• Thunder beat writers break down Thunder-Spurs

    Friday, April 29, 2016 at 08:30 PM

    POINT GUARD Russell Westbrook vs. Tony Parker • Analysis: The Spurs will attempt to hide Tony Parker defensively on Andre Roberson when the Thunder is on offense. That's in order to avoid the mismatch of mismatches. Westbrook has the size, athleticism and playmaking (NBA best 11.2 apg in playoffs) to cancel out Parker, 33, who could face another mismatch in Dion Waiters. • Edge: Westbrook SHOOTING GUARD Andre Roberson vs. Danny Green • Analysis: Green hit 46.2 percent of his 3-point attempts against Memphis in a first-round sweep. Roberson's iffy 3-point shot was even worse against Dallas (1-of-7), but he locked up J.J. Barea and upped his rebounding and steals.

  • Why did Dallas draft Ezekiel Elliott?

    Friday, April 29, 2016 at 02:00 PM

    The Dallas Cowboys, with the fourth overall pick in the NFL Draft, took Ohio State Ezekiel Elliott. And in doing so, bucked conventional wisdom. Heavy-duty tailbacks no longer are the rage in the NFL. Using two- or even three-man platoons is the new order. Tailbacks’ careers don’t last long. Why use such a premium pick on a player with an abbreviated career? Why use such a premium pick when a similar player might be available in the second round? But is all that true? Can you find tailbacks in the second round who are just as productive? So I ran a list. I found all the tailbacks picked in the upper half of the first round the last 10 years. I compared them to all the tailbacks picked in the upper half of

  • Live Coverage: Thunder at Spurs

    Today at 12:00 AM

    It's Game 1 of this highly-anticipated Western Conference Semifinals series. Follow live coverage of the matchup from our Thunder coverage team and more from around the web.

  • Oklahoma's Sterling Shepard drafted by New York Giants

    Friday, April 29, 2016 at 06:34 PM

    The New York Giants selected Shepard in the second round with the 40th overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, making him the first Sooner picked this year and adding another chapter to his family’s football legacy.

  • ALL IN THE FAMILY: Thunder has been the most successful of the many Spurs spinoffs

    Friday, April 29, 2016 at 08:15 PM

    The Thunder and Spurs meet for a third time in the playoffs. The Western Conference semifinals start Saturday night in San Antonio, and it’s all in the family again.

  • Cleveland Browns select Oklahoma State's Emmanuel Ogbah with the 32nd overall pick

    Friday, April 29, 2016 at 05:06 PM

    Ogbah, who moved the U.S. from Nigeria at just 9 years old, is the third player in the Mike Gundy coaching era selected by the browns — joining quarterback Brandon Weeden (2012) and defensive back Justin Gilbert (2014), who is currently on the roster.

  • What's changed, remained the same in theThunder-Spurs series since 2012?

    Friday, April 29, 2016 at 07:30 PM

    This series won’t decide the West’s winner, but it shares some similarities to the previous two meetings. The differences, however, could tilt the series in either team’s favor.

  • Bengals get defensive tackle, restock on final day of draft

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    CINCINNATI (AP) — The Bengals used the final day of the draft to help their defense, which is already one of the NFL's best. Cincinnati added Baylor defensive tackle Andrew Billings in the fourth round, another player who can stop the run and contribute to a successful line rotation. The Bengals gave up the second-fewest points in the league last season and spent most of free agency trying to keep the defense intact. They have high regard for Billings, who was projected to go in the first three rounds. His below-average height for a tackle — he's comparable to 6-foot-1 Pro Bowler Geno Atkins — was probably was a factor in making him slip to a later round. The Bengals also got Atkins in the fourth round in 2010.

  • Sadler wins Xfinity Series race at Talladega after OT wreck

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) — Elliott Sadler celebrated his 41st birthday Saturday with his first victory in almost two years. Mired in a drought that dated to May 4, 2014, Sadler didn't mind waiting through a five-minute post-race review by NASCAR to be named the winner of the Xfinity Series race at Talladega Superspeedway. NASCAR had to determine who was the actual leader when a caution froze the field in overtime. Brennan Poole crossed the finish line first, but was denied his first career Xfinity Series win when NASCAR said the field was frozen with Sadler still ahead of Poole. "People don't know how hard it is to win these races. It's very emotional," Sadler said in victory lane, choking back tears. "It's a great birthd

  • LA Rams grab targets for Jared Goff in late rounds of draft

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two days after landing Jared Goff, the Los Angeles Rams went out and got him a whole bunch of targets in the later rounds of the NFL draft. The Rams picked troubled Western Kentucky tight end Tyler Higbee and South Carolina receiver Pharoh Cooper in the fourth round. Los Angeles chose another big tight end with the second pick of the sixth round, getting South Carolina State's Temarrick Hemingway, before adding Southern Miss receiver Michael Thomas later in the sixth. The Rams also picked Kentucky linebacker Josh Forrest in the sixth round, but they met their goal to bolster Goff's chances to improve the NFL's least productive passing offense, total offense and receiving corps last season. "Offense

  • Ravens snag Navy QB Reynolds during busy day at NFL draft

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP) — The Baltimore Ravens addressed several needs in the NFL draft before making an emotional selection that brought tears to owner Steve Bisciotti. Keenan Reynolds, a record-setting quarterback at Navy, was taken by Baltimore on Saturday in the sixth round with the 182nd overall pick. The 5-foot-10, 190-pound Reynolds ran the triple option with the Midshipmen. He scored a Football Bowl Subdivision record 88 touchdowns, but will seek to make his mark in the NFL as a wide receiver and punt returner. "That's what I've been working on," Reynolds said. "I just think my best area is being in (open) space with the football." The Ravens didn't need to have Reynolds.

  • Ducks give fans a glimpse of QBs in spring game

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Oregon quarterback Dakota Prukop had two main goals this spring in Eugene. The graduate transfer from Montana State wanted to build relationships and control the offense. After the spring game Saturday, Prukop said he'd accomplished both. Prukop made his first Autzen Stadium appearance as a Duck, giving fans a glimpse of how the quarterback competition is shaping up now that fellow graduate transfer Vernon Adams has moved on. Prukop started for the Mighty Oregon side, while redshirt freshman Travis Jonsen started for the Webfoots. Prukop finished the first half with a 32-yard touchdown pass to true freshman receiver Dillon Mitchell, pulling Mighty Oregon ahead 7-7 at the break.

  • Zimmermann goes 5-0, Upton homers as Tigers top Twins 4-1

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Jordan Zimmermann hasn't required much run support this year. Justin Upton gave him all he needed in the first inning Saturday. Zimmermann won his fifth straight start to begin his first season with Detroit, and Upton hit a three-run homer for the Tigers in their 4-1 victory over the Minnesota Twins. "Give him a three-run lead, we're pretty confident he can work with that," said Upton, whose second homer of the year reached the second deck in left-center. "If we can fight and get on the board early, and let our guys work, we'll be all right." Zimmermann (5-0) gave up one run and six hits with no walks and seven strikeouts over seven innings. His ERA actually rose to 0.

  • Jaguars continue to revamp defense on NFL draft's final day

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — The Jacksonville Jaguars treated the NFL draft much like they did free agency — with defense being the No. 1 priority. The Jaguars spent six of their seven picks on that side of the ball, including adding Notre Dame defensive tackle Sheldon Day (fourth round), Montana defensive end Tyrone Holmes (sixth) and Central Arkansas defensive end Jonathan Woodard (seventh) on Saturday. Those final-day selections followed cornerback Jalen Ramsey (first), linebacker Myles Jack (second) and defensive end Yannick Ngakoue (third).

  • Raiders give Mexico a taste of the NFL during draft days

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    MEXICO CITY (AP) — The Oakland Raiders relocated south for the third day of the NFL draft Saturday. South of the border, that is. Amid sombrero- and lucha libre mask-clad fans, the Raiders announced their late-round picks from Azteca Stadium, where they'll face the Houston Texans on Nov. 21. The Raiders, one of the NFL's most popular teams in Mexico, gave their fan base in the nation's capital a taste of the NFL with a Fan Fest to kick off their activities prior to the first regular-season game in the country since 2005, when San Francisco played Arizona.

  • Walton has unfinished work with Warriors before Lakers job

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Luke Walton was in no rush to leave his job as an assistant coach with the Golden State Warriors. He won an NBA championship his first season, went 39-4 as interim coach in place of Steve Kerr to start this season and was part of a team that set the single-season record for wins in the regular season. But when the Los Angeles Lakers came calling, Walton could not turn down the team he began his career with and which he helped win two NBA titles. "I was very comfortable with the idea of coming back here and coaching again next year with this team and Steve," Walton said Saturday. "I was fine with that. But you have to take the opportunities when they come.

  • Cardinals 3B coach Oquendo to have knee surgery, miss season

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis Cardinals third base coach Jose Oquendo will undergo right knee replacement surgery next month and won't return to the team this season. The 52-year-old Oquendo was in town Saturday to have the knee examined. He said the recovery time for the surgery is about six months. Oquendo has been the third base coach for 16 seasons. He was placed on medical leave just before the season opener because of problems with the knee. Oquendo is selling his house in St. Louis and moving to Florida, near where the team trains in Jupiter. Chris Maloney is now coaching third base, with Bill Mueller moving to first, Maloney's old spot. Oquendo had a 17-year career in the majors that included 10 seaso

  • Hawks get another playoff shot at King James and Cavaliers

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Hawks were a work in progress much of the season, a team that went from relying on a dazzling, spread-the-ball offense to a grittier, defensive-minded bunch. They're hoping that will serve them well heading into an NBA playoff rematch with LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Feeling confident after an opening-round win over Boston but a big underdog against the top-seeded team in the Eastern Conference, the Hawks returned to practice Saturday to begin preparations for the best-of-seven series. Game 1 is Monday night in Cleveland. "Defense has been our staple throughout the season," said Atlanta's Kent Bazemore, who figures to have the unenviable task of guarding James much of the

  • Giants pick 6 in draft; get depth, no linemen for first time

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — The New York Giants got the players they wanted in the NFL draft, and there might not be a starter among them. There seems to be no Odell Beckham Jr., Ereck Flowers or Justin Pugh in the six players the Giants picked over the past three days. But the Giants got highly productive college players with no off-the-field issues who add a lot of depth to an organization that has missed the playoffs the past four seasons, posting 6-10 records the last two. What was missing for the first time in a Giants' draft was a lineman. While there were holes on the offensive and defensive lines, the right ones were not there.

  • Cardinals pick Missouri C Evan Boehm in 4th round

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Anyone who was paying attention knew the Arizona Cardinals were in search of a center, and they got one on the final day of the NFL draft. Evan Boehm, a son of a high school coach who started all 52 games in his career at Missouri, was selected in the fourth round on Saturday and he will have a chance to start right away. The Cardinals already had addressed needs in the draft's first two days. They drafted Robert Nkemdiche, the powerful defensive lineman from Mississippi with a troubling incident in his recent past, in the first round on Thursday and cornerback Brandon Williams of Texas A&M in the third round Friday.

  • Cowboys draft 1st QB since 2009, Baylor basketball player

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    IRVING, Texas (AP) — The Dallas Cowboys have drafted a quarterback for the first time since 2009 and added a Baylor basketball star who last played football when he was in eighth grade. The Cowboys took Mississippi State's Dak Prescott with the 135th overall pick in the fourth round of the NFL draft Saturday, adding to the group competing to be the backup to Tony Romo. With the last of four picks in the sixth round — and their final pick of the draft — the Cowboys took Baylor's Rico Gathers at No. 217 overall. The 6-foot-8, 275-pound Gathers projects as a tight end after deciding against pursuing a career in the NBA. Dallas made a similar move in 2008, taking Texas A&M's Martellus Bennett in the second round.

  • 4 former Razorbacks taken Saturday in the NFL draft

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Four former Arkansas Razorbacks were selected Saturday in the NFL draft. Running backs Jonathan Williams and Alex Collins, offensive lineman Sebastian Tretola and quarterback Brandon Allen were chosen Saturday after tight end Hunter Henry was selected on Friday. Williams was selected in the fifth round by the Buffalo Bills with the 156th overall pick and Collins was also taken in the fifth round with the 171st pick by the Seattle Seahawks. Tretola was a sixth round choice of the Tennessee Titans with the 193rd pick and Allen also was taken in the sixth round by the Jacksonville Jaguars with the 201st pick. Henry was chosen by the San Diego Chargers on Friday in the second round with the

  • New Seahawks RB Alex Collins dancing his way to Seattle

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    RENTON, Wash. (AP) — Alex Collins already stands out among his new Seattle Seahawks teammates — for his unusual hobby if nothing else. Irish dancing isn't usually high on the list of interests for potential NFL running backs. "I'm always on my toes and my lower body, my calf muscles and what not," Collins said. "It's a lot of fun working with them and learning something new, especially since I didn't think I could do it." Collins was selected with the second of Seattle's fifth-round picks during the final day of the draft on Saturday as the Seahawks continued to address depth in the offensive backfield after the retirement of Marshawn Lynch and with incumbent Thomas Rawls still recovering from a broken ankle suffere

  • Arkansas signs high school forward from Indiana

    Updated: 2 hr ago

    FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — University of Arkansas basketball coach Mike Anderson has announced the signing of a high school forward from Fort Wayne, Indiana. Anderson says 6-foot-8-inch Brachen Hazen has signed to play for the Razorbacks. Hazen averaged 16.1 points and 9.3 rebounds per game as a senior at Columbia City High School in Fort Wayne. Hazen joins junior college transfers Jaylen Barford, Daryl Macon and Arlando Cook and high school signees C.J. Jones and Adrio Bailey in signing with Arkansas.

  • Dolphins owner says team's latest shake-up pays off in draft

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    DAVIE, Fla. (AP) — Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross says his latest shake-up of the organization paid off in the draft, including unanimity about the risky decision to take Ole Miss tackle Laremy Tunsil. The Dolphins selected players they had targeted, and benefited from cohesion among their decision-makers lacking in the past, Ross said Saturday. Tunsil became the biggest story of the draft when he fell to Miami hours after a video was posted on his Twitter account showing him wearing a gas mask connected to a bong. Another post on his Instagram showed an alleged text exchange with an Ole Miss football staff member that included Tunsil's request for money, prompting a university investigation. Tunsil said his accoun

  • Chiefs begin adding depth with trio of 4th-round draft picks

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Eric Murray grew up in Milwaukee and played college football at Minnesota, so one might assume that the physical cornerback would consider the Packers or Vikings his favorite NFL team. "I love the Chiefs," he countered, before offering a reason many college kid can appreciate: "I play a lot of 'Madden' and that's my favorite team to play with. It means a lot to go to the team I love." The Chiefs concluded the NFL draft on Saturday by stocking up on depth at a number of positions of need, including cornerback. They took Notre Dame's KeiVarae Russell in the third round Friday night before grabbing Murray, whose in-your-face style fits Chiefs defensive coordinator Bob Sutton's system.

  • Battered and bloodied Clippers exit playoffs early again

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — The battered and bloodied Los Angeles Clippers fought to the end only to exit the playoffs early once again. Together for five years now, Chris Paul and Blake Griffin have yet to make it past the second round and this time, they weren't even around when the Clippers lost in six games to the Portland Trail Blazers after owning a 2-0 lead. Paul went out with a broken right hand in Game 4, when Griffin re-aggravated the left quadriceps injury that cost him 41 games this season. Their teammates were hobbled, too. J.J.