Sports

NBA: Sixers handed No.1 draft pick

NEW YORK , Philippines (AFP) — The Philadelphia 76ers were handed the number one overall pick in the 2016 NBA draft on Tuesday, handing the franchise a vital boost as they attempt to rebuild after yet another disastrous season. The Sixers finished with a league worst 10-72 this season, lurching from one crisis to the next as they stumbled to a record losing streak of 28 straight defeats. Being awarded first choice in the draft […]

NBA: League admits key missed call in Thunder-Warriors

LOS ANGELES, United States (AFP) — The NBA on Tuesday admitted missing a traveling violation by Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook at a key moment in the Thunder’s thrilling Western Conference playoff win over Golden State. NBA senior vice president of replay and referee operations Joe Borgia acknowledged that the officiating crew in Monday’s game, won 108-102 by the Thunder, had not spotted Westbrook lifting his pivot foot in the closing seconds. The violation occurred with […]

Boxing: ‘Madness!’ Legendary Arum rips into Olympic pros plan

by Daniel HICKS HONG KONG , China (AFP) — Legendary boxing promoter Bob Arum has slammed as “total madness” a proposal to allow professional boxers to fight against amateurs in the Rio Olympics. The 84-year-old American, who has arranged fights for ring greats from Muhammad Ali to Manny Pacquiao in a career spanning more than 50 years, believes boxers could be seriously hurt if the plan by the sport’s governing body, the International Boxing Association […]

NBA: Oklahoma City stun Warriors to take finals lead

OAKLAND , United States (AFP) — Russell Westbrook inspired a second-half fightback as the Oklahoma City Thunder came from behind to beat the Golden State Warriors 108-102 in the opening game of the Eastern Conference finals on Monday. Westbrook poured on 27 points as the Thunder overturned a 60-47 halftime deficit to snatch victory in a pulsating clash between two of the most potent attacking units in the NBA. Westbrook also chipped in with 12 […]

NBA: McMillan promoted as Pacers head coach

NEW YORK , United States (AFP) — The Indiana Pacers appointed Nate McMillan as head coach on Monday, replacing Frank Vogel after the team refused to renew his contract, a statement said. McMillan, who had spent the last three seasons working alongside Vogel as associate head coach, takes over after signalling his desire for the top job. “I truly believe Nate is the right coach for us at this time,” Pacers president of basketball operations […]

Golf: Woods hoping to return next month

BETHESDA , United States (AFP) — Tiger Woods said Monday he hopes to make his comeback from injury at next month’s Quicken Loans National — but highlighted his tough road to recovery by hitting three shots into the water before watching journalists. His Tiger Woods Foundation helps host the tournament, which this year takes place at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Maryland from June 23-26, the week following the US Open. Woods, who has not […]

NBA: McMillan promoted as Pacers head coach

NEW YORK , United States (AFP) — The Indiana Pacers appointed Nate McMillan as head coach on Monday, replacing Frank Vogel after the team refused to renew his contract, a statement said. McMillan, who had spent the last three seasons working alongside Vogel as associate head coach, takes over after signalling his desire for the top job. “I truly believe Nate is the right coach for us at this time,” Pacers president of basketball operations […]

Boxing: Heavyweight champion Fury sorry for video rant

LONDON , United Kingdom (AFP) — World heavyweight champion Tyson Fury insists he is “in no way a racist or bigot” after apologising on Monday for comments he made in an hour-long video rant. Fury caused controversy after making homophobic, sexist and anti-Semitic remarks in the interview last week, which led to widespread calls for him to be banned from boxing. “I apologise to anyone who may have taken offence at any of my comments,” […]

Boxing: Wilder promoter opens door for fights with British rivals

NEW YORK , United States (AFP) — Unbeaten heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder could be in line to face rival undefeated British ring kings Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua after a planned bout next Saturday in Moscow was canceled. Lou DiBella, Wilder’s promoter, said that any talk of rescheduling a new fight date for Wilder to meet Russian Alexander Povetkin, who tested positive for the banned substance meldonium, was “unfounded and premature.” The World Boxing Council […]

Olympics: Hayne Olympic dream may be shot down

SYDNEY , Australia (AFP) — Former Australian rugby league star Jarryd Hayne’s hopes of chasing an Olympic dream after ditching a career in American football may be scuttled by anti-doping protocols, it emerged Monday. Hayne announced Sunday he was abandoning playing NFL with the San Francisco 49ers to pursue a spot on Fiji’s rugby sevens squad for this year’s Rio Games. But the switch may have struck an obstacle with former head of the Australian […]

Last surviving ‘Casablanca’ actor dies aged 92

PARIS, France (AFP) —¬†French actress Madeleine LeBeau, the last surviving member of the cast of “Casablanca”, has died at the age of 92, her family said on Sunday. LeBeau, who died on May 1, played the role of Yvonne, the spurned girlfriend of Humphrey Bogart’s character Rick Blaine in the classic 1942 movie that also starred Ingrid Bergman. Born in June 1923 in Antony near Paris, LeBeau fled Paris in 1940 after the German occupation […]

NBA: Lowry stars as Raptors down Miami to make history

LOS ANGELES , United States (AFP) — Kyle Lowry scored 35 points as the Toronto Raptors clinched a playoff series victory over the Miami Heat on Sunday, sending the Canadian franchise to the Eastern Conference finals for the first time in their history. Lowry and teammate DeMar DeRozan stole the show as Toronto completed a 116-89 victory to win the best-of-seven series 4-3 and set up a conference championship showdown with LeBron James and the […]