Update on the latest sports


Payton, Randle help power Knicks past Lillard, Blazers

NEW YORK (AP) — Elfrid Payton and Julius Randle scored 22 points apiece to power the New York Knicks to a 110-99 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers.

Six players scored in double figures for New York, which has won two straight and improved to 11-13. RJ Barrett scored 18 points, Alec Burks added 16 and fellow reserve Immanuel Quickley had 12.

Damian Lillard scored 29 points in his return to the lineup but Portland had its two-game winning streak end. Lillard, who missed Portland’s 121-105 victory at Philadelphia on Thursday with a strained abdomen, started and played 38 minutes.


Leonard on All-Star Game: ‘It’s money on the line’

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kawhi Leonard is suggesting the NBA is prioritizing money over the health of its players in planning to stage the All-Star Game in March. Leonard was MVP of last year’s All-Star Game before the coronavirus pandemic shut down most of the sports world.

Leonard says the exhibition scheduled for Atlanta is “money on the line, it’s an opportunity to make more money. Just putting money over health right now, pretty much.”

The league has not said when players would have to report and how testing will work in Atlanta, or if fans will be part of the game.


Harkless scores 19; No. 9 Oklahoma holds off Iowa St. 79-72

UNDATED (AP) — Elijah Harkless scored a season-high 19 points to help No. 9 Oklahoma hold off Iowa State 79-72 for the Cyclones’ seventh straight loss.

Austin Reaves returned to action Saturday and had 16 points, eight rebounds and eight assists. Brady Manek had nine points and a career-high 15 rebounds and Umoja Gibson added 18 points for Oklahoma which bounced back from a close loss at No. 10 Texas Tech.

Rasir Bolton scored 21 points and surpassed 1,000 career points for the Cyclones.

In other top 25 action:

— Way ahead, it looked as if No. 18 Missouri might beat 10th-ranked Alabama in a laugher. The joke was almost on the Tigers. Dru Smith and No. 18 Missouri built a 22-point lead in the second half, then held off a frantic rally by No. 10 Alabama for a 68-65 victory. Herb Jones had two chances to give Alabama the lead in the final 20 seconds, but he missed a layup and had another try blocked by Mitchell Smith. Missouri is 13-3. Alabama lost for the first time in SEC play and fell to 15-5 overall.

— Nahiem Alleyne hit a go-ahead jumper with 25 seconds remaining in overtime and No. 16 Virginia Tech defeated Miami 80-76. Hunter Cattoor’s two late free throws secured the win for the Hokies. Cattoor forced the overtime with a 3-pointer at the buzzer to tie the game at 74.



Correa, Astros reach deal on $11.7 million, 1-year contract

HOUSTON (AP) — Shortstop Carlos Correa and the Houston Astros have settled their arbitration case, reaching a deal on a one-year contract for $11.7 million.

The 26-year-old All-Star had an $8 million salary that became a prorated $2.96 million during the pandemic-shortened season.

Correa hit .264 with five home runs and 25 RBIs in 58 games last year, then excelled in the postseason. He hit .362 with six homers and 17 RBIs in 13 playoff games as Houston came within one win of reaching the World Series. Correa led major league shortstops with a .995 fielding percentage.

Elsewhere in the majors:

— Elvis is leaving Texas. The Rangers have traded veteran infielder Elvis Andrus to the Oakland Athletics. Texas is sending Andrus, catcher Aramis Garcia and $13.5 million to the A’s for designated hitter Khris Davis, along with catcher Jonah Heim and right-hander Dane Acker. The A’s recently lost shortstop Marcus Semien to Toronto in free agency.


AP source: Brees renegotiates to help Saints with cap if he retires

UNDATED (AP) — Drew Brees has agreed to renegotiate his salary down to the NFL minimum in 2021, according to a person with knowledge of the situation.

The person tells The Associated Press that under the agreement, the 42-year-old New Orleans Saints quarterback would wait until June to retire, at which point his guaranteed money would be effectively split between 2021 and 2022. If he chose to retire now, his previous contract would have counted more than $22 million against the salary cap next season.

In other NFL news:

— The NFL and the players’ union sent a memo to the Super Bowl teams Saturday detailing what celebrations attended by players and staff should look like. The Buccaneers and Chiefs were reminded of COVID-19 protocols that will remain in place. The Florida Department of Health encourages everyone in Florida to avoid gathering in groups larger than 10.

— Longtime San Francisco 49ers star Charlie Krueger has died. The defensive tackle spent his 16-year NFL career with the 49ers, from 1958 to 1973, and was one of the longest tenured players in team history. Krueger was part of teams that won three straight NFC West titles from 1970-72. His No. 70 jersey was retired in 1974 and he joined the club’s Hall of Fame in 2009.

— A Coast Guard cutter and an athletic building on the Coast Guard Academy campus are being named in honor of former New York Giants defensive back Emlen Tunnell. Before he became the first Black player inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Tunnell served in the Coast Guard during and after World War II, where he was credited with saving the lives of two shipmates in separate incidents.


Peyton Manning, Charles Woodson top Hall of Fame candidates

UNDATED (AP) — More than two decades ago Charles Woodson beat out Peyton Manning for the Heisman Trophy. On Saturday, they likely will share an even more impressive football honor: entry into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Manning and Woodson are two of the most dominant players at their positions in the NFL from 1998 until their retirements in early 2016. They are among four first-year-eligible finalists that also includes former Lions receiver Calvin Johnson, and sack master Jared Allen.

Other finalists include defensive backs John Lynch, Ronde Barber and Leroy Butler; wideouts Torry Holt and Reggie Wayne; defensive lineman Richard Seymour; linebackers Zack Thomas, Clay Matthews and the late Sam Mills; and offensive linemen Alan Faneca and Tony Boselli. Three previously announced candidates are coach Tom Flores, contributor Bill Nunn and senior Drew Pearson.


NBA tells teams to exercise caution when watching Super Bowl

UNDATED (AP) — The NBA doesn’t want the Super Bowl to turn into a superspreader.

Mindful of the potential of virus-related issues that can come from attending even small gatherings, the NBA issued guidance Saturday telling players, coaches and other employees that they may not go to a Super Bowl party outside their own home. And if they do watch with others, keep the invite list basically to family only.

According to the memo obtained by The Associated Press, teams spending Super Sunday on the road will not be permitted to leave their hotel to watch the title game between Kansas City and Tampa Bay.

In other virus-related sports news:

— Michigan’s men’s basketball game Thursday against Illinois has been postponed. That will be the fifth straight game the fourth-ranked Wolverines will miss. That came after several positive tests for a new COVID-19 variant that transmits at a higher rate. Michigan says it expects to resume the men’s basketball season on Valentine’s Day at Wisconsin.

— The Boston College women’s basketball team is going back into a COVID shutdown for the second time in a month. The Atlantic Coast Conference has postponed BC’s next two games after a positive test and contact tracing within the program. The Eagles already had four games postponed.


Humphries, Jones win historic world bobsled title for US

ALTENBERG, Germany (AP) — Kaillie Humphries is the world women’s bobsled champion for a record fourth time, teaming with Lolo Jones to win the title for the United States on a snowy day in Altenberg, Germany.

Humphries got some help from a U.S. bobsled legend on her way to making history Saturday. She drove to the title in a sled equipped with runners that were owned by Steven Holcomb, the former world and Olympic champion who died nearly four years ago.

Humphries and Jones finished their four runs over two days in 3 minutes, 48.26 seconds.

Jones is now a world champion in two different sports — winning those crowns in three different decades. She’s a two-time indoor women’s hurdles champion and began bobsledding nearly a decade ago.


Williams, Osaka and Azarenka withdraw from Australian Open tuneup events

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — A run of withdrawals has taken star players out of tuneup events on the weekend before the Australian Open is due to begin. Former Australian Open champions Naomi Osaka and Victoria Azarenka pulled out of women’s tournaments a day after Serena Williams withdrew, all citing soreness or niggling injuries but all vowing they’ll be fine for the year’s first major.

Alexander Zverev hurt his back while playing for Germany in the ATP Cup but still took it the distance before falling to Daniil Medvedev in a result that ensured Russia’s spot in the final.

The Australian Open starts Monday.