Sunday's Results
National Basketball Association Playoffs

Kevin  Durant capped a  big second half with 12 fourth quarter points, and his
go-ahead  bucket  with 11.1 seconds left  helped the Thunder rally for a 93-91
victory  over the  Memphis Grizzlies  in Game  1 of  their Western  Conference
semifinal  series. Oklahoma  City trailed almost the entire second half and by
as  many  as 12, but  Durant brought them back  and sent the Chesapeake Energy
Arena  crowd into a  frenzy with his late pull-up bucket to put the Thunder in
front.  He made the team's final three baskets and finished with game-highs of
35 points, 15 rebounds and six assists.

Elsewhere in the NBA Playoffs:

Eastern Conference Semifinals (Best-of-seven)

Indiana Pacers 102, New York Knicks 95 (Pacers lead, 1-0)

National Hockey League Playoffs

A  change in  the Vancouver  net didn't  produce a  different outcome  for the
Canucks.  Antti Niemi made 28 saves, and the San Jose Sharks erupted for three
third-period  goals  in  a 5-2  win  at  HP  Pavilion  that gave  them  a  3-0
stranglehold  over  Vancouver in  this Western Conference quarterfinal series.
Logan  Couture  registered two power-play goals  in the final frame to go with
two  assists for  the Sharks, who will  look to complete the sweep on Tuesday.
Joe  Pavelski netted  the  first  two San  Jose  goals,  with Patrick  Marleau
supplying the other tally during the third-period blitz. The Canucks turned to
Cory  Schneider  in hopes  of  reversing  their  fortunes, instead  they  find
themselves  in  an 0-3 first-round hole  for a second straight year. Schneider
missed  the final two  games of the regular season and did not dress the first
two  playoff contests  with  what the  team  termed a  "body"  injury. He  was
replaced in the third by Roberto Luongo, who started both games in Vancouver.

Elsewhere in the NHL Playoffs:

Western Conference Quarterfinals (Best-of-seven)

Minnesota Wild 3, Chicago Blackhawks 2 (OT) (Blackhawks lead, 2-1)

Eastern Conference Quarterfinals (Best-of-seven)

Pittsburgh Penguins 5, New York Islanders 4 (OT) (Penguins lead, 2-1)
Ottawa Senators 6, Montreal Canadiens 1 (Senators lead, 2-1)

Major League Baseball

American League

Justin  Verlander struck  out nine over seven stellar innings of two-hit ball,
as the Detroit Tigers pounded the Houston Astros, 9-0, to complete a four-game
sweep  Sunday  at Minute  Maid Park.  Verlander (4-2) worked  around a pair of
walks  and carried  a no-hitter into the seventh before serving up consecutive
one-out  singles to  Carlos Pena and Carlos Corporan. The right-hander escaped
the  frame unscathed  by inducing an inning-ending, double-play groundout from
Brandon  Laird.  Detroit's  offense  provided Verlander  with  plenty  of  run
support, as the Tigers belted four home runs.

Elsewhere in the AL:

Minnesota Twins 4, Cleveland Indians 2
Oakland Athletics 5, New York Yankees 4
Toronto Blue Jays 10, Seattle Mariners 2
Kansas City Royals 6, Chicago White Sox 5 (10 innings)
Texas Rangers 4, Boston Red Sox 3
Baltimore Orioles 8, LA Angels of Anaheim 4

National League

Allen  Craig doubled,  tripled and drove in  four runs and Matt Holliday had a
two-run  homer  with three  RBI to  help the  St. Louis  Cardinals take a 10-1
victory  and sweep the  Milwaukee Brewers in a four-game series  for the first
time  in franchise history. Shane Robinson and Yadier Molina each drove in one
run for the Cardinals, who added to a season high with six straight victories.
St. Louis has also won its last seven road tilts.

Elsewhere in the NL:

Atlanta Braves 9, New York Mets 4
Washington Nationals 6, Pittsburgh Pirates 2
Cincinnati Reds 7, Chicago Cubs 4
Miami Marlins 14, Philadelphia Phillies 2
San Diego Padres 5, Arizona Diamondbacks 1
San Francisco Giants 4, Los Angeles Dodgers 3


Tampa Bay Rays 8, Colorado Rockies 3


In  a near-unanimous vote, Miami Heat forward LeBron James was named the NBA's
Most Valuable Player for the 2012-13 season on Sunday. It is James' fourth MVP
award  overall,  all coming in the  last five seasons, thanks to garnering all
but  one  of the 121 first-place  votes cast. The 28-year-old James became the
fifth  player  in league history  to capture at  least four MVP awards. Kareem
Abdul-Jabbar  leads the  way with  six, followed  by Michael  Jordan and  Bill
Russell  with  five apiece. Wilt Chamberlain  also owns four. James helped the
Heat to a franchise-record 66 regular-season victories by posting 26.8 points,
8.0 rebounds and 7.3 assists per game.

A  pair of second-round NBA playoff matchups got underway Sunday. Kevin Durant
capped a big second half with 12 fourth-quarter points and his go-ahead bucket
with 11.1  seconds left helped the Thunder rally for a 93-91 victory over  the
Memphis Grizzlies in a Western Conference semifinal. David West had 20 points,
while  Roy Hibbert tallied 14 points,  eight rebounds and  five blocks  in the
Pacers'  102-95  win  over the Knicks  in their  Eastern Conference  semifinal

The other two  conference semifinals  will begin Monday.  The Miami Heat  have
been idle  since completing a  four-game  sweep  of the  Milwaukee Bucks  last
Sunday and will face a Chicago  Bulls team that posted  a Game 7 road  victory
over the  Brooklyn Nets  on Saturday.  The  San Antonio Spurs  have also  been
resting for a week since sweeping the Los Angeles Lakers and will tangle  with
the  upstart Golden State Warriors, who  eliminated the  Denver Nuggets in six


Sunday's  first-round playoff action in the NHL featured a quartet of Game 3s,
two  of  which needed overtime to  determine a winner. Chris Kunitz scored his
second  power-play goal  of the game at  the 8:44 mark of the extra period, as
the  Pittsburgh  Penguins topped  the New  York Islanders, 5-4,  to take a 2-1
series  lead.  Jason Zucker  scored 2:15 into  overtime, lifting the Minnesota
Wild  to  a 3-2 victory that  trimmed the Chicago's Blackhawks' series lead to
2-1.  Rookie Jean-Gabriel  Pageau scored his first three career playoff goals,
and  the  Ottawa Senators pounded  the Montreal Canadiens,  6-1, to take a 2-1
series lead.  The San Jose Sharks pushed the Vancouver Canucks to the brink of
elimination with a 5-2 win.

Monday's  playoff  schedule includes  two Game 3s  and a pair  of Game 4s. The
Toronto  Maple Leafs  evened their  series against  the Boston  Bruins at  one
victory  apiece  on Saturday and will  now host their first playoff game since
2004.  The New York  Rangers will try to defend home ice and cut the Capitals'
series  lead  after dropping  the first  two games  in Washington. The Anaheim
Ducks  will attempt to grab a commanding 3-1 series lead against the Red Wings
with  another win  in Detroit. Also, the  St. Louis Blues will look to put the
defending champion Los Angeles Kings in a 3-1 hole.


David Ragan avoided  two major wrecks and received pushing help  from teammate
David Gilliland to take the lead on the final lap and win Sunday's Aaron's 499
at  Talladega Superspeedway,  a race delayed 3 hours, 36 minutes due to  rain.
Ragan and Gilliland drafted through the field during the last lap before Ragan
pulled  in front of pole-sitter Carl Edwards for the lead between  turns 3 and
4. Ragan then beat Gilliland to the finish line by 0.2 seconds  for his second
career Sprint Cup Series victory.  A 12-car accident on the backstretch set up
the  green-white-checkered  finish.  Edwards  finished  third,  while  Michael
Waltrip and Daytona 500 champ Jimmie Johnson rounded out the top five.


Derek  Ernst parred the  first playoff hole on Sunday to defeat David Lynn and
win  the Wells Fargo Championship in Charlotte. Ernst closed with a 2-under 70
to end  at 8-under-par and was joined there by Lynn,  who also shot 70  in the
final round. Ernst, who started the week as the fourth alternate, knocked  his
approach  on the first playoff hole to within 14 feet of the hole,  while Lynn
hit  into a  greenside bunker,  blasted across  the green and chipped to eight
feet before  missing a bogey putt  that allowed Ernst  a two-putt par  for his
first  PGA Tour  win. Phil Mickelson bogeyed  the 16th and 17th holes to slide
out  of the lead,  carding his second straight 73  to end one shot out  of the
playoff at minus-7.


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