OAKLAND, Calif.—Russell Westbrook blocked Stephen Curry’s lay-up, Kevin Durant corralled the ball and dribbled down court.
He threw down a soaring dunk at full extension, then pretended to slice his throat and crossed his hands in prayer.
“Kill ’em and pray for ’em after the game,” Durant said of his new celebration.
WASHINGTON—Chicago White Sox manager Robin Ventura faced a dilemma last night in the fourth inning of a close game against the Washington Nationals.
Pitch to No. 3 hitter Bryce Harper with a runner on base, or walk Harper and pitch instead to cleanup man Ryan Zimmerman with two aboard.
Ventura chose to have right-hander Dylan Axelrod intentionally walk the lefty-swinging Harper.
DETROIT—J.P. Arencibia and Mark DeRosa gave the struggling Toronto Blue Jays a chance to feel good.
Arencibia hit a three-run double in the seventh inning as the Blue Jays rallied from a five-run deficit to beat the Detroit Tigers 8-6 yesterday.
Toronto had opened a season of high expectations with five losses in seven games.
MIAMI—All the Miami Heat did was set a franchise single-season record for wins with four games left to play, clinch the top overall spot in the NBA, and secure home-court advantage for the entirety of the playoffs.
No big deal.
AUGUSTA, Ga.—Eighty-three-year-old Arnold Palmer punched the air on an overcast morning.
The Masters was underway.
Three of golf’s greatest players—Palmer, 77-year-old Gary Player, and 73-year-old Jack Nicklaus—struck ceremonial tee shots to begin the first major of the year this morning.
NEW YORK—A sudden goal-scoring surge for Phil Kessel has helped the Maple Leafs earn three out of four points against a very desperate N.Y. Rangers’ team.
Kessel had two goals for the second-straight game against New York, although the Leafs lost 3-2 in a shootout last night to give the Rangers a split in a home-and-home series.
KANSAS CITY, Mo.—Royals’ fans waited almost all afternoon to see some offence.
When their team finally built a rally, it came just in time to give Ervin Santana a much-deserved win.
Santana pitched eight strong innings, and Alcides Escobar doubled home the go-ahead run, as Kansas City beat the Minnesota Twins 3-1 yesterday in its home-opener.
ATLANTA—What a week for Rick Pitino! He’s elected to the Hall of Fame. His horse is headed to the Kentucky Derby. His son gets a prominent head coaching job.
Then he caps it off with what he wanted most—another national championship.
For that, he can thank 13 of the grittiest guys he’s ever coached.
TORONTO—Phil Kessel couldn’t have picked a better time to end his nine-game goal-scoring drought.
The veteran forward scored twice, including the game-winner in the third period, and added an assist to lead the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 4-3 win over the N.Y. Rangers last night to open an important home-and-home series between the Eastern Conference rivals.
OTTAWA—Canada won last year’s women’s world hockey championship on American ice, so the United States would like nothing more than to win it in Canada.
The two countries will extend their streak of playing each other for world championship gold to 15 times tonight at Ottawa’s Scotiabank Place.