Update on the latest sports


Heat put chill in Jazz

UNDATED (AP) — The Miami Heat continue to do their best to put a 7-14 start in their rearview mirror.

The Heat have a season-high, five-game winning streak after Jimmy Butler poured in a season-high 33 points in a 124-116 win over the Jazz.

Goran Dragic tied his season best with 26 points as Miami handed Utah just the third loss in its last 25 games.

Bam Adebayo (ad-eh-BY’-oh) scored 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds for the Heat, who shot 15-for-46 from 3-point range and won the battle of the boards, 49-36.

Donovan Mitchell scored 30 for the Jazz, who got 17 from Bojan (BOY’-ahn) Bogdanovic and 15 from Rudy Gobert (goh-BEHR’).

Utah remains the NBA’s top team despite falling to 26-7.

Checking out Friday’s other NBA action:

— Kawhi (kah-WY’) Leonard scored 30 points and the Clippers bounced back from Thursday’s lopsided loss in Memphis by posting a 20-point win over the Grizzlies, 119-99. Lou Williams chipped in 17 points and the Clippers closed the half on a 13-1 run for 63-47 lead at the break. Jonas Valanciunas (YOH’-nuhs val-ehn-CHOO’-nuhs) led Memphis with 22 points and 11 rebounds.

— The Lakers’ four-game skid is over after LeBron James provided 28 points, 11 boards and seven assists in a 102-93 verdict over the Trail Blazers. Dennis Schröder (SHROO’-dur) added 22 in his return to the Lakers’ lineup after missing four games due to NBA health and safety protocols. Damian Lillard scored 24 of his 35 points in the first half for the Blazers, who lost their fourth straight.

— Phoenix won for the 10th time in 12 games as Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton each scored 22 points in a 106-97 victory at Chicago. Chris Paul added 14 points, 15 assists and six rebounds for Phoenix. Zach LaVine scored 24 points for Chicago, which had won three in a row.

— Draymond Green delivered a triple-double with a career-high 19 assists, 12 rebounds and 11 points to help the Warriors earn their season-high third straight win, 130-121 against the Hornets. Green dished on each of Kelly Oubre’s (OO’-brayz) six first-round dunks as the Golden State guard finished with 27 points. Stephen Curry added 29 points and eight assists after he sat out with an illness Saturday night in his hometown of Charlotte.

— The Rockets’ losing streak has reached 10 games after Norman Powell scored 30 points and Kyle Lowry had a triple-double in Toronto’s 122-111 victory over Houston. Lowry had 20 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in only his second game after missing four straight with a sprained left thumb. Lowry and Powell led Toronto on a 44-21 run over a 13-minute span that put the Raptors in command at 65-50 late in the first half.

— The Thunder knocked off the Hawks, 118-109 as Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored 24 points in the victory. Lu Dort scored 19 points and Darius Bazley added 18 with 12 rebounds while Oklahoma City held Trae Young to 17 points on 7 of 21 shooting. The Thunder had to change uniforms at halftime because a mix-up left the teams wearing similar colors at the start.

— Kemba Walker poured in a season-high 30 points and hit two big free throws with 11.6 seconds left to help the Celtics beat the Pacers, 118-112 and end a three-game losing streak. Daniel Theis added 17 points and Jaylen Brown finished with 15 for Boston, which trailed by 14 in the first quarter. Indiana lost for the third time in four games despite Domantas Sabonis (doh-MAHN’-tahs sah-BOH’-nihs), who led the Pacers with 24 points and nine assists.

— De’Aaron Fox scored 27 points and the Kings snapped a nine-game losing streak with a 110-107 decision over the Pistons. Sacramento blew a 17-point first-quarter lead, then rallied from an eight-point deficit in the final quarter. Harrison Barnes furnished 21 points, eight boards and seven assists to the win, while Richaun Holmes added 19 points and 17 rebounds.


Durant out through All-Star Game

NEW YORK (AP) — The Brooklyn Nets will be spending more time without Kevin Durant.

The team says the forward will be out through the All-Star break because of a hamstring injury that already has forced him to miss the Nets’ last six games. Durant was the top vote-getter for the Eastern Conference All-Star team.

The Nets are riding an eight-game winning streak, their longest since moving to Brooklyn. They will play at least three more games without Durant.

Also around the NBA:

— Raptors forward Pascal Siakam (see-A’-kam), head coach Nick Nurse and five others from his coaching staff missed Friday’s win against Houston due to NBA health and safety protocols regarding the coronavirus. A positive test, a presumed positive test or contact tracing data are among the reasons league players and coaches are placed in protocols. Assistant coach Sergio Scariolo was promoted to coach the team.


Ramblers win again

CHICAGO (AP) — Loyola Chicago was the lone top-25 team in action on Friday.

Marquise Kennedy scored 16 points, and the 21st-ranked Ramblers hung on to beat Southern Illinois 60-52.

Loyola Chicago steadied itself in the closing minutes after letting a 16-point lead shrink to four. The Ramblers improved to 20-4 overall with the 13th victory in their last 14 games.


Bruins ripped in New York again

UNDATED (AP) — The Boston Bruins’ three-game swing through New York hasn’t been very productive.

The Bruins have followed Thursday’s 7-2 loss to the Islanders by getting blasted by the Rangers, 6-2.

Ryan Strome (strohm) had a goal and an assist for the Blueshirts, who had fans in the stands for the first time since last March. Chris Kreider added a goal and an assist as the Rangers won for the third time in four games.

Patrice Bergeron (pah-TREES’ BEHR’-zhuh-rahn) got the Bruins within 2-1 early in the second, but the Rangers regained control when Colin Blackwell and Kreider scored 12 seconds apart late in the period.

Brad Marchand netted his 300th NHL goal for Boston.

Elsewhere on NHL ice:

— Kirill Kaprizov (kah-RIHL’ KAP’-rih-zahv), Nick Bjugstad (BYOOG’-stag) and Joel Eriksson Ek scored in a 3:03 span late in the first period before the Wild hung on for their sixth consecutive win, 3-1 versus the Kings. Cam Talbot stopped 27 shots for the Wild, holding Los Angeles scoreless until Jeff Carter’s goal late in the third period. The Kings had won six in a row.

— Nazem Kadri (NA’-zehm KA’-dree) had a goal and two assists for the Avalanche in a 3-2 victory against the Coyotes. Hunter Miska stopped 16 shots and blanked Arizona until the final 1:36. Mikko Rantanen and Andre Burakovsky (bur-ah-KAHV’-skee) also tallied for Colorado.


Sharks back at practice

UNDATED (AP) — The San Jose Sharks have returned to practice and are set to play the St. Louis Blues as scheduled on Saturday night after having one game postponed because a player tested positive for the coronavirus.

Tomas Hertl was placed on the COVID-19 list on Wednesday, leading to the team canceling practice that day and postponing Thursday’s game against Vegas. With no other players or staff testing positive since then, the Sharks were allowed to return to practice Friday and will host St. Louis the next night.


Braves extend manager Brian Snitker through at least 2023

UNDATED (AP) — The Atlanta Braves have extended the contract of manager Brian Snitker through the 2023 season with a club option for 2024.

The 65-year-old Snitker took over the Braves on an interim basis in 2016 when the club was in the midst of a massive rebuilding job. Atlanta has captured the last three NL East titles and recently won a playoff series for the first time in 19 years, coming within one victory of the 2020 World Series.

The Braves are 353-317 in four seasons under Snitker, including a 72-90 mark as a rookie skipper

In other MLB news:

— Veteran right-hander Jesse Chavez has re-signed with the Angels on a minor league deal. Chavez will join the Angels’ spring training camp in Tempe, Arizona, after he clears their intake protocols. Chavez spent the past two seasons back with the Rangers, struggling last season with a 6.88 ERA.

— Three players were positive for COVID-19 among 900 samples during the second week of spring training testing. Major League Baseball says there had been 15 positives overall among more than 5,200 tests thus far during spring training, a positive rate of 0.3%.

— The Rockies say they’ve been approved to allow 12,500 fans per game at Coors Field this season, or 25% of the stadium capacity. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment agreed to the club’s request to allow fans back into the stands.


NFL minority hirings spike

UNDATED (AP) — The number of minority hires for open positions in the NFL nearly doubled to 34.6% in 2021. That’s according to a league demographics study obtained by The Associated Press.

The minority hirings include three general managers, two head coaches, three offensive coordinators, six defensive coordinators, four special teams coordinators, three quarterbacks coaches.

The minority hiring rate was 18.8% in 2020. Interview requests for minority candidates increased to 47% from 22% in 2020.


NCAA lifts Ga Tech hoop scholarship, recruiting sanctions

UNDATED (AP) — The NCAA has overturned scholarship and recruiting limitations placed on Georgia Tech’s men’s basketball team in 2019.

The NCAA Division I Infractions Appeals Committee overturned the reduction of one scholarship per year for four years. It also restores Georgia Tech’s freedom to schedule official recruiting trips in conjunction with home games. The Committee on Infractions will reconsider the sanctions at a date which has not been announced.

The penalties were the result of the NCAA finding major recruiting violations were committed by former Georgia Tech assistant coach Darryl LaBarrie as well as coach Josh Pastner’s former friend, Ron Bell. Pastner was not directly named in the findings.

In other college basketball news:

— Indianapolis will relax coronavirus restrictions on the city’s bars and restaurants starting next week ahead of the upcoming Big Ten and NCAA men’s basketball tournaments. The changes will allow bars to operate at 50% capacity instead of 25% starting Monday. Restaurants will see their indoor restaurant capacity increase from 50% to 75%. Bars, restaurants and music venues will also be able to close two hours later, at 2 a.m.


Koepka on top

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) — Brooks Koepka (KEHP’-kah) is the leader through two rounds of the WGC Workday Championship in Florida.

Koepka followed Thursday’s 67 with a 6-under 66 that puts him 11 under, one shot ahead of Collin Morikawa, Cameron Smith and Billy Horschel.

Morikawa made up ground quick with six birdies over his last 10 holes.

Tony Finau (FEE’-now), Webb Simpson and Matthew Fitzpatrick are two strokes back and one ahead of Patrick Reed and Kevin Kisner.


Wu leads through 36

RIO GRANDE, Puerto Rico (AP) — Brandon Wu is the leader at the midway mark of the PGA’s Puerto Rico Open.

Wu birdied the final two holes for a 5-under 67 and an 11-under total.

Greg Chalmers is a stroke back after a 68. Home star Rafael Campos and South Africa’s Branden Grace are at minus-9.


Mickelson in contention in Champions event after mud birdie

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Phil Mickelson is in contention for a third straight victory to open his PGA Tour Champions career.

Mickelson opened with a 3-under 70 at the Cologuard Classic.

Mickelson was four shots behind Mike Weir, who had a bogey-free 66 in windy conditions at Tucson National. Lefty is bidding to become the first player to win his first three starts on a PGA-sanctioned tour.


Former British gymnasts allege physical, psychological abuse

UNDATED (AP) — Three Olympians and several other former gymnasts are taking legal action against British Gymnastics, saying Friday they have been the victims of decades of physical and psychological abuse by coaches.

The litany of allegations by 17 female claimants includes bullying, controlling behavior and inappropriate use of physical force against athletes as young as 6 years old in a “winning at all costs” mentality.

British athletes have come forward over the past year following allegations of abuse in gymnastics in the United States.