Boxing: How Ali’s ‘Thrilla’ left its mark on the Philippines

  MANILA, Philippines (AFP) — A bustling shopping mall forms an unlikely monument to the “Thrilla in Manila”, but Muhammad Ali’s most brutal fight made its biggest impression on the minds of those who witnessed it and still speak of it with awe. The late Ali’s third and final meeting with Joe Frazier, in 1975, only went to Manila because Philippines dictator Ferdinand Marcos was hoping to gain popularity and prestige, three years after declaring martial […]

NBA: Adopted Warrior ‘Splash Brother’ Green sinks Cleveland

by Jim SLATER OAKLAND, United States (AFP) — Golden State Warriors sharpshooters Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, nicknamed the “Splash Brothers” for their skill at sinking 3-pointers, welcomed Draymond Green as an adopted soggy sibling Sunday at the NBA Finals. Green scored a game-high 28 points, his 11-of-20 shooting from the floor including 5-of-8 from 3-point range, to spark the defending champion Warriors over Cleveland 110-77, giving Golden State a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven […]

Boxing: ‘Proud British fighter’ Khan wants success for Pakistan, too

by Issam AHMED ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (AFP) — Boxer Amir Khan has denied betraying his British upbringing after being criticised for saying he would represent Pakistan at the Rio Games, insisting he only wanted to boost the sport in his parents’ country of birth. But the Bolton-born fighter also admitted he would not be willing to face an accompanying two-year ban from the World Boxing Council (WBC) that would jeopardise his professional career, making an Olympic […]

NBA: Warriors halfway to title repeat after routing Cavs

by Jim SLATER OAKLAND, United States (AFP) — Draymond Green scored 28 points and Stephen Curry added 18 as defending champion Golden State overwhelmed Cleveland 110-77 Sunday in the NBA Finals, pushing the Warriors halfway to a title repeat. Humbling the Cavaliers in the second half, Golden State seized a 2-0 edge in the best-of-seven series, which shifts to Cleveland for game three Wednesday and game four Friday. “It’s a fabulous position with everybody playing […]

Tennis: Djokovic wins French Open, completes career Grand Slam

by Dave JAMES PARIS, France (AFP) — Novak Djokovic captured a first French Open at the 12th time of asking on Sunday, becoming just the third man in history to hold all four Grand Slam titles at the same time. The world number one downed Andy Murray 3-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 to claim a 12th career major and join Don Budge in 1938 and Rod Laver, in 1962 and 1969, as the only players to […]

Hundreds visit Muhammad Ali Center to pay tribute to legendary boxer

As hundreds continued to bring flowers and balloons to a growing memorial outside of the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, Kentucky, on Sunday (June 5), many had an opportunity to go inside the center and see the boxing champion’s memorabilia on display there. Ali, who had long suffered from Parkinson’s syndrome which impaired his speech and made the once-graceful athlete almost a prisoner in his own body, died on Friday (June 3) at age 74. […]

NBA: Curry wants to go to Rio but still not sure he will

by Jim SLATER OAKLAND, United States (AFP) — NBA Most Valuable Player Stephen Curry wants to play for the United States at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, but the Golden State Warriors star hasn’t made a final decision. NBA scoring champion Curry, who sparked the Warriors to a record 73-win season, is too busy trying to lead Golden State to a second consecutive NBA Finals victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers to focus on Olympic gold […]

Key fights in the boxing career of Muhammad Ali

(Reuters) Important bouts in the career of former heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali: * Sept. 5, 1960 – Wins the Olympic light-heavyweight gold medal in Rome in a unanimous decision over Zbigniew Pietrzykowski of Poland. * Oct. 29, 1960 – Makes his professional debut in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, winning a six-round unanimous decision over Tunney Hunsaker, whose day job was police chief of Fayetteville, West Virginia. * Feb. 25, 1964 – Boasting a 19-0 […]

Boxing legend Muhammad Ali dies at 74

LOS ANGELES, United States (AFP) y 6/4/2016 —Boxing icon Muhammad Ali died on Friday, a family spokesman said in a statement. “After a 32-year battle with Parkinson’s disease, Muhammad Ali has passed away at the age of 74,” spokesman Bob Gunnell said. Ali, whose fame transcended sport during a remarkable heavyweight boxing career that spanned three decades, had been hospitalized in the Phoenix, Arizona, area with a respiratory ailment this week. Concern for the three-time heavyweight world […]

NBA: Iguodala still mystifies LeBron, Cavs in finals

by Jim SLATER OAKLAND, United States (AFP) — Golden State’s Andre Iguodala earned the NBA Finals Most Valuable Player award last year for coming off the bench and playing smothering defense on LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. One year later, the Warriors are again facing Cleveland for the league crown and the Cavaliers still appear to have no answer for the disruptive force of the 32-year-old US swingman. Iguodala scored 12 points, grabbed seven […]

NBA: Livingston overcomes severe injury to star in Finals

by Jim SLATER OAKLAND, United States (AFP) — Shaun Livingston injured his left leg so badly during a 2007 NBA game that there was talk of amputation and he needed months of rehabilitation just to walk again. So when the defending champion Golden State Warriors needed a spark off the bench to fight off a Cleveland rally in Thursday’s opening game of the NBA Finals, it was no surprise Livingston had the grit and determination […]

NBA: Warriors rip Cavaliers in Finals opener

by Jim SLATER OAKLAND, United States (AFP) — Defending champion Golden State, showing the teamwork and depth that helped produce a record 73 regular-season wins, routed the Cleveland Cavaliers 104-89 in Thursday’s opening game of the NBA Finals. Game two in the best-of-seven series will be played Sunday at Oakland before the scene shifts to Cleveland for two games. Warriors reserve guard Shaun Livingston scored a season-best 20 points, his career playoff high, while Draymond […]