Spurs, Warriors to break tie; Pacers try to take command
UNDATED (AP) — The Warriors and Spurs return to San Antonio tonight for the start of what amounts to a best-of-three series. The teams have split the four first-round games of the NBA Western Conference semifinal series, with each winning once on the road.
Each team has a key player hobbled. Golden State's Stephen (STEH'-fahn) Curry needed an injection before Game 4 for the third time in the playoffs to ease the discomfort in his sprained left ankle. He responded with 22 points, six rebounds and four assists in the Warriors win.
San Antonio's Tony Parker is nursing a bruised left calf. He was limited to 17 point on 6-of-17 shooting Sunday.
After tonight's game, the series returns to Oakland for Game 6 Thursday.
Indiana looks to take firm control of its Eastern Conference semifinal series with the Knicks tonight. The Pacers are up 2-1 and have the home court, where they are 4-0 this post-season. Indiana has won by an average of 16.5 points at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in the playoffs.
Things are looking good for the Knicks from a health standpoint. The NBA's top sixth man, J.R. Smith, and Kenyon Martin have both missed the last two practices will illnesses and are questionable. Guard Iman Shumpert sat out Monday's practice with a sore knee and coach Mike Woodson says he's probable for tonight's game.
Conference semifinals begin
UNDATED (AP) — The NHL drops the puck on conference semifinal action tonight on two fronts.
Pittsburgh will host Ottawa to open the Eastern Conference best-of-seven series. A big question going into the first game will be who will be in nets for the Penguins. Thomas Vokoun (voh-KOON') was between the pipes for wins in Games 5 and 6 to wrap up the Islanders series, giving up just two goals. He took over from Marc Andre Fleury (FLOOR'-ee), who coughed up 14 goals while splitting the first four games.
The interesting match-up will be the Penguins' high-profile scoring attack featuring Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, against a Senators team that allowed the second-fewest goals during the regular season and limited Montreal to just nine in five games in the first-round series.
Pittsburgh won all three meetings during the season.
Just the fourth all-California playoff series in NHL history opens tonight in Los Angeles where the Kings host San Jose. L.A. is riding a 10-game winning streak at Staples Center heading into the game. The Kings are the first defending Stanley Cup champ to advance out of the first round of the playoffs in three years, and are trying to become the first repeat champs since 1998.
The Kings scored just 12 goals in eliminating St. Louis in six games.
After sweeping Vancouver in the opening round of the playoffs, the Sharks have had plenty of down time. That might not be good news for Joe Pavelski and Logan Couture (koh-TOOR'), who each had eight points against the Canucks. Pavelski and Patrick Marleau had four goals apiece.
San Jose and Los Angeles faced each other four times in the regular season with the home each team winning twice at home.
Surging Rays start perfect Moore
UNDATED (AP) — Matt Moore takes the mound for Tampa Bay tonight trying to join Washington's Jordan Zimmerman as a seven-game winner in the majors. The left-hander is has won six straight decisions to start the season heading into his assignment tonight against Boston. The Rays have strung together five straight wins to climb a game above .500.
Jeremy Guthrie tries to continue some pitching mastery when he puts his 5-0 record on the line for Kansas City against the Angels in Anaheim. Guthrie is 10-0 since Aug. 8 and has gone a franchise-record 18 straight starts without a loss. The earned run he surrendered the last time out against Baltimore was his first in three starts.
Patrick Corbin is off to a 5-0 start for Arizona and gets the ball tonight at home against Atlanta. Corbin is sporting a stingy 1.75 ERA. He's the first pitcher to throw at least six innings and allow two or fewer runs in his first seven starts of the season since Ubaldo Jimenez had 12 straight such outings for the Colorado Rockies in 2010.
The Yankees have won 12 of 15 heading into the start of their home series against Seattle. They could be in for trouble tonight facing Mariners ace Felix Hernandez, who is 5-2 with a 1.53 ERA. CC Sabathia (suh-BA'-thee-uh) goes for the AL East-leading Yankees.
Orb readies for Preakness
BALTIMORE (AP) — Orb is settling into the digs reserved for the Kentucky Derby winner at Pimlico this morning. The Derby champ is housed in stall 40 in the Stakes Barn at the Baltimore race track after being vanned from Churchill Downs yesterday.
Shug McGaughey (muh-GAY'-hee) is delighted with the way Orb has prepped for Saturday's run in the Preakness Stakes, a race the Hall of Fame trainer has never won.
McGaughey plans to give Orb the day off today, before resuming training for the second leg of the Triple Crown tomorrow.
U.S. misses top spot
HELSINKI (AP) — The United States missed out on a chance to top its group at the ice hockey world championships, losing 4-1 to Slovakia. The U.S. will finish second or third and meet Russia or Finland in a quarterfinal on Thursday.
Danny Kristo scored the only goal for the Americans.
United on the mats
NEW YORK (AP) —The possibility of wrestling losing its Olympic spot has given three often-divergent nations a cause to rally around.
The U.S., Russian and Iranian wrestling teams will meet on Wednesday for an historic exhibition in New York to showcase what the sport's international governing body has dubbed "World Wrestling Month."
The exhibition, known as "The Rumble on the Rails" and to be held at Grand Central Terminal, is designed to highlight the sport's international appeal and popularity in an effort to keep the sport in the Olympics.
The IOC in February recommended that wrestling be dropped from the Olympic program starting in 2020. Wrestling now has to plead its case to the IOC to be included as a provisional sport in St. Petersburg, Russia on May 29.