, assistant coach Tyronn Lue walked into the coaches office with a large tray of nachos.

  • The Latest: A sign? Curry nails pregame 'tunnel shot'

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---5:30 p.m. PDTThings got off to a good start for Stephen Curry and the Warriors.Curry connected on his pregame ''tunnel shot'' on the third try. Fans surrounding the tunnel behind the Warriors' bench erupted in cheers, and Curry signed a few autographs before heading to the locker room.

  • The Latest: There's Strength in Numbers of those T-shirts

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The latest from Game 1 of the NBA Finals:---5::20 p.m. PDTThere's been a little confusion over the color of those T-shirts fans wear at every Warriors home game during the playoffs.Well, they're not quite gold, and not quite yellow. Officially, the shirts are ''California golden yellow.''

  • As recovery continues, George starting to feel like old self

    July 4, 2015

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) Paul George was ready to play Thursday night - and not just in another charity softball game.He was ready for the biggest challenge of all. A little more than 10 months after a horrific leg injury and just hours after impressing his coach with an hour-long workout, the Indiana Pacers' two-time All-Star proclaimed he felt like his old self and was ready to face his biggest rival.

  • Psychiatrist testifies about Saints, Pelicans owner

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) A psychiatrist who examined New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson spent more than five hours testifying about the 87-year-old billionaire's mental health.And he's not done.Dr. Ted Bloch is one of three physicians who performed a court-ordered psychiatric evaluation, the results of which have been sealed.

  • Psychiatrist testifies about Saints and Pelicans owner

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) A psychiatrist who examined New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson is the latest witness to testify about the 87-year-old billionaire's mental health.Dr. Ted Bloch is one of three physicians who performed a court-ordered psychiatric evaluation, the results of which have been sealed.

  • Wisconsin governor announces deal for new 0M Bucks arena

    July 4, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) Taxpayers would pick up half the cost of a 0 million arena for the Milwaukee Bucks under a financial deal that would rely on current and former team owners for the rest, Gov. Scott Walker said Thursday.Walker, a likely presidential candidate, has argued for months that it will cost the state more in lost income-tax revenue if the NBA team leaves Milwaukee than it will to pay for a new downtown arena.

  • Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker announces deal to build new 0 million arena for Milwaukee Bucks

    July 4, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker announces deal to build new 0 million arena for Milwaukee Bucks.

  • AP sources: Half of 0M Bucks arena to come from taxpayers

    July 4, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) Gov. Scott Walker was set to announce terms of a deal to pay for a new 0 million arena to keep the Milwaukee Bucks in Wisconsin, with half the financing coming from taxpayers and the rest coming from current and former team owners, two people familiar with the deal told The Associated Press on Thursday.

  • Ohio, California senators make beverage bets on NBA finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Ohio's two U.S. senators are betting beers brewed in the state against their California counterparts' wine, beer and coffee as the Cleveland Cavaliers take on the Golden State Warriors in the NBA finals.U.S. Sen. Rob Portman has wagered a six-pack of beer from Cleveland's Great Lakes Brewing Co. against California U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein's bottles of chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon.

  • Walker to announce terms of Bucks arena deal

    July 4, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) Gov. Scott Walker is set to announce terms of a deal to pay for a new 0 million arena to keep the Milwaukee Bucks in Wisconsin amid concerns from Republican lawmakers about how much of the bill taxpayers will foot.Walker, a likely presidential candidate, has been arguing for months that it will cost the state more in lost income tax revenue if the NBA pulls the Bucks from Milwaukee than it will to pay for a new downtown arena.

  • Walker to announce Bucks arena deal

    July 4, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) Gov. Scott Walker is set to announce terms of a deal to pay for a new 0 million arena to keep the Milwaukee Bucks in Wisconsin amid concerns from Republican lawmakers about how much of the bill taxpayers will foot.Walker, a likely presidential candidate, has been arguing for months that it will cost the state more in lost income tax revenue if the NBA pulls the Bucks from Milwaukee than it will to pay for a new downtown arena.

  • Ohio, California senators make beverage bet on NBA finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Ohio's Republican senator is hoping to toast a Cleveland Cavaliers NBA title with some California wine from a Democratic counterpart.U.S. Sen. Rob Portman has wagered a six-pack of Sharpshooter Wheat IPA from Cleveland's Great Lakes Brewing Co. California U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein has put up Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon wines from the Golden State Warriors' home state of California.

  • Spike Lee talks drafting story for 'NBA 2K16' video game

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) ''NBA 2K16'' will be a Spike Lee joint.2K Games announced Thursday that it recruited the acclaimed filmmaker - and die-hard New York Knicks fan - to write and direct the single-player campaign for the interactive basketball franchise's next edition.

  • Five things to know from NBA Finals practices

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) They talked about ending championship droughts, starting new traditions and building legacies.The Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors met with the media Wednesday in their final practices before Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night.

  • Curry set for his NBA Finals moment against LeBron, Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Stephen Curry was early in his career, a long way from even thinking about the NBA Finals.His Golden State Warriors were in Cleveland, where LeBron James powered one of the best teams in the league. Curry thinks the Warriors lost the game (they did, one of their 56 losses his rookie season) but certainly remembers the chat.

  • Granddaughter of Saints, Pelicans owner concludes testimony

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) Rita LeBlanc once expected to spend many years running the New Orleans Saints and Pelicans, which would have made her one of the most powerful women in pro sports.This week, the disowned granddaughter has spent many hours on a witness stand, trying to persuade a judge that her 87-year-old grandfather, Tom Benson, was not of sound mind when he ousted her, her mother and her brother from ownership positions with his NFL and NBA clubs, and changed his succession plan to place his third wife in line to control his business empire.

  • LeBron a favorite in Vegas even if Cavaliers are not

    July 4, 2015

    LAS VEGAS (AP) LeBron James will do more than just make a lot of people in Cleveland happy if he can find a way to lead the Cavaliers over Golden State in the NBA Finals.He'll also make a lot of people a pretty good return on their investment.Bettors in this gambling city are taking a chance on the Cavaliers to win the NBA title, lured by odds that are roughly 2-1 against that happening. They're counting on the best player of his generation and his teammates to overcome the odds and beat the heavily favored Warriors.

  • Ex-Warriors coach Mark Jackson calls team's games in finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) As awkward as it might appear, Mark Jackson believes his job analyzing his former Golden State Warriors team is really quite simple.''To me, it's an assignment, and my job is to tell the story,'' Jackson said. ''Sometimes people don't like the stories, but it is what it is. So to me, I absolutely feel like no matter, if I'm calling a game between my brothers or my parents, the facts are the facts. The story dictates itself to me, and I relay the message to the viewers as good as I possibly can. That's going to be my job whether it's the Warriors or anybody else.''

  • NBA plans "The NBA Experience at Walt Disney World Resort"

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA is going to Disney World.The league says Wednesday it is developing ''The NBA Experience at Walt Disney World Resort,'' which will be located at Disney Springs in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.It will include NBA video productions, interactive experiences for fans, plus a restaurant and retail store.

  • NBA's Gasol brothers win Spanish sports prize

    July 4, 2015

    MADRID (AP) Brothers Pau and Marc Gasol have been awarded Spain's Princess of Asturias prize for sports for their ''brilliant record'' playing basketball for Spain and their NBA teams.The pair was recognized for their ''sporting standards'' as well as being ambassadors for ''the Spanish brand,'' the award foundation said in a statement on Wednesday.

  • LeBron on his game: 'This is probably the best I've been'

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) LeBron James listened to a question he's been asked in the past and began processing.On the eve of his fifth consecutive NBA Finals, the four-time league MVP who has carried the Cavaliers within four wins of a championship in his homecoming season, James appears to be playing the best ball of his life.

  • Kin of Saints, Pelicans owner testify in competency case

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) A lawyer for the estranged heirs of Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson described the tone in the courtroom as ''somber'' and ''emotional'' as his clients began testifying about their patriarch's mental state.Taking the witness stand on Tuesday were Benson's daughter, Renee, and his granddaughter, Rita LeBlanc. The pair, along with Renee Benson's son, Ryan LeBlanc, claim in a lawsuit filed in January that Tom Benson was not of sound mind when he ousted them from ownership positions five months ago, instead leaving his third wife in position to take over.

  • Kings F Carl Landry has surgery on right wrist

    July 4, 2015

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) Sacramento Kings forward Carl Landry had surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right wrist.The Kings said Landry underwent the operation on Tuesday in New York and will miss approximately four to five months.Landry dealt with a sore wrist this past season, missing five games in January. An initial evaluation indicated surgery was not necessary. But when the pain persisted in the offseason, Landry underwent an MRI that revealed that surgery was necessary.

  • Warriors All-Star G Klay Thompson cleared to play in finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson has been cleared to return after his concussion and play in the NBA Finals.The Warriors announced after practice on Tuesday that Thompson completed the NBA's concussion protocol and will be ready to play Game 1 on Thursday night against Cleveland.

  • Cavs coach Blatt takes shots, battles his way to NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) For any NBA rookie, the first year is challenging. There's the adjustment to travel, the pressure to perform and all that comes with being a professional.It can be overwhelming - even for a seasoned coach. No, nothing has come easy for David Blatt, who has had a tumultuous journey with the Cavaliers to the NBA Finals.

  • Chicago Bulls introduce Fred Hoiberg as new coach

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Fred Hoiberg looked at Chicago and saw a deep and talented roster with a chance to contend for a championship - an opportunity that was too good to pass up.The long-rumored pairing of Hoiberg and the Chicago Bulls became official on Tuesday when the former NBA guard and executive left Iowa State to become the 19th coach in franchise history, replacing the fired Tom Thibodeau.

  • Warriors will rely on versatility, depth to defend LeBron

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) LeBron James believes there is nobody in the world that can stop him. He is too strong, too fast, too skilled.A bully with a basketball and beast above the rim.For the Golden State Warriors to win the NBA title, they will need to get past James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in the finals starting Thursday night. And not just once - but four times in seven games.

  • Rapper Iggy Azalea, NBA player Nick Young are engaged

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Iggy Azalea recently canceled her fall tour, so she has time to plan for a big moment in her life: her wedding.Nick Young of the Los Angeles Lakers proposed to the rapper late Monday as they celebrated Young's 30th birthday. A short video of Azalea saying yes as Young proposed on bended knee was posted on the blog site Karen Civil. The site confirmed its authenticity via email.

  • So long, Mayor: Hoiberg leaves Iowa State stocked for future

    July 4, 2015

    DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Iowa State's beloved ''Mayor'' is gone, lured to the riches and challenges of the NBA.At least Fred Hoiberg left his alma mater stocked with talent.The 42-year-old Hoiberg grew up in Ames, served as a ball boy for the Cyclones and later starred for legendary coach Johnny Orr. As a coach, he brought back the ''Hilton Magic'' to a success-starved fan base.

  • NBA union to investigate league's concussion protocol

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) When NBA union chief Michele Roberts watched Stephen Curry return to a game after his head slammed against the floor and he walked woozily to the locker room, she immediately took a closer look the league's concussion protocols.

  • Wade to join ABC for NBA Finals coverage

    July 4, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat is going back to the NBA Finals - as an analyst.The three-time NBA champion will join ABC for pregame and halftime shows during Games 2 and 3 of the Cleveland-Golden State series. Wade also will have the same arrangement for Games 6 and 7 if those games are played.

  • AP Source: Bulls plan to introduce Hoiberg as coach

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Mayor is moving to Chicago.The Bulls plan to introduce Iowa State's Fred Hoiberg as their new coach on Tuesday, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press.Hoiberg had long been rumored as the replacement for Tom Thibodeau, who was fired last week after five seasons in Chicago. The person spoke to the AP on Monday night on condition of anonymity because the contract had not been finalized.

  • AP source: Bulls plan to introduce Fred Hoiberg as coach

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) AP source: Bulls plan to introduce Fred Hoiberg as coach.

  • Benson in good spirits as trial vs. estranged heirs starts

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson walked slowly toward a court room where a struggle for control of his pro sports teams is playing out.Using a cane with his left hand while a young lawyer held the 87-year-old's right arm for support, Benson paused near several media members and quipped, ''Y'all can report that I'm still walking - damn good.''

  • Cavs' Irving making slow progress before NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Kyrie Irving is resigned to not being 100 percent for the Cavaliers in the NBA Finals.''Unless something miraculous happens,'' he said.Cleveland can't count on that.The All-Star guard has been kept out of portions of practice in the past few days as he continues to recover from tendinitis in his left knee, a condition that flared up earlier in the postseason and sidelined him from two games in the Eastern Conference finals. On Monday, Irving said he's continued to receive treatment during the break before Game 1, but he sounded less enthused about his progress than last week when he insisted there were ''no ifs and or buts'' whether he would play.

  • Man at work: Aussie guard Dellavedova sparks Cavs with grit

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) The kid was fearless, relentless, a hustler.Growing up in tiny Maryborough, Australia, Matthew Dellavedova tried every sport. And no matter if it was playing basketball, soccer, Aussie rules football, tennis, cricket or field hockey, the Cavaliers backup point guard went after the ball with disregard for his body.

  • Iowa St coach Fred Hoiberg visits Chicago about Bulls job

    July 4, 2015

    AMES, Iowa (AP) Iowa State coach Fred Hoiberg boarded a flight to Chicago on Monday to meet with the Bulls about their coaching vacancy, and the NBA team then said it would have a major announcement on Tuesday.Hours before the Bulls sent out their release, Hoiberg told reporters at the airport in Ames, Iowa, that he had meetings set for Monday night but no deal had been finalized.

  • Warriors guard Klay Thompson returns to practice

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson is one step away from being cleared to play in the NBA Finals.Thompson returned to practice Monday, a major step in the All-Star shooting guard's recovery. Thompson said he feels great and is just waiting on final clearance from doctors under the NBA's concussion protocol to play in Game 1 against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night.

  • Former BYU guard Tyler Haws works out for hometown Utah Jazz

    July 4, 2015

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Tyler Haws has been on an odd mission of late - trying to prove to NBA teams that he can shoot the ball. The scenario is a bit strange considering he finished his BYU career as the school's all-time leading scorer and built his reputation off being a knock-down shooter.

  • Warriors quietly trying to finish one of NBA's best seasons

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Steve Kerr remembers coming into training camp with the Chicago Bulls before the 1995-96 season and sensing something different about the team.After getting upset by Orlando in the Eastern Conference semifinals a few months earlier, Michael Jordan was motivated to redeem himself in his second year back in basketball and the Bulls were built for a championship run. Kerr, a reserve guard, noticed after just a few practices that season would be unlike any other.

  • Cavs limiting Irving in practice before NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving has been kept out of portions of practice as the team tries to get him ready for the NBA Finals.Irving has been slowed by left knee tendinitis and a sprained right foot throughout the playoffs. He sat out two games in the Eastern Conference finals because of his knee. Irving said Monday he feels he's in a good place as he recovers. He's continued to receive medical treatment during the long break before the Cavs play Game 1 at Golden State on Thursday.

  • Ohio homeboys: Superstars LeBron, Curry both born in Akron

    July 4, 2015

    AKRON, Ohio (AP) Welcome to the Rubber Capital, where car tires first rolled, the Goodyear Blimp took flight and two bouncing baby basketball prodigies were born less than four years apart in the 1980s.LeBron James and Stephen Curry, the NBA's two biggest stars set to square off in the upcoming finals, are from the same city.

  • Out of finals, Love says he'll be back next season with Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) The pain in Kevin Love's surgically repaired left shoulder has become manageable. The Cleveland forward is now dealing with a different ache - the sting of sitting and watching the NBA Finals.Knocked from his first playoffs in the opening round by injury, Love spoke Sunday for the first time since undergoing an operation to repair the extensive damage caused when Boston's Kelly Olynyk pulled on his arm and yanked it from the socket. Love is pleased with the progress of his recovery and he intends to be ready for the start of next season.

  • Kevin Love says he'll be back next season with Cavaliers

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Unable to help his teammates in the NBA Finals, injured forward Kevin Love intends to play for the Cavaliers next season.Love, sidelined by a left shoulder injury, can opt out of his contract after this season. But the three-time All-Star indicated Sunday - in his first comments since undergoing surgery - that he'll stay with Cleveland. Love was asked if there was any question he would return next season.

  • Capsule preview of the Warriors-Cavaliers NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    A capsule look at the NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers, which begin Thursday night (with playoff stats):GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS (67-15, 12-3) vs. CLEVELAND CAVALIERS (53-29, 12-2).Starters: Warriors - C Andrew Bogut (5.3 ppg, 8.6 rpg), F Draymond Green (14.0 ppg, 10.8 rpg), F Harrison Barnes (11.3 ppg, 5.0 rpg), G Klay Thompson (19.7 ppg, 3.7 rpg), G Stephen Curry (29.2 ppg, 6.4 apg). Cavaliers - C Timofey Mozgov (9.1 ppg, 7.2 rpg), F Tristan Thompson (9.4 ppg, 9.9 rpg), F LeBron James (27.6 ppg, 10.4 rpg, 8.3 apg), G Iman Shumpert (10.1 ppg, 5.4 rpg), G Kyrie Irving (18.7 ppg, 3.7 apg). Key reserves: Warriors - G Andre Iguodala (8.0 ppg, 3.9 rpg), F G Shaun Livingston (5.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg), C Festus Ezeli (3.2 ppg, 3.0 rpg), G Leandro Barbosa (4.9 ppg, 1.1 rpg), F David Lee (2.0 ppg, 2.7 rpg). Cavaliers - G J.R. Smith (13.5 ppg, 4.9 rpg), G Matthew Dellavedova (7.0 ppg, 2.6 apg), G James Jones (4.8 ppg, 1.5 rpg).

  • Position-by-position matchups for the NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    A position-by-position look at the matchups in the NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers:CENTER: Andrew Bogut vs. Timofey Mozgov. Mozgov, who could become the first Russian to win an NBA title, made his Cavs debut in a Jan. 9 loss to Golden State, and his acquisition from Denver was one of the catalysts for Cleveland's turnaround. He provides valuable defense and rebounding, as does Bogut, the former No. 1 overall pick from Australia who has had to tangle with Marc Gasol and Dwight Howard in the last two rounds. Edge: Even.

  • Pelicans hire Warriors assistant Alvin Gentry as coach

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) The New Orleans Pelicans have decided that 60-year-old NBA coaching veteran Alvin Gentry is the best candidate to mold a young roster featuring 22-year-old budding superstar Anthony Davis.The Pelicans hired the Golden State assistant Saturday night. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.

  • AP source: Pelicans hire Alvin Gentry as coach

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) The New Orleans Pelicans have decided that 60-year-old NBA coaching veteran Alvin Gentry is the best candidate to mold a young roster featuring 22-year-old budding superstar Anthony Davis.Gentry, who is currently a top Golden State Warriors assistant, has been hired as New Orleans' new head coach, according to a person familiar with the situation.

  • AP source: Pelicans hire Gentry as Pelicans

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) A person familiar with the situation says the New Orleans Pelicans have hired Golden State Warriors assistant Alvin Gentry as head coach.The person spoke to The Associated Press on Saturday on condition of anonymity because no announcement has been made.

  • Warriors' Kerr expects Thompson to play in Game 1 of finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr is so confident Klay Thompson will be cleared for Game 1 of the NBA Finals against Cleveland that he isn't preparing to play without him.The All-Star guard sat out a second consecutive practice Saturday recovering from a concussion. Kerr said Thompson is feeling well and progressing through the NBA's concussion protocol.

  • Chris Gatling arrested in online credit card scam

    July 4, 2015

    SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) Former NBA All-Star Chris Gatling ran a massive online fraud scheme using credit cards of people from across the nation, Scottsdale police said Saturday.Gatling was released from jail after being booked on fraud schemes, aggravated identity theft and forgery, police spokesman Kevin Watts said. His arrest Thursday was first reported by TMZ.com.

  • Almost colleagues, Kerr and Blatt are rare rookies in finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The path to the NBA Finals for Steve Kerr and David Blatt, a rare pair of rookie coaches on basketball's biggest stage, started with a meeting organized by their agent at Los Angeles International Airport last June.The two clicked immediately, talking about their philosophies for basketball and life, and Kerr offered Blatt a spot on his new staff with the Golden State Warriors. Blatt, a successful coach internationally, had been waiting for the right opportunity to break into the NBA and initially accepted.

  • Ex-Chicago Bulls player Brunson acquitted of sexual abuse

    July 4, 2015

    VERNON HILLS, Ill. (AP) Former Chicago Bulls player Rick Brunson has been acquitted of charges he sexually abused a massage therapist at a Vernon Hills fitness center.Lake County judge James Booras made the ruling Friday, saying prosecutors couldn't ''meet the burden of proof required'' to convict the 42-year-old Vernon Hills resident.

  • Washington Wizards' John Wall kicked off Las Vegas flight

    July 4, 2015

    LAS VEGAS (AP) Police say NBA star John Wall was kicked off a flight in Las Vegas on Tuesday after a disturbance was reported.Las Vegas police said Friday that the Washington Wizards' All-Star point guard was with a group of people on an American Airlines flight around 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

  • Lakers close deal on land for new headquarters in El Segundo

    July 4, 2015

    EL SEGUNDO, Calif. (AP) The Los Angeles Lakers have completed the purchase of five acres that will be the site of their new team headquarters.The Lakers announced the completion of the deal Friday.The new corporate headquarters will include their training complex, team offices and a 750-seat gym where the Lakers' D-League affiliate will play its home games.

  • LeBron on stopping him or Stephen Curry: "You can't"

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) With a week to get ready for the NBA Finals, the Cavaliers have a check list of things to get done before Game 1.First, is to get All-Star guard Kyrie Irving healthier after he sat two games in the conference finals with knee and foot injuries. Then, there's putting together a defensive plan to try and slow Golden State guard Stephen Curry, the league MVP and quickest draw in the West.

  • Magic hire former player Scott Skiles as head coach

    July 4, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The next chapter in Orlando Magic basketball will be led by one of its most familiar faces.General manager Rob Hennigan introduced former player Scott Skiles as the franchise's 12th coach Friday, beginning what they hope will be the turning point in their latest rebuilding project.

  • Warriors guard Klay Thompson diagnosed with concussion

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The initial hit caused Klay Thompson plenty of pain. The final diagnosis delivered another blow to him and the Golden State Warriors as they prepare for the NBA Finals.Two days after he got kneed in the head by Houston's Trevor Ariza, the Warriors said Friday that Thompson has a concussion and will not return to practice until he is symptom free.

  • Dwight Howard suspended for 1 game after foul upgraded

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard was suspended without pay for one game Friday after getting his fourth flagrant foul point in the postseason.Howard will serve the suspension in the first game next season that he is physically able to play.

  • LeBron says stopping Curry futile: 'You can't'

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James says he's given teammates ''the blueprint'' for the NBA Finals and it's up to the Cavaliers to follow it.James will appear in his fifth straight finals, a feat not accomplished since 1966 when members of the Boston Celtics were on their dynastical run. As he and the Cavaliers prepare to meet Golden State, James says the key to postseason success is to stay even keeled and understand the task at hand.

  • Klay Thompson diagnosed with concussion

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson has been diagnosed with a concussion and will not practice until he is symptom free.The Warriors announced the diagnosis Friday after Thompson went through neurological tests earlier in the day. Thompson was kneed in the head by Houston's Trevor Ariza in the fourth quarter of Golden State's Western Conference finals clinching win Wednesday night.

  • Judge keeps court closed in Saints, Pelicans ownership row

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) A judge denied a motion by media outlets who sought to open court for next week's trial involving New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson and his estranged heirs.Judge Kern Reese, who ruled Friday in New Orleans civil court, said he carefully weighed the public's constitutional right to access the court room against the 87-year-old Benson's privacy rights regarding his medical history.

  • Thompson's father says son 'on track' to return for finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors guard Klay Thompson is feeling better and on track to return for the NBA Finals next week after taking a knee to his head from Trevor Ariza that caused ''concussion-like symptoms.''That's according to Thompson's father, former NBA player Mychal Thompson. He told The Associated Press on Thursday night that his son's energy was up and his appetite was back, but he still needs to pass the league-mandated concussion protocol.

  • And now, we wait: Cavs and Warriors get time to rest

    July 4, 2015

    Golden State coach Steve Kerr was chatting with assistant Luke Walton a few minutes before what became the Warriors' clinching victory in the Western Conference Finals, and a realization popped into his head.''You know what we do now?'' Kerr asked, somewhat rhetorically. ''We wait.''

  • Rockets looking forward after elimination

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) The Houston Rockets reached the Western Conference finals for the first time in 18 years before being eliminated in five games by the Golden State Warriors.''We fought,'' star guard James Harden said. ''That's all we could do is fight. We put ourselves in a situation where we made it tough against a really good team, to be down 0-3, so we just look back at it and be ready for next year.''

  • Hawks looking for 'continuity' after historic 60-win season

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The Atlanta Hawks cleaned out their lockers, met with the coaches, and headed off for summer vacation Thursday.Even though a historic 60-win season ended with a one-sided sweep by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference final, no one was hanging their heads less than 48 hours after the final game.

  • Hornets expand Dell Curry's role in organization

    July 4, 2015

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Hornets have expanded Dell Curry's role, naming him the franchise's ambassador and special projects adviser.He will remain the color analyst for the team's TV broadcasts on SportSouth.The team announced Curry will serve as an ambassador for the team at events related to both basketball and business operations, which include community programs, charity outings and fundraising events. He will also work on special projects.

  • AP Source: Contract talks between Wade, Heat at impasse

    July 4, 2015

    MIAMI (AP) For the first time, the relationship between Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat seems murky at best.And his future with the team is now in doubt.Contract talks between Wade and the Heat are at ''an impasse'' and the three-time NBA champion is preparing himself for possibly leaving the team this summer, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told The Associated Press on Thursday. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because neither side has publicly released details of the negotiations.

  • Chicago Bulls fire coach Tom Thibodeau, cite lack of trust

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) In five seasons under Tom Thibodeau, the Chicago Bulls soared to heights they had not reached since Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen were collecting championships.They never got to the top with him and now he is out.The Bulls fired Thibodeau on Thursday, parting ways with the strong-willed coach who took the team to the playoffs in each of his five seasons only to have his success overshadowed by his strained relationship with the front office.

  • Booed no more, Warriors owner relishing NBA Finals berth

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Wearing a black NBA Finals cap and white team T-shirt, Golden State Warriors owner Joe Lacob waved to a cheering crowd at Oracle Arena as confetti fell all around.Lacob, booed off the same floor three years ago, couldn't help but smile after the Warriors eliminated the Houston Rockets in the Western Conference finals Wednesday night. In fewer than five years as owner, Lacob has led the franchise to a place it hasn't been since 1975: the NBA Finals.

  • Walker supports key parts of reported Bucks arena deal

    July 4, 2015

    PORTAGE, Wis. (AP) Gov. Scott Walker spoke in favor Thursday of key elements of a reported deal fora new 0 million arena for the Milwaukee Bucks that includes raising taxes on Milwaukee County hotel rooms and rental cars.Walker's support for central parts of the plan came as conservatives, including the influential group Americans for Prosperity, blasted the latest funding proposal as irresponsible and harmful to taxpayers.

  • Chicago Bulls fire coach Tom Thibodeau after 5 seasons

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls fired Tom Thibodeau on Thursday, saying a change was needed from the strong-willed coach who took his team to the playoffs in each of his five seasons.Thibodeau went 255-139 with the Bulls, a .647 winning percentage that ranks seventh in NBA history among coaches with at least 200 games. He led the Bulls to the top seed in the playoffs his first two seasons and was the NBA's Coach of the Year in 2011 - the same year Derrick Rose became the league's youngest MVP.

  • Chicago Bulls fire coach Tom Thibodeau

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls have fired coach Tom Thibodeau.Thibodeau led the Bulls to a 255-139 record and playoff appearances in each of his five seasons. But friction with management led to the change.General manager Gar Forman says Thibodeau was the right fit for the Bulls when he was hired in 2010, but a ''change in approach was needed'' to improve.

  • Curry wants what LeBron has in Warriors-Cavaliers NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    Stephen Curry and LeBron James, this season's brightest stars, are taking basketball's biggest stage.The NBA Finals start June 4 with the Golden State Warriors against the Cleveland Cavaliers, two teams who have little experience playing this time of year.

  • Warriors G Klay Thompson suffers concussion

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State guard Klay Thompson has a concussion after getting kneed in the side of the head by Houston's Trevor Ariza.Thompson was injured after he faked a shot and Ariza knocked him to the floor with a knee to the head in the fourth quarter of Game 5 of the Western Conference finals Wednesday night.

  • AP Source: Pelicans interview Jeff Van Gundy

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) The New Orleans Pelicans have interviewed Jeff Van Gundy for the club's vacant head coaching job, according to a person familiar with the situation.The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the Pelicans have not disclosed any candidates they've interviewed to succeed Monty Williams, who was fired May 12.

  • Howard could face suspension if Rockets force Game 6

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Dwight Howard could miss Houston's next playoff game after picking up his seventh technical foul of the playoffs.Howard and Golden State's Andrew Bogut were called for a double technical in the second quarter of Game 5 of the Western Conference finals on Wednesday night.

  • Hawks' Korver has surgery to repair ankle ligament damage

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta Hawks guard Kyle Korver is facing a recovery period of three months after having surgery to repair ligament damage in his right ankle.The Hawks say Wednesday's surgery was performed in New York City by Dr. Martin O'Malley.The NBA's best 3-point shooter in the regular season, Korver was injured in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals when he was scrambling for a loose ball and his ankle was rolled on by Cleveland's Matthew Dellavedova.

  • TNT has 7 percent rise in viewers from '14 conference finals

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Cleveland's four-game sweep of Atlanta in the Eastern Conference finals averaged 6.8 million viewers on TNT, a 7 percent increase from last season's coverage.The four games, along with the Inside the NBA studio show, were the two highest-rated programs on cable each night. Game 3 was the most-watched program on television - cable and broadcast.

  • Basketball Without Borders camps reach 2 new destinations

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA says its Basketball Without Borders camps will go to Gran Canaria, Spain, and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, for the first time.The league says Wednesday the camps, run jointly with FIBA, basketball's world governing body, also will return to Johannesburg for the 12th time.

  • Hawks point to bright future even after playoff rout by Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The season didn't end like they wanted.Not even close.But, despite the sting of a humiliating playoff defeat, the Atlanta Hawks seem closer than ever to winning a championship.''We grew up faster than we thought,'' forward DeMarre Carroll said, looking for the bright side after getting swept by LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

  • Curry 'ready to go' for Game 5 after frightening fall

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State star Stephen Curry said he had no lingering effects from his frightening fall before Game 5 of the Western Conference finals Wednesday night.Curry took part in the Warriors' morning shootaround before their game against the Houston Rockets with a protective sleeve on his bruised right arm. He said his head felt fine and that effects of the fall are no different than taking a hard screen or a charge.

  • With 4 picks in draft, Celtics have to cast wide net

    July 4, 2015

    WALTHAM, Mass. (AP) With four picks in next month's NBA draft, the Boston Celtics can't just focus on a couple of players who look like they might be in their range.The Celtics will look at as many as 100 or more potential rookies in preparation for the June 25 draft. Boston has two picks in the first round - its own at No. 16 and the Clippers' at No. 28 - and two more in the second: Philadelphia's at No. 33 and its own at No. 45.

  • Better than ever, LeBron leads Cavaliers into NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Escorted by family members and friends, LeBron James walked out of Quicken Loans Arena cradling his sleepy youngest son with his left arm while clutching an expensive bottle of champagne in his right hand.It was time for one James to go to bed, the other to have a late-night drink and get some much-needed rest.

  • Cleveland Cavaliers advance to NBA Finals with 118-88 win over Atlanta Hawks to complete sweep

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cleveland Cavaliers advance to NBA Finals with 118-88 win over Atlanta Hawks to complete sweep.

  • Fireman, Self, Smith to receive Hall of Fame award

    July 4, 2015

    SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) Former Reebok CEO Paul Fireman, Kansas coach Bill Self and former NBA veteran Steve Smith have been named winners of the 2015 Mannie Jackson - Basketball's Human Spirit Award.The winners will be recognized on Sept. 10 at the Reunion Dinner on the Hall of Fame's Center Court during Enshrinement Weekend.

  • Kyrie Irving back for Cavs, will start Game 4

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cavaliers All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving will start Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals after missing two games with a sore left knee.Irving sat out Cleveland's wins in Game 2 and 3 with tendinitis. He tested the knee during the morning shootaround and again before tip-off. The Cavs announced he would play about 30 minutes before the start.

  • Lopez twins to co-host NBA blooper show on Disney XD

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Twin brothers Brook and Robin Lopez will co-host three specials featuring funny moments involving NBA players on and off the court.''NBA Slam Funk!'' will run Monday, June 1 through Wednesday, June 3 on Disney XD. The 15-minute specials will include NBA bloopers, fan and mascot antics, circus shots and player outtakes.

  • Rockets' Howard won't be suspended for Game 5 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard will not be suspended for Game 5 of the Western Conference finals against the Golden State Warriors after the NBA decided to uphold his flagrant 1 foul.NBA President of Basketball Operations Rod Thorn said in a statement Tuesday night that Howard was trying to free himself from Andrew Bogut when Howard ''recklessly hit him in the face with an open hand.'' Thorn said the contact was deemed unnecessary by game officials, who were aided by replay review, and the league doesn't ''see a reason to modify that call.''

  • Hawks guard Kyle Korver to have surgery on ankle

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Atlanta Hawks guard Kyle Korver will have surgery on the right ankle he injured in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals.Korver went to New York on Tuesday to get a second opinion from a specialist and it was determined he'll need an operation to repair his ankle. Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer did not say what damage Korver has in his ankle and there is no timetable for his return.

  • Warriors try again to close out Rockets, reach NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) One play. One fall. One bad break.That's all it takes to shift a series and derail a dream season.Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors found out how fragile a championship chase can be in their Game 4 loss at Houston when the NBA MVP took a scary spill that nearly gave a storybook season a frightening twist.

  • Northwestern, Collins agree to extension

    July 4, 2015

    EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) Northwestern has agreed to a contract extension with men's basketball coach Chris Collins.The school did not provide any details while announcing the move on Tuesday.Collins, who replaced Bill Carmody, is 29-36 in two seasons. Northwestern went 14-19 his first year and 15-17 last season.

  • Lawmaker says goal is to announce Bucks deal Wednesday

    July 4, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) Milwaukee officials, leaders of the Wisconsin state Legislature and the president of the Milwaukee Bucks all said Tuesday they're close to reaching a deal to pay for a new 0 million arena for the NBA team.The goal is to announce a deal Wednesday, said Rep. John Nygren, co-chairman of the Legislature's budget-writing committee. Nygren's committee is finalizing the state budget this week and intends to include a Bucks financing component.

  • Milwaukee officials, Bucks president say arena deal close

    July 4, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) Milwaukee leaders and the president of the Milwaukee Bucks all say they are close to reaching a deal to pay for a new 0 million arena for the NBA team.They said Tuesday following a closed-door meeting in Gov. Scott Walker's Capitol conference room that they were optimistic a deal can be reached by Friday.

  • NBA MVP Curry OK after fall as Warriors lose to Rockets

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) When Golden State's Stephen Curry crashed into Trevor Ariza's shoulder, was upended and sent flying toward the court on Monday night against Houston, it felt like forever before he landed.''That was the worst (fall ever) because you're in the air for a long time,'' Curry said. ''And not knowing how you're going to hit the floor, knowing that it's going to happen, it's inevitable, but you're up there just trying to brace yourself.''

  • NBA MVP Stephen Curry takes nasty fall, walks off court

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) MVP Stephen Curry was able to walk to the locker room after a nasty spill where he flipped over in the air and his head crashed to the court in Golden State's Western Conference finals game against Houston on Monday night.Curry jumped in the air as Trevor Ariza was about to go up for a shot. Ariza saw him and stopped abruptly, causing Curry to be upended in midair when he crashed into Ariza's shoulder. His head hit the court and it propelled him up and back onto the floor, where he remained for several minutes.

  • LeBron, Cavaliers limping their way toward NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James hurts everywhere, the King of Pain.One win from taking the Cavaliers back to the NBA Finals, and one step closer to a title he covets more than any other, James leaned against a padded wall on Monday and hardly resembled basketball's most undeniable force.

  • Rockets respond to McHale's old-school coaching approach

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Kevin McHale's stride is painful to watch.His limp is so pronounced it induces his 6-foot-10 frame into an odd bobbing motion with every deliberate step. And it tells a powerful story.The awkward gait for the Houston Rockets' coach is the product of 13 punishing NBA seasons, including the 1987 postseason when he played on a broken foot.

  • Hawks cry foul over Horford's ejection from Game 3

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Al Horford threw an elbow at Matthew Dellavedova during the game.He saved a few more shots for Cleveland's scrappy guard afterward.Horford was assessed a Flagrant 2 foul and tossed from Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals on Sunday night for striking Dellavedova above his shoulders late in the first half.

  • Hawks' Horford ejected from Game 3 for throwing elbow

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Atlanta forward Al Horford was ejected in the final minute of the second quarter of Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals on Sunday night for throwing an elbow at Cavaliers guard Matthew Dellavedova.Horford and Dellavedova got tangled on the floor while scrambling for a loose ball. As Dellavedova was rolling up on his right knee, Horford brought his right arm down hard and appeared to strike the side of the scrappy Australian guard's head.

  • Hawks' Horford ejected from Game 3 for elbow

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Atlanta forward Al Horford has been ejected in the second quarter of Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals for throwing an elbow at Cavaliers guard Matthew Dellavedova.Horford and Dellavedova got tangled on the floor while scrambling for a loose ball. As Dellavedvoa was rolling up on his right knee, Horford brought his right arm down hard to the side of the scrappy guard's head.

  • Cavs' Kyrie Irving out for Game 3 with injured knee

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cavaliers All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving will miss his second straight Eastern Conference finals game with an injured left knee.Irving, who has been dealing with tendinitis, was ruled out of Sunday's Game 3 about 45 minutes before tip-off. Wearing a new knee brace, Irving put himself through a rigorous workout on the Quicken Loans Arena floor about three hours before the game started. Although he moved well, the Cavs decided to rest him for at least one more game.

  • Golden State Warriors 1 win away from NBA Finals

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors aren't worried about a letdown in Game 4 after taking a 3-0 lead over the Houston Rockets in the Western Conference finals.''It's easy for us to stay hungry because none of us have really experienced this before or accomplished really anything,'' Curry said.

  • Cavs' Kyrie Irving shoots, still questionable for Game 3

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving took part in the team's shootaround and remains questionable for Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals with an injured left knee.Irving wore a new brace on his knee for the second day in a row. He worked on his shooting and did some cutting at the team's facility. Irving sat out Game 2 in Atlanta on Friday, but the Cavs won without him to take a commanding lead over the Hawks.

  • Cavs' Irving tests knee with brace, questionable for Game 3

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) - Kyrie Irving plopped down on a courtside bench following a brisk workout and two team trainers quickly went to work adjusting straps on his new knee brace.The Cavaliers, completely in command of the Eastern Conference finals, may soon be closer to full strength.

  • Hawks' Kyle Korver out for the playoffs with sprained ankle

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Already facing a daunting task after losing the first two games at home in the Eastern Conference final, the Atlanta Hawks were dealt another major blow Saturday when 3-point specialist Kyle Korver was ruled out for the rest of the playoffs because of a severely sprained right ankle.

  • Hawks' G Korver out for the playoffs with sprained ankle

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Hawks guard Kyle Korver is done for the NBA playoffs because of an ankle injury, dealing another blow to a team that already trails Cleveland 2-0 in the Eastern Conference final.The Hawks announced Saturday that Korver has a severe high right ankle sprain. A foot and ankle specialist will determine the best court of treatment, but he definitely won't play again in the postseason.

  • Raptors' Terrence Ross has ankle surgery

    July 4, 2015

    TORONTO (AP) Toronto Raptors guard Terrence Ross has had ankle surgery to remove bone spurs.The team says he had surgery in California on Friday, and he'll undergo rehabilitation in Toronto.Ross has averaged 9.8 points in a career-best 82 games this season. He's shot .373 from 3-point range in his career.

  • Hawks lose Korver to right ankle sprain against Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta's Kyle Korver has an ankle injury and might not return for the Atlanta Hawks against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday night in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals.Korver left with about a minute remaining in the third period with a right ankle sprain and walked straight to the locker room. The Hawks said he was doubtful to return.

  • Hawks' DeMarre Carroll starts vs. Cavaliers in Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta Hawks forward DeMarre Carroll was a surprise starter in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday night.The Hawks waited until seeing Carroll test his sprained left knee before finalizing their starting lineup less than 30 minutes before the game.

  • Hawks' Carroll starting vs. Cavaliers in Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta Hawks forward DeMarre Carroll was a surprise starter in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final against the Cleveland Cavaliers.The Hawks waited until seeing Carroll test his sprained left knee before finalizing their starting lineup less than 30 minutes before the game Friday night.

  • Cavs' Irving held out of Game 2 with sore left knee

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving missed Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Atlanta Hawks on Friday night after he had his ailing left knee examined by Dr. James Andrews.Irving had been listed as questionable after scoring only 10 points and sitting out the final 8 minutes of the Cavaliers' victory in Game 1.

  • Warriors head to Houston up 2-0

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Stephen Curry has been playing like the MVP he is to help the Golden State Warriors to 2-0 lead in the Western Conference finals.Now things get tougher as the Warriors head to Houston for two games beginning Saturday night.Curry scored 34 points in Game 1, 33 in Game 2 and has made 11 3-pointers in the series.

  • Houston star Harden's unique game hard to stop - and to like

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Whether he's stirring the pot after a big shot or flailing his arms to draw contact en route to the basket James Harden evokes strong reactions from fans and players alike.The internet abounds with people complaining that his game isn't aesthetically pleasing, but he's even tougher to stop than his game is to like.

  • Isiah Thomas doesn't reject idea of eventual return to NBA

    July 4, 2015

    GREENBURGH, N.Y. (AP) Isiah Thomas said he hasn't spoken with New York Knicks President Phil Jackson since joining the Liberty as a consultant in February.Thomas didn't reject the notion that someday he could return to the NBA. The new president of the New York Liberty was introduced Thursday after being rehired by Madison Square Garden Chairman James Dolan.

  • Hawks Coach: Carroll's status vs. Cavs a game-time decision

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta Hawks forward DeMarre Carroll took part in shootaround Friday morning but is still questionable for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final against the Cleveland Cavaliers.Coach Mike Budenholzer said Carroll's status would be a game-time decision.

  • Cavs' Irving misses shootaround, questionable for Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving skipped the morning shootaround Friday before Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final to get further evaluation on his ailing left knee.Irving was listed as questionable after scoring only 10 points and sitting out the final 8 minutes of the Cavaliers win over the Atlanta Hawks in the series opener.

  • In this generation, 3-pointers are paramount in the playoffs

    July 4, 2015

    Those notable names of the past, the ones still insisting that NBA playoff offenses must pound the ball inside, have been awfully quiet this week.Perhaps they've finally come to accept that the days of packing the paint are over. In this generation, offense is predicated on space, passing and plenty of 3-point shooting.

  • Howard in starting lineup for Rockets in Game 2 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Dwight Howard was in the starting lineup for the Houston Rockets against the Golden State Warriors in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals.The center had been questionable to play in Thursday night's game with a sprained left knee. He ran sprints to test his knee during pregame warmups at Oracle Arena before the Rockets made the announcement.

  • Rockets: Dwight Howard playing in Game 2 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Houston Rockets say center Dwight Howard will play against the Golden State Warriors in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals.The Rockets made the announcement about 30 minutes before Thursday night's game. Howard had been questionable to play with a sprained left knee.

  • Gentry interviews with Pelicans, still focused on Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr acknowledged Thursday that top assistant Alvin Gentry interviewed for the vacant New Orleans Pelicans' job.Kerr's comments came before the Warriors hosted the Houston Rockets in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals. He said Gentry met with Pelicans officials earlier this week, but the interview process hasn't taken Gentry away from his current coaching duties with the Warriors.

  • Banged-up Cavaliers, Hawks adjust for Friday's Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) While the Atlanta Hawks try to figure out who will guard LeBron James, the Cleveland Cavaliers are just grateful the four-time MVP is still standing.It's understandable. This series could turn into a war of attrition - and they've only played one game.

  • Celtics owner Pagliuca takes over Boston's 2024 Olympic bid

    July 4, 2015

    BOSTON (AP) The group leading the bid to bring the 2024 Olympics to Boston shook up its management Thursday, making Boston Celtics co-owner Steve Pagliuca the new chairman in an attempt to revive the city's chances of hosting the Summer Games.Pagliuca takes over the effort to convince the IOC to send the Summer Olympics to the United States for the first time since 1996. The managing director of Bain Capital and formerly a vice chairman of the bid, he will replace construction magnate John Fish, the point man through a domestic competition in which Boston was selected by the USOC as the American bid city.

  • Curry, James unanimous selections to All-NBA first team

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Golden State's Stephen Curry, the league MVP, and LeBron James are the only unanimous selections to the All-NBA first team.New Orleans' Anthony Davis and Memphis center Marc Gasol joined Curry as newcomers on the team. Houston's James Harden rounded it out with his second straight selection.

  • Hawks' Carroll avoids serious injury, listed as questionable

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) An MRI on DeMarre Carroll's left knee showed no structural damage, and he hopes to play for Atlanta in Friday night's Game 2 against Cleveland in the Eastern Conference semifinals, Carroll's agent said Thursday.Mark Bartelstein told The Associated Press that Carroll has only a knee sprain and ''maybe a little'' bone bruise. The Hawks confirmed the MRI showed only a knee sprain and said Carroll would be listed as questionable.

  • Rockets' Howard appears ready to play in Game 2 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard appears ready to play in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals against the Golden State Warriors, although he's not ready to say as much.Howard participated in about half of the Rockets' morning shootaround Thursday in San Francisco with a black brace over his sprained left knee. During the portion of practice open to reporters, Howard worked on his post-up game - turnaround hook shots, short floaters and a few dunks. He didn't do any running.

  • Agent: Hawks' Carroll has no structural damage in knee

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) An MRI on DeMarre Carroll's left knee showed no structural damage, and he hopes to play for Atlanta in Friday night's Game 2 against Cleveland in the Eastern Conference semifinals, Carroll's agent said Thursday.Mark Bartelstein told The Associated Press that Carroll has only a knee sprain and ''maybe a little'' bone bruise.

  • Hawks lose DeMarre Carroll with left knee sprain

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta forward DeMarre Carroll left Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday night with a left knee sprain, an injury that threatens his status for the remainder of the series.Following the Cavaliers' 97-89 win, Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer said Carroll will have a MRI on Thursday to determine the severity of the sprain.

  • Hawks lose DeMarre Carroll to apparent leg injury

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta Hawks forward DeMarre Carroll has left Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers with what appeared to be a serious left leg injury.Carroll was hurt when his knee appeared to buckle as he was driving to the basket with about 5 minutes remaining in the game.

  • Leonard, 2 Clippers on NBA's All-Defensive first team

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Defensive Player of the Year Kawhi Leonard of San Antonio was the leading vote-getter for the NBA's All-Defensive first team, where he was joined by Los Angeles Clippers teammates Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan.Leonard received 116 first-team votes and 242 points Wednesday from a panel of 129 writers and broadcasters in the U.S. and Canada. Golden State's Draymond Green was second with 229 points and 107 first-team votes.

  • With Howard hobbled, Rockets trying to regroup vs. Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calf. (AP) James Harden and the Houston Rockets spent half the season finding ways to win without Dwight Howard and another chunk of the schedule with the center limited because of an injury.Now they might have to do it again to save their season.

  • Bucks sticking to long-term plan with draft approaching

    July 4, 2015

    ST. FRANCIS, Wis. (AP) The Milwaukee Bucks plan to stick with a slow and steady approach to constructing a consistently successful team.It doesn't appear as if an unexpected push for the playoffs this year is going to accelerate the rebuilding process.

  • Curry: Bringing daughter to interview was a last-minute call

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Stephen Curry knows he may no longer be the biggest star in his family. At least for one day, that title belonged to his 2-year-old daughter, Riley.She stole the spotlight from the Golden State Warriors guard and NBA MVP during his news conference after Tuesday night's 110-106 victory over the Houston Rockets in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals.

  • Stephen Curry says daughter's antics were a 'special moment'

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Stephen Curry knows he may no longer be the biggest star in his family. At least for one day, that title belonged to his 2-year-old daughter, Riley.She stole the spotlight from the Golden State Warriors guard and NBA MVP during his news conference after Tuesday night's 110-106 victory over the Houston Rockets in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals.

  • Rockets' Howard unsure if he can play in Game 2 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard has a sprained left knee and is unsure whether he'll be able to play against Golden State in Game 2 of the Western Conference finals Thursday night.Howard sat out practice Wednesday at Oracle Arena after an MRI confirmed the injury. He said his knee was still in pain and he'll listen to his body before deciding whether to play. He added that he has ''no doubt'' he'll return at some point in the series.

  • Warriors' Curry fined ,000 for flop in Game 1 vs Rockets

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry said he disagreed with the NBA's decision to fine him ,000 for violating the league's anti-flopping rules against the Houston Rockets in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals.The league said Wednesday that the NBA MVP exaggerated contact after his 3-pointer with 3:07 remaining in the fourth quarter of the Warriors' 110-106 victory on Tuesday night. Curry made the shot and fell to the court after getting bumped by defender Terrence Jones. The shot gave Golden State a 106-97 lead.

  • For Cleveland and Atlanta, plenty of sports lowlights

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) On the sports misery index, Atlanta and Cleveland are hard to beat.The two cities have combined for one championship over the last half-century - and that came in 1995, when the Atlanta Braves beat the Cleveland Indians in the World Series.

  • Wolves finally come out on top after heartache, bad luck

    July 4, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) His voice cracking and tears welling in his eyes, Flip Saunders pointed to the sky about 20 minutes after the Minnesota Timberwolves - the franchise that has been down on its luck for most of the past 25 years - won the draft lottery to get the No. 1 overall selection.

  • Best shot: J.R. Smith making most of fresh start with Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) J.R. Smith barely has as an inch of skin not covered by tattoos, offering a colorful timeline of the enigmatic Cleveland shooting guard's life.Some of the markings are personal: portraits on his chest of his mom and Jesus, an NBA logo on his ring finger and an interlocking NY on his neck. The tattoos help define him, but he's also been tagged with some labels he didn't seek.

  • Curry's daughter steals spotlight during news conference

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) There's at least one person on the planet who can contain Stephen Curry: his daughter.Curry's 2-year-old daughter, Riley, stole the spotlight from the Golden State Warriors star and NBA MVP during his news conference after Tuesday night's 110-106 victory over the Houston Rockets.

  • Rockets C Dwight Howard bruises left knee

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard has a bruised left knee and is questionable to return to Game 1 of the Western Conference finals.Howard hurt his leg midway through the first quarter Tuesday night when teammate Josh Smith collided with his leg. Howard tried to limp back on defense but was unable to run and left the game after the Rockets called a timeout.

  • Timberwolves win draft lottery, Lakers move to No. 2

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The Minnesota Timberwolves too often came to the NBA draft lottery and left in worse shape than they arrived.And when they finally ended years of lottery futility, it came from the spot where nobody had been winning.The Timberwolves won the lottery Tuesday night, the first time since 2004 the team with the worst record earned the No. 1 pick.

  • Minnesota Timberwolves to get No. 1 pick in NBA draft.

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Minnesota Timberwolves to get No. 1 pick in NBA draft.

  • Thunder G Westbrook wins NBA Cares award

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook has been named winner of the NBA Cares Community Assist Award.The league announced the honor Tuesday.After receiving a new car for being named the All-Star Game MVP, Westbrook donated the automobile to Kerstin Gonzalez, a single mother of two. During the 2014-15 season, Westbrook's Why Not? Foundation opened new reading centers in three Oklahoma City public schools. ''Russell's Reading Rooms'' provide underserved children with 1,200 books. His yearlong charitable efforts also included hosting Thanksgiving meals, holiday parties and shopping sprees.

  • Quite a change since 2014; Cavs meet Hawks in East finals

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The Cleveland Cavaliers could only watch enviously as LeBron James made a run at another NBA title in Miami.The Atlanta Hawks were trying to move on after a tough loss in the opening round of the playoffs.My, how things have changed from a year ago in the Eastern Conference.

  • Judge opts to close trial involving Saints, Pelicans owner

    July 4, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) A judge has decided to bar the public from a trial in which estranged heirs of New Orleans Saints and Pelicans owner Tom Benson intend to argue that their patriarch was mentally unfit when he ousted them from ownership stakes in the franchises.

  • Cavs' Irving has "light" workout before Game 1

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers All-Star guard Kyrie Irving had a ''light, but good'' practice a day before Cleveland opens the Eastern Conference finals in Atlanta.Irving has been slowed by knee and foot injuries during the postseason, but expects to play in the opener against the Hawks on Wednesday night. Cavs coach David Blatt has been pleased with Irving's progress and said Tuesday he hopes Irving ''wakes up tomorrow feeling great.''

  • Calipari: 'Not interested' in vacant Pelicans coaching job

    July 4, 2015

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) John Calipari says he's not interested in the New Orleans Pelicans' coaching job and is happy at Kentucky.The Pelicans fired Monty Williams a week ago and the team's NBA roster features former Kentucky star Anthony Davis and Tyreke Evans, who played for Calipari at Memphis.

  • Rockets depth proves important in playoffs

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) James Harden and Dwight Howard are undeniably Houston's most important players.But without role players like Josh Smith, Corey Brewer and even 38-year-old Pablo Prigioni, who spent most of his career overseas, the Rockets probably wouldn't be in the Western Conference finals for the first time since 1997.

  • Hawks' 2-headed point guard a big key to playoff success

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Jeff Teague leads the Atlanta offense.So does Dennis Schroder.Sometimes, they do it together.The point guard tandem is a big reason the Hawks have reached the Eastern Conference final for the first time in franchise history. Top-seeded Atlanta hosts LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 1 on Wednesday night.

  • All-Star center Marc Gasol will consider free agency options

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) The Memphis Grizzlies head into the offseason with a major goal: re-signing their free agent All-Star center.Marc Gasol is in no hurry, he's on his own timetable.He plans to take as much time as possible to consider all his options as one of this free agent market's biggest targets.

  • For Warriors and Rockets, West finals go beyond MVP talk

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The MVP race was decided weeks ago. Newly crowned Stephen Curry and runner-up James Harden insist there's a bigger prize they've wanted all along.Now is their chance to compete for it.Curry and the top-seeded Golden State Warriors will meet Harden and the rejuvenated Houston Rockets in the Western Conference finals beginning Tuesday night.

  • NBA lottery still creating hope and headlines after 30 years

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Phil Jackson remembers watching old teammate Dave DeBusschere pound his fist in triumph, when the Knicks and NBA were dual winners.The first draft lottery in 1985 gave New York the No. 1 pick and the NBA all the publicity a league could want, plus a way to deter teams from losing on purpose.

  • Capsule previews of the NBA's conference finals

    July 4, 2015

    A look at the NBA's Eastern and Western Conference finals (with regular-season and playoff records):EASTERN CONFERENCENo. 1 ATLANTA HAWKS (60-22, 8-4) vs. No. 2 CLEVELAND CAVALIERS (53-29, 8-2)Season series: Hawks, 3-1. Atlanta won the final three meetings, though one was with LeBron James sitting out and only one came after Cleveland upgraded its rotation with the acquisitions of J.R. Smith, Iman Shumpert and Timofey Mozgov. The Hawks averaged 109 points and shot 52.3 percent against the Cavs, with Al Horford making 23 of 36 shots (64 percent). James averaged 23.7 points, but had nearly as many turnovers (14) as assists (17) or rebounds (15).

  • John Wall's Wizards wind up in same place, see differences

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Even if John Wall and the Washington Wizards wound up in the same place as a year ago - eliminated in six games in the second round of the playoffs by the Eastern Conference's No. 1 seed - they see plenty of differences.First of all, Wall missed three games of the series loss to the Atlanta Hawks because of fractures in his left hand and wrist.

  • Cavs' Irving says he's ready for Game 1 vs. Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Kyrie Irving finished an animated post-practice shooting game of ''Around The World'' with LeBron James and then quickly removed any doubt about his playing status for Game 1.''I'm going to go,'' he said.Cleveland's All-Star guard may not be 100 percent - or anywhere close - but he's much better and that's welcome news to the Cavs, who will open the Eastern Conference finals on Wednesday in Atlanta.

  • Wizards PG John Wall says his left hand won't need surgery

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Washington Wizards All-Star point guard John Wall says he does not need surgery for the fractures in his left hand and wrist that kept him out of three playoff games.Wall says Monday that he will head to Cleveland this week or next to see a specialist about the injury and find out what he needs to do to heal properly.

  • Wiggins only unanimous pick for NBA All-Rookie team

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Rookie of the Year Andrew Wiggins of Minnesota is the only unanimous selection for the NBA's All-Rookie first team.Wiggins received all 130 votes Monday from a panel of sports writers and broadcasters in the U.S. and Canada. He averaged 16.9 points, tops in the class, and his 36.2 minutes per game ranked fourth in the NBA.

  • Cavaliers' Irving says he'll play Game 1 vs. Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers All-Star guard Kyrie Irving returned to practice and says his leg injuries will not keep him off the court for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals.Irving sat out Cleveland's practice Saturday and spent the weekend receiving treatment on tendinitis in his left knee and a sprained right foot as the Cavs rested for their series against the Atlanta Hawks. On Monday, Irving said the time off helped and he feels ''pretty good'' going into Wednesday's series opener.

  • Blazers' LaMarcus Aldridge has surgery on left thumb

    July 4, 2015

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) Trail Blazers forward LaMarcus Aldridge had surgery Monday to repair a ligament in his left thumb.The team said in a statement that Aldridge is expected to be able to return to basketball activity in about eight weeks.Aldridge, a four-time All-Star, averaged 23.4 points and 10.2 rebounds during the regular season, playing with the injured thumb for part of that time. He averaged 21.8 points and 11.2 rebounds in the playoffs.

  • Changes may be in order after Clippers' playoff collapse

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) The Clippers were on the verge of finally shedding the dubious reputation that has dogged them for decades only to lose in the second round of the playoffs for the third time in four years.Changes could be coming in the offseason to a team that will surely be haunted by its epic collapse for a long time.

  • Party time: Hawks' streak, LeBron has Atlanta fans buzzing

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Atlanta fans love a big winner, and they love big stars.So the stage is set - the NBA's biggest star playing in the biggest series in Atlanta Hawks history. The party invitations have been sent, and the infamously fair-weathered ATL fans should quickly RSVP.

  • Rockets bounce back to advance to conference finals

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Down 3-1 in the series and on the brink of elimination, the Houston Rockets reeled off three straight wins to complete an improbable comeback over the Los Angeles Clippers and return to the Western Conference finals for the first time since 1997.

  • Warriors coach Steve Kerr coming through in playoffs again

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) With the stakes high and fans ready to question and critique every move, Steve Kerr knew he'd be in the spotlight no matter how things played out this postseason.That's just the reality of being a rookie coach with the NBA MVP and the league's top-seeded team.

  • Cavs' Irving sits out practice, status for Game 1 uncertain

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James should have had a stethoscope hanging around his neck as he reeled off the latest medical updates on him and his teammates.''It goes without saying that we're banged up right now,'' the pseudo Dr. J said Saturday.

  • Rockets hope to carry momentum in Game 7 against Clippers

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Forcing a Game 7 in the Western Conference semifinals with a comeback win over the Los Angeles Clippers, the Houston Rockets have evoked memories of the Clutch City teams that won NBA titles in 1994 and '95.One more win Sunday will put them in the conference finals for the first since 1997 against a Clippers team that has never reached the conference finals.

  • Hawks finally give Atlanta reason to cheer in playoffs

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) From Cliff Levingston taking the final shot instead of Dominique Wilkins to the largest four-game blowout in NBA history, the Atlanta Hawks have plenty of playoff lowlights.Now, finally, there's something to cheer about.For the first time, the Hawks are headed to the Eastern Conference finals, just one step away from playing for the first championship since the franchise moved from St. Louis to the Deep South in 1968.

  • Irving sits out practice, rests knee as Cavs ready for Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James should have had a stethoscope hanging around his neck as he reeled off the latest medical updates on him and his teammates.''It goes without saying that we're banged up right now,'' the pseudo Dr. J said Saturday.

  • Irving rests sore knee, foot as Cavaliers gear up for Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) All-Star guard Kyrie Irving has stayed off the practice court to rest his injured knee as the Cavaliers began preparing for the Eastern Conference finals against Atlanta.Irving sat out nearly three quarters of Game 6 in Chicago on Thursday night after aggravating tendinitis in his left knee. Irving was seen by team doctors on Friday and on Saturday Cavs' coach David Blatt says he's hopeful his starting point guard will play in Wednesday's Game 1 in Atlanta.

  • Lack of outside shooting costs Grizzlies in playoffs again

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) For the fifth straight year, the Memphis Grizzlies have come up short of the NBA championship they want so badly.After losing to the Golden State Warriors, they head into another offseason looking for the same thing to help them go further - better outside shooting.

  • No longer just a dunker, Griffin emerges as playoff star

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Every NBA fan knows Blake Griffin, resident dunk-monster of Lob City. His one-handed jams have been fodder for highlight reels since his pro career began five years ago.This playoff season, Griffin is showing a new level of production.

  • NBA Calendar

    July 4, 2015

    June 15 - Draft early-entry withdrawal deadline (5 p.m. EDT).June 25 - NBA draft.July 1 - Free agency opens.July 9 - Free-agent contracts can be signed.July 10-20 - NBA Summer League, Las Vegas.

  • Warriors earn some rest before 1st Western final since 1976

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) MVP Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors are shooting the ball outside the arc even better than they did during the regular season.Yes, they feel ready for the franchise's first Western Conference final since 1976.They finished off the Memphis Grizzlies in six games, including a 108-95 win Friday night where they became the first team since the 1985 postseason to hit 14 or more 3s in three consecutive playoff games. Curry was 8 of 13 from beyond the arc as the Warriors knocked down their playoff-best 15 3-pointers.

  • In 1st conference final, Atlanta Hawks to face LeBron's Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) As far as Jeff Teague and the rest of the Atlanta Hawks are concerned, bring on LeBron.Atlanta managed to make it to its first Eastern Conference final without the sort of transcendent, game-changing player that upcoming opponent Cleveland features with LeBron James. The Hawks are OK with that.

  • Warriors advance to Western final, beating Memphis 108-95

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Stephen Curry scored 32 points, including a 62-footer to end the third quarter, and Golden State advanced to its first Western Conference finals since 1976 by beating Memphis 108-95 on Friday night.The Warriors advanced with some of the best shooting in the NBA postseason since 1985, becoming the first team since that year to hit 14 or more 3s in three consecutive playoff games. Curry was 8 of 13 from beyond the arc as the Warriors knocked down a playoff-best 15 3-pointers, closing out Memphis with their third straight win.

  • Grizzlies Tony Allen starts, lasts 5 minute vs. Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Grizzlies guard Tony Allen started Game 6 on Friday night and managed to play all of 5 minutes before his injured left hamstring sent him to the bench against the Golden State Warriors.Allen said after Friday morning's shootaround that he was at about 60 percent. But he tried to play with Memphis facing elimination. He hit one of three shots before going to the bench. He was limping noticeably when he came out for the second half and stayed on the bench.

  • With Bulls' season over, Thibodeau watch begins

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls' season ended. And the Tom Thibodeau watch began.The Bulls headed into the offseason Friday with one big issue hanging over them - the future of their coach.There is heavy speculation that Thibodeau will not be back because of a rift with management despite a 255-139 record and playoff appearances in each of his five seasons. But there was no word from the Bulls on Friday.

  • Cavaliers push through injuries on path to Eastern finals

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) LeBron James sat in his usual middle seat at the postgame podium talking about another playoff win, one moving him closer to another NBA championship.He was joined by unlikely company, a point guard to his right and power forward to his left but not the same ones he began these playoffs with a few weeks ago.

  • Grizzlies guard Tony Allen says he's playing vs. Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Grizzlies guard Tony Allen says he's definitely playing Game 6 against the Golden State Warriors with Memphis needing a win to avoid elimination trailing their Western Conference semifinal 3-2.Allen said after Friday morning's shoot around that he's obviously fighting an injury but will come out to help his teammates as much as he can.

  • Cavaliers, King James take next step toward crown

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Everything changed for the Cleveland Cavaliers when they found out LeBron James was bringing his talents home from South Beach.Just like that, they were contenders again. And now, they're headed to the Eastern Conference finals.The Cavaliers knocked out the Chicago Bulls 94-73 on Thursday night to clinch their Eastern Conference semifinal series in six games even though James struggled to score 15 points and Kyrie Irving limped off the court.

  • College star Kaminsky hears doubts as he prepares for NBA

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Frank Kaminsky measured as the tallest player at the NBA Draft Combine, and he felt like a big target already.The do-it-all player of the year in college keeps hearing what he can't do as a pro. He's not strong enough, quick enough, or even young enough next to the flashier kids in the class.

  • James struggles, Cavaliers still advance past Bulls 94-73

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) LeBron James struggled to score 15 points, Kyrie Irving limped off the court and Cleveland still beat Chicago 94-73 on Thursday night to clinch their Eastern Conference semifinal series in six games.Matthew Dellavedova scored 19 points and Tristan Thompson added 13 points and 17 rebounds to help the Cavaliers advance to the conference final for the first time since 2009.

  • Cavaliers' Irving injured in Game 6 of Eastern semis

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving was not on the court to start the second half of Game 6 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Chicago Bulls, and ESPN reported he is doubtful to return.Irving, playing on two injured legs, crumbled to the court grimacing in pain after he came down on teammate Tristan Thompson's foot with 9:47 left in the first half. He limped to the sideline and then to the locker room.

  • Gasol in lineup for Bulls in Game 6 of semis

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Chicago Bulls forward Pau Gasol is in the lineup for Game 6 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night.Gasol is back after missing two games because of a strained left hamstring. The Bulls hope he can help them avoid elimination with Cleveland up 3-2 in the series, even if he is limited.

  • Top-seeded Warriors, Hawks try to close out series, advance

    July 4, 2015

    The Golden State Warriors and Atlanta Hawks have regained control of their respective series, doing their best to restore order in the NBA playoffs.Though things can turn quickly in these series, and the league could easily fall right back into postseason chaos. That's exactly what the upset-minded Wizards and Grizzlies have in mind.

  • Westbrook, Barneys New York launch spring collection

    July 4, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Barneys New York, a luxury department store chain, has announced the release of its latest fashion collaboration with Oklahoma City Thunder All-Star Russell Westbrook.The Westbrook XO Barneys New York Spring 2015 Collection is the second installment in the series - Barneys first worked with Westbrook last summer, and will do so again next year.

  • Gasol remains on track to play for Bulls in Game 6 of semis

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Chicago Bulls forward Pau Gasol remains on track to play against the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 6 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series on Thursday night.Coach Tom Thibodeau said at the morning shootaround that the five-time All-Star is ''feeling a lot better,'' but would not say if he will be in the lineup. Gasol said Wednesday he plans to play after missing back-to-back games because of a strained left hamstring.

  • Bulls' Noah wins J. Walter Kennedy Award for citizenship

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah won the J. Walter Kennedy Award, given annually to an NBA player, coach or trainer for community service.The two-time All-Star was selected by the Pro Basketball Writers Association for his work with youth. His Noah's Arc Foundation recently launched the ''Rock Your Drop: The Drop of Consciousness'' anti-violence initiative, supporting those impacted by violence and encouraging youngsters to express themselves through sports and art.

  • Allen's absence felt in Grizzlies Game 5 loss to Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Memphis Grizzlies figured Tony Allen's absence would hurt on the defensive end.They hoped that Jeff Green and Vince Carter could make up for the defensive stopper's injury on the offensive end.Instead Green and Carter struggled to make shots and Marc Gasol was unable to dominate inside as the Grizzlies fell 98-78 to the Golden State Warriors in Game 5 of their second-round series on Wednesday night.

  • Horford's late follow gives Hawks 82-81 win over Wizards

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Al Horford's offensive rebound with 1.9 seconds left after Dennis Schroder's drive to the basket was blocked by John Wall, gave top-seeded Atlanta an 82-81 victory over Washington on Wednesday night and a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

  • Wizards' John Wall plays well returning from hand injury

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) John Wall hardly played like a guy who fractured several bones in his left hand 10 days earlier.Returning to the playoffs after missing the previous three games, the Washington Wizards star scored 15 points and made what could have been a game-saving block in the closing seconds Wednesday night.

  • Clippers, Cavaliers have closeouts on their minds

    July 4, 2015

    As the stakes get higher in these NBA playoffs, LeBron James only seems to get better.The best player in the world has found another gear as he tries to will the Cleveland Cavaliers forward, even as the injuries mount on his teammates and his own body.

  • Grizzlies guard Tony Allen out for Game 5 vs. Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Memphis Grizzlies guard Tony Allen sat out Game 5 against the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday night because of a left hamstring injury.Allen had been listed as questionable to play but the Grizzlies decided before the game to hold him out.

  • Wizards' John Wall starting Game 5 of playoffs vs Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Washington Wizards star John Wall was starting Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday night despite several fractures in his left hand.Wall missed the last three games of the best-of-seven series after injuring his hand in a fall along the baseline during the May 3 opener.

  • Wizards' John Wall active for Game 5 of playoffs vs Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Washington Wizards star John Wall was active for Wednesday night's playoff game against the Atlanta Hawks and looked set to start Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals despite several fractures in his left hand.Wall missed the last three games of the best-of-seven series after injuring his hand in a fall along the baseline during the May 3 opener.

  • Clippers down to last chance to close Rockets out at home

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Chris Paul has never reached the conference finals in his 10-year All-Star career. Neither have the Los Angeles Clippers. Now the pressure is on them to make franchise history together.They failed to get it done in Game 5, losing 124-103 to the Rockets in Houston - the third straight game of the series to be decided by 20 points or more. The Clippers were on the winning end of the first two blowouts, both at home.

  • A roof grows in Brooklyn: Barclays Center to get grassy lid

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) A roof grows in Brooklyn.One of the nation's biggest green roofs on a sports arena is taking shape atop Brooklyn's Barclays Center, where cranes are hoisting tons of steel beams and decking that will provide the base for an urban prairie in the sky.

  • Mind over matter: Cavs' Irving pushing past playoff injuries

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) As the crowd's roar softened after the Cavaliers fended off Chicago's last, late charge, LeBron James smiled and mocked Kyrie Irving's slow, pained walk.''Get your limping (butt) over here,'' James said before wrapping his arms around his gifted, gimpy younger teammate.

  • Cavs' Dellavedova gets technical for Game 5 incident

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers guard Matthew Dellavedova has been assessed a technical foul by the NBA for his role in a skirmish in Game 5 against the Bulls.Dellavedova locked his legs around Chicago forward Taj Gibson, who was ejected in the fourth quarter after kicking his leg to free himself from the guard's hold. Dellavedova also received an automatic ,000 fine for the technical.

  • Bulls' Gasol plans to play in Game 6 against Cleveland

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Chicago Bulls forward Pau Gasol plans to play in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Cleveland Cavaliers.The five-time All-Star has missed the past two games because of a strained left hamstring. While coach Tom Thibodeau wouldn't say if he will play Thursday, Gasol later made it clear that he expects to be in uniform with Chicago down 3-2 and facing elimination at home.

  • A roof grows in Brooklyn: Barclay's Center to get grassy lid

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) A roof grows in Brooklyn.One of the nation's biggest green roofs on a sports arena is taking shape atop Brooklyn's Barclays Center, where cranes are hoisting tons of steel beams and decking that will provide the base for an urban prairie in the sky.

  • Grizzlies guard Tony Allen a 'game-time' decision for Game 5

    July 4, 2015

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Memphis Grizzlies guard Tony Allen remains questionable to play in Game 5 against the Golden State Warriors because of a sore left hamstring.Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger told reporters after the team's shootaround in San Francisco that Allen will be a game-time decision Wednesday night. The series is tied 2-2.

  • Cavs' Irving pushing past playoff injuries

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Kyrie Irving was understandably sore on Wednesday, a day after battling through injuries to both legs to score 25 points in Cleveland's Game 5 win over Chicago.The All-Star guard pushed through some pain to help the Cavs move within one win of closing out the Bulls. Coach David Blatt said Wednesday he could tell Irving was slowed by a sprained right foot and sore left knee, but he found a way to get open and make shots.

  • Wizards' Wall unsure if he'll play against Hawks in Game 5

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) John Wall's status for Wednesday night's Game 5 against Atlanta is still unclear.The Washington Wizards All-Star point guard practiced his dribbling for the second straight day, but said he doesn't know if he'll play against the Hawks.Wall has missed three straight games since suffering five non-displaced fractures in his left wrist and hand.

  • Police: Cavs' Perkins in verbal dispute with wife

    July 4, 2015

    WESTLAKE, Ohio (AP) Police are investigating a roadside altercation between Cavaliers forward Kendrick Perkins and his wife.According to police, a 911 caller told them that Perkins and his wife, Vanity, were ''fighting'' by their SUV on Wednesday morning. When officers arrived, the couple claimed they were having an argument, police said. However, the 911 caller claimed there was physical contract between the pair.

  • Barkley, 'Inside the NBA' crew get new multiyear deals

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Charles Barkley won't be gone fishin' just yet.After previously suggesting he might leave TNT at the end of his current contract, the Hall of Famer has agreed to a multiyear extension to remain as a studio analyst for ''Inside the NBA.'' The network announced Wednesday that all of the show's stars had received new deals, so Barkley will keep trading barbs with fellow commentators Kenny Smith and Shaquille O'Neal and host Ernie Johnson.

  • Top-seeded Warriors, Hawks return home for pivotal Game 5s

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Golden State Warriors and Atlanta Hawks spent all season earning home-court advantage in the playoffs, quickly lost it in the second round, and then regained it.Whether they've rediscovered their regular-season form is another matter.

  • Bulls Taj Gibson ejected in 4th quarter of Game 5

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Bulls forward Taj Gibson has been ejected from Game 5 in the fourth quarter for kicking Cavaliers guard Matthew Dellavedova.Gibson shoved Dellavedova from behind and then delivered a kick while Cleveland's scrappy guard was lying in the foul lane. Players from both teams then exchanged shoves and pushes under the basket before order was restored.

  • Bulls' Gasol will miss Game 5 with strained hamstring

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) The Bulls are again missing one of their big men.Chicago forward/center Pau Gasol will sit out Tuesday night's Game 5 against the Cleveland Cavaliers with a strained left hamstring, an injury he sustained in Game 3 of the series and also kept him out of the Game 4.

  • Top seeds Warriors, Hawks returning home for pivotal Game 5s

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Golden State Warriors and Atlanta Hawks spent all season earning home-court advantage in the playoffs, quickly lost it in the second round, and then regained it.Whether they've rediscovered their regular-season form is another matter.

  • NBA draft to be held at Barclays Center on June 25

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA draft will be held at the Barclays Center, the home of the Brooklyn Nets, on June 25.The league announced Tuesday that Brooklyn will host the draft for the third consecutive year.The NBA draft lottery, held on May 19 in New York and broadcast on ESPN, will determine the first 14 picks of the draft.

  • Wizards' Wall shows improvement; Game 5 status uncertain

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Washington Wizards guard John Wall took the next step in recovery from a fractured left hand and wrist: He dribbled.The All-Star missed the last three playoff games since suffering five non-displaced fractures in his left wrist and hand in Game 1 against Atlanta on May 3.

  • New Orleans Pelicans fire head coach Monty Williams

    July 4, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) The New Orleans Pelicans fired head coach Monty Williams on Tuesday, parting ways with a coach who has a strong relationship with the franchise's marquee player, Anthony Davis.General manager Dell Demps, who'll lead the search for a new coach, said he informed Davis of the decision in a one-on-one meeting after the move was made. When asked about Davis' reaction, Demps said, ''That'll stay between us.''

  • LeBron hasn't tested ankle, Gasol game-time decision

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James says he has not yet tested his sprained left ankle as the Cavaliers prepare for Game 5 against Chicago.James had his ankle wrapped at the team's morning shootaround on Tuesday. He got hurt in the third quarter of Sunday's game when he stepped on one of Derrick Rose's feet on a drive to the basket. James stayed in the game and dropped a buzzer-beating jumper to give Cleveland an 86-84 win.

  • Golden State ties series at 2-2, rout Grizzlies 101-84

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Stephen Curry scored 21 of his 33 points by halftime, and Golden State snapped its two-game skid Monday night by routing Memphis 101-84 to tie the Western Conference semifinal at 2-2.The Warriors hadn't lost three straight games all season, and they never came close as they took back home-court advantage. Curry hadn't scored more than 23 points in this series, and he nearly had that by halftime.

  • Bulls-Cavaliers Preview

    July 4, 2015

    Among the multitude of highlights in the long-running clash between LeBron James and the Chicago Bulls, the big moments in this playoff series may stand alone.Two former MVPs, two buzzer-beaters, two wins apiece.With this Eastern Conference semifinal now a best-of-three, those dramatics only figure to increase Tuesday night when the series shifts back to Cleveland for a critical Game 5 after James gave the Cavaliers a thrilling win in Chicago.

  • Wizards guard Wall sits out 3rd straight game against Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) All-Star point guard John Wall will sit out his third consecutive game in the Washington Wizards' second-round playoff series against the Atlanta Hawks.Wizards coach Randy Wittman says Wall won't play Monday night because of an injured left hand and wrist.

  • Cavs and Bulls recovering, Clippers aiming to oust Rockets

    July 4, 2015

    There's been former MVP's winning games with dramatic buzzer-beating jumpers. There's been injuries to stars. There's been a coach getting questioned by his own team.And now this Chicago-Cleveland series is going to get really intense.Game 5's have arrived in the second round of the NBA playoffs, with the Bulls visiting the Cavaliers in their knotted-up series to start a Tuesday night doubleheader. The nightcap features the Los Angeles Clippers - a franchise that has never won two playoff series in the same year - looking to change that and advance, as they take a 3-1 lead into Houston.

  • Cavs coach Blatt owns up to late-game gaffes, LeBron bailout

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) David Blatt stepped over some cables and weaved through a throng of reporters eager to hear his explanation of two head-scratching decisions on Sunday in Chicago.Blatt leaned back and steadied himself. He was up against a wall, literally and figuratively, with some explaining to do.

  • LeBron, Irving both nursing injuries before Game 5

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers stars LeBron James and Kyrie Irving both underwent treatment for injuries as they prepared for Tuesday's Game 5 against Chicago.James rolled his left ankle in the third quarter of Sunday's Game 4 win. He battled through the injury before hitting a game-winning shot at the buzzer to even the series 2-2. James said he watched several replays of him turning his ankle over and was shocked he was able to finish the game.

  • Top seeds in both East, West in trouble trailing semis 2-1

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) First-year coach Steve Kerr knows a crucial moment in the playoffs, so he understands exactly the test his Golden State Warriors face trailing Memphis 2-1 in their Western Conference semifinal.If his Warriors adapt and correct their mistakes mid-series, then the team that posted the NBA's best record in the regular season can continue its dream season. Keep rushing while turning the ball over and missing too many 3s, and those growing pains will hurt until this time next year.

  • Warriors forward Marreese Speights out with strained calf

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Warriors reserve forward Marreese Speights has a strained right calf that could keep him out for the rest of Golden State's series with the Memphis Grizzlies.The Warriors said Sunday that Speights had an MRI exam that showed a moderate strain, and the forward will be re-evaluated in one week.

  • Bulls' Gasol out for Game 4 against Cavaliers

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Chicago Bulls forward Pau Gasol will miss Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinals because of a strained left hamstring.Coach Tom Thibodeau said Sunday the five-time All-Star was still sore and remains day to day. He said he is not sure if Gasol will be ready for Game 5 on Tuesday at Cleveland.

  • Pierce's buzzer-beater lifts Wiz past Hawks 103-101

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Paul Pierce's banked-in 21-foot jumper at the buzzer gave Washington a 103-101 victory over Atlanta on Saturday night, even with an injured John Wall reduced to cheerleading, and after a 21-point lead had dwindled down to nothing.The Wizards lead the Eastern Conference semifinal series 2-1.

  • Marreese Speights hurts right calf in 4th vs. Memphis

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Golden State Warriors reserve forward Marreese Speights strained his right calf in the fourth quarter and will not return against the Memphis Grizzlies on Saturday night.Speights scored six points in 41 seconds in the fourth quarter pulling Golden State within 83-70 before he hopped to the sideline during a timeout. Then he walked gingerly to the locker room.

  • No giddiness from Doc Rivers and son Austin after big game

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Doc Rivers spares no one on the Clippers, including son Austin. So when the young guard had the biggest game of his young career, it might have been heartwarming to everyone else, but it was just business to the only coach-father and son duo in NBA history.

  • Millsap out of Hawks' starting lineup for Game 3 against Wiz

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) Atlanta Hawks forward Paul Millsap is out of the starting lineup for Game 3 against the Washington Wizards because of flu-like symptoms.Millsap was listed in Atlanta's expected starting lineup Saturday. But when a new list of starters was issued shortly before tipoff, Pero Antic replaced Millsap.

  • Paul set to play for Clippers in Game 4 against Rockets

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Chris Paul's hamstring injury is showing improvement and he will start for the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 4 against the Houston Rockets.Coach Doc Rivers says Paul might play a few more minutes Sunday because he was feeling better a day after the Clippers won 124-99 to take a 2-1 lead in the Western Conference semifinals.

  • Bulls' Gasol questionable for Game 4 against Cavaliers

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Chicago Bulls forward Pau Gasol is questionable for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Cleveland Cavaliers because of a strained left hamstring.Gasol left Friday night's game, and an MRI showed no major structural damage, although coach Tom Thibodeau said he was ''not sure'' how severe the strain is. He also said ''we'll see how he feels'' when asked if the five-time All-Star will play Sunday.

  • Injuries keep piling up, adding to playoff drama

    July 4, 2015

    Kyrie Irving is limping. Pau Gasol is aching. Chris Paul is limited. Kevin Love is gone. And the injury list around the NBA just keeps growing.Welcome to the survival phase of the playoffs.Health will surely factor into the Game 4s on Sunday's schedule, when Cleveland visits Chicago and Houston visits the Los Angeles Clippers - with the Cavaliers and Rockets trying to avoid 3-1 deficits.

  • Clippers' Glen Davis fined ,000 for flop vs Rockets

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Glen Davis of the Los Angeles Clippers was fined ,000 by the NBA on Saturday for violating the league's anti-flopping rules in Game 3 of the playoffs against the Houston Rockets.The flop occurred with 1:09 remaining in the first quarter of the Clippers' 124-99 victory over the Rockets on Friday night.

  • Wizards PG John Wall out for Game 3 against Atlanta Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) All-Star point guard John Wall was inactive for Game 3 of the Washington Wizards' Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday because of an injured left hand and wrist.Wizards coach Randy Wittman said he does not know Wall's status beyond Saturday.

  • Grizzlies' Conley has new mask with swelling easing in cheek

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Mike Conley will be protecting his face with a new mask Saturday night against Golden State, needing a more snug fit with the swelling easing in the Grizzlies guard's left cheek.Conley tested the new mask Saturday morning at shoot around, and he says this one has a tighter fit.

  • BC-AP Sports Preview Digest

    July 4, 2015

    Some of the sports stories The Associated Press is covering Saturday. A full Sports Digest will be sent about 3 p.m. All times EDT:- ATLANTA - Jameis Winston's attorneys filed a counterclaim against the woman who is suing Tampa Bay's rookie quarterback, saying the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft did not rape Erica Kinsman and her lawsuit is motivated by greed. SENT: 700 words, photos. SENT: 600 words, phots. UPDATES as warranted.

  • Rose banks in 3 at buzzer to lift Bulls over Cavaliers 99-96

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Derrick Rose wanted to make one thing clear about his winning 3-pointer. He did not call glass.Rose banked in a 3-pointer at the buzzer and scored 30 points Friday night to give the Chicago Bulls a 99-96 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers and a 2-1 lead in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

  • Injured Chris Paul to start Game 3 for Clippers

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Injured Chris Paul will start for the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 3 against the Houston Rockets on Friday night.Coach Doc Rivers confirmed before the game that Paul will make his series debut after missing the first two games of the Western Conference semifinals because of a strained left hamstring. The series was tied 1-1.

  • Smith returns from suspension, Shumpert in lineup for Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Cleveland Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith is back from a two-game suspension and Iman Shumpert is in the starting lineup for Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Chicago Bulls on Friday night.Shumpert's status was in question after he strained his left groin in Wednesday's win.

  • NBA fines Clippers' Barnes, Bulls' Noah

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Los Angeles Clippers forward Matt Barnes was fined ,000 by the NBA on Friday for directing inappropriate language at a courtside fan who turned out to be Houston star James Harden's mother.Barnes made the comments to Monja Willis during the Clippers' Game 2 loss in Houston on Wednesday night.

  • Injured point guards major impact in East, West semifinals

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) John Wall hopes to test his broken left hand and wrist by trying to dribble a basketball.''You have to be able to dribble,'' the Wizards' All-Star guard said Friday. ''It's basically taping my hand behind my back and saying dribble with one hand. It's not happening in this league. It's just something I have to deal with. It's frustrating. It's tough.''

  • Matt Barnes: Injured Chris Paul will play Game 3

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Matt Barnes says injured Los Angeles Clippers teammate Chris Paul will play Game 3 against the Houston Rockets.Paul missed the first two games of the Western Conference semifinals with a strained left hamstring. The best-of-7 series is tied 1-1 going into Friday night's game at Staples Center.

  • Wizards' Wall unsure about availability for series vs Hawks

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) John Wall doesn't know if he will be available for the Washington Wizards' next game on Saturday or the remainder of the series with the Atlanta Hawks.The All-Star point guard has five non-displaced fractures in his left wrist and hand. Wall said Friday the injury news announced the day before was ''devastating. I was excited about playing.''

  • Smith set to return, Shumpert game-time decision for Cavs

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) Cleveland Cavaliers guard J.R. Smith is ready to return from a two-game suspension while Iman Shumpert's status for Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinals in Chicago remained in question because of a groin strain.Smith was expected to suit up Friday night for the first time since he hit Boston's Jae Crowder in the face in the opening round. He felt he let his team down by doing that, particularly since the Cavaliers had already lost Kevin Love to a season-ending shoulder injury in that game.

  • Breaking down some numbers from the NBA Playoffs

    July 4, 2015

    A look inside the numbers of the NBA playoffs, as the conference semifinals resume Friday night with Cleveland at Chicago and Houston at the Los Angeles Clippers.The other semis pick up again on Saturday, with Golden State at Memphis and Atlanta visiting Washington.

  • NBA: Most exclusive club when it comes to winning titles

    July 4, 2015

    The NBA could crown a first-time champion this year.Or, at the very least, a team that hasn't won a title in nearly two decades.Of the eight teams remaining in the playoffs, the most recent to win a championship is the Chicago Bulls, who captured the last of their six Michael Jordan-era banners in 1998.

  • With longtime powers sidelined, NBA playoffs have fresh look

    July 4, 2015

    Spurs and Celtics? Already eliminated.Lakers and Heat? Didn't even make the playoffs.There's a new look to this NBA postseason, which will crown a champion that hasn't won the title in at least 17 years - or, quite possibly, a franchise that has never been on top.

  • LeBron leads Cavs into Chicago, with JR Smith joining him

    July 4, 2015

    The statue outside is of Michael Jordan. The court inside, come playoff time, has often belonged to LeBron James.James is headed back to Chicago - with J.R. Smith joining him for the first time in the series - when the Cleveland Cavaliers face the Bulls on Friday night in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.

  • Injured Chris Paul works out on court for Clippers

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Chris Paul worked out on the court Thursday, a positive sign in his struggle to overcome a strained left hamstring, though it's not known whether he can play for the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 3 against the Houston Rockets.Coach Doc Rivers said on a teleconference that ''everything is going well'' with the All-Star guard, but his status is unknown going into Friday night, when the series resumes at Staples Center. The teams are tied 1-1 after a split in Houston.

  • Grizzlies' Tony Allen showing why he's called Grindfather

    July 4, 2015

    In Memphis, Tony Allen is known simply as the Grindfather. Kevin Durant and others call him the NBA's toughest one-on-one defender.Give him an opponent, watch him go to work studying tape for angles to attack, tendencies to expose. Then Allen clamps down, getting as close as physically possible and taking that man out of his game.

  • Ex-Knicks exec criticizes Garden for hiring Thomas

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The woman once at the center of a sexual harassment lawsuit involving Isiah Thomas is criticizing Madison Square Garden for rehiring the former NBA star.Anucha Browne Sanders won an .5 million suit against Thomas, the Garden and chairman Jim Dolan in 2007. Thomas, the former Knicks president and coach, was hired this week by Dolan as president of the WNBA's New York Liberty.

  • Wizards' Wall has multiple fractures in left wrist, hand

    July 4, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) John Wall has five non-displaced fractures in his left wrist and hand, and the All-Star guard's playing status has not been determined.Wall was hurt in Game 1 of Washington's Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Atlanta Hawks. Initial X-rays were negative, but ''multiple examinations'' on Wednesday revealed the injuries, the Wizards announced Thursday.

  • Rockets' Brewer fined ,000 for flopping

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The NBA has fined Houston Rockets swingman Corey Brewer ,000 for flopping.Brewer was penalized Thursday for tumbling backward well beyond the baseline and crashing into the basket stanchion after stepping in front of Clippers guard Lester Hudson with 1:03 remaining in the first quarter of Houston's 115-109 victory on Wednesday.

  • NBA TV documentary looks at Rockets' back-to-back champs

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The Houston Rockets teams that won consecutive NBA titles in the mid-1990s during Michael Jordan's retirement will be the focus of an upcoming NBA TV documentary.''Clutch City'' looks at the 1994 and 1995 champions, led by Hakeem Olajuwon and coached by Rudy Tomjanovich. It will be televised Monday, June 8, at 9 p.m. EDT, an off day during the NBA Finals when the network has debuted other specials in recent years.

  • Cavs' Shumpert improves, status for Game 3 unknown

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers coach David Blatt walked across his team's practice court wearing a black T-shirt that maybe best sums up his team's current delicate status.''Talent Ain't Enough,'' it said.Not for the Cavs, who are facing the possibility of being down another key player in the postseason.

  • Cavs apologize for in-game video showing man throwing woman

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Cavaliers apologized Thursday for a video parody that showed a man violently throwing a woman across a room for wearing a Chicago Bulls T-shirt.During a timeout in Cleveland's win on Wednesday night, the team showed a one-minute video (https://youtu.be/zVV6oXTH9Wc ) on its large scoreboard spoofing a popular TV commercial for United Healthcare in which a couple fall while attempting the famous lift from ''Dirty Dancing.'' In the Cavs' in-arena promotion, the male Cleveland fan lifts his partner then tosses her over a sofa, saying: ''Bulls fan? I didn't know you were a Bulls fan.''

  • Phoenix Suns' Morris twins plead not guilty in beating case

    July 4, 2015

    PHOENIX (AP) Phoenix Suns players Marcus and Markieff Morris have pleaded not guilty to two counts of felony aggravated assault.The twins are accused of helping three others beat a man outside a Phoenix recreation center on Jan. 24. The brothers entered their pleas Thursday morning in Maricopa County Superior Court.

  • Bulls' Jimmy Butler selected as NBA's Most Improved Player

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) There was a time when Jimmy Butler was kicked out of his home as a teenager with no place to go. He has come a long way since then.The Chicago Bulls guard was named the NBA's Most Improved Player on Thursday after making his first All-Star team and averaging a career high in scoring.

  • Cavs chided for in-game video showing man throwing woman

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Cavaliers are being criticized on social networks for playing a video during Wednesday night's playoff game that showed a man throwing a woman across a room for wearing a Bulls T-shirt.During the Cavs' game against Chicago, the team showed a video on its large scoreboard spoofing a popular TV commercial in which a couple fall while attempting the famous lift from ''Dirty Dancing.'' In the Cavs' in-arena promotion, the male Cavs fan lifts his partner then tosses her over a sofa, saying: ''Bulls fan? I didn't know you were a Bulls fan.''

  • Seattle arena can move forward after environmental review

    July 4, 2015

    SEATTLE (AP) The hopes of bringing the NBA back to Seattle and adding an NHL team passed a significant milestone Thursday when a final environmental impact statement found no major issues to block a projected new multipurpose arena in Seattle's stadium district.

  • Conley's comeback stirs memories of gritty performances

    July 4, 2015

    The Masked Assassin. One-Eyed Charlie. The Terminator.Call Mike Conley whatever nickname you prefer.The injured point guard's gritty performance led the Memphis Grizzlies to a 97-90 win in Game 2 over the Golden State Warriors and earned him instant respect from players, coaches and fans across the country. It also evoked memories of some of the most courageous showings in sports history.

  • Shaquille O'Neal tumbles on set of TNT halftime report

    July 4, 2015

    Shaquille O'Neal took quite a tumble during the ''NBA on TNT'' halftime show of the Clippers-Rockets game on Wednesday night.O'Neal appeared to get his foot caught in wires and crashed off the raised platform onto the floor of the set. He lost his shoe in the process and his 7-foot-plus, 325-pound frame was on the deck for a time.

  • Pelicans' Holiday has screw removed from right leg

    July 4, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) Jrue Holiday has had surgery to remove a screw from his lower right leg, which has hampered the New Orleans Pelicans guard for much of the past two seasons.The Pelicans say a procedure performed Wednesday was deemed successful after a screw was removed from a rod previously placed along Holiday's shin to help him heal from a stress fracture that first sidelined him two seasons ago.

  • Clippers' Paul out against Houston in Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul will miss his second straight game with a strained left hamstring, sitting out Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals against Houston.Paul was injured Saturday night against San Antonio, but returned to hit the winning shot to eliminate the Spurs.

  • LeBron puts headband back on for Game 2 vs. Chicago

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) King James placed his crown back on for Game 2.LeBron James returned to the floor Wednesday night against Chicago wearing his signature headband, which the Cavaliers' star had ditched since a March 7 game against Phoenix. Since his high school days in Akron, James had always worn a headband before surprisingly putting it away for nearly two months.

  • Cavs start forward Tristan Thompson in Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cavaliers forward Tristan Thompson started Game 2 against Chicago, a move that put LeBron James back at his customary small forward position.Thompson started 15 games during the regular season, but 6-foot-8 big man has been most effective coming off the bench with Cleveland's second unit.

  • Utah Jazz hold first pre-draft workouts of summer

    July 4, 2015

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Quin Snyder and his assistants weren't in place when the Utah Jazz began their pre-draft workouts a year ago. The entire coaching staff will have its fingerprints all over the process this time around.The Jazz held their first pre-draft workout of the offseason Wednesday, hosting six seniors and officially beginning the next stage of player evaluation.

  • Cavaliers cancel arm slings giveaway during playoffs

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) The Cavaliers canceled a plan to give away 20,000 arm slings to fans to show support for injured starting forward Kevin Love, who is out for the rest of the NBA playoffs.Love underwent surgery last week after his left shoulder was dislocated when his arm was yanked from the socket by Boston center Kelly Olynyk in Cleveland's series-clinching win in the opening round. The Cavs intended to hand out the slings, adorned with a sponsor's name, during their Eastern Conference semifinal series against Chicago but scrapped the idea.

  • Utah Jazz hold first predraft workouts of summer

    July 4, 2015

    SALT LAKE CITY (AP) The Utah Jazz held their first predraft workout of the offseason Wednesday, hosting six seniors and officially beginning the next stage of player evaluation.Coach Quin Snyder is out of town this week, but general manager Dennis Lindsey, assistant general manager Justin Zanik and vice president of player personnel Walt Perrin were all in attendance. Assistant coach Brad Jones ran the session that included guards D.J. Newbill (Penn State), Rayvonte Rice (Illinois), Trey Zeigler (TCU), Russell Byrd (Master's College), Denzel Livingston (Incarnate Word) and forward Maurice Ndour (Ohio).

  • Pelicans' Pondexter has offseason surgery

    July 4, 2015

    METAIRIE, La. (AP) New Orleans Pelicans forward Quincy Pondexter has undergone arthroscopic surgery on his left knee.The Pelicans say the procedure, performed Wednesday, was successful, adding that they'll soon be able to project a timetable for Pondexter's return to ''basketball activities.''

  • King wants to keep Lopez, try to build Nets around him

    July 4, 2015

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) The big blockbusters haven't done much for the Brooklyn Nets. So now general manager Billy King is looking to improve from within.Just don't rule out another trade.Keeping Brook Lopez is the priority, while moving Deron Williams and Joe Johnson could be options if King decides to break up Brooklyn's core.

  • Pass first? Point guards look to show you can score, win

    July 4, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Bob Cousy, Magic Johnson and Isiah Thomas set the standard for championship point guards, winning mostly by setting up their teammates even though they were capable scorers.Stephen Curry, Derrick Rose and Kyrie Irving are trying to see if they can take a different path to the title, more often beating opponents scoring the basketball, though they are capable passers.

  • Cavs expected to start Tristan Thompson in Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Cavaliers forward Tristan Thompson is expected to start Game 2 against Chicago, a move that puts LeBron James back at his customary small forward position.Thompson started 15 games during the regular season, but 6-foot-8 big man has been most effective coming off the bench with Cleveland's second unit.

  • Warriors lose shooting touch in Game 2 loss to Grizzlies

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) A celebratory night quickly turned into a puzzling one for the Golden State Warriors.With the long-range shots not falling as usual and sloppy play from the start, a night that started with Stephen Curry being handed the Most Valuable Player trophy ended with the first home for the Warriors in more than three months.

  • Conley comes back, leads Grizzlies past Warriors 97-90

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Mike Conley returned just eight days after having facial surgery to score 22 points, and Memphis used a smothering defensive effort to beat Golden State 97-90 on Tuesday night, evening the Western Conference semifinals 1-1.Wearing a clear mask to protect his swollen face and red left eye, Conley stole the spotlight from newly minted MVP Stephen Curry. He made his first four shots to get the Grizzlies going, and his teammates did the rest on defense.

  • Curry presented with MVP award before Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry was presented with his NBA Most Valuable Player trophy before Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals against Memphis.Commissioner Adam Silver handed Curry the trophy to the cheers from a raucous crowd Tuesday night.

  • Grizzlies' Mike Conley starts in Game 2 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Memphis point guard Mike Conley started for the Grizzlies in Tuesday night's Game 2 against the Golden State Warriors after missing the previous three playoff games.''I'm going to give it a go,'' Conley said after testing himself in pregame warmups. ''I'm very excited.''

  • Grizzlies' Mike Conley to start in Game 2 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Memphis point guard Mike Conley will start for the Grizzlies in Tuesday night's Game 2 against the Golden State Warriors after missing the previous three playoff games.''I'm going to give it a go,'' Conley said after testing himself in pregame warmups. ''I'm very excited.''

  • Grizzlies' Mike Conley trying to play in Game 2 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Memphis Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger says injured point guard Mike Conley is going to try to play in Game 2 against the Golden State Warriors.Conley was warming up wearing a protective mask before Tuesday night's game. He had been upgraded from doubtful to questionable after the team's morning shootaround in San Francisco.

  • Wizards G John Wall out for Game 2 vs Hawks with hand injury

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Washington Wizards star John Wall was surprisingly on the inactive list for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday night because of a left hand injury.Wall injured the hand when bracing himself as he fell along the baseline in the series opener on Sunday. He finished the game, scoring 18 points, dishing out 13 assists and playing almost 39 minutes as the Wizards upset the top-seeded Hawks 104-98.

  • TIPOFF: Paul '50-50' for Clippers; Bulls' Rose ready to play

    July 4, 2015

    Los Angeles Clippers coach Doc Rivers thinks the odds are 50-50 point guard Chris Paul will return on Wednesday night to try to help the Clippers build a 2-0 lead over the Houston Rockets in the Western Conference semifinals.Chicago Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau has no such concerns about his franchise point guard after Derrick Rose suffered a shoulder stinger in their Game 1 win over Cleveland. Rose said he's raring to go in the other Game 2 set for Wednesday night.

  • Howard happy in Houston and focused on getting a ring

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Dwight Howard knows he's a polarizing figure. He's finally learned to be OK with that.The bad feelings toward Houston's star center originated when he wanted out of Orlando and intensified amid rumblings that he couldn't get along with Kobe Bryant in his one season with the Los Angeles Lakers.

  • Plan LeB: LeBron may be more aggressive vs. Bulls in Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James leaned against a padded basket stanchion and spun a ball on his index finger. As it rotated, his brain seemed to be turning just as quickly.He's plotting his next move against the Bulls.After losing Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series to Chicago, James and the Cleveland Cavaliers regrouped on Tuesday to watch film, work on outside shooting and devise a better defensive scheme to stop a pick-and-roll play the Bulls executed to near perfection during their 99-92 victory.

  • Bulls' Derrick Rose says shoulder "feels good" for Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Chicago Bulls star guard Derrick Rose says he has no pain in his right shoulder and doesn't expect to have any problems going into Game 2 against the Cleveland Cavaliers.Rose sustained a ''stinger'' in his shoulder late in Chicago's 99-92 win over the Cavaliers in the series opener on Monday night. Rose says he's ''not sore or anything, so that's a good sign.'' He scored 25 points with five rebounds and five assists, showing flashes of the player he was before being slowed by knee injuries the past few years.

  • Grizzlies' Mike Conley upgraded to questionable for Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Memphis Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley has been upgraded from doubtful to questionable to play in Game 2 against the Golden State Warriors.Grizzlies coach Dave Joerger said after the team's morning shootaround in San Francisco that if Conley plays Tuesday night, he will start. Conley has missed the last three games recovering from surgery to repair broken bones in his face.

  • LeBron may be more aggressive against Bulls in Game 2

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James says he may have to change his mindset and be more aggressive in Game 2 against the Chicago Bulls.With Cleveland missing starters Kevin Love and J.R. Smith, the Cavs dropped Game 1 on Monday night. James scored 19 points and added 15 rebounds and nine assists, but he often deferred to others instead of driving to the basket and that may have to change if the Cavs intend to even the series on Wednesday night.

  • Griffin's triple-double lifts Clippers over Rockets 117-101

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Blake Griffin had 26 points, 14 rebounds and 13 assists for his second straight triple-double to lift the Chris Paul-less Los Angeles Clippers to a 117-101 victory over Houston on Monday night in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals.

  • Clippers' Paul's hamstring keeps him out against Houston

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) Chris Paul will not play for the Los Angeles Clippers against the Houston Rockets in Game 1 of their Western Conference semifinal Monday night because of a strained left hamstringPaul was injured Saturday night in Game 7 against the San Antonio Spurs but returned to hit the game-winning shot.

  • Mike Miller makes surprise start for Cavs in Game 1

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cavaliers veteran swingman Mike Miller was a surprise starter for Game 1 against Chicago.With Cleveland missing starters Kevin Love and J.R. Smith, Cavs coach David Blatt decided to go with Miller, who made 15 regular-season starts. The 15-year veteran's addition to the lineup was mildly shocking since Blatt also had James Jones and Shawn Marion as options.

  • Spurs facing most uncertain future ever under Popovich

    July 4, 2015

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) The Spurs are facing their most uncertain future ever under Gregg Popovich.San Antonio has only five players under contract for next season. Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili have not decided whether they will return or retire from their Hall of Fame careers. Potential franchise cornerstone Kawhi Leonard is expected to be back, but he is a restricted free agent coming off winning Defensive Player of the Year just one season after earning NBA Finals MVP honors.

  • TIPOFF: Wizards look to keep up their winning ways on road

    July 4, 2015

    The Washington Wizards are right at home on the road.Over the last two years, the Wizards have been the ultimate road warriors in the playoffs, winning eight of nine games away from D.C. and becoming the first team in NBA history to capture four straight Game 1s in the other team's arena.

  • LeBron lifts media blackout to call Chris Paul

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James lifted his personal media boycott during the playoffs to phone a friend.Cleveland's superstar does everything he can to block out distractions during the postseason: turning off his cellphone, avoiding Twitter and watching NBA games only with the sound muted.

  • Warriors' Stephen Curry voted NBA's MVP over Harden, James

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) His voice cracked first. Then, his eyes got red. Finally, Stephen Curry cried.He had felt this way in the past - when he barely received any scholarship offers out of high school, when some questioned whether his game could translate from tiny Davidson College to the NBA, when he sat in a doctor's office searching for answers on how to fix his troublesome right ankle.

  • Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry wins NBA MVP

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry has won the NBA's Most Valuable Player award, beating out Houston's James Harden in a race that turned out not to be that close.The league announced the results Monday.Curry received 100 of 130 first-place votes for a total of 1,198 points from a panel of 129 writers and broadcasters, along with the fan vote on the NBA's website. Harden had five first-place votes and 936 points. Cleveland's LeBron James got five first-place votes and 552 points.

  • Clippers-Rockets Playoff Capsule

    July 4, 2015

    WESTERN CONFERENCE SEMIFINALSNo. 2 HOUSTON ROCKETS (56-26, 4-1) VS. No. 3 LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS (56-26, 4-3)Season Series: Split, 2-2. Each team won once at home and once on the road, with the Clippers winning in more decisive fashion. They cruised to 17-point and 15-point wins while the Rockets won by two points and five points in their two victories.

  • AP Source: Warriors star Stephen Curry to be named NBA MVP

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Some called him too small. Others too fragile.Stephen Curry has another label now: NBA MVP.The Golden State point guard has won the league's most coveted individual award, a person familiar with the decision said Sunday.The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the league has not released the voting results. An official announcement and news conference are expected Monday, and Curry will be presented with the award on the court before Game 2 of the Warriors' Western Conference semifinal series against Memphis on Tuesday night.

  • AP source: Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry selected NBA most valuable player

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) AP source: Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry selected NBA most valuable player.

  • Paul questionable as Clippers and Rockets begin series

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) When the Houston Rockets open their second-round Western Conference playoff series against the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday night, it will have been six days since they last played.The Clippers are in a much different situation after clawing their way out of the first round with a gritty performance in downing the defending champion San Antonio Spurs in Game 7 on Saturday night.

  • LeBron, Cavs ready to take on raging Bulls

    July 4, 2015

    INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) LeBron James embraces challenges, big or small, personal or professional. They drive him, push him, make him dig deeper.He's about to face another daunting one. Actually, a dozen of them.The Bulls are charging at him.On Monday, the Cleveland Cavaliers, missing two starters, will open their best-of-seven Eastern Conference semifinals against a confident and finally healthy Chicago team looking to exact some revenge on James, who has eliminated them from the NBA playoffs three times since 2010.

  • Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley out for Game 1 vs Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Memphis Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley is sitting out Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Golden State Warriors as he continues to recover from surgery to repair broken bones in his face.Conley warmed up on the court Sunday wearing a clear, plastic mask. But it has been less than a week since he had surgery and the team says he will not play.

  • Bulls-Cavaliers Preview Capsule

    July 4, 2015

    No. 2 CLEVELAND CAVALIERS (53-29, 4-0) vs. No. 3 CHICAGO BULLS (50-32, 4-2)Season Series: Cavaliers, 3-1. Cleveland was 3-0 with F Kevin Love in the lineup and 0-1 when he wasn't; Love's season ended last week because of a shoulder injury. Bulls G Jimmy Butler missed two of the four games, G Derrick Rose missed one. Cavs F LeBron James averaged 28.3 points, while G Kyrie Irving shot just 39 percent but averaged 21.3 points.

  • Clippers have 2 days rest before facing Rockets in 2nd round

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) The Los Angeles Clippers have less than two days to enjoy their wildly entertaining first-round series victory over the defending NBA champion San Antonio Spurs.And what a victory it was.Chris Paul, who willed himself back from an early hamstring injury, banked in a shot over Spurs iron man Tim Duncan with a second left to lift the Clippers to a 111-109 victory in Game 7 on Saturday night that eliminated San Antonio.

  • Grizzlies-Warriors Playoff Capsule

    July 4, 2015

    EASTERN CONFERENCENo. 1 GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS (67-15, 4-0) vs. No. 5 MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES (55-27, 4-1)Season Series: Warriors, 2-1. The teams split two games in Memphis, then Golden State won its lone home game of the season series by a deceptive four-point margin - since the Warriors led by 27 after three and then a bunch of reserves gave just about every bit of the lead away.

  • For Bulls, question remains which team will show up

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) The Chicago Bulls are about to face LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference semifinals, and even they aren't quite sure which team will show up.That's because they were as inconsistent as anyone during the season.

  • Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo suspended 1 game

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo was suspended one game without pay by the NBA on Saturday for running over Chicago Bulls forward Mike Dunleavy.Antetokounmpo was called for a flagrant foul 2 and ejected for the play in the Bucks' season-ending 120-66 playoff loss to the Bulls on Thursday. Antetokounmpo will sit out the first game next season for which he is eligible and physically able to play.

  • Grizzlies, Warriors ready to meet in conference semifinals

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) The Golden State Warriors waited a week to play another playoff game, and they're still not exactly sure who they're facing in the Western Conference semifinals.Sure, they know they'll host the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 1 on Sunday. They just have no idea whether Mike Conley can play after having surgery to repair broken bones in his face or how Memphis will adjust without its point guard.

  • Hawks face quick turnaround, but seem to have swagger back

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) The Atlanta Hawks seem to have their swagger back.Just in time for the second round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.Coming off their most complete performance of the postseason, the top-seeded Hawks faced a quick turnaround before hosting the Washington Wizards in Game 1 on Sunday.

  • Nets end disappointing season without clear way to improve

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) Mikhail Prokhorov arrived from Russia as Nets owner in 2010, vowing a championship in five years or he would get married.Basketball season in Brooklyn is over.Time for wedding season?The Nets ended a largely disappointing 2014-15 on Friday with a 111-87 loss to the Atlanta Hawks in Game 6 of their first-round playoff series. Brooklyn fell 4-2 to the top seed in the Eastern Conference, those two victories pushing the Nets' total for the season to 40.

  • Wizards-Hawks Preview Capsule

    July 4, 2015

    A look at the Eastern Conference semifinal series between the Atlanta Hawks and Washington Wizards (with regular season and playoff records):No. 1 ATLANTA HAWKS (60-22, 4-2) vs. No. 5 WASHINGTON WIZARDS (46-36, 4-0)Season series: Hawks, 3-1. Atlanta won the first three meetings before giving its entire starting lineup the night off on April 12 and going with Elton Brand, John Jenkins, Mike Muscala, Kent Bazemore and Dennis Schroder in a 108-99 loss. The Hawks averaged 110.3 points with their regular team and made 16 3-pointers in a 120-89 rout on Jan. 11.

  • Hawks find their groove in finishing off Nets in first round

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) The Atlanta Hawks may never duplicate the way they played in January, during the best month in NBA history.They at least begin May looking better than in April.The 60-game winners and runaway No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference weren't sharp when the playoffs started, mostly because they were so good during the regular season that they lost their edge once everything was clinched.

  • Bucks coach Jason Kidd looks ahead to bright future

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) Milwaukee Bucks coach Jason Kidd looked ahead to what he sees as a bright future, rather than dwell on the disheartening final 48 minutes of this season.The Bucks improved from an NBA-worst 15 victories last season to 41 in their first season under Kidd. Their surprising season come to an abrupt halt with the worst defeat in franchise history, a 120-66 loss to the Chicago Bulls on Thursday night in Game 6 of their first-round playoff series.

  • Spurs, Clippers ready for Game 7 of 1st round series

    July 4, 2015

    Doc Rivers stepped to the podium a few minutes after his Los Angeles Clippers survived another road game against the defending champions, a clutch performance that set up a Game 7 against the San Antonio Spurs in what has easily been the series of the first round.

  • Grizzlies' gritty D to be tested by Warriors without Conley

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) To the Memphis Grizzlies, it's simply grit and grind. Harass opponents from one end of the court to the other, frustrating players into missing shots and forcing turnovers until they lose their offensive rhythm.Tony Allen calls it shutting off the water.

  • Trail Blazers' Damian Lillard receives college degree

    July 4, 2015

    OGDEN, Utah (AP) Gina Johnson was rooting hard for the Portland Trail Blazers to upset the Memphis Grizzlies in the first round of the NBA playoffs. Damian Lillard is her son, so she didn't have much of a choice.Johnson, however, did have other thoughts.

  • Mike Conley to travel with Grizzlies; playing status unclear

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley will travel with the team for its first two games of the Western Conference semifinals against the Golden State Warriors, but his status for the series is uncertain.Memphis coach Dave Joerger discussed Conley's plans Friday before practice. Conley wasn't on the court as Joerger spoke.

  • Mavericks' Parsons has knee surgery; no timetable for return

    July 4, 2015

    DALLAS (AP) Mavericks forward Chandler Parsons has undergone knee surgery, and there is no timetable for his return.Parsons had cartilage damage in his right knee. The arthroscopic procedure Friday was done by team physician Dr. T.O. Souryal.Parsons just finished the first season of a three-year, million contract. He averaged 15.7 points and 4.9 rebounds in 66 games, all starts. He missed the last six games of the regular season and all but the opener in a 4-1 first-round playoff loss to Houston, his former team.

  • Thunder introduce new coach Billy Donovan

    July 4, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) It's safe to say new Thunder coach Billy Donovan will stay in the NBA this time.Donovan jokes that he has coached in the league before - eight years ago, he was hired by the Orlando Magic, only to change his mind the following day and return to the University of Florida. He said that decision had nothing to do with the Magic, and that it was more about his relationships with his family and Florida.

  • Warriors GM Bob Myers voted NBA's executive of the year

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) His voice cracking and his eyes watering, Golden State Warriors general manager Bob Myers nearly let his emotions get the best of him on one of the biggest days of his career.Myers accepted the NBA's executive of the year award Friday while his wife, Kristen, sat in the front row of a hotel ballroom alongside his parents. He got choked up while thanking her for all she does in raising their daughters, 5-year-old Kayla and 2-year-old Annabelle, when work often takes him to other places.

  • Governor says deal on new Milwaukee Bucks arena 'close'

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) Gov. Scott Walker says he thinks a deal to pay for a new arena for the Milwaukee Bucks is ''close.''Walker commented on the status of negotiations Friday, the day after he personally joined the talks for the first time.Walker says, ''I think we're close. But obviously we have to work out the last little bit of details.''

  • Warriors believe depth, sacrifice keys to their success

    July 4, 2015

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Those golden yellow shirts the Golden State Warriors give to fans at every home playoff game are printed with a slogan that reads: ''STRENGTH IN NUMBERS.''The wording is more than just a catchphrase for fans - it's practically a team motto.

  • Bulls beat Bucks, it's on to Cavaliers

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) When playing at their best, the Chicago Bulls are a team that can go far in the NBA playoffs. They just aren't making things easy for themselves along the way.The Bulls finally came up with the dominant performance they needed to close out a first-round series against the Milwaukee Bucks, shaking off a surprisingly stubborn team with a 120-66 rout Thursday night that nearly set an NBA playoff record for the largest margin of victory. That performance only came after the Bulls allowed the Bucks to win two games to get back in the series after falling behind 3-0.

  • Dunleavy scores 20, Bulls clobber Bucks 120-66 to advance

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) Mike Dunleavy scored 20 points and Chicago came close to an NBA playoff record, finally putting away Milwaukee with a 120-66 victory in Game 6 to clinch their first-round series Thursday night.The Bulls, who move on to face the Cleveland Cavaliers in the second round, finished four points from the NBA playoff record for largest margin of victory. Minnesota beat St. Louis 133-75 on March 19, 1956.

  • Despite Walker involvement, no deal on new Bucks arena

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) Despite Gov. Scott Walker joining the talks, no deal has been reached on financing a new arena for the Milwaukee Bucks.Walker had his first face-to-face meeting Thursday with officials from the NBA team and others who have been working to reach a deal. But the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1QR2ivK) reports there was no deal to finance the proposed 0 million downtown arena.

  • Ainge wants to build on Celtics' surprising playoff berth

    July 4, 2015

    WALTHAM, Mass. (AP) Hall of Famers Kevin McHale and John Havlicek had some of their best years coming off the bench for the Boston Celtics. As did Cedric Maxwell, whose number is also hanging from the rafters at the Boston Garden.So Celtics general manager Danny Ainge would like Isaiah Thomas not to worry about whether he is going to be labeled as a second-stringer.

  • Blazers head home after season marked by injuries

    July 4, 2015

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) The moment that defined the Portland Trail Blazers this season came in early March, when Wesley Matthews collapsed at midcourt and grasped his ankle during a game against Dallas.Matthews said later that he first thought someone had hit him from behind. It was far worse.

  • Rookie of the year Wiggins on MN: 'I hope I'm here forever'

    July 4, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Andrew Wiggins sat down on a black leather couch, his navy blue tuxedo jacket and bow tie bunching up at the neck as his 6-foot-8 frame plopped down for a break.The first rookie of the year in Minnesota Timberwolves history was sitting in a no-frills room in the back alleys of Target Center with cinder block walls and empty lockers that house the WNBA's Lynx in the summer. There is nothing fancy about the 25-year-old building that is home to an NBA franchise that has gotten so many things wrong over the last decade.

  • Nets try to take force No. 1 seed Hawks to go the distance

    July 4, 2015

    NEW YORK (AP) They were separated by 22 victories in the regular season and a mere nine points so far in the playoffs.The Atlanta Hawks, on cruise control over the final weeks of the season, and Brooklyn Nets, who didn't even have a postseason spot until after their final game, have delivered one of the closest, most competitive series of the first round.

  • Timberwolves' Andrew Wiggins voted NBA's top rookie

    July 4, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Dressed in a Navy blue tuxedo with shiny black lapels, Andrew Wiggins certainly looked the part while collecting his NBA rookie of the year award Thursday.He looked even better on the court in his first season in the league.Wiggins became the first Minnesota Timberwolves player to win the rookie of the year, and he did it in a landslide. He received 110 of 130 first-place votes and had 604 points in the voting. Chicago's Nikola Mirotic finished second with 14 first-place votes and 335 points and Philadelphia's Nerlens Noel was third.

  • Timberwolves' Andrew Wiggins named NBA's top rookie

    July 4, 2015

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Andrew Wiggins has been named the NBA rookie of the year.The NBA made the announcement on Thursday. After coming to the Minnesota Timberwolves in the trade that sent Kevin Love to Cleveland, Wiggins averaged 16.9 points and 4.6 rebounds while playing all 82 games in his first season.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder hire Florida's Billy Donovan as coach

    July 4, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The Thunder hired Florida's Billy Donovan as their coach Thursday, hoping he will help the franchise win an NBA championship in Oklahoma City.''We warmly welcome Billy and his family to Oklahoma City,'' team chairman Clayton Bennett said. ''He is the perfect fit for our organization and for our community, and we look forward to a long and successful relationship.''

  • Ainge defends Olynyk for injuring Love

    July 4, 2015

    WALTHAM, Mass. (AP) Boston Celtics general manager Danny Ainge came to the defense of forward Kelly Olynyk for the play that injured Kevin Love.Ainge says the Cleveland forward was ''a little over the top'' in his complaint that Olynyk tried to hurt him on purpose. Ainge said he sympathizes with Love, who had waited his whole career to make the playoffs. Love will miss the rest of the postseason with a dislocated shoulder.

  • Trail Blazers' Lillard to give graduation speech at Weber St

    July 4, 2015

    OGDEN, Utah (AP) Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard will deliver an address when he graduates from Weber State on Friday.Lillard will graduate with a degree in professional sales from the College of Applied Science & Technology. He will be one of two student speakers at the Dee Events Center at 8 a.m., the school said Thursday.

  • Florida's Billy Donovan hired to coach Oklahoma City Thunder

    July 4, 2015

    OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The Oklahoma City Thunder have hired Florida's Billy Donovan as their new coach.The Thunder made the announcement Thursday.The 49-year-old Donovan led Florida to two national championships, four Final Fours, seven Elite Eights and 14 NCAA Tournament berths in 19 years. He signed a one-year contract extension with the Gators in December that would have paid him an average salary of million through 2020.

  • AP source: Thunder reach agreement to hire Florida's Donovan

    July 4, 2015

    GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) Florida coach Billy Donovan is headed back to the NBA.This time, he's expected to stay more than a day.Donovan agreed Thursday to become the Oklahoma City Thunder's next coach, according to a person familiar with negotiations. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday because neither side has announced the agreement.

  • AP source: Florida's Billy Donovan agrees to coach NBA's Thunder

    July 4, 2015

    GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) AP source: Florida's Billy Donovan agrees to coach NBA's Thunder.

  • Magic extend general manager Rob Hennigan for 2 more years

    July 4, 2015

    ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The Orlando Magic have extended general manager Rob Hennigan through the 2017-18 season.The team announced the two-year extension Thursday. Terms of the new deal were not disclosed.Hennigan just completed his third season as the Magic's leader of basketball operations, and was entering the final year of his contract before Thursday's new pact.

  • Grizzlies earn some rest before semifinal with Warriors

    July 4, 2015

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) The Memphis Grizzlies were so busy finishing off their first-round series they haven't considered the impact of playing the Golden State Warriors without Mike Conley.Yet.Now that the Grizzlies have ousted Portland 4-1 in the first round with a 99-93 win on Wednesday night, they can focus on if they will be preparing for the NBA's best team in the Western Conference semifinals with or without their starting point guard.

  • Rockets fire social media manager after distasteful tweet

    July 4, 2015

    HOUSTON (AP) The Houston Rockets have fired their social media manager after he posted a tweet with an emoji of a gun pointed at a horse's head as they were beating the Dallas Mavericks.The Rockets confirmed the dismissal of Chad Shanks on Wednesday. Shanks wrote on his personal Twitter page that he would no longer run the Rockets' Twitter account but was grateful to the organization.

  • Spurs look to move on, Bucks try to hang on in NBA's Game 6s

    July 4, 2015

    The San Antonio Spurs want to move on. The Milwaukee Bucks are trying to hang on.Game 7s are great for fans, though for an older team such as the Spurs, they should be avoided - especially because in this series it would require them to win a third time in Los Angeles.

  • NBA Playoff Capsules

    July 4, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) LeBron James hit a jumper from the corner at the buzzer to give the Cleveland Cavaliers an 86-84 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Sunday, tying the Eastern Conference semifinal series at 2-2.James finished with 25 points to help the Cavaliers win in another wild finish, returning the favor after Chicago took Game 3 on Derrick Rose's banked 3-pointer at the buzzer.

  • Kevin Love has shoulder surgery, sidelined 4-to-6 months

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Kevin Love had surgery on his badly damaged left shoulder that could require six months of recovery, officially ending any remote chance he had of returning during Cleveland's playoff run.Love, whose arm was yanked from the socket on Sunday by Boston's Kelly Olynyk during Game 4, had the operation at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York on Wednesday. The team released a brief statement saying the forward had the procedure and that his projected recovery time is 4-to-6 months.

  • AP Source: Thunder, Donovan in talks about coaching vacancy

    July 4, 2015

    GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) Florida coach Billy Donovan is entertaining a move to the NBA again.This time with the Oklahoma City Thunder, a person familiar with the search said.Eight years after leaving Florida to coach the Orlando Magic and then changing his mind the following day, he appears poised to make the jump and not look back this time.

  • Kevin Love has shoulder surgery, could miss 4-to-6 months

    July 4, 2015

    CLEVELAND (AP) Cavaliers forward Kevin Love had surgery on his dislocated left shoulder and may need up to six months to recover.Love was injured in Cleveland's series-sweeping win at Boston on Sunday, and will miss the remainder of the NBA playoffs.

  • Wisconsin Gov. Walker to get involved in Bucks arena talks

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker says he will step into negotiations to finance a new downtown Milwaukee arena for the Bucks.Walker told reporters Wednesday the intent is to try to get a deal done quickly.The Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1P8gGMl ) reports Walker said he would be personally involved in the talks Thursday in Milwaukee. He repeated that the city and county needed to play what he called ''meaningful roles'' to get a package that has a chance of legislative passage.

  • Ex-NBA player Crittenton pleads guilty in fatal shooting

    July 4, 2015

    ATLANTA (AP) Former NBA player Javaris Crittenton has pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the 2011 shooting death of a mother of four.Crittenton appeared in court Wednesday and was sentenced to 23 years in prison.Prosecutors have said Crittenton was aiming for a man who had robbed him days before the shooting but shot 22-year-old Julian Jones instead.

  • Walker to get involved in Bucks arena talks

    July 4, 2015

    MILWAUKEE (AP) Gov. Scott Walker says he will step into negotiations to finance a new downtown Milwaukee arena for the Bucks.Walker told reporters Wednesday the intent is to try to get a deal done quickly.The Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1P8gGMl ) reports Walker said he would be personally involved in the talks Thursday in Milwaukee. He repeated that the city and county needed to play what he called ''meaningful roles'' in order to get a package that has a chance of legislative passage.

  • Kareem Abdul-Jabbar briefly examined at LA hospital

    July 4, 2015

    LOS ANGELES (AP) Kareem Abdul-Jabbar briefly returned to Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center on Wednesday, two weeks after the 68-year-old NBA career scoring leader had quadruple coronary bypass surgery.''This morning, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was experiencing some dizziness following his April 16 quadruple bypass surgery,'' the hospital said in a statement. ''He contacted his physicians who told him to come to the emergency department at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. He was evaluated by his surgeon and cardiologist. After a battery of tests, they found no complications.

  • Hawks beat 76ers 95-79 for 8th straight win

    December 10, 2014

    ATLANTA (AP) - Kyle Korver and Paul Millsap each scored 17 points and Atlanta beat the Philadelphia 76ers 95-79 on Wednesday night, giving the Hawks their longest winning streak in 17 years.Korver sank five 3-pointers as Atlanta (15-6) won its eighth straight - the Hawks' longest since an 11-0 start to the 1997-98 season.

  • Warriors, Rockets both without starting centers

    December 10, 2014

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Golden State's Andrew Bogut and Houston's Dwight Howard are both out for Wednesday night's game between the Western Conference leaders because of injuries.Warriors coach Steve Kerr said Bogut is still bothered by right knee tendinitis and Festus Ezeli will start at center. Kerr expects Bogut to return for Saturday's game at Dallas.

  • Mavericks' Nelson out for game against Pelicans

    December 10, 2014

    DALLAS (AP) - Jameer Nelson sat out the Dallas Mavericks' game against the New Orleans Pelicans on Wednesday night due to a sore right shoulder.J.J. Barea made his first start of the season in Nelson's place at point guard against the Pelicans.Nelson, who missed three games last month because of back spasms, had season highs of 18 points and four 3-point field goals Tuesday at Memphis.

  • Anthony, Duncan among the missing for Knicks-Spurs

    December 10, 2014

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Knicks star Carmelo Anthony and Spurs veterans Tim Duncan and Tony Parker are among several big names out of action for Wednesday night's game between New York and San Antonio.Anthony felt soreness in his left knee after playing 39 minutes Tuesday night in New Orleans. He had 17 points and eight rebounds in New York's ninth straight loss.

  • Knicks' Anthony sits out against Spurs

    December 10, 2014

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) - Carmelo Anthony sat out New York's game Wednesday night against San Antonio because of soreness in his left knee, and the Spurs were without Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Kawhi Leonard.Anthony experienced soreness in the knee after playing 39 minutes Tuesday night in New Orleans. Anthony had 17 points and eight rebounds, but it wasn't enough to keep New York from suffering its ninth straight loss, 104-93 to the Pelicans.

  • Bulls looking for answers for defensive woes

    December 10, 2014

    CHICAGO (AP) - Compared to their high standard, the Chicago Bulls are struggling on defense. Everyone on the team agrees with that part.When it comes to talk of trust issues, then everything gets a little murky.Heading into Wednesday night's game against Brooklyn, Chicago was allowing 100.5 points per game, tied for 19th in the league. The Bulls allowed an NBA-low 91.8 points last season and 92.9 points for the 2012-13 season, which ranked third.

  • Hornets' Kidd-Gilchrist returning from foot injury

    December 10, 2014

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Charlotte forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist will see his first action in nearly a month Wednesday night in the Hornets' game against the Boston Celtics.Charlotte coach Steve Clifford said before Wednesday's game that he would bring Kidd-Gilchrist off the bench behind starters Lance Stephenson and Gerald Henderson.

  • Warriors release new arena renderings

    December 10, 2014

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - The Golden State Warriors have released new renderings for their planned San Francisco arena after the last design became an Internet punchline for its resemblance to a toilet.The updated concepts announced by the Warriors on Wednesday show a more curved look for the arena. Much of the viewing deck next to the arena - which together previously gave the aerial appearance of a giant toilet seat with the lid down - is now gone.

  • King James commits personal foul with royal touch

    December 10, 2014

    LONDON (AP) - When King James touched the future queen of England on the shoulder after a basketball game, royal watchers cried foul.LeBron James, whose nickname is ''King James,'' met Prince William and his wife Kate at an NBA game between Cleveland Cavaliers and Brooklyn Nets in New York on Monday. The three posed for a photograph and James put his right hand on the Duchess of Cambridge's right shoulder.