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Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne (87) runs away from New York Giants' Jayron Hosley (28) for a touchdown during the second half of an NFL football game Monday, Nov. 3, 2014, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)Your Top Plays for Today: AP's Sports Guide


10ThingstoSeeSports - Crystal Palace's Fraizer Campbell, left, competes for the ball with Chelsea’s Thibaut Courtois during their English Premier League soccer match at Selhurst Park, London, Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Tim Ireland, File)Here's a look at some of the defining moments, exciting scenes, triumphs and defeats from the world of sports.


Cornerback Bashaud Breeland of the Washington Redskins holds up the ball after making an interception against the Philadelphia Eagles in the fourth quarter at FedExField on December 20, 2014 in Landover, MarylandKai Forbath booted a field goal in the dying seconds as the Washington Redskins stunned Philadelphia 27-24, dealing the Eagles' playoff hopes a serious blow. Forbath kicked a 26-yard field goal with just five seconds left in regulation for the Redskins who snapped a six-game National Football League losing skid in front of a crowd of close to 80,000 at FedEx Field. Philadelphia has lost three straight games since a US Thanksgiving holiday win at Dallas gave it sole possession of first place in the NFC East. A win at home by the Cowboys against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday would eliminate the Eagles from playoff contention.


Rajon Rondo (R) of the Dallas Mavericks celebrates a play against the San Antonio Spurs at American Airlines Center on December 20, 2014 in Dallas, TexasDallas (AFP) - Rajon Rondo tallied six points and nine assists in his Dallas debut as he helped lead the Mavericks to a 99-93 win over the short-handed San Antonio Spurs.


NFL: Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins(Reuters) - The Philadelphia Eagles' playoff ambitions suffered a near-fatal blow with a surprise 27-24 loss to the Washington Redskins on Saturday. By contrast, the San Diego Chargers kept their postseason hopes alive in dramatic fashion when they rallied from a 21-point halftime deficit to beat the San Francisco 49ers in the second game of the day. Nick Novak kicked the winning field goal from 40 yards in a 38-35 overtime victory. ...


By Julia Edwards Honolulu (Reuters) - The Obama administration is consulting the UK, Australia and New Zealand, among other countries in hopes of organizing an international response to the cyberattack on Sony Pictures that it has pinned on North Korea, an administration official told Reuters on Saturday. The U.S. is also consulting South Korea, Japan, China and Russia for help reining in North Korea. (Reporting by Julia Edwards)

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions(Reuters) - The Detroit Lions wrapped up an NFL playoff berth without playing a down on Saturday thanks to the Washington Redskins' upset victory over the Philadelphia Eagles. The win by the Redskins put the Lions (10-4) in the playoffs for the first time since 2011 even though they and NFC North co-leader Green Bay currently have the same 10-4 records. Detroit got the nod because a superior record against NFC teams. The Lions, winners of three straight, play at Chicago while the Packers, who were upended by Buffalo last weekend, can claim a playoff spot with a win at Tampa Bay on Sunday. ...


Former Baltimore Ravens NFL running back Ray Rice arrives for a hearing at a New York City office buildingNEW YORK (Reuters) - Newly released video footage appears to show professional football's Ray Rice and his future wife kissing while handcuffed in a casino elevator following the couple's fight that cost Rice his job with the Baltimore Ravens. The brawl in which Rice, 27, knocked out and dragged an unconscious Janay Palmer, 26, at an Atlantic City casino in February inflamed debate over domestic violence and professional football. ...


Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers, pictured earlier in the season, scored a career high 43 points as Portland beat San Antonio 129-119 in triple overtimeDamian Lillard scored a career high 43 points as Portland beat San Antonio 129-119 in triple overtime, sending the Spurs to their second-straight heartbreaking triple overtime loss. The reigning NBA champion Spurs also lost in multiple overtimes 117-116 to the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday.


NBA: Los Angeles Lakers at Indiana PacersBy Mark Lamport-Stokes LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant has often been a polarizing figure during his illustrious NBA career, criticized by some for being too selfish and not doing enough as a facilitator for his team mates. For his peers, however, Bryant is simply a winner and will do whatever it takes to instill a winning mindset, even though this season has been especially challenging for an injury-hit team decidedly low in overall quality. ...


By Zoran Milosavljevic BELGRADE (Reuters) - Euroleague debutants Nizhny Novgorod and 1999 champions Zalgiris Kaunas booked the last two berths in the competition’s second group stage on Friday. Nizhny overpowered more fancied fellow Russians Unics Kazan 78-74 thanks to an outstanding performance by forward Tarence Kinsey and Zalgiris progressed after a dramatic 80-79 defeat of Italians Dinamo Sassari. ...

NFL: Commissioner Roger Goodell-Press ConferenceBy Steve Keating (Reuters) - The stadiums and arenas where fans go to escape were invaded like never before in 2014 as the reality of racism, domestic violence and equality turned the Fields of Dreams into gloomy landscapes. LeBron James's homecoming, a Super Bowl blowout, a throwback World Series pitching performance and a Stanley Cup comeback for the ages all provided enough drama, suspense and awe to keep the turnstiles twirling and television ratings soaring. ...


McIlroy of Northern Ireland watches his shot from the second tee during the final round of the DP World Tour Championship in DubaiBy Mark Lamport-Stokes LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A year to forget for an injury-plagued Tiger Woods was savored sweetly by Northern Ireland's Rory McIlroy after the 'Celtic Tiger' won two majors in 2014 to regain his status as the game's leading player. McIlroy ended a stellar campaign with four victories and five runner-up spots in 23 starts worldwide, embellishing his credentials as a genuine golfing great in what many regard as a handover of the 'Tiger' torch to usher in a new 'Rory' era. ...


Four out of five Olympic rings are seen lit up during the opening ceremony of the 2014 Sochi Winter OlympicsBy Gene Cherry Five talking points for sports in 2014: 1. Soccer World Cup It began as a chance for fun-loving Brazilians to take back soccer's biggest honor but ended in humiliation for the hosts in what was widely regarded as one of the best ever World Cups. After years of doubt whether Brazil as a nation would be ready for the quadrennial show, Germany emerged as champions, defeating Argentina in the final after destroying Brazil 7-1 in the semi-finals. ...


Brazil soccer fans walk in the rain after watching a broadcast of their team's loss against Germany in their 2014 World Cup semi-final match in Rio de Janeiro(Reuters) - Five of the biggest sporting flops from 2014: Brazil (Soccer) Anything less than a World Cup win on home soil was always going to be seen as a failure but nobody could have predicted Brazil would suffer a 7-1 semi-final drubbing by Germany, one of the greatest shocks in soccer history. To make matters worse, the Brazilians followed that up with a another woeful performance to lose 3-0 to the Netherlands in the third-place playoff. ...


MLB: World Series-San Francisco Giants ParadeBy Larry Fine (Reuters) - Five best sporting performances of 2014: 1. MADISON BUMGARNER (BASEBALL) San Francisco pitcher Madison Bumgarner saved the day and the World Series for the Giants with a Game Seven effort that capped a record-breaking performance in the Fall Classic. The 25-year-old country boy from North Carolina put a spell over the Kansas City Royals, pitching five shutout innings of relief to preserve a deciding one-run win on two days rest after winning twice as a starting pitcher. ...


By Nick Mulvenney SYDNEY (Reuters) - The lack of an Olympics or a soccer World Cup deprives 2015 of a single global focus for sports fans but a rich calendar of international events has more than enough world class action to satiate even the most refined palate. Tens of millions of cricket obsessives in South Asia will ensure plenty of eyeballs on the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, while rugby's equivalent is among many contenders for the title of the world's third biggest tournament. The Tour de France, with a worldwide TV audience of 3. ...

Cuban players celebrate after winning the Gold medal against Nicaragua, at the XXII Central American and Caribbean Games, in Veracruz, Mexico on November 21, 2014A seismic shift in relations with Cuba had many in US baseball salivating Thursday at the prospect of a flood of talent from the Caribbean country where America's "national pastime" is a passion. Major League Baseball made a measured response to the news on Wednesday that the United States and Cuba would end five decades of Cold War hostility and move to revive diplomatic ties and ease a crippling US trade embargo. The sanctions, and Cuba's refusal to allow players there to seek employment in the United States, have made for an arduous path for Cuban baseballers who defy their government and seek to pursue careers in America. Amid speculation that the trickle of talent from Cuba could become a torrent, and the country could surpass the Dominican Republic and Venezuela as top Latin American sources for Major League players, MLB and the players' union were cautious.


LONDON, Dec 19 (Reuters) - On Friday Dec. 19 from 1900GMT we will publish the following series of year-end review stories: A review of world sport in 2014 A look ahead to 2015 Year reviews of: Olympics Soccer Rugby Cricket Tennis Motor racing Golf North American sport We will also have stories on: Five major upsets of 2014 Five best performances of 2014 Five biggest flops of 2014 Five talking points of 2014 (Editing by Ed Osmond)

Oklahoma City Thunder players check to see if Kevin Durant is okay after he twisted his ankle towards the end of the first half of their game against the Golden State Warriors at ORACLE Arena on December 18, 2014 in Oakland, CaliforniaKevin Durant's hot start was cold comfort when the Oklahoma City star limped out at halftime Thursday of the Thunder's 114-109 NBA loss to Golden State. Stephen Curry posted a game-high 34 points with nine assists, seven rebounds and four steals for Golden State. Six Warriors players scored in double figures as the team bounced back from a loss in Memphis on Tuesday that snapped their 16-game winning streak. Reigning NBA Most Valuable Player Durant seemed determined to remind the league-leading Warriors they can't expect to have things their own way in the Western Conference when he scored 16 points in the first quarter.


The Padres have signed off on the blockbuster deal to bring Dodgers slugger Matt Kemp, shown here in October 2014, to San Diego after medical issues reportedly threatened to scupper the tradeThe Padres signed off on the blockbuster deal to bring Dodgers slugger Matt Kemp to San Diego after medical issues reportedly threatened to scupper the trade. In addition to Kemp, the Padres acquired catcher Tim Federowicz from the Dodgers in exchange for catcher Yasmani Grandal and pitchers Joe Wieland and Zach Eflin.


NFL: Tennessee Titans at Jacksonville Jaguars(Reuters) - Jordan Todman produced a 62-yard touchdown run to help the Jacksonville Jaguars beat the Tennessee Titans 21-13 on Thursday in a clash between struggling teams already looking ahead to next season. The Jaguars trailed 10-0 but rallied with 21 unanswered points, with their final TD coming on Todman's long run in the fourth quarter. "I heard the call (for me to carry the ball), and it was my first carry of the day so I was excited," Todman told reporters. "I saw there was an opportunity to cut it back and make a guy miss and then it was off to the races. It was a great feeling. ...


NBA: New York Knicks at Chicago Bulls(The Sports Xchange) - Highlights of Thursday's National Basketball Association games: Bulls 103, Knicks 97 Jimmy Butler scored a career-high 35 points and added seven assists to lead the Chicago Bulls to a win against the New York Knicks. Chicago (16-9) played without guard Derrick Rose, who was sick, while the Knicks (5-23) were without forward Carmelo Anthony because of a sore left knee. Pau Gasol added 20 points for the Bulls while Tim Hardaway Jr. led the Knicks with 23 points. ...


Rajon Rondo of the Boston Celtics looks on in the second half against the Cleveland Cavaliers at TD Garden on November 14, 2014 in Boston, MassachusettsThe Boston Celtics have traded versatile point guard Rajon Rondo to the Dallas Mavericks for three key players and an NBA first- and second-round draft pick, the Mavericks said. The Mavericks will give up Brandan Wright, Jameer Nelson and Jae Crowder -- three key members of their playing rotation -- along with their 2015 first-round draft selection and a 2016 second-round draft pick in a deal that will also bring Dwight Powell to Dallas.


NBA: San Antonio Spurs at Boston Celtics(Reuters) - The Dallas Mavericks landed point guard Rajon Rondo in a trade with the Boston Celtics on Thursday. Dallas sent Brandan Wright, Jae Crowder, Jameer Nelson, two draft picks and a trade exception to the Celtics in exchange for Rondo and center Dwight Powell. The 28-year-old Rondo had long been in trade rumors as Boston is rebuilding and he was the sole remaining standout from the team's recent success, where they won the title in 2008 and made the finals in 2010. ...


LPGA: Canadian Pacific Women's Open-Final Round(Reuters) - Brooke Henderson, a 17-year-old Canadian who was golf's top-ranked female amateur, on Thursday announced her decision to turn professional and sign up with sports management company IMG (International Management Group). "I am really excited to begin my professional career in 2015 and proud to represent Canada along the way," Henderson, a native of Smiths Falls, Ontario, said in a statement. "I realize what a big step it is to play professionally. ...


WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday rejected a petition that asked regulators to punish a radio station for using on air the name of the National Football League's Washington team, Redskins, a word some consider a slur to Native Americans. Legal activist John Banzhaf III had petitioned the agency to strip the WWXX-FM radio station, which belongs to the team's owner, Dan Snyder, of its broadcasting license for using the word "Redskins." Banzhaf said the name was racist, derogatory, profane and hateful, making its use "akin to broadcasting obscenity. ...

Matt Kemp #27 of the Los Angeles Dodgers leads off first base against the St. Louis Cardinals during a game on October 7, 2014 in St Louis, MissouriThe San Diego Padres reportedly may opt not to finalize their trade for Dodgers slugger Matt Kemp because a medical exam revealed the outfielder has arthritis in both hips. USA Today reported that the Padres are still trying to determine whether the condition will affect the remainder of the 30-year-old Kemp's playing career. The two teams had set a Thursday deadline to complete the deal, in which the Dodgers would send Kemp and reserve catcher Tim Federowicz to the Padres in exchange for catcher Yasmani Grandal, pitcher Joe Wieland and minor league hurler Zach Elfin.


Michael Jordan, owner of the Charlotte Hornets, watches on during their game against the Milwaukee Bucks on October 29, 2014 in Charlotte, North CarolinaA pair of sneakers worn by Michael Jordan when he played basketball at the University of North Carolina sold for $33,387 on Thursday, US media reported. Grey Flannel Auctions, which sold the shoes, told ESPN they were consigned by a high school team-mate of Jordan and that the winning bidder preferred to remain anonymous. Jordan, who later became closely associated with Nike through the creation of the "Air Jordan" brand, wore Converse while at UNC because the company had a contract with coach Dean Smith. Grey Flannel Auctions said Jordan wore the shoes during his freshman year in 1981-82.


NBA: Los Angeles Clippers at Indiana PacersBy Mark Lamport-Stokes LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - For Indiana Pacers coach Frank Vogel, the one shining light in an injury-hit campaign where the Eastern Conference finalists of the past two seasons have resembled a sinking ship has been the team's strong unity. Very few teams, if any, in the league could withstand the loss of a standout forward for an entire season and lengthy absences of two other key players but Indiana have refused to adopt a "woe is me" attitude. ...


NBA: Preseason-New York Knicks at Boston CelticsBy Larry Fine NEW YORK (Reuters) - In a season full of hope in the first full campaign under club president Phil Jackson, the New York Knicks are struggling with a new offense, a rookie coach and a frustrated star in Carmelo Anthony. Coach Derek Fisher, who won five NBA titles as a guard for the Lakers under then-coach Jackson, has been cool and calm in his new role but showed growing impatience against the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday when his club fell to woeful 5-22 record. ...


MIAMI (Reuters) - A black-market chemist pleaded guilty on Thursday to concocting testosterone in the garage lab of his Florida home that was used to supply performance-enhancing drugs linked to the U.S. baseball doping scandal. Paulo Berejuk, 51, faces up to 10 years in prison at his February sentencing in Miami federal court for conspiring to distribute a controlled substance. Berejuk is the latest to admit guilt in one of the biggest doping scandals in U.S. sports. It led to the suspension of more than a dozen Major League Baseball players, including New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez. ...
LONDON (Reuters) - Factbox on world number one Rory McIlroy who enjoyed a stellar year in 2014, winning two major championships. EARLY LIFE Born: May 4, 1989 in Hollywood, County Down, Northern Ireland Strikes a 40-yard drive at the age of two and becomes youngest member of Hollywood golf club aged seven. TEENAGER 2004 - Member of Europe's Junior Ryder Cup-winning team 2005 - Becomes youngest winner of West of Ireland Championship, shooting record score of 61 around Royal Portrush Golf Club. First European Tour appearance at British Masters. ...
By Tony Jimenez LONDON (Reuters) - Rory McIlroy received plenty of criticism when he switched club manufacturers almost two years ago and he has now conceded that it took nearly 12 months to feel totally at ease with his new equipment. The Northern Irishman was flying high at the top of the world rankings when he signed a 10-year contract with Nike in January 2013 that, according to media reports, was worth $250 million. ...

Irene Wust of the Netherlands competes in the women's 1,000 metres speed skating event during the 2014 Sochi Winter OlympicsBy Mitch Phillips LONDON (Reuters) - Double major golf winner Rory McIlroy and prolific Olympic Dutch speed skater Irene Wust have been named Reuters sportsman and sportswoman of the year after a poll of the news agency's sports journalists from around the world. Soccer World Cup winners Germany were voted team of the year, Atletico Madrid's Diego Simeone coach of the year, the comeback of the year went to speed skater Victor Ahn and Kei Nishikori took the breakthrough award. After off-course issues contributed to a thin 2013, McIlroy roared back this year by winning the British Open and the ...


LONDON, Dec 18 (Reuters) - Factbox on world number one Rory McIlroy who enjoyed a stellar year in 2014, winning two major championships. EARLY LIFE Born: May 4, 1989 in Hollywood, County Down, Northern Ireland Strikes a 40-yard drive at the age of two and becomes youngest member of Hollywood golf club aged seven. TEENAGER 2004 - Member of Europe's Junior Ryder Cup-winning team 2005 - Becomes youngest winner of West of Ireland Championship, shooting record score of 61 around Royal Portrush Golf Club. First European Tour appearance at British Masters. ...
By Tony Jimenez LONDON, Dec 18 (Reuters) - Rory McIlroy received plenty of criticism when he switched club manufacturers almost two years ago and he has now conceded that it took nearly 12 months to feel totally at ease with his new equipment. The Northern Irishman was flying high at the top of the world rankings when he signed a 10-year contract with Nike in January 2013 that, according to media reports, was worth $250 million. ...

FIBA says the JBA has six months to come up with a plan to merge its community-based professional bj League and the National Basketball League comprising corporate-sponsored teamsJapan has six months to hammer out a plan for merging its two national basketball leagues, or risk not qualifying for the 2016 Rio De Janeiro Olympics, a senior International Basketball Federation (FIBA) official said Thursday. During a visit to Tokyo, FIBA secretary general Patrick Baumann repeated calls for the Japan Basketball Association (JBA) to usher in reforms by June, after the body suspended Japan from international competition.


Michigan Wolverines receiver Arrington grabs a pass away from Florida Gators defender Anderson for a 37-yard gain during Capital One Bowl in Orlando(Reuters) - A federal judge on Wednesday rebuffed a $75-million NCAA settlement that aimed to end a massive class-action lawsuit over head injuries suffered by student athletes, court records show. U.S. District Judge John Lee wrote in a 21-page opinion that while the proposed agreement was a step in the right direction, the $70 million devoted to fund concussion testing and diagnosis for players might not cover potential costs, among other issues. "Although these concerns may prove surmountable, the Court cannot grant preliminary approval of the settlement as currently proposed," Lee wrote. ...


Kyle Lowry and Patrick Patterson of the Toronto Raptors at TD Garden on November 5, 2014 in Boston, MassachusettsKyle Lowry scored 20 points and handed out 12 assists Wednesday to lead Toronto to a 105-89 NBA victory over Brooklyn that made the Raptors the first Eastern Conference team to 20 wins this season. Patrick Patterson and Lou Williams contributed eight points apiece in the fourth quarter and Lowry scored six as the Raptors out-scored the Nets 29-16 in the final frame to pull away for their fourth straight win. Toronto improved to 20-6 and have enjoyed three winning streaks of at least four games this season. Mason Plumlee had 23 points to lead Brooklyn, Joe Johnson scored 17 and Mirza Teletovic added 14 in the first meeting between the Atlantic Division rivals since the Nets' seven-game win in the first round of last season's playoffs.


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