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Suns Beat Clippers, Return to West Finals (AP)
The Phoenix Suns' Steve Nash, left, goes up for a shot past Los Angeles Clippers' Chris Kaman in the third quarter of Game 7 of an NBA Western Conference semifinal playoff basketball series Monday, May 22, 2006, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)AP - Steve Nash was back in MVP form, and the 3-pointers were falling like a welcome desert rain for Phoenix. That combination spelled a one-sided end to the playoff run of the Los Angeles Clippers and sent the Suns to the Western Conference finals for the second year in a row.


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Mavs Beat Spurs in Game 7 to Advance (AP)
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban celebrates the Mavericks 119-111 win over the San Antonio Spurs in overtime with forward Josh Howard  in Game 7 of the NBA Western Conference semifinal basketball game in San Antonio, Monday, May 22, 2006. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)AP - Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks squandered every opportunity they had to finally overtake the San Antonio Spurs — except the last one. They lost the season-long battle for home-court advantage. They blew a 3-1 series lead in the Western Conference semifinals and watched a 20-point lead in Game 7 dry up as well.


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Wesley Helps Hurricanes Even Series (AP)
Buffalo Sabres goalie Ryan Miller (30) watches the shot of Carolina Hurricanes Ray Whitney, not shown, go into the net during the second period of Game 2 of the NHL hockey Eastern Conference finals Monday, May 22, 2006, in Raleigh, N.C. Hurricanes' Glen Wesley (2) and Sabres' Daniel Briere (48) are shown at bottom. The Hurricanes won 4-3. (AP Photo/ Karl DeBlaker)AP - It was the kind of play that saves not only a game, but perhaps a season. Carolina's Glen Wesley, an 18-year veteran and the longest tenured active NHL player not to win the Stanley Cup, dived over his goalie to stop a sure goal.


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Despite Surgery, Barbaro's Only 50-50 (AP)
In this photo provided by the University of Pennsylvania, veterinary resident Dr. Steven Zedler stands in the stall with Barbaro after the Kentucky Derby winner underwent more than five hours of surgery Sunday, May 21, 2006, to repair three broken bones in his right rear leg at the University of Pennsylvania's New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, Pa. (AP Photo/University of Pennsylvania, Sabina Louise Pierce)AP - Barbaro was on his feet Monday in his 12-by-12 stall, and that's where he'll be for the next few days, the next few weeks and probably the next few months.


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Respect Fuels Penske-Ganassi Rivalry (AP)
Indy Racing League driver Dan Wheldon of Great Britain, left, and car owner Chip Ganassi chat after Wheldon qualified with an average speed of 227.338 mph during qualifications for the 90th running of the Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Saturday, May 20, 2006 in Indianapolis.  (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)AP - The renewed rivalry between Marlboro Team Penske and Target Chip Ganassi Racing has heated up nicely heading into the Indianapolis 500.


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Jets Sign Graham to Contract Extension (AP)
AP - The New York Jets signed punter Ben Graham to a contract extension Monday.

Nowitzki ends Spurs' reign (Reuters)
Reuters - Dirk Nowitzki had 37 points and 15 rebounds as the Dallas Mavericks beat the San Antonio Spurs 119-111 in the deciding Game Seven of their National Basketball Association series Monday night in San Antonio.

Seo, Kim Make History in Dodgers' Win (AP)
Colorado Rockies' Byung-Hyun Kim, of South Korea, pitches against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the first inning of a baseball game in Los Angeles on Monday, May 22, 2006.(AP Photo/Francis Specker)AP - The matchup between the former high school teammates was televised live in their home country. Jae Seo and Byung-Hyun Kim became the first Korean-born starting pitchers to meet in a major league game and the significance of the event wasn't lost on either of them.


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U.S. Poised to Begin World Cup Rehearsals (AP)
United States men's soccer team head coach Bruce Arena answers questions after practice on Monday, May 22, 2006 in Nashville, Tenn.  The U.S. men's soccer team plays Morocco in a friendly match in Nashville on Tuesday, May 23. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)AP - Now that U.S. players have had nearly two weeks to get reacquainted, it's time for the games to begin.


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Sabres Defenseman Numminen Sidelined (AP)
AP - Buffalo defenseman Teppo Numminen didn't dress Monday night for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final against the Carolina Hurricanes, with Doug Janik taking his place in the lineup.

Spring forward
DENVER – With the NFL's labor issues resolved, Paul Tagliabue can look to the future, namely a new team in Los Angeles.

Colts' Harrison to undergo elbow surgery (AP)
Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Marvin Harrison will have elbow surgery Monday. The surgery, which will be performed in his hometown of Philadelphia, is for an injury sustained during the 2005 season. Harrison, who caught 82 passes for 1,146 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2005, left Sunday's final minicamp workout early to catch a flight.

Packers let Texans interview McKenzie (AP)
The Green Bay Packers have given the Houston Texans permission to interview Reggie McKenzie for their vacant general manager job, but McKenzie said Sunday that the Texans have not yet called to schedule an interview. "It's an honor to be considered," said McKenzie, the Packers director of pro personnel.

Lions cut DT Wilkinson, re-sign LB Davis (AP)
The Detroit Lions released defensive tackle Dan Wilkinson on Monday, and re-signed linebacker James Davis to a one-year contract. Wilkinson, the No. 1 pick overall in the 1994 draft, spent the last three seasons in Detroit after five with the Washington Redskins. He spent his first four seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals.

Jets sign P Ben Graham to extension (AP)
The New York Jets signed punter Ben Graham to a contract extension Monday. Last year, the Australian punted 74 times for a gross average of 43.7 yards and a net average of 37.9 yards in his first NFL season. Both of those were sixth-best in the AFC. The 32-year-old also became the oldest rookie in NFL history to make an opening day roster.

Bucs owner Glazer suffered second stroke (AP)
Buccaneers and Manchester United owner Malcolm Glazer remained hospitalized Friday, nearly three weeks after suffering a second stroke. The 77-year-old Glazer was readmitted to Cleveland Clinic on April 30. He suffered an initial stroke on April 16 and was released from the Florida hospital eight days later.

Vinatieri fitting in with Colts (AP)
It hasn't taken long for Adam Vinatieri to fit in with the Indianapolis Colts. Since signing a five-year, $12 million contract with Indianapolis in late March, the former Patriots kicker has been at the Colts' practice facility constantly, and has gotten more comfortable with punter/holder Hunter Smith and long snapper Justin Snow.

Los Angeles to improve Coliseum for NFL (AP)
The City Council voted Friday to spend $25 million on improvements around the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in hopes of luring an NFL team back to the city. Under the plan, the city Community Redevelopment Agency would issue $25 million in bonds for street widening, site clearing and other work near the Coliseum, which would be paid for by expected tax revenue from the stadium.

Dirk's defining moment
SAN ANTONIO – Dirk Nowitzki's Game 7 heroics against the Spurs will go down as his greatest performance.

Mavs waste big lead, go OT to oust Spurs (AP)
Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks squandered every opportunity they had to finally overtake the San Antonio Spurs -- except the last one. They lost the season-long battle for home-court advantage. They blew a 3-1 series lead in the Western Conference semifinals and watched a 20-point lead in Game 7 dry up as well.

Nash's 3s help Suns end Clippers' run (AP)
Steve Nash's aching back was a whole lot better, and that led to a painful night for the Los Angeles Clippers in the biggest game in that franchise's mostly sorry history. With Nash back in MVP form -- 29 points and 11 assists -- and 3-pointers falling like a welcome desert rain for Phoenix, the Suns routed the Clippers 127-107 on Monday night to advance to the Western Conference finals for the...

New Orleans gets 2008 NBA All-Star Game (AP)
The NBA confirmed Monday that its 2008 All-Star game will be played in this beleaguered but rebuilding city, an announcement local officials seized upon as a sign the Hornets also will be playing here full-time in the 2007-08 season. "The NBA would not want to award an All-Star game to a city (that was losing its team), so it certainly bodes well for us in that respect," said Doug Thornton,...

Larry Brown runs Knicks' draft workouts (AP)
Larry Brown showed up at the New York Knicks' training center Monday to work out four prospective draft picks, an otherwise routine coaching duty made remarkable by one thing: that he was there at all. In his first day on the job since reports surfaced last weekend that owner James Dolan may buy out his contract, Brown worked closely with team president Isiah Thomas to put the possible draftees...

Spurs, Duncan come up short in Game 7 (AP)
The grind of a long series finally showed on Tim Duncan. It was overtime Monday in Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals, and the leader of the defending champion San Antonio Spurs was limping up and down the court. After scoring 41 points, absorbing enough fouls from the Dallas Mavericks to send him to the line 23 times and playing nearly 50 minutes, San Antonio finally limped off with him.

James' goal next season is to win title (AP)
Less than 24 hours after losing a Game 7 that he has no plans to ever watch on tape, LeBron James stated without a moment's hesitation his goal for next season. "Win the championship," James said Monday. "Simple as that." As James learned, he can't win one by himself. Posting incredible statistics nearly every time he took the floor, James pushed the Cleveland Cavaliers deeper into the NBA playoffs...

Same-old Pistons face new-look Heat (AP)
Pat Riley's experiment is about to be put to the test. The Miami Heat president shook up his team after it fell just short of beating the Detroit Pistons last year in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals. Then Riley became coach of his new-look team after Stan Van Gundy resigned for family reasons.

Detroit stands in Shaq's way again (AP)
Here is a quick synopsis of Shaquille O'Neal's recent history against the Detroit Pistons. Great individual numbers. Disappointing team results. Despite his penchant for big performances against Detroit, the Pistons have ushered in summertime for O'Neal in each of the past two postseasons. First, they beat his Los Angeles Lakers for the 2004 NBA title, then ended his debut year with the Miami Heat by...

Blazers have best shot at top draft pick (AP)
While the odds favor the Portland Trail Blazers in the NBA Draft Lottery on Tuesday night, history hasn't favored the team with best chance of getting the No. 1 pick -- at least until recently. Only three times since 1990 has the team with the best chance of winning the pingpong ball lottery gotten the No.

Gaining strength
Thanks in no small part to a miracle save by defenseman Glen Wesley, Carolina evened its series with Buffalo Monday.

Whitney scores twice, 'Canes even series (AP)
It was the kind of play that saves not only a game, but perhaps a season. Glen Wesley, an 18-year veteran and the longest tenured active NHL player not to win the Stanley Cup, dived over his goalie to stop a sure goal. "It was just a reaction thing, and fortunately, it stayed out," said Wesley, who played in his 157th career playoff game.

Tampa signs Richards for 5 years, $39M (AP)
The Tampa Bay Lightning began what figures to be an offseason of change by ensuring their future includes Brad Richards. The 2004 Stanley Cup playoffs MVP signed a new five-year, $39 million contract instead of opting to become a restricted free agent on July 1. The $7.8 million average annual salary is more than twice the $3.4 million he made while leading the Lightning in scoring this season.

Kings hire Marc Crawford as coach (AP)
Marc Crawford brings a demanding style and a winning resume to his new job as coach of the Los Angeles Kings. Crawford was introduced Monday as the replacement for John Torchetti, who coached the season's final 12 games after Andy Murray was fired. Crawford signed a multiyear deal. Terms weren't disclosed.

Oilers return home up 2-0 on Ducks (AP)
The speedy Edmonton Oilers are trying to drive the Anaheim Mighty Ducks right out of the playoffs. "The last thing we want to do is take our foot off the gas," Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said. After taking the first two games of the Western Conference final in Anaheim, the Oilers returned to Edmonton on Monday two victories away from their first Stanley Cup final since 1990.

Sabres D Numminen sits out Game 2 (AP)
Buffalo defenseman Teppo Numminen didn't dress Monday night for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final against the Carolina Hurricanes, with Doug Janik taking his place in the lineup. It was Janik's first game with the Sabres since the 2003-04 season. Numminen suffered an injury in the first period of the opener Saturday night and sat out the final 60 minutes.

Sweden blanks Czechs in world final (AP)
Sweden shut out defending champion Czech Republic 4-0 Sunday to win hockey's world championship, becoming the first country to win that title and Olympic gold in the same year. It was the eighth world title for Sweden, which had eight Olympic champions on its roster. In the Winter Olympics, Sweden beat Finland in the final.

Stirling to coach Springfield in AHL (AP)
Former New York Islanders coach Steve Stirling returned to coaching Monday, taking over the Tampa Bay Lightning's Springfield affiliate in the American Hockey League. Stirling was fired by the Islanders in January, when the team was 18-22-2. In his first season in 2003-04, he led the Islanders to a 38-29-11-4 record and a third straight playoff appearance.

Sharks waste opportunity in playoffs (AP)
Although the San Jose Sharks seem destined to be postseason players for years to come, they wasted an opportunity this spring that might never come again. Team Teal's roller-coaster season flew off the tracks Wednesday night, with a 2-0 loss in Edmonton that capped a stunning playoff collapse for many experts' favorites to reach the club's first Stanley Cup finals.

Predators sign Fiddler, Koistinen (AP)
The Nashville Predators re-signed center Vernon Fiddler to a one-year contact Thursday. The 26-year-old Fiddler is coming off a season in which he set career-highs with 40 games played, eight goals and four assists. Nashville also signed free-agent defenseman Ville Koistinen, who led defensemen in the Finnish Elite League in scoring with 34 points and assists (26) in 56 games.

Petty prestige
CONCORD, N.C. – He didn't find victory lane, but Kyle Petty came out of NASCAR's All-Star weekend a winner.

Up-and-coming NASCAR driver killed on N.M. highway (AP)
Spencer Clark, who made his Busch Series debut this year, and a crew member were killed in a single-vehicle crash on Interstate 40 in New Mexico, authorities said. Clark, 19, and Andrew Phillips, 28, were killed when their truck and trailer were hit by a gust of wind as they passed through the mountains just east of Albuquerque on Sunday night.

Stewart-Kenseth rivalry fun, while it lasts (AP)
Tony Stewart vs. Matt Kenseth.

Another Lowe's win complete, Johnson thinks championship is close (AP)
Winning yet another race at Lowe's Motor Speedway guarantees Jimmie Johnson absolutely nothing. He learned that the last three years, when his domination at his ``home'' track failed to win him a Nextel Cup championship.

Johnson wins again at Lowe's Motor Speedway (AP)
So many things went wrong for Jimmie Johnson at the one place he counts on everything going right.

Johnson wins NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge (SportsTicker)


Riggs races way into All-Star Challenge (AP)
Scott Riggs raced his way into the All-Star Challenge with a dominating victory in the Nextel Open.

Kyle Busch wins NCTS Quaker Steak & Lube 200 (SportsTicker)


Busch wins Truck Series race at LMS (AP)
Kyle Busch made it 2-for-2 at Lowe's Motor Speedway by driving away to an easy victory in the Craftsman Truck Series on Friday night.

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