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Howard scores 40 as Magic beat Thunder

Sat., Feb. 26, 2011

NBA: Dwight Howard had 40 points and 15 rebounds, powering the Orlando Magic to a 111-88 victory over the visiting Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday night.

Jason Richardson added 17 points for the Magic, who earned their first victory since the All-Star break.

Kevin Durant led the Thunder with 23 points and 16 rebounds.

• Knicks lose to Cavaliers: Carmelo Anthony missed a key late free throw and fouled out of his first road game with the New York Knicks, who may have taken Cleveland too lightly and were beaten 115-109.

Anthony finished with 27 points. Chauncey Billups scored 20 of his 26 in the fourth trying to rally the Knicks.

• Portland hands new-look Nuggets first loss: LaMarcus Aldridge had 24 points and 14 rebounds, Brandon Roy hit the tying 3-pointer with 5.8 seconds left in regulation, and the short-handed Portland Trail Blazers beat the visiting Denver Nuggets 107-106 in overtime.

Roy added 18 points in his second game since coming back from arthroscopic surgery on both knees.

NHL: Rookie Matt Calvert had three goals and an assist and the Columbus Blue Jackets bounced back from an early two-goal deficit to beat the Phoenix Coyotes 5-3 at Columbus, Ohio.

Calvert, playing in his 20th NHL game, had never had two goals in a game, let alone a hat trick.

• Rangers cruise to victory over Capitals: Erik Christensen had two goals and two assists, Henrik Lundqvist stopped 35 shots for his league-leading eighth shutout of the season, and the visiting New York Rangers rolled to a 6-0 victory over the Washington Capitals.

• Bernier scores in SO as Panthers top Thrashers: Marty Reasoner scored his 12th goal, Steve Bernier added the deciding goal in a shootout and the visiting Florida Panthers stopped a two-game slide with a 2-1 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers.

Federer will face Djokovic in Dubai

Tennis: In Dubai, Roger Federer will face Novak Djokovic in the final of the Dubai Championships after beating Richard Gasquet 6-2, 7-5.

Djokovic advanced when Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic retired because of a leg injury while trailing 6-7 (5), 6-2, 4-2.

• Wozniacki, Zvonareva win semis: In Doha, Qatar, second-seeded Vera Zvonareva rallied to defeat Jelena Jankovic 6-1, 2-6, 6-4 to set up a final against top-ranked Caroline Wozniacki in the Qatar Ladies Open.

Wozniacki cruised into the final with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Marion Bartoli of France. She will be aiming for her 14th career title after winning the trophy in Dubai last week.

NFLPA head hopes deal gets done

Miscellany: The NFL Players’ Association doesn’t want a lockout. It wants a deal.

Union executive director DeMaurice Smith and four of the league’s most prominent agents put on a unified front at the league’s annual scouting combine. The hope is the union and the NFL can agree on a new collective bargaining agreement before the current one expires next week.

If they can’t, a lockout could begin Friday.

• Mets acknowledge they got loan from MLB: The New York Mets acknowledged they received a loan from Major League Baseball to help cover expenses in November.

The team said in a statement it expected to have “a short- term liquidity” problem and were helped by the league. The New York Times and Daily News said the amount was $25 million.

• Beltre sidelined with sore calf: Adrian Beltre’s debut with his new team will have to wait a short while.

Beltre, the Rangers’ new third baseman, will miss at least the first week of spring training games because of a strained right calf that is bothering him.

• Watson on a roll as the kids go home: In Marana, Ariz., J.B. Holmes and Bubba Watson are in the quarterfinals of the Match Play Championship.

Holmes defeated Jason Day while Watson stopped Geoff Ogilvy.

That set up more fireworks for this morning – Holmes vs. Watson, two of the longest hitters on the PGA Tour, head to head on a course nearly 7,800 yards long in the high desert.

• Stroud leads Mayakoba Golf Classic: Playa del Carmen, Mexico, Chris Stroud made eight straight birdies – one off the PGA Tour record – and shot an 8-under 63 to take a three-stroke lead after the second round of the Mayakoba Golf Classic.

Winless in five seasons on the PGA Tour, the 29-year-old Stroud started the birdie run on No. 9. Mark Calcavecchia set the record of nine straight birdies in the 2009 Canadian Open at Glen Abbey.

• Coastal Carolina reported basketball allegations: Coastal Carolina reported violations regarding its men’s basketball team to the NCAA last summer.

The New York Times reported the focus of the NCAA’s investigation is possible illegal benefits that former player Marcus Macellari said were given to other players.

• Riesch wins WCup super-combi, Vonn 6th: In Are, Sweden, Maria Riesch won a World Cup super-combined race after a strong slalom run, while Lindsey Vonn finished sixth in her first race back since withdrawing from the world championships because of the lingering effects of a concussion.

• Busch leads final 107 laps to win at Phoenix: In Avondale, Ariz., Kyle Busch was fastest out of the pits on the opening stop and on the track the rest of the night, leading the final 107 laps to win a wreck-filled NASCAR trucks race at Phoenix International Raceway.


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