BC-AP Sports Digest

December 15, 2017 - 4:30 am

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SHOWCASE

HKN--POWER VS. POWER

Checking lines are dead. The old, defensive-minded line that NHL coaches counted on to stop opposing stars is rapidly fading away as top players are increasingly counted on to stop each other. The best forwards and lines in hockey know they have to produce a 200-foot game or they'll never score. By Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno. UPCOMING: 890 words, photos.

TOP STORIES

FBC--BOWLS-STAYING AT HOME

BOCA RATON, Fla. — Sometime late Friday afternoon, Florida Atlantic will load up its luggage and head south to the hotel that will house the Conference USA champions for their bowl-game preparations. It'll be a 4-mile drive. The comforts of home await the Owls as they get ready to play in the Boca Raton Bowl, and they're hardly the only team in America that won't be seeing a new part of the country as part of the postseason perk package. By Tim Reynolds. UPCOMING: 830 words, photos.

LUG--KESHAVAN'S JOURNEY

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. — Shiva Keshavan's name gets heard once every four years, because of his story: A guy from India, where there is no great winter sports legacy to speak of, goes to the Olympics — in luge of all things. When he competes in Pyeongchang, it'll be his sixth and almost certainly final time as an Olympian. He's never finished better than 25th, and yet he insists that his life on a sled was worthwhile. By Tim Reynolds. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos.

NBA

BKN--LAKERS-CAVALIERS

CLEVELAND — Lonzo Ball got an up-close look at the biggest baller of them all. LeBron James recorded his 59th career triple-double in front of Ball and his brothers, Kevin Love scored 28 points and the Cleveland Cavaliers won for the 16th time in 17 games, 121-112 over the Los Angeles Lakers. By Tom Withers. SENT: 965 words, photos.

Also:

— BKN--MAVERICKS-WARRIORS — By Janie McCauley. SENT: 800 words, photos.

— BKN--BUCKS-TELETOVIC — Milwaukee forward Mirza Teletovic is out because of a blockage in his lungs. SENT: 150 words, photo.

NFL

FBN--BRONCOS-COLTS FOLO

INDIANAPOLIS — The Denver Broncos know where they stand. There will be no playoffs and no winning record this season. But at least after Brock Osweiler's relief appearance in Indianapolis, they'll no longer be talking about a road losing streak next week. By Michael Marot. SENT: 865 words, photos.

— With:

— FBN--COLTS-INJURIES — By Michael Marot. SENT: 625 words, photos.

— FBN--BRONCOS-COLTS INJURIES — SENT: 330 words, photos.

FBN--STEELERS-MAN UP

PITTSBURGH — The Steelers made it a point to play more man-to-man defense this season after Tom Brady torched their zone in the AFC championship game. Time to see how much has changed on Sunday when Brady and the New England Patriots visit Heinz Field. By Will Graves. SENT: 965 words, photo.

FBN--COWBOYS-NO ELLIOTT

FRISCO, Texas — Now that Ezekiel Elliott is near the end of a six-game suspension over domestic violence allegations, Dak Prescott doesn't mind acknowledging that things changed for the Dallas Cowboys. By Sean Shapiro. SENT: 765 words, photos.

FBN--PACKERS-PROTECTING RODGERS

GREEN BAY, Wis. — The band is practically back together up front, just in time for the Packers' three-week playoff push. When Aaron Rodgers returns from a broken collarbone Sunday against Carolina, he will be behind an offensive line that has at last stabilized after early injuries. By Genaro C. Armas. SENT: 750 words.

FBN--BROWNS-DORSEY

CLEVELAND — New Browns general manager John Dorsey played linebacker in the NFL. Turns out, he still hits hard. Dorsey, hired last week by owner Jimmy Haslam to fix his floundering franchise, harshly criticized the team's previous football leader, Sashi Brown, saying he failed to give coach Hue Jackson good players. By Tom Withers. SENT: 635 words, photo.

Also:

— FBN--NFL THIS WEEK — By Pro Football Writer Barry Wilner. SENT: 1,900 words, photos.

— FBN--SEAHAWKS-THE TEACHERS — By Tim Booth. SENT: 645 words, photo.

— FBN--FALCONS-PLAYOFF PUSH — By Matt Winkeljohn. SENT: 880 words.

— FBN--RAIDERS MOVE-VEGAS STADIUM — By Regina Garcia Cano. SENT: 600 words, photos.

BASEBALL

BBO--WINTER MEETINGS

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Much like the postseason, the baseball winter meetings became a parade of relievers. Steve Cishek and Fernando Rodney were on the move Thursday, joining Brandon Morrow, Luke Gregerson, Bryan Shaw, Joe Smith and other setup men, middlemen and specialists going to new teams this week. By Baseball Writer Ben Walker. SENT: 625 words, photos.

Also:

— BBA--YANKEES-JUDGE-STANTON — By Baseball Writer Janie McCauley. SENT: 420 words, photos, video.

NHL

HKN--PENGUINS-GOLDEN KNIGHTS

LAS VEGAS — Marc-Andre Fleury has been thinking about one game for quite a while. He rose to the challenge, too. Fleury stopped 24 shots against his former team and Jon Merrill's first goal of the season snapped a third-period tie as the Vegas Golden Knights beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 2-1. It was the first meeting between the defending Stanley Cup champions and Vegas, which acquired Fleury from Pittsburgh during the NHL expansion draft in June. By W.G. Ramirez. SENT: 875 words, photos.

Also:

— HKN--WILD-DUBNYK — SENT: 150 words.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

FBC--FLORIDA STATE-THRASHER

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida State President John Thrasher believes his football facilities compare favorably to any in the country, and there is still some bad blood between he and Jimbo Fisher. By Joe Reedy. SENT: 930 words, photos.

SOCCER

FIFA INVESTIGATION-TRIAL

NEW YORK — Closing arguments at the U.S. corruption trial of three former South American soccer officials concluded with the lawyer for an ex-president of Brazil's soccer federation claiming his client was clueless about a bribery scheme and a prosecutor saying the testimony of the star government witness was "devastating" for the defense. By Tom Hays. SENT: 450 words, photo.

WINTER SPORTS

OLY--SPD-US SHORT TRACK TRIALS

KEARNS, Utah — J.R. Celski and Katherine Reutter-Adamek are favorites heading into the U.S. short track speedskating trials. They're both trying to make one more Olympic team in careers that have been interrupted and, in Reutter-Adamek's case, cut short by injuries. By Beth Harris. SENT: 740 words, photos.

OTHER

— VOL--NEBRASKA-PENN ST — NCAA semifinal match. SENT: 155 words, photos.

— OLY--SBD-HALFPIPE QUALIFIER — Shaun White falls in Olympic halfpipe qualifier. By National Writer Eddie Pells. SENT: 140 words.

— CAR--NASCAR-STEWART-WARD — NY judge: Racer's family can pursue claims against Stewart. SENT: 190 words.

CAPSULES

— BKN--NBA CAPSULES

— HKN--NHL CAPSULES

___

Friday's Time Schedule

College Basketball

Top 25

Women

No. 13 Ohio State vs. Dartmouth, 7 p.m.

No. 19 Texas A&M at Southern Cal, 10 p.m.

No. 22 South Florida vs. Southern University, 7 p.m.

NBA

Detroit at Indiana, 7 p.m.

L.A. Clippers at Washington, 7 p.m.

Miami at Charlotte, 7 p.m.

Oklahoma City at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.

Portland at Orlando, 7 p.m.

Brooklyn at Toronto, 7:30 p.m.

Utah at Boston, 7:30 p.m.

Atlanta at Memphis, 8 p.m.

Chicago at Milwaukee, 8 p.m.

New Orleans at Denver, 9 p.m.

San Antonio at Houston, 9:30 p.m.

NHL

Dallas at New Jersey, 7 p.m.

Carolina at Buffalo, 7 p.m.

Los Angeles at N.Y. Rangers, 7 p.m.

Toronto at Detroit, 7:30 p.m.

San Jose at Vancouver, 10 p.m.

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