Wednesday Sports in Brief


BASEBALL

NEW YORK (AP) — Tom Seaver, the galvanizing leader of the Miracle Mets 1969 championship team and a pitcher who personified the rise of expansion teams during an era of radical change for baseball, has died. He was 75.

The Hall of Fame said Wednesday night that Seaver died Monday from complications of Lewy body dementia and COVID-19. Seaver spent his final years in Calistoga, California.

Seaver’s family announced in March 2019 he had been diagnosed with dementia and had retired from public life.

He continued working at Seaver Vineyards, founded by the three-time NL Cy Young Award winner and his wife, Nancy, in 2002 on 116 acres at Diamond Mountain in the Calistoga region of Northern California.

Seaver was diagnosed with Lyme disease in 1991, and it reoccurred in 2012 and led to Bell’s Palsy and memory loss, the Daily News of New York reported in 2013.

NBA

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) – James Harden made up for a miserable shooting night with a big blocked shot, Russell Westbrook scored 20 points against his former team and the Houston Rockets edged the Oklahoma City Thunder 104-102 on Wednesday night in Game 7 of their first-round series.

The Rockets pulled out a tense final game of the first round that lasted long past the final basket as replays and fouls were sorted out.

In the end, Houston prevailed to set up a second-round matchup with the Los Angeles Lakers that begins Friday despite Harden, the NBA’s leading scorer, going 4 for 15 from the field.

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) -Jimmy Butler made two free throws with no time remaining and the Miami Heat wasted a six-point lead in the final seconds yet found a way to beat the Milwaukee Bucks 116-114 on Wednesday night for a 2-0 lead in the Eastern Conference semifinal series.

Butler rattled in the first, which was the only one that mattered, then made the second for the final margin. He got fouled by Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo with about a tenth of a second left on a jump shot from the left corner.

Referees sent Butler to the line, with no one else on the lane, as some Heat teammates knelt at midcourt.

And just like that, the Heat became the first No. 5 seed in NBA history to take a 2-0 series lead over a No. 1 seed.

Goran Dragic scored 23 points, Tyler Herro added 17 off the bench and Jae Crowder had 16 for Miami.

NFL

NEW YORK (AP) – Jerry Jones won’t put a number on the attendance for the Dallas Cowboys’ home opener until the crowd is announced later this month at AT&T Stadium.

The owner of the Cowboys also hopes the 80,000-seat venue with standing room space that pushes capacity past 90,000 will be closer to full as the pandemic-altered NFL season goes on.

All of which is to say the league’s clubs are preparing for a rapidly changing environment while accepting the bottom-line notion that playing games with limited numbers of fans or none at all will affect revenues in 2020.

TENNIS

NEW YORK (AP) – Under normal circumstances, Karolina Pliskova would not have been seeded No. 1 at the U.S. Open and so, while a second-round loss certainly would have been disappointing to her, and noticed by others, it wouldn’t have been as newsworthy.

But what’s normal in 2020? With the women who are 1-2 in the rankings choosing to skip the trip to Flushing Meadows because of the pandemic, No. 3 Pliskova ascended to the top spot in the draw — and by Day 3, she was gone.

Pliskova, the 2016 runner-up at the U.S. Open, made her mood clear during a 6-1, 7-6 (2) loss to 50th-ranked Caroline Garcia on Tuesday by breaking a racket, then again afterward with a series of clipped responses at her news conference.

More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports





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