AFC GAMES-BALT over Cin, HOU over S.Deigo, BUF over Jax, DENV over K.City

NFC GAMES-ATL over Ariz, N.ORL over L.A.Rams,Seat oevr TB

INT-CONF GAMES-NY Giants over CLEVE, MIAMI over S.Fran, OAK over Car



NFC NORTH Games-DET over Minn(Thurs), PHILA over G.Bay, Tenn over BEARS

Teams in ALL CAPS are HOME teams.


Hawks goal scoring drought continues as Sharks win 2-1

SAN JOSE—Joe Pavelski figured if the extra goal wasn’t going to come, then the Sharks needed extra defense. Martin Jones happily obliged.Logan Couture and Joel Ward scored in the first period and San Jose gave the Blackhawks their second straight loss with a 2-1 victory on Wednesday night.

”Guys are competing,” Pavelski said. ”We’re coming back, we’re doing a lot of good things in the D zone. You just keep playing. It will break a little bit but if it doesn’t break we’ll keep trying to win like this.”

Artemi Panarin scored for the Blackhawks, who have back-to-back losses for the first time since opening the season 0-2. They also fell to the Oilers 5-0 on Monday night.Jones, who had his 15th career shutout Monday, stopped 33 shots for his 10th win of the year.

”It was great. That’s a tough team to play against defensively, and we did a great job,” Jones said. ”Limiting them to what we did tonight was pretty impressive and especially the last two minutes, just not even letting them set up in the zone. That was a great job by everybody.”

Corey Crawford saved 33 shots for the Blackhawks, who entered with points in 10 of their last 12 games against San Jose.

”Both goalies were excellent,” Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. ”A lot of skill, a lot of speed, a lot of plays being made, a lot of great players. It was a good hockey game. I thought we had some opportunities to maybe extend the lead and put them away and Crawford made some saves. But it was a great hockey game.”

Jonathan Toews left with an unspecified injury following the second period. He leads the league with 292 faceoff wins and had a game-high eight after two periods.

”It’s tough when guys go down, especially in the middle of the game,” Blackhawks’ Brent Seabrook said. ”It’s like you’re playing short-handed. He’s a big part of this team. He plays in every aspect of the game.”

The Sharks scored twice in the first period for the second consecutive game, getting a power-play goal from Couture at 11:32 and a short-handed goal from Ward three minutes later.Couture, who scored for the third time in four games after netting three goals over his first 16, beat Crawford to the glove side after taking a sharp pass from Pavelski.Chris Tierney, from behind the net, threw the puck down the center of the ice and Ward got the jump on Seabrook, who slipped going after the puck. Ward patiently worked the puck deep and got Crawford on the ice for an easy tap in.

”I made a huge error on that one by not coming out,” Crawford said. ”I was a little flat-footed and I didn’t read it well. I should have played the puck. I wasn’t patient enough on that one.”

The Blackhawks responded with a goal in the second period. Niklas Hjalmarsson dug out the puck from along the boards and flipped a pass to a streaking Artem Anisimov, who found Panarin. The second-year wing clanked the puck off the right side post and into the net.Crawford, who has allowed 13 goals in his last four games, was a rock over the final 45 minutes, though Jones was also up to the task.

NOTES—Pavelski has points in each of his last four games. … The Sharks have recorded a short-handed goal in two straight. … Hjalmarsson recorded his 12th point in 26 games against the Sharks. … Anisimov claimed his second point over his last seven games after scoring in each of his previous 11….The Blackhawks complete their seven-game trip with back-to-back games at the Anaheim Ducks on Friday and Los Angeles Kings on Saturday.

Freeman latest Bear to be busted for PED use–out for 4 games.

LAKE FOREST—The Bears 2016 season might have just gone from bad to worse.According to the Chicago Tribune, quarterback Jay Cutler suffered a shoulder injury against the Giants on Sunday that could sideline him for the rest of the season. Although it’s not exactly clear when Cutler got hurt, it appears that he played at least part of the game with the injury.Cutler finished 17 of 30 for 252 yards with a touchdown and an interception in the 22-16 loss. Although a report had suggested that Cutler lost the locker room after a 36-10 loss to Tampa in Week 10, it definitely didn’t look that way against the Giants.During Sunday’s game, Cutler helped lead his team out to a 16-6 lead before the Bears offense finally disappeared late in the second half.The injury to Cutler’s shoulder is the second potentially serious injury that he’s suffered this season. The Bears quarterback also suffered a thumb injury in Week 2 that sidelined him for five games.If Cutler is done for the season, that means the quarterback job would go to Matt Barkley unless the team decides to bring someone else in. After early season injuries to Cutler and Brian Hoyer, Barkley was forced to take most of the snaps in a Week 7 game against the Packers.In that 26-10 loss, Barkley threw for just 81 yards and added two interceptions.The Bears have been dealing with quarterback injuries all season. Besides Cutler’s two injuries, the Bears also lost Hoyer when he broke his arm in Week 7.If Cutler’s shoulder injury ends up costing him the rest of the season, it will be fascinating to see what the Bears to with Cutler after 2016. If they decide to cut him, it wouldn’t cost them very much in salary cap space. On the other hand, if they decide to keep him, Cutler would only be making $12.5 million in base salary in 2017, which is a manageable number if the Bears truly think he can be their starting quarterback.

Oilers smoke Hawks 5-0

EDMONTON—Leon Draisaitl scored twice and Cam Talbot made 31 saves for his third shutout of the season, helping the Edmonton Oilers beat the Western Conference-leading Blackhawks 5-0 on Monday night.Oscar Klefbom, Andrej Sekera and Anton Slepyshev also scored for the Oilers.Corey Crawford made 22 saves in the loss as the Blackhawks had a two-game winning streak snapped.Teenage captain Connor McDavid had two assists for Edmonton. The 19-year-old set up a goal 2:39 in by skating the length of the ice before centering the puck for Klefbom, who blasted a shot past Crawford.McDavid also assisted late in the first when Draisaitl tipped in Klefbom’s shot from the point on a power play for a 2-0 lead.Talbot kept the Hawks from getting on the board four minutes into the second when he stopped Duncan Keith on a point-blank power-play shot.Sekera scored on a long wrist shot with just 7.6 seconds left in the second shortly after a power play expired to make it 3-0.Edmonton took a 4-0 lead seven minutes into the third period when Slepyshev’s deceptive shot from a bad angle handcuffed Crawford.Draisaitl scored his second of the game late in the third on the power play to put the game away.

NOTES—It was the first of three games between the two teams this season. The Hawks swept the season series last year, with McDavid missing all three contests for the Oilers due to injury. … Despite their 13-5-2 record, the Blackhawks were last in the NHL on the penalty kill at just 69.5 percent coming into the game. …The Hawks play the fifth in a season-high seven-game road trip in San Jose on Wednesday night..

NU surprises #22 Texas to face ND in Legends Classic Title Game

Northwestern Wildcats (1981 - Pres)

BROOKLYN—Northwestern came into the Legends Classic off a last-second loss to Butler.It didn’t seem to bother the Wildcats as they beat No. 22 Texas 77-58 on Monday night.
”I’m really proud of my guys tonight. We had a very tough loss Wednesday in Hinkle Fieldhouse at Butler,” Northwestern coach Chris Collins said. ”Teams can go two separate ways after a loss like that. You can go on a little bit of a tailspin or you can rally together and come out fighting. There was never a doubt in my mind that our guys were going to keep fighting. We came in confident, yet very respectful of Texas. We knew it was going to take a great effort to beat a team like that. I thought a lot of guys played well.”

Bryant McIntosh had 20 points and five assists in the convincing win that propelled the Wildcats (3-1) into a championship showdown against Notre Dame, which beat Colorado 89-81, on Tuesday night at Barclays Center.McIntosh turned the ball over that led to Butler’s buzzer-beater.

”I thought right after the Butler game, I knew we wouldn’t go into a tailspin just because we didn’t feel sorry for ourselves,” McIntosh said. ”We were upset that we lost a game that we thought we could win. That’s a difference with this team than on the other teams I’ve been on since being here. If we lost a close game, we felt sorry for ourselves where this team we’re hungry. We think we’re good and I thought tonight we played exceptionally well.”

Northwestern opened the game with an 11-0 run and closed the first half on a 9-0 spurt to take a 34-26 lead.The Wildcats opened the second half on a 10-1 run to go up by 17 points and the Longhorns (3-1) were never closer than 14 points the rest of the way.Scottie Lindsey had 16 points and Dererk Pardon had 10 points and 11 rebounds for Northwestern which took advantage of an out-of-synch Texas offense for the easy win.

”We came in to win,” Collins said. ”We have the utmost respect for Texas, just like we did at Butler the other night. I just think there’s a mindset with these guys. I think we believe we’re good. I believe we can play with these teams, not only play with them but beat them.”

Tavin Mack scored 18 points for the Longhorns, who finished with 14 turnovers and just seven assists. Texas didn’t help itself at the free throw line going 13 for 27.

”I thought Northwestern did a great job of starting the game with aggressiveness and got off to that big lead,” Texas coach Shaka Smart said. ”Our guys responded really well and battled back and took the lead but obviously from there, Northwestern was just a much better team tonight.”

Northwestern, which shot 48.2 percent (27 for 56), led by as many as 20 points as nine of the 10 players who saw time scored.Texas, which came into the game averaging 82 points per game, shot 37.3 percent (19 for 51) and were outrebounded 40-31.

”I was a little bit concerned this morning because sometimes you can feel when guys get in the bright lights, you can tell they’re playing a little bit away from what really goes into it,” Smart said. ”It’s natural. I think we were a step off with a lot of things we know how to do.”

The Longhorns allowed opponents to shoot 21.8 percent from 3-point range in their first three games. Northwestern was 10 of 24 (41.7 percent) from beyond the arc. … Six Texas players were averaging double figures entering the game and only Mack reached that against the Wildcats.Vic Law came into the game shooting 76.8 percent (11 of 14) from 3-point range including eight in a row at one stretch. He went 1 for 2 Monday. … Law was the Wildcats’ leading scorer at 20.3 points per game. He had just nine against Texas.McIntosh celebrated his birthday Sunday by heading to the famed Rucker Park with his godfather to shoot baskets.Northwestern leads the all-time series 2-1. The last time the teams met was in 1974, a 63-59 Texas victory. The first meeting was a 73-71 Northwestern victory in 1965….Northwestern will play Notre Dame in the championship game of the Legends Classic.

ND holds off Colorado in legends Classsic, face Northwestern in Title Game

BROOKLYN—Notre Dame had a good enough start that a tough second half didn’t make a difference.Bonzie Colson had 22 points and 12 rebounds for his fifth career double-double and the Fighting Irish held off Colorado 89-83 on Monday night in the semifinals of the Legends Classic at Barclays Center.

”We got off to a great start, really flowing offensively,” Notre Dame coach Mike Brey said. ”Second half Colorado really guarded us and we had to find different ways to play. We made free throws and it was kind of a grinding game. I’m proud of how we held people but we have a lot of guys that have won big games and have big game pressure on them. I thought that experience helped us escape tonight.”

The Fighting Irish (4-0) will play Northwestern, which beat No. 22 Texas 77-58, for the title on Tuesday.The Buffaloes (3-1) trailed by 15 points at halftime and were able to get as close as four points twice in the final minute but Notre Dame went 14 for 14 from the free throw line over the final 1:33 to keep Colorado at bay in the first meeting between the schools.Matt Farrell had 20 points and V.J. Beacham and Steve Vasturia added 17 each for Notre Dame which went 27 for 29 from the free throw line. Colson, a 6-foot-5 junior, matched his career high with the 12 rebounds.Xavier Johnson scored 23 points, Derrick White had 20 points and nine assists and George King added 17 points and 13 points for Colorado, which was able to rally in the second half by shooting 16 of 34 from the field (47.1 percent). The Buffaloes finished 18 of 19 from the free throw line.Notre Dame came out firing and gave itself a comfortable 50-35 halftime lead.The Fighting Irish shot 54.5 percent (18 of 33) from the field, including making six of 12 3-point attempts in the first half. Colorado, meanwhile, struggled from the field in the first half shooting 37.1 percent (13 of 35) from the field and only 2 of 8 from 3-point range.Notre Dame couldn’t keep up the shooting in the second half and the Buffaloes were able to make it close but the Fighting Irish sealed it at the free throw line.

Illini stunned by Winthrop in OT

Illinois Fighting Illini (2004 - 2013)

CHAMPAIGN—Keon Johnson’s 5-foot-7 frame hasn’t always impressed many, including when he first met his head coach, but the guard’s effort was the difference as Winthrop upset Illinois 84-80 in overtime on Monday night.The senior scored 38 points after missing Friday’s game against Florida State due to a foot injury, and helped Winthrop win its first-ever matchup against Illinois. The Eagles held the lead for only 29 seconds before forcing overtime.

”That’s just who he is: He’s just a little warrior, fearless,” Winthrop head coach Pat Kelsey said. ”He plays with a chip on his shoulder . I’m so proud of him.”

Tevin Prescott had two dunks and Johnson made a layup during a 6-2 run to open the extra period and Winthrop (3-1) led the rest of the way.The Illini pulled within two on three occasions in the final 1:23, but Johnson made a jumper and Bjorn Broman and Prescott each made two free throws to hold off Illinois.The Eagles shot 50 percent from the field and 45 percent (10 of 22) from 3-point range.While Johnson was the star of the show, Kelsey said it was a team win, more than just the players on the court.

”This is a program win,” Kelsey said. ”This isn’t just our win. This is a university and program win.”

Michael Finke led the Illini (4-1) with 18 points, including six in overtime.The Winthrop bench, including Johnson, outscored the Illini reserves 54-18.Illinois players and head coach John Groce acknowledged that the little mistakes hurt the team at the end, but Groce thought this was something that his team needed.

”It was good for us,” Groce said. ”We needed that challenge and we’ll see how we respond on Thursday.”

The Illini fell into a trap game against Winthrop and the loss might hurt them come Selection Sunday. Illinois will now face its toughest competition of the season in the NIT Season Tip-Off where it will play No. 19 West Virginia and potentially No. 25 Florida State.The Eagles pulled off the upset on the road in what will likely be their most impressive win of the season.The game was sloppy as each team committed 22 turnovers – Illinois scored 25 points off turnovers while Winthrop scored 18.Tracy Abrams continued his hot return to the court, scoring 17 points. He hit 2 of 4 from beyond the arc Monday night, and is 11 of 15 from 3-point range this season.Illinois travels to Brooklyn for a Thanksgiving matchup against No. 19 West Virginia in the NIT Season Tip-Off tournament.

Giants rally to drop Bears to 2-8

EAST RUTHERFORD—Nothing has come easy for the New York Giants this season, even the games they are supposed to win.The difference this year is they are winning the close games, a big change from previous seasons.Eli Manning threw a go-ahead 15-yard touchdown pass to rookie Sterling Shepard in the third quarter as the Giants rallied for their fifth straight win with a 22-16 decision Sunday over the Bears in a gusty MetLife Stadium.New York (7-3) remains two games behind the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC East.

”We did find a way, that’s the resiliency of this team,” guard Marshall Newhouse said. ”In the past we’d lose a lot of close games, now we are winning a lot of close games. People see that as a negative and I don’t see why. Obviously there is stuff to improve on, but if you can play, maybe not playing your best, and you win, that’s a positive.”

Manning (21 of 36 for 227) also threw a third-quarter touchdown to Will Tye, Rashad Jennings scored on a 2-yard run and Robbie Gould kicked a 46-yard field goal on a day he missed two extra points.The Giants got a second-half shutout from their defense and a game-clinching interception from Landon Collins .After taking a surprising 16-6 lead, injuries on the offensive line finally caught up with the Bears (2-8) and left Jay Cutler under constant pressure.The winning streak is New York’s longest in the regular season since 2010, while the Bears’ starts matches their worst since 2002.

”This one is going to be a hard one to swallow,” said Cutler, who was 17 of 30 for 252 yards and sacked four times. ”These games that you lose when you definitely have a chance at the end to win, those are the ones that kind of keep you up at night.”

Down 16-9 at the half, the Giants grabbed the lead in the third quarter, scoring on their first two possessions. The second featured a third-down scramble by Manning and 48-yard pass to Victor Cruz on the next play. Manning ran toward the line on what looked like another run, then found Cruz behind the defense.Shepard split a seam in the middle of the Bears defense three plays later, but Gould missed the extra point keeping things tense.

”We’ll take it as it comes,” Cruz said. ”We’re continuing to rally these victories and continuing to build on them. With every victory, with every week, we’re getting stronger as a team. That’s what you want to see.”

The Bulls got to the New York 30 in the final two minutes but Jason Pierre-Paul had a 13-yard sack and Cutler was picked off by Collins, his fifth interception in the last four games.

”I even told some guys that it is time to blow up, it is on us, and guys responded,” said Pierre-Paul, whose 2 1/2 sacks were his best performance since injuring a hand in a fireworks accident last year. ”I responded myself. I can’t just do the talking, I have to show up and we came out with a win.”

Cutler found Miller for a 19-yard TD on the opening possession. A 34-yard pass to Miller set up Barth’s 40-yard field goal and Langford’s short TD lunge put the Bears ahead halfway through the second quarter.A couple of fourth-down gambles got the Giants nine points in the half. A 15-yard pass to Shepard on a fourth-and-2 at the Bears 17, set up Jennings’ TD run. A 5-yard pass to Jennings on fourth-and-2 at Bears 33 set up Gould’s 46-yard field goal with 3:33 left in the half.

NOTES—Leonard Floyd, the Bears first round draft pick from Georgia, was removed from the field on a stretcher with 5:53 to go against the Giants with a neck injury. He gave a thumbs-up to teammates leaving the field and returned Sunday night to Chicago after being released from a hospital, the Bears said. … Miller had to leave the game early in the second half with a possible broken foot. … Giants receiver Roger Lewis Jr. and Bears cornerback Cre’Von LeBlanc left in the first-half with concussions……Cruz returned to the lineup after missing a game with an ankle injury. Tight end Larry Donnell was a healthy scratch for the first time this season. … Bears right tackle Bobbie Massie (concussion), nose tackle Eddie Goldman (ankle) and defensive end Mitch Unrein (back) were inactive. …Alshon Jeffery served the first game of a four-game suspension for violating the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing substances. Bears also were missing guard Kyle Long, who was placed on injured reserve last week with an ankle and shoulder injuries….The Bears host the Titans and Marcus Mariota on Sunday.

Bulls win as Butler drops 40 on Lakers

Chicago Bulls Logo - Red bull with script above head

LOS ANGELES—Jimmy Butler scored a season-high 40 points and Isaiah Canaan added a season-high 17 in the Bulls’ fifth victory in six games, 118-110 over the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday night.Nikola Mirotic had 15 points and 15 rebounds and the Bulls held off Los Angeles’ late rally for their third win in four stops on their annual circus road trip.Rajon Rondo had four points, nine rebounds and 12 assists despite a sore left ankle. He hit a floater in the lane with 28.6 seconds left to secure the Bulls’ win after Los Angeles trimmed a 15-point lead to five.Lou Williams scored a season-high 25 points and Larry Nance Jr. had a career-high 18 for the Lakers (7-7), but their other young stars mostly struggled in their second straight loss.Dwyane Wade took his first night off this season for the Bulls. He scored 28 points on Saturday while the Bulls blew a 19-point lead in a loss to the Clippers, but the Bulls are monitoring their 34-year-old guard’s long-term health.D’Angelo Russell had only eight points and seven assists while playing on a sore left knee. Jordan Clarkson managed just five points on 1-of-12 shooting, and Julius Randle had 14 points.Butler destroyed a series of Los Angeles defenders with his usual flair, scoring inside and on the perimeter without hitting a 3-pointer. the Bulls also outrebounded the Lakers 56-37, constantly outhustling Los Angeles to loose balls.Even on a bad night, the young Lakers made a late rally to trim the Bulls lead to 115-110 with 1:12 left on back-to-back 3-pointers by Nick Young and Russell.Young and Russell then missed 3-pointers that would have trimmed the Bulls lead to two, and Butler won a jump ball before Rondo’s clinching floater.


NOTES—Bulls: Rondo played his second straight game on that balky ankle. … They’ll host the Lakers in the rematch on Nov. 30. The Bulls have only two games before then, while the Lakers have five. … German C Paul Zipser sat out with a lower back strain…..Luol Deng scored six points. He spent his first 9 1/2 NBA seasons with the Bulls…..The circus trip continues at Denver on Tuesday

Hawks rally from 3-0 hole to edge Canaucks 4-3 in OT on Hossa goal.

VANCOUVER—The Blackhawks got to celebrate twice Saturday night.Not bad for a team down three goals after 40 minutes.Marian Hossa scored late in overtime, capping a rally to overcome a three-goal deficit that gave the Blackhawks a 4-3 victory over the Vancouver Canucks.Hossa scored after Jonathan Toews’ apparent winner 31 seconds into OT was overturned on a video review that showed the Hawks to be offside.

”It’s tough,” goalie Scott Darling said. ”You get that sigh of relief and all of a sudden it’s taken back from you.”

Hossa then beat Jacob Markstrom low blocker side 4:04 into OT for his 11th goal of the season.That came after Ryan Hartman tied it with 4:14 left in regulation following goals from Artemi Panarin and Vinnie Hinostroza earlier in the third. The 22-year-old Hinostroza got his first NHL points with a goal and two assists.

”We didn’t panic,” Hossa said. ”We knew there was still 20 minutes left and this team is able to score three goals in a period.”

Loui Eriksson, Bo Horvat and Brandon Sutter scored for Vancouver, which got 28 stops from Markstrom.

”Tough one,” Canucks captain Henrik Sedin said. ”Getting a point against the Blackhawks should be a good thing for us, but tonight we should have had two.”

After Toews’ score was overruled, an end-to-end extra period continued. Darling stopped one chance by Vancouver’s Markus Granlund, and then Sedin sent a shot off the post. The Blackhawks’ Patrick Kane was stopped on a breakaway before Darling came up with huge stops on Eriksson and Sutter, and then Horvat ripped another chance just wide.

”That’s probably the most exciting overtime I’ve been a part of,” Horvat said.

Vancouver led 3-0 after two periods behind strong defensive play, but the Blackhawks got on the board 2:53 into the third when Panarin one-timed a cross-ice pass from Kane for his seventh of the season a few seconds after a Vancouver penalty expired. Hossa also came close to scoring on the power play on a shot that hit the post.

Chicago cut the deficit 1:13 later when Hinostroza, playing the 17th game of his career, stepped around defenseman Alexander Edler before scoring on his own rebound.

Bryan Campbell also hit the post while the Blackhawks outshot the Canucks 17-3 in the third period, but Chicago didn’t tie it until Hinostroza set up Hartman for his fourth of the season.

”It’s a tremendous comeback,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. ”We didn’t have anything going for two periods, we didn’t generate much, didn’t have any traffic.We got one and got a little excited.”

Eriksson scored on a power play in the first period, and Horvat made it 2-0 with 2:57 left in the second while killing a penalty. Alexandre Burrows stripped Toews at the Canucks’ blue line and chipped the puck ahead to Horvat, who beat Darling on a breakaway for his sixth goal.Sutter made it 3-0 later in the second off a feed from Sedin following a dump that eluded Hawk defenseman Michal Kempny. It was Sutter’s fifth goal and fourth in four games.

NOTES—Darling stopped 24 shots. … Canucks G Ryan Miller, who sat Thursday against the Coyotes with the flu, was well enough to dress as the backup. … Vancouver’s Derek Dorsett sat out after injuring his shoulder in the first period Thursday. He joined fellow F Jannik Hansen (fractured rib) and S Christopher Tanev (lower body) on the shelf….The Hawks continue their season-high seven-game circus road trip Monday night against Edmonton.