Friday Sports Update – NFL Conference Championships Are Sunday

Rams Rematch With Saints In Big Easy

(New Orleans, LA) — The Los Angeles Rams head to the Big Easy to battle the New Orleans Saints in the NFC Championship Game Sunday at the Superdome. It’s a matchup of the top two seeds in the conference, with the Saints winning the NFC South at 13-and-3 and the Rams claiming the NFC West at 13-and-3. Los Angeles lost 45-35 in a shootout at New Orleans back in Week Nine. The Rams beat the Cowboys 30-22 in their divisional round game last weekend. The Saints rallied past the defending champion Eagles 20-14 in their divisional round game. Our pregame coverage begins Sunday afternoon at 1.

Patriots Play Chiefs In AFC Championship Game

(Kansas City, MO) — The New England Patriots play the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium. It’s a matchup of the top two seeds in the conference and a rematch from Week Six when the Patriots beat the Chiefs 43-40 in Foxboro on a last-second field goal. The Patriots earned the two-seed as AFC East champs at 11-and-5. They beat the Chargers 41-28 in last weekend’s divisional round game to advance. The Chiefs are the top seed after winning the AFC West at 12-and-4. They crushed the Colts 31-13 in their divisional round game to advance.

Lakers Outlast Thunder In Overtime

(Oklahoma City, OK) — The Lakers erased a 17-point deficit as they outlasted the Thunder 138-128 in overtime in Oklahoma City. The Lakers fell behind in the first quarter but battled back to stay in the game in the second. Kyle Kuzma nailed seven three-pointers and led LA with 32 points. Ivica Zubac tallied a career-high 26 points plus 12 rebounds, and Lonzo Ball added 18 points and 10 assists. Ball hit a big three-pointer in overtime to give the Lakers the lead for good as they improved to 25-and-21. Paul George posted 27 points for OKC and Russell Westbrook added 26 points and 13 assists. Westbrook shot just 7-of-30 in defeat.

NBA
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Washington Wizards 101, New York Knicks 100 (at London, England)
Charlotte Hornets 114, Sacramento Kings 95
Philadelphia 76ers 120, Indiana Pacers 96
Toronto Raptors 111, Phoenix Suns 109
Denver Nuggets 135, Chicago Bulls 105
Los Angeles Lakers 138, Oklahoma City Thunder 128 (OT)

Mavs Will Play Tomorrow At Indiana

(Indianapolis, IN) — The Mavericks will play tomorrow night against the Pacers in Indianapolis. The Mavericks lost to Golden State and San Antonio on a just completed two-game homestand. Dallas is 2-and-7 in its last seven games. Overall, the Mavs are 20-and-24 and in fourth place in the Southwest. The Mavs continue this trip with a Monday afternoon game in Milwaukee.

Rockets Hosting Lakers Tomorrow

(Houston, TX) — The Rockets will face the Lakers tomorrow at the Toyota Center. Houston will be without center Clint Capela, who underwent thumb surgery, and guard Chris Paul, who has a lingering hamstring issue. James Harden has scored 57 and 58 points in the Rockets last two games. The Rockets are 3-and-4 in their last season. The Rockets will go on the road Monday, playing the Sixers in Philadelphia.

Popovich Unsure If He’ll Stay On With Spurs

(San Antonio, TX) — Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich reportedly isn’t sure whether he’ll stay on after the end of this season. Popovich turns 70 later this month, and he’s in the last year of his current five-year contract. Popovich has coached the Spurs since the 1996-97 season, and in that time he’s won five NBA championships and has been NBA Coach of the Year three times. Spurs general manager R.C. Buford says Popovich will coach the team as long as he wants to.

Stars’ Offense Betrays Them Again In Loss

(Dallas, TX) — Esa Lindell scored with 64 seconds left to prevent the Stars from being shutout in back-to-back games in a 2-1 loss to the Los Angeles Kings in Dallas. The Stars took 30 shots, 11 more than the Kings. The Stars have scored two or fewer goals in 12 of their last 15. Dallas has lost four straight. The Stars continue this six-game homestand tomorrow night against Winnipeg.

NHL
—–
New York Rangers 4, Chicago Blackhawks 3
New York Islanders 4, New Jersey Devils 1
Boston Bruins 5, St. Louis Blues 2
Toronto Maple Leafs 4, Tampa Bay Lightning 2
Anaheim Ducks 3, Minnesota Wild 0
Winnipeg Jets 5, Nashville Predators 1
Los Angeles Kings 2, Dallas Stars 1

Mickelson Shoots 60 At Desert Classic

(La Quinta, CA) — Golfer Phil Mickelson is still reaching milestones at age 48. “Lefty” tied his career-low with a 12-under-60 during Thursday’s first round of the Desert Classic in La Quinta, California. Mickelson is entering his 27th season as a pro and also shot a 60 at the Phoenix Open six years ago. Adam Long is in second place at nine-under. Ryan Palmer is tied for 53rd at 3-under.

College Basketball (Top-25 Coaches Poll)
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#5 Gonzaga Bulldogs 73, Loyola Marymount Lions 55
#6 Michigan State Spartans 70, Nebraska Cornhuskers 64

College Basketball Roundup

(Undated) — In area college basketball, UT-Arlington defeated Arkansas State 68-59 at home. Tomorrow, Baylor will host number-9 Texas Tech in Big 12 action, SMU will travel to Memphis, TCU will be at Kansas State, Missouri will play at Texas A&M, Texas will try to end a three-game slide when it welcomes Oklahoma to Austin, North Texas will play Rice in Denton and UT-Arlington will host Little Rock in a Sun Belt Conference game.

West Texas A&M Buff Basketball Roundup

(Canyon, Texas) – The #8 Lady Buffs of West Texas A&M shot 52.8% from the floor on Thursday night as they topped the Lions of Texas A&M-Commerce 81-70 in Lone Star Conference action at the First United Bank Center.In the men’s game, Brandon Hall filled the stat sheet in #16 West Texas A&M’s 87-66 victory over #20 Texas A&M-Commerce..

UT Shortstop Hamilton Will Miss Season

(Austin, TX) — A star junior shortstop with the University of Texas will sit out the 2019 season after being injured in a motorized scooter accident. David Hamilton tore his Achilles tendon last week when his scooter hit a pothole in Austin. Hamilton had surgery on Friday and is looking at a recovery period of at least six months. He’ll be eligible to leave for the MLB draft after this season, but he won’t be running up any impressive stats like he did last year.

Lett Returning To Cowboys’ Staff

(Frisco, TX) — Defensive tackles coach Leon Lett is returning to the Cowboys with a new contract. Lett started 10 years with the Cowboys and was a Pro Bowl defensive lineman on the Cowboys’ three Super Bowl teams in the 1990s. He has been a member of head coach Jason Garrett’s staff since 2011. Assistant special teams coach Doug Colman will not be brought back after one season with Dallas.

Gladys Knight To Sing Anthem At Super Bowl

(Atlanta, GA) — R&B legend Gladys Knight will sing the national anthem at the Super Bowl. Knight said in a statement that she’s proud to use her voice to unite and represent our country in her hometown of Atlanta. Super Bowl 53 will be February 3rd at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. Knight also promoted the NFL’s new social justice platform Inspire Change, and said she is honored to be a part of its inaugural year. The league announced its Inspire Change initiative earlier this month, to showcase “the collaborative effort of players, owners and the league to create positive change in communities across the country.”

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