Update on the latest in sports:

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Updated: Wed, 29 Jan 2014 07:15:04 EST


Lakers star likely out of All-Star game

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kobe Bryant's recovery from a knee injury is taking longer than expected, and he's likely to miss the NBA All-Star game in New Orleans on Feb. 16 -- less than three weeks away. Bryant was voted a starter in the All-Star game by fans.

L.A. Lakers team physician Steve Lombardo examined Bryant after the team returned from a two-week road trip for Tuesday's home game against Indiana.

Bryant broke a bone in his knee Dec. 17, just six games into his comeback from a torn left Achilles tendon. His program of recovery now consists of light exercise, including riding a stationary bike.


Knicks turn tables on Celtics

UNDATED (AP)— Carmelo Anthony had 24 points and nine rebounds in just 28 minutes, and the New York Knicks avenged an embarrassing home loss by beating the Boston Celtics 114-88 for their third straight victory.

Jeremy Tyler added a career-high 17 points. Fellow reserve J.R. Smith also scored 17 for the Knicks, who lost by 41 last time the Celtics came to Madison Square Garden.

New York is headed in the right direction again since ending a five-game losing streak Friday behind Anthony's 62 points. The Knicks are only a half-game out of the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot.

In other NBA action:

— Dwight Howard scored 23 points, Terrence Jones had 21 and the Houston Rockets held on for a 97-90 win over the San Antonio Spurs. The loss dropped the Spurs two and a-half games back of Oklahoma City in the race for best record in the Western Conference. Rockets star James Harden sat out with a sore thumb.

__ Memphis upset Portland 98-81. Zach Randolph had 23 points and 10 boards. LaMarcus Aldridge had a big night in defeat for the Trail Blazers with 27 points and 16 rebounds.

__ The Indiana Pacers topped the L.A. Lakers 104-92. David West led five Pacers in double figures with 19 points.

__ The Washington Wizards posted a road victory by knocking off Golden State 88-85. Bradley Beal led the Wizards with 20 points.

__ Anthony Davis scored 30 points with eight divs and seven rebounds and Eric Gordon scored 20 in the New Orleans Pelicans' 100-89 win over Cleveland.

__ Detroit overwhelmed Orlando 103-87. Andre Drummond had 13 points and 17 rebounds as the Pistons end a four-game slide.


Shockers go 22-0

UNDATED (AP)— Cleanthony Early scored 23 points, including 12 of the 21 Wichita State scored in the second half, to help the fourth-ranked Shockers stay unbeaten with a 57-45 victory over Loyola of Chicago. The Shockers are 22-0 overall, and 9-0 in Missouri Valley play.

Wichita State saw its 22-point second-half lead trimmed to nine in the game's final minutes but hung on to extend school records for winning streak and start to a season. The Shockers shot 23 percent (6 of 26) in the second half.

In other AP Top-25 hoops:

__ LSU upset 11th-ranked Kentucky 87-82. Johnny O'Bryant III had 29 points and nine rebounds as LSU led wire-to-wire. Jordan Mickey scored 14 points and dived five shots for LSU.

— Keith Appling scored 16 points and No. 7 Michigan State outlasted No. 15 Iowa 71-69 in overtime to improve to 19-2 overall. Matt Costello had 11 points and 12 rebounds for the Spartans, who handed the Hawkeyes their first home loss of the season.

__ Number-20 Creighton (KRAY'-tuhn) survived a scare against St. John's before beating the Red Storm 63-60. Doug McDermott hit a 25-footer with 2.5 seconds left to finish his season-high 39-point night after the Bluejays had lost an 18-point lead.


Alabama-Auburn postponed until Thursday

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — The Alabama at Auburn men's basketball game scheduled for Wednesday night has been postponed a day because of a rare winter storm that made traveling in the state treacherous. It now will be played Thursday night.


No happy homecoming for Thomas...Canadiens recover

UNDATED (AP)— On NHL ice, Milan Lucic (LOO'-chich) scored twice and the Bruins spoiled goalie Tim Thomas' return to Boston with a 6-2 win over the Florida Panthers.

It was the third straight six-goal game for the Bruins, following road wins of 6-1 and 6-3. The Atlantic Division leaders improved to 5-0-1 in their last six games.

Thomas won the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP in 2011 when the Bruins won the Stanley Cup. He spent one more season with them, took last season off and then joined the Panthers.

In other NHL action:

__ The Montreal Canadiens rebounded from their embarrassing 5-0 home loss Saturday to Washington by blanking the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0. Carey Price got the shutout with 36 saves.

— Scott Hartnell and Claude Giroux (zheh-ROO') each had three points, Steve Mason made 33 saves and the Philadelphia Flyers blanked Detroit 5-0.

— Jason Spezza (SPET'-suh) scored a power-play goal with 5 minutes left and Stephane Da Costa had two goals in the Ottawa Senators' 3-2 victory over Columbus.

— Nazem Kadri (nah-ZEEM' KAH'-dree) scored twice and James van Riemsdyk (REEMS'-dyk) got the go-ahead goal late in the third period to lift the Toronto Maple Leafs over the Tampa Bay Lightning 3-2

— Washington nipped Buffalo 5-4 in overtime. Mike Green scored twice, including the game-winner one minute into OT. Alex Ovechkin had two goals and two assists.

— Alexander Steen gave the St. Louis Blues the early lead and Jaroslav Halak (YAR'-oh-slav HAH'-lak) earned his fourth shutout of the season in a 3-0 victory over the New Jersey Devils.

— Mike Fisher scored the tiebreaking goal on a power play 42 seconds into the third period and the Nashville Predators beat the Winnipeg Jets 4-3.

__ The Phoenix Coyotes blanked the L.A. Kings 3-0. Thomas Greiss got the shutout with 30 saves. Oliver Ekman-Larsson scored twice.

__ Calagary knocked off the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks 5-4 in overtime. T.J. Brodie netted the game-winner.

__ The Minnesota Wild scored a 4-2 road victory over the Anaheim Ducks. Jason Pominville (PAHM'-in-vihl) scored his 21st goal.


Harvin, Prater plan to play

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Seattle's wide receiver Percy Harvin who said he is "absolutely playing" in the Super Bowl. He returned to practice last Wednesday after passing the NFL's concussion protocol. He suffered a concussion in Seattle's playoff game against New Orleans which forced him to miss the NFC title game against San Francisco.

Denver kicker Matt Prater says he's feeling much better after missing three practices last week because of an illness and expects to be "totally fine" for the Super Bowl. Prater kicked Monday for the first time since being sent home by the team last Thursday and says at media day that he didn't feel too rusty.


2 charged with selling fake tickets

NEW YORK (AP) — Two men made high-quality counterfeit tickets for the Super Bowl and other postseason NFL games and sold them online, authorities in New York said on Tuesday, five days before tens of thousands of fans are expected to pack into a stadium across the river in New Jersey for the game.

Forty-three-year-old Damon Daniels of New York, and 32-year-old Eugene Fladger of Philadelphia were scheduled for arraignment today in Queens Criminal Court following their arrests Monday on forgery, possession of forged instruments and other trademark counterfeit charges.

Police recovered 59 counterfeit tickets at Daniels' Queens apartment Monday, including 36 Super Bowl tickets.


Media day free for all

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Internet star Lil Terrio danced with cheerleaders, an Austrian man dressed as Mozart, another guy wore a Waldo costume and Nickelodeon's Pick Boy was in the house.

Welcome to Media Day, the annual Super Bowl circus.

It seems fitting this event was held at a hockey rink, of all places, because there's nothing ordinary about it. Thousands of journalists, pseudo-journalists and other credentialed "media" from all over the world gathered at the home of the NHL's New Jersey Devils to meet the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks.

Strange questions were the norm instead of football ones. A man asked Seahawks center Max Unger if he could touch his long, scruffy beard. He said yes. A woman asked Seahawks defensive lineman Brandon Mebane for a kiss. He said no. Another woman asked Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson for as hug. He complied.

There was more, but you get the idea.


Rivera earns extension...Kiffin demoted in Big-D

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Carolina has given coach Ron Rivera a three-year contract extension through the 2017 season. Details of the deal weren't immediately available.

Rivera led the Panthers to a 12-4 mark and the NFC South title. Carolina made their first playoff appearance since 2008.

Rivera had one year left on the four-year, $11.2 million contract he signed in 2011 when first hired as head coach.

IRVING, Texas (AP) — The Dallas Cowboys have demoted defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin, giving his title to Rod Marinelli, and hired Scott Linehan (LIN'-uh-han) as the passing game coordinator who will call plays.

The Cowboys announced a change in Kiffin's title to assistant head coach/defense. Dallas missed the playoffs this season.


AP source: Friedgen to be offensive coordinator

UNDATED (AP) — A person familiar with the negotiations says Rutgers is close to hiring former Maryland head coach Ralph Friedgen (FREE'-jihn) as offensive coordinator under coach Kyle Flood. The Fridge coached the Terrapins from 2001-10 and went 75-50, including 9-4 in his last season. He was 5-2 in bowl games.

Rutgers is coming off a 6-7 season. Friedgen would replace Ron Prince, who left Rutgers to become an assistant with the Detroit Lions.


MLB wants Rodriguez's suit dismissed

NEW YORK (AP) — Major League Baseball is seeking a speedy dismissal of third baseman Alex Rodriguez's lawsuit challenging a season-long suspension for using three prohibited performance enhancing substances.

MLB lawyer Howard Ganz said in a letter to U.S. District Judge Edgardo Ramos that Rodriguez's claims do not come "remotely close" to what is needed to overturn an arbitration decision in federal court. Ganz said in the letter, which became public Tuesday, that the lawsuit should be tossed because a court is not empowered to re-examine the merits of an arbitration award.

Arbitrator Fredric Horowitz cut Rodriguez's 211 game suspension to 162 games and the 2014 postseason. He concluded Rodriguez used banned substances each year from 2010-12 and twice tried to obstruct MLB's investigation.


Chapman agrees with Reds...Puig gets off the hook

CINCINNATI (AP) — Closer Aroldis Chapman has agreed to a $5 million, one-year contract with Cincinnati. Chapman and the Reds split the difference on their arbitration figures. Chapman went 4-5 with 38 saves and a 2.54 ERA in 68 appearances with 112 strikeouts in 63 2-3 innings.

In other baseball doings:

— Prosecutors have dropped a reckless driving charge against Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig (yah-SEEL' pweeg). The 23-year-old Cuban defector was arrested Dec. 28 at the western end of Alligator Alley near Naples after a Florida Highway Patrol trooper reported clocking him at 110 mph in a 70 mph zone. Puig lives in the Miami area during the offseason.

— First baseman Carlos Pena and outfielder Brennan Boesch have signed minor league deals with the Los Angeles Angels. Pena, who was an All-Star in 2009, and Boesch have been invited to spring training with the Angels, getting the chance to earn a backup job on the major league roster.

— Major League Baseball has approved a protective cap for pitchers that is designed to make them feel safer on the mound. The new hat will be available for testing during spring training on a voluntary basis. Major leaguers and minor leaguers won't be required to wear it.


Attempt to unionize college players

CHICAGO (AP) — Football players at Northwestern are spearheading the formation of a first-of-its-kind union for college athletes. Outgoing Wildcats quarterback Kain Colter joined union leaders in Chicago to announce the creation of the College Athletes Players Association. Colter says athletes need "a seat at the table" to guarantee safeguards against injuries and to ensure adequate financial compensation.

United Steelworkers official Tim Waters spoke alongside Colter. He says the key issue is whether college football players are employees. He says if they're deemed employees, they have the right to organize.

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