NHL: Joel Ward slammed home a rebound at the 2:57 mark of overtime to give the visiting Capitals a 2-1 victory over the Boston Bruins on Wednesday night as Washington advanced to the second round of the playoffs and ended the defending Stanley Cup champions’ hopes of a repeat.
“When I saw the puck there, I just took a whack at it,” Ward said. “It was a sense of relief, a great accomplishment.”
Rookie Braden Holtby stopped 31 shots for Washington in Game 7 – the seventh one-goal game of the series. Matt Hendricks scored the Capitals’ other goal.
Tyler Seguin scored, and Tim Thomas made 26 saves for Boston.
It was the first time in NHL history that a playoff series had seven games determined by one goal. Four of the games went into overtime.
Bulls move closer to No. 1 playoff seed
NBA: Kyle Korver scored 20 points to help the Chicago Bulls beat the Indiana Pacers 92-87 at Indianapolis and inch closer to the top overall seed in the NBA playoffs.
The Bulls ended the game needing just a win over Cleveland tonight or a loss by the San Antonio Spurs to clinch the league’s top spot.
Carlos Boozer scored 16 points, and Joakim Noah had 14 points and 14 rebounds for Chicago.
• Bobcats’ streak reaches 22: J.J. Redick had six 3-pointers and scored a career-high 31 points as Orlando sent Charlotte to its 22nd consecutive loss, 102-95 at Orlando, Fla.
The Bobcats (7-58) head into their season finale tonight needing to beat New York to avoid the worst winning percentage in NBA history.
• Harden cleared: Oklahoma City guard James Harden has been cleared to play after recovering from the concussion he suffered when the Los Angeles Lakers’ Metta World Peace elbowed him in the back of the head.
World Peace, formerly known as Ron Artest, was suspended seven games for elbowing Harden. He’ll miss the Lakers’ regular-season finale tonight at Sacramento and then the start of the playoffs.
NBA commissioner David Stern said the elbow that World Peace used to give Harden a concussion was “recklessly thrown” and the Lakers forward’s history absolutely weighed into the suspension.
Delany says BCS makes progress
COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany says BCS officials are narrowing the field of possible changes to college football’s postseason and the Rose Bowl is not standing in the way of progress.
Delany has been meeting with his fellow commissioners, Notre Dame’s athletic director and other college football officials working on overhauling the Bowl Championship Series.
Among the options being discussed Wednesday is a four-team playoff that could be held separate from the bowls.
Delany said there is “pretty high expectation that there’s going to be change.”
He also said he wants the group to proceed with caution.
“I just want to make sure that the changes that we make are evolutionary,” he said. “That they support the regular season. That … from a Rose Bowl perspective, that they sustain that tradition.”
Bayern Munich advances to final
MISCELLANY: Bayern Munich became the first team to advance to a Champions League final it is hosting, beating host Real Madrid 3-1 on penalty kicks as Bastian Schweinsteiger converted the final shot after Sergio Ramos skied his over the crossbar.
Bayern, a four-time champion of European soccer’s top club tournament, reached the final for the second time in three seasons and will play Chelsea at Allianz Arena on May 19. Chelsea eliminated defending champion Barcelona on Tuesday.
• Bonderman hopes for comeback: Former Detroit Tigers pitcher Jeremy Bonderman of Pasco said he wants another shot at playing in the major leagues.
The 29-year-old Bonderman had elbow-ligament replacement surgery Tuesday to help him attempt to make a comeback next spring.
He hasn’t pitched since 2010 when he was 8-10 and had a 5.53 ERA over 29 starts. His career record is 67-77 with a 4.89 ERA in 193 starts.