Update on the latest sportsAP
Celtics beat Lakers in James’ return
UNDATED (AP) — Jayson Tatum scored 37 points and the Boston Celtics beat Los Angeles 130-108 in Lakers star LeBron James’ return.
Marcus Smart had 22 points and Dennis Schroder 21 for Boston, which climbed back to .500. Tatum had 11 rebounds and Al Horford added 18 points.
Anthony Davis led Los Angeles with 31 points and James finished with 23 in 32 minutes. James missed eight games with an abdominal strain, and the Lakers went 3-5 while he was sidelined.
Elsewhere in the NBA:
— James Harden had 36 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists, and the Brooklyn Nets overcame a 19-point deficit and the absence of Kevin Durant to beat the Orlando Magic 115-113. Durant did not play due to a right shoulder sprain.
— Jordan Poole stepped up in Stephen Curry’s absence as Golden State beat the Detroit Pistons 105-102. Poole scored 22 of his season-high 32 points in the first half, while Andrew Wiggins finished with 27 points. Curry sat out with a bruised hip.
— The Milwaukee Bucks withstood Oklahoma City’s comeback attempt and to beat the Thunder 96-89. Milwaukee never trailed but nearly allowed Oklahoma City to come all the way back from a 20-point deficit. Giannis Antetokounmpo (YAH’-nihs an-teh-toh-KOON’-poh) led the Bucks with 21 points, 19 rebounds and seven assists.
— Charlotte has run its win streak to five games, beating the Indiana Pacers 121-118. LaMelo Ball had a season-high 32 points along with 11 rebounds and eight assists. Gordon Hayward added 25 points, and Kelly Oubre Jr. had 16 to finish off a 4-0 homestand that included wins over Golden State and Washington.
— The New Orleans Pelicans overcame a 20-point first-half deficit to beat the Los Angeles Clippers 94-81. After challenging the Pelicans to “grow up” after they’d blown double-digit leads at Washington and Miami earlier this week, Josh Hart had 19 points, 10 rebounds and two steals. Jonas Valanciunas led New Orleans with 26 points and 13 rebounds.
Season over for Cavs’ Sexton
UNDATED (AP) — Cavaliers guard Collin Sexton’s season is over.
Cleveland’s leading scorer tore cartilage in his left knee earlier this month and the team says he underwent surgery on Wednesday.
The 22-year-old Sexton averaged 16 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists in Cleveland’s first 11 games.
In other NBA news:
— The Dallas Mavericks will retire Dirk Nowitzki’s (noh-VIHT’-skeez) No. 41 when Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors visit in January. Nowitzki is the franchise leader in points, games, starts, minutes, rebounds, 3-pointers, free throws and blocks. Nowitzki retired at 40 in 2019, eight years after leading Dallas to the only championship in franchise history.
— Pelicans reserve small forward Didi Louzada has been suspended 25 games for violating the the NBA’s performance enhancing drug rules.
TOP 25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL
Wendell Moore Jr. heats up as No. 7 Duke beats Lafayette
UNDATED (AP) — No. 7 Duke used a few smooth stretches in the second half to pull away for an 88-55 victory over Lafayette.
Wendell Moore Jr. scored 23 points and AJ Griffin came off the bench to score 18 points for Duke, which had too many weapons for Lafayette to defend. Mark Williams added 14 points and 15 rebounds, Paolo Banchero scored 11 points and Trevor Keels had 10 points for the Blue Devils.
In other top 25 men’s college basketball:
— Jalen Duren had 22 points, 19 rebounds and five blocks as No. 11 Memphis beat Western Kentucky 74-62 in a sloppy game. Memphis shot poorly from 3-point range and committed 26 turnovers, keeping Western Kentucky in the game even when the Tigers stretched their second-half lead to double digits.
— Keion Brooks scored 22 points to lead No. 13 Kentucky to a 77-59 win over Ohio. Freshman guard TyTy Washington followed Brooks with a career-high 20 points and 11 rebounds. The Wildcats (3-1) used a big second half to fend off the Bobcats, who led for most of the first half.
— Jaden Shackelford scored 20 points, including the 1,000th of his career in No. 14 Alabama’s 86-59 victory over Oakland. Jahvon Quinerly led Alabama with 19 points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals.
— K.D. Johnson scored 15 points, Zep Jasper added 13 and No. 21 Auburn rallied to beat South Florida 58-52. Jabari Smith hit a 3-pointer 10 minutes into the second half during a 15-0 stretch that gave Auburn its first lead.
— Ian Martinez made two free throws with 4.2 seconds remaining, and No. 20 Maryland avoided another loss this week by edging Hofstra 69-67. Hofstra had the ball with the score tied, but Omar Silverio’s deep 3-pointer was blocked by Eric Ayala. Silverio fouled Martinez as he went for the loose ball.
— No. 22 St. Bonaventure rallied from a 16-point deficit to beat Clemson 68-65 in the semifinals of the Charleston Classic. Kyle Lofton and Jaren Holmes combined for 32 points in the second half, after they went 3 of 15 in the first half and had only one 3-pointer between them.
Rodgers practices…Bears put Mack on season-ending IR
UNDATED (AP) — Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers returned to practice on a limited basis Friday after missing the last two days with a toe injury. The Packers are in Minnesota to play the Vikings Sunday.
Elsewhere in the NFL:
— Saints running back Alvin Kamara will miss his second straight game Sunday when the New Orleans visits Philadelphia. The Saints also will be without starting offensive tackles Terron Armstead and Ryan Ramczyk.
— Dallas Cowboys receiver Amari Cooper has been placed on the COVID-19 reserve list and will miss Sunday’s game at Kansas City.
—The Seattle Seahawks will be without starting running back Chris Carson for the rest of the season after he chose to undergo surgery on his neck.
— Chicago Bears have placed linebacker Khalil Mack on season-ending injured reserve. He has a foot injury that will require surgery.
—The Pittsburgh Steelers will head to Los Angeles to face the Chargers without star outside linebacker T.J. Watt. Also ruled out ARE cornerback Joe Haden and starting left guard Kevin Dotson.
— Linebacker Bud Dupree is among seven Titans ruled out for Sunday’s game with the Houston Texans. Coach Mike Vrabel says right guard Nate Davis, linebacker David Long, running back Jeremy McNichols, linebacker Rashaan Evans, cornerback Greg Mabin and tight end Geoff Swaim also will be held out against the Texans.
— Browns running back Nick Chubb has been activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list. He is cleared to play Sunday when Cleveland hosts the winless Detroit Lions. Coach Kevin Stefanski also says quarterback Baker Mayfield will start.
— Detroit Lions quarterback Jared Goff missed a third straight practice with an oblique injury and is listed as doubtful to play against the Browns. Tim Boyle is expected to make his first career start Sunday in Cleveland.
— Panthers coach Matt Rhule says Cam Newton will start Sunday at quarterback against the Washington Football Team. Rhule says P.J. Walker, who started in Carolina’s 34-10 win against the Arizona Cardinals last week, could still see action as well.
— New York Giants defensive back Logan Ryan has been placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list after having close contact with someone who has the coronavirus. His status for Monday night’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is uncertain.
— Connor McGovern is replacing Connor Williams at left guard for Dallas on Sunday at Kansas City.
— A person with knowledge of the negotiations tells The Associated Press that wide receiver Tim Patrick and the Denver Broncos have agreed to a three-year extension worth $30 million with $18.5 million in guarantees. Over the last two seasons, Patrick has caught 88 passes for 1,265 yards and 10 touchdowns in 25 games with no drops and no fumbles.
Syndergaard looking to return to elite with Angels
UNDATED (AP) — Noah Syndergaard got a qualifying offer and not much else from the New York Mets over the past two months. That’s one big reason he’s switching coasts to join Mike Trout, Shohei Ohtani and the Los Angeles Angels.
The imposing right-hander known as Thor says he’s thrilled to land with the Halos on a $21 million, one-year deal. He sees the move as an opportunity to reestablish himself as an elite starter after being limited by injuries and surgery to two brief appearances over the past two seasons.
In other MLB news:
— Billy Eppler embraced the bright lights of the big city, promising on his first day as Mets general manager to pursue pricey free agents and create a perennial World Series contender. Eppler and owner Steve Cohen promise money will flow.
— The Texas Rangers have given manager Chris Woodward a contract extension through the 2023 season, with a club option for 2024. The team has been in rebuilding mode and lost 102 games last season.
— The Detroit Tigers added infielder Kody Clemens to their 40-man roster. He is the youngest son of seven-time Cy Young winner Roger Clemens.
— The Tampa Bay Rays have sent right-hander Brent Honeywell Jr. to the Oakland Athletics for cash. Honeywell was once considered a top pitching prospect but had his career slowed by elbow injuries and Tommy John surgery.
— Clint Frazier’s tenure with the Yankees may have ended after five unfulfilling seasons. New York has designated him for assignment to open a roster spot for a prospect ahead of the winter meeting draft.
— A special opening day for the newly named Cleveland Guardians began with a bang. As fans were buying the first available Guardians merchandise as the team officially transitioned from Indians after 106 years, a sign installed outside the team store at Progressive Field broke free from its mount and crashed to the sidewalk. No one was injured.
Avalanche, coach Jared Bednar agree on extension
UNDATED (AP) — The Colorado Avalanche have signed coach Jared Bednar to a two-year extension that runs through the 2023-24 season.
Bednar is coming off a 2020-21 season in which he guided the Avalanche to the Presidents’ Trophy for the league’s top mark and their fourth straight postseason appearance. His team is off to a solid start this season despite key injuries for players like Nathan MacKinnon.
The 49-year-old Bednar has a 191-154-40 career mark in six seasons in charge of Colorado.
In other NHL news:
— The league has rescheduled one of the Ottawa Senators’ three games that were postponed this week because of a COVID-19 outbreak on the team. Ottawa’s game at New Jersey originally scheduled for Tuesday night will take place Dec. 6. The Senators have had 10 players and an assistant coach in the COVID-19 protocol.
— Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin has tested positive for COVID-19.
— The league has suspended San Jose Sharks forward Kevin Labanc without pay for one game for slew-footing St. Louis Blues forward Tyler Bozak.
— Anaheim Ducks forward Max Comtois will be out for about six weeks after surgery on his right hand. He was the Ducks’ leading scorer during the 2020-21 season but has just one assist in 13 games this year.