Trail Blazers cruise past struggling Miami Heat
NBA: Shortly after LeBron James called LaMarcus Aldridge one of the top All-Star “snubs” in NBA history, he scored 26 points and led the Portland Trail Blazers to a 105-96 win at Miami – sending the Heat to their fifth straight loss.
Gerald Wallace scored 22 for Portland, which won its seventh straight on the road and fourth straight overall. Brandon Roy and Andre Miller each scored 14 for the Blazers, who got 11 from Nicolas Batum and 10 more from Wesley Matthews.
Dwyane Wade scored 38 points and LeBron James added 31 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists for the Heat, who are the 12th team in NBA history to have a 12-game winning streak and five-game losing streak in the same season.
• Bryant moves up scoring list as Lakers win: Kobe Bryant scored 26 points to pass Moses Malone on the career scoring list and the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Hawks 101-87 at Atlanta.
Bryant passed Malone for sixth place on the list. He began the night 12 points from matching Malone’s 27,409 points.
• NBA looks into concussion issue: The NBA is consulting with an independent neurologist and may establish a league-wide policy for handling concussions by next season.
The move would bring the NBA more in line with both the NHL and the NFL.
The most recent serious incident happened to New Orleans point guard Chris Paul, who was taken off the floor on a stretcher on Sunday night.
• Nuggets extend Karl: The Nuggets signed coach George Karl to a long-term extension to stay in Denver.
Karl signed on for three more seasons.
His deal runs through 2014 and includes options for additional years.
NCAA men: Matt Howard scored 18 points and Shelvin Mack added 14 to lead Butler to a 59-44 victory over Wisconsin-Milwaukee at Milwaukee, for its third Horizon League tournament title in the past four years.
The Bulldogs (23-9) will get a chance to duplicate their wild run last year to the NCAA championship game when they fell two points short to Duke.
Butler defeated Milwaukee (19-13) for the third time this season.
• Oakland earns bid as Summit League champs: Keith Benson scored 28 points and Reggie Hamilton had 26 points to lead Oakland, Mich. (25-9), past Oral Roberts (19-15) 90-76 in Sioux Falls, S.D., to repeat as the Summit League champion and clinch a berth in the NCAA tournament.
• Arkansas Little-Rock rallies to move on to NCAAs: Solomon Bozeman’s deep 3-pointer with 1.5 seconds remaining gave Arkansas-Little Rock (19-16) a 64-63 win over North Texas (22-11) for the Sun Belt title at Hot Springs, Ark., and sent the Trojans to the NCAA tournament for the first time in 21 years.
NFLPA explores financial disclosure
NFL: The NFL Players Association retained an international investment bank to help it decide whether the league’s offer to reveal more financial information during negotiations will be enough to satisfy the union’s call for full disclosure.
Zeroing in on the crux of the labor dispute – how to split $9 billion in revenues – one NFLPA executive committee member, Cleveland Browns linebacker Scott Fujita, said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press and NFL Network that what the NFL has turned over to the union so far “hasn’t been sufficient.”
Mourners honor prep basketball player
Miscellany: Classmates, coaches and former opponents were among the mourners who filled a church in Holland, Mich., to celebrate the short life of athlete Wes Leonard.
Many of the more than 1,500 people at Leonard’s funeral wore orange ribbons, and some released orange and black balloons outside the church, mirroring the colors of the Fennville High team that he made a game-winning shot for last week before collapsing on the basketball court.
Leonard died of cardiac arrest from an enlarged heart last Thursday, moments after his shot gave the undefeated Blackhawks a victory to wrap up the regular season.
• Iditarod champ faces uphill battle: Defending champion Lance Mackey pulled into the checkpoint at Nikolai, Alaska, just two days into the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race and said a fifth victory does not look promising.
According to the Iditarod’s official website, Mackey pulled into the checkpoint carrying two dogs in his sled, and had just put a third dog back in the team after carrying it for a ways. Mushers will carry dogs when they aren’t pulling well so they don’t slow down the team.
“I’m not saying I’m out of it by any means but it sure don’t look too promising at this point,” Mackey said.