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Wednesday's Results

National Basketball Association Playoffs

Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder shook off the pesky Houston Rockets
and  took Game  2 of  their Western  Conference quarterfinal  series, 105-102,
despite blowing a 15-point lead in the fourth quarter. James Harden and Carlos
Delfino  spearheaded  a 21-2 flurry down  the stretch to give the upset-minded
Rockets  a  four-point lead  with just  over three  minutes remaining. But the
Thunder's  subsequent  10-2 run, highlighted by  Durant hitting a  go-ahead 3-
pointer  and assisting  on Thabo Sefolosha's open three, has the series headed
to Houston with Oklahoma City holding a 2-0 lead.

Elsewhere in the NBA playoffs:

Western Conference Quarterfinals (Best-of-seven)

San Antonio Spurs 102, Los Angeles Lakers 91 (Spurs lead, 2-0)

Eastern Conference Quarterfinals (Best-of-seven)

Indiana Pacers 113, Atlanta Hawks 98 (Pacers lead, 2-0)

National Hockey League

The  Chicago Blackhawks  wrapped up their first Presidents' Trophy in 22 years
on  Wednesday  thanks to a  4-1 win over the  Edmonton Oilers. Thanks in large
part  to playing  their  first 24  games  of  this season  without  a loss  in
regulation,  the Blackhawks  clinched the best record in the NHL for the first
time  since  the 1990-91  season, the  only other time  they claimed the honor
which  assures home-ice  advantage through  all four  rounds of  the playoffs.
Patrick  Kane  had a goal and  two assists while Patrick Sharp, Jonathan Toews
and  Johnny Oduya  all scored for the Blackhawks, who snapped a two-game slide
and upped their point total to 75.

Elsewhere in the NHL:

Tampa Bay Lightning 5, Toronto Maple Leafs 2
Detroit Red Wings 3, Los Angeles Kings 1
Phoenix Coyotes 2, San Jose Sharks 1

Major League Baseball

National League

Jordany  Valdespin  hit a  game-winning grand  slam in the  bottom of the 10th
inning  and the  New York  Mets  outlasted the  Los Angeles  Dodgers, 7-3,  on
Wednesday  at Citi Field  in the second of a three-game test. New York's David
Wright tied the game in the bottom of the ninth with an RBI single.

Elsewhere in the NL:

Cincinnati Reds 1, Chicago Cubs 0
St. Louis Cardinals 4, Washington Nationals 2
Colorado Rockies 6, Atlanta Braves 5 (12 innings)
Arizona Diamondbacks 3, San Francisco Giants 2 (10 innings)
Pittsburgh Pirates 5, Philadelphia Phillies 3
San Diego Padres 2, Milwaukee Brewers 1

American League

After  belting four  home  runs,  the Toronto  Blue  Jays prevailed  Wednesday
afternoon  behind some small ball. Maicer Izturis walked with the bases loaded
in  the  top of the 11th  inning, as the  Blue Jays avoided a three-game sweep
with a 6-5 win over the Baltimore Orioles at Camden Yards.

Elsewhere in the AL:

Chicago White Sox 3, Cleveland Indians 2
Houston Astros 10, Seattle Mariners 3
Boston Red Sox 6, Oakland Athletics 5
Detroit Tigers 7, Kansas City Royals 5
Tampa Bay Rays 3, New York Yankees 0
Texas Rangers 11, LA Angels of Anaheim 3


The  first  round of the  NFL Draft  will take place  tonight in New York. The
Kansas  City Chiefs have  the first pick and, barring a trade, are expected to
take  an offensive tackle. Texas A&M's Luke Joeckel or Central Michigan's Eric
Fisher  are considered  the  likely choices.  Jacksonville  will pick  second,
followed  by  Oakland, Philadelphia, Detroit, Cleveland, Arizona, Buffalo, the
New York Jets and Tennessee.


The  Oklahoma City  Thunder, Indiana  Pacers and  San Antonio  Spurs are  each
sporting 2-0 series leads in their first-round playoff series after winning at
home  on Wednesday. The Thunder blew a 15-point lead in the fourth quarter but
rallied  down  the stretch to  beat the  Houston Rockets, 105-102. The Indiana
Pacers  used  another terrific all-around effort  from Paul George to down the
Atlanta  Hawks, 113-98,  and  the Spurs'  balanced attack  powered  them to  a
thorough 102-91 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.

Three  more playoff games are on tap for Thursday, with the Miami Heat and Los
Angeles Clippers trying  to extend 2-0 leads  on the road while the  Bulls and
Nets play a pivotal Game 3 in Chicago.  The defending champion Heat had little
trouble  with the Milwaukee Bucks in their first two games in Miami, while the
Clippers  needed  Chris Paul's buzzer-beater  to edge the Memphis Grizzlies in
Game  2 of  their  Western Conference  series.  The Bulls  earned  a split  in
Brooklyn with a win on Monday.

The Cleveland Cavaliers made it official Wednesday and announced the return of
Mike Brown as the club's head coach. Brown previously served as the Cavaliers'
head coach for five seasons from 2005-10, compiling a regular-season record of
272-138  with playoff  appearances  each  year and  the  club's  only trip  to
the  NBA Finals in  the spring of 2007. The Cavs were led on the floor at that
time  by LeBron  James,  who quickly  took  his  talents to  Miami  as a  free
agent  the summer  after  Brown was  fired  in  the wake  of  the team's  2010
playoff   exit  in  the  Eastern  Conference  semifinals.  Brown  returned  to
coaching  with the  Los Angeles  Lakers for  the 2011-12  season, leading  the
squad to a record of 41-25 during the lockout-shortened year, which ended with
a loss to Oklahoma City in the second round of the playoffs. He was then fired
this past November after a 1-4 start just five games into his second year.

Memphis  Grizzlies center  Marc Gasol has been named the 2012-13 NBA Defensive
Player of the Year. Gasol, the first Grizzlies player to win the award, earned
30  first-place votes and a total of 212 points from a nationwide panel of 121
sportswriters  and  broadcasters  throughout  the United  States  and  Canada.
Miami's  LeBron  James, who has  never won this  honor, finished second in the
balloting with 149 points and 18 first-place votes, followed by Serge Ibaka of
Oklahoma  City. Gasol averaged 1.7 blocks and 1.0 steals to go along with 14.1
points,  7.8 rebounds  and 4.0 assists in  80 games this season. He was one of
only  six  players in the NBA  to average at  least 1.5 blocks and 1.0 steals,
leading a Grizzlies team that allowed a league-low 88.7 points per game during
the regular season.


Louisville  guard  Russ Smith will  return for his  senior season. He made the
announcement  Wednesday  at a  news conference with  Cardinals head coach Rick
Pitino at his side. Smith led the NCAA Tournament champions with an average of
18.7  points  in 40  games. He  also grabbed  3.3 rebounds  and dished out 2.9
assists while shooting 32.8 percent from beyond the arc.


Matt Kenseth's win at Kansas last weekend was virtually nullified by NASCAR on
Wednesday,  as the  governing body  docked  the driver  50 points  for a  rule
violation  discovered in  a post-race  inspection on  Tuesday. NASCAR  said on
Wednesday  that  one of  the connecting  rods on the  No. 20  car did not meet
minimum  weight.  In  addition,  Kenseth's crew  chief,  Jason  Ratcliff,  was
suspended for six races and fined $200,000.


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