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76ers escape with 108-105 win over Knicks as Joel Embiid scores 26

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NEW YORK (AP) Ben Simmons fell an assist short of a triple-double with 20 points and 22 rebounds, Joel Embiid scored 26 points and the Philadelphia 76ers escaped with a 108-105 victory over the New York Knicks on Sunday.

New York’s Emmanuel Mudiay missed a potential game-tying 3-pointer at the buzzer that would have sent the game into overtime.

JJ Reddick had 22 points for the 76ers, who ended a two-game skid. Philadelphia survived a scare after leading by as many as 24 points late in second quarter before New York charged back with a strong third period and closed the gap to 83-82 with 11 seconds left after Luke Kornet‘s jumper.

The 76ers recovered to start the fourth quarter and went on an 11-0 run capped by Jimmy Butler‘s driving layup that extended the lead to 94-82 with 6:22 left.

Embiid hit a free throw that extended Philadelphia’s lead to 108-103 with 9.3 seconds to go but then made the mistake of fouling New York’s Damyean Dotson on a 3-point attempt.

Dotson hit two of three free throws, cutting the deficit to 108-105. Mudiay grabbed the rebound and ran behind the 3-point line before his last second heave fell short.

It was Philadelphia’s seventh straight win over the Knicks.

Kevin Knox scored 31 points for the New York, who have lost four straight and 19 of their last 22.

The Knicks have lost eight straight at Madison Square Garden. Their last home win was Dec. 1 over Milwaukee.

TIP INS

76ers: C Embiid played 32 minutes in his return to the starting lineup after missing Friday night’s home loss to Atlanta. Embiid, who suffered a sore left ankle Wednesday night at Washington, had eight rebounds and blocked six shots.

Knicks: G Tim Hardaway Jr., who injured his left hamstring during Friday night’s loss, did not play. . C Enes Kanter was held out because of what coach David Fizdale described as “flu-like symptoms”. . G Frank Ntilikina played 28 minutes after missing his last three games because of a sprained left ankle. He had eight points and six assists.

SHOW OF SUPPORT

With the 76ers leading by 18 points late in the first quarter and again in the second period, Philadelphia fans visiting Madison Square Garden broke into an “E-A-G-L-E-S Eagles!” chant in support of the NFL’s defending champion Philadelphia Eagles, who play later Sunday in a divisional round playoff game at New Orleans.

UP NEXT

76ers: Host the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday night.

Knicks: Will play the NBA’s ninth regular-season game in London when they face the Washington Wizards. It is New York’s third game in England.

More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Report: After two-year, $21 million deal falls apart, Knicks signing Reggie Bullock for less than room exception

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Reggie Bullock agreed to a two-year, $21 million contract with the Knicks.

He’ll get far less.

A health issue became apparent before the original deal was finalized. So, New York used nearly all its remaining cap space on Marcus Morris, who got a one-year, $15 million contract.

That left only the $4,767,000 room exception available for Bullock.

And he won’t get even get all that.

Ian Begley of SNY:

Marc Berman of the New York Post:

That’s a tough turn for Bullock. Less than the room exception and a team option – man. I wonder how much more, if any, Bullock got than his minimum ($2,028,594).

But David Bauman sure sounds pleased with the process. If his agent isn’t slamming the Knicks, Bullock hopefully also feels treated fairly.

This significant drop in salary sure signals major health concerns.

Giannis Antetokounmpo has rough go of hitting baseball off tee with New York Yankees (video)

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NEW YORK (AP) In hoops, Giannis Antetokounmpo is court royalty. But in baseball, he’s a complete rookie.

In fact, the 24-year-old from Greece said he’d never even touched a baseball before he did so Monday night at Yankee Stadium.

The reigning NBA MVP was shocked.

“It was really heavy,” Antetokounmpo told The Associated Press. “I thought it would be lighter.”

The Milwaukee Bucks star went on to take a few swings in the batting cage beneath the stands before the Yankees faced the Tampa Bay Rays. The 6-foot-11 Antetokounmpo got some coaching, with limited results – he swung and missed once with the ball on a tee, and made light contact on two other tries.

“I would be a terrible baseball player,” he said.

The “Greek Freak” was in the Bronx with his three brothers to promote his new signature sneaker and signed a pair for a fan – Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia.

Antetokounmpo watched the Yankees take batting practice, which reinforced his notion that he wasn’t destined for the diamond.

“I saw Aaron Judge hitting the ball into the stands. That’s amazing. You’ve got to be really strong to do that,” he said.

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

NBA 2K20 ratings released, LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard earn 97s to lead way

NBA 2K20
Via 2K Sports
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How do NBA players measure respect? There are a few ways, with the size of the paycheck being at the top of the list. Awards and accolades fit in there.

However, few things rile guys up like their NBA 2K rankings. Most play the game, and their ranking (out of 100) is seen as a measure of status among fellow players and fans.

2K Sports unveiled the top rankings for NBA 2K20 in a live-streamed show on Monday night, and LeBron James and Kawhi Leonard got the top honors. Here’s the top 20:

1. LeBron James 97
2. Kawhi Leonard 97
3. Giannis Antetokounmpo 96
4. Kevin Durant 96
5. James Harden 96
6. Stephen Curry 96
7. Anthony Davis 94
8. Paul George 93
9. Damian Lillard 92
10. Joel Embiid 91
11. Kyrie Irving 91
12. Nikola Jokic 90
13. Russell Westbrook 90
14. Klay Thompson 89
15. Karl-Anthony Towns 89
16. Jimmy Butler 88
17. Kemba Walker 88
18. Donovan Mitchell 88
19. Rudy Gobert 88
20. Blake Griffin 88

The highest-rated rookie: Of course it was Zion Williamson (81).

Anthony Davis is on the cover of NBA 2K20, which will be released on Sept. 6. Sorry, you’ve got to wait until then to play it, but here is an early teaser video.

Report: Chris Paul trade to Miami hung up on picks moving with him

Associated Press
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Chris Paul is making a stopover in Oklahoma City. The Rockets sent him there for Paul George, but the competitive 34-year-old point guard doesn’t want to be part of a long rebuilding project. He wants to be traded again before the season starts.

His preference? Miami, according to Brian Windhorst of ESPN. There, CP3 would team up with Jimmy Butler. Miami is open to the idea, but what has hung the entire thing up is the discussion of picks, Windhorst said on ESPN’s SportsCenter on Monday night (hat tip NESN).

“When you talk about him potentially going to the Miami Heat, which is his preference, one thing I’ve been told in the talks; the fact that the Thunder hold the two of the Heat’s first-round picks in the future — unprotected 2021, protected 2023 — makes this a difficult conversation because the Heat want those picks back,” Windhorst said. “The Thunder have expressed an interest in giving one of those picks back but they would want another pick farther off into the future. So I do think that these teams have a lot to talk about.”

Oklahoma City is rebuilding and the mountain of picks they have compiled through trading George and Westbrook — 16 potential first rounders through 2026, including their own, enough to make Danny Ainge think they have too many picks — is at the heart of that plan. While the Thunder can afford to give one or two up, they don’t want to.

Miami is saying that to take on Paul’s remaining three-years, $124 million, they want a sweetener. Which is what every team would ask for.

Which brings us to another problem for the Thunder: There is not much of a market for Paul. Miami is the only name really mentioned in negotiations. There is speculation about other potential landing spots, and no doubt some feeler calls have come into Sam Presti in OKC, but the Heat seem to be the only team going down the road of serious talks.

There are other challenges to getting this trade done. For example, the Thunder would love to shed salary (they are still $3.7 million into the tax) but the Heat are hard-capped after the Jimmy Butler sign-and-trade and cannot absorb any more salary.

The Heat may be the place Paul ultimately lands but finding a deal that works could take some time to bring together.