Kari Lehtonen made 30 saves and the Atlanta Thrashers completed the NHL preseason with a 1-0 shutout of the Florida Panthers on Friday night. Veteran defenseman Alexei Zhitnik scored the goal on a power play late in the second period as the Thrashers ended exhibition play 5-2-0. Tomas Vokoun made 23 saves for the Panthers, who finished the preseason 4-3-0.
Alex Ovechkin scored two goals and had two assists, including on the game-winner from Tomas Fleischmann, as the Washington Capitals scored five straight third-period goals to beat the Philadelphia Flyers 7-5 on Friday night. The Capitals (3-2-1) trailed 5-2 after the Flyers’ Simon Gagne scored early in the third period.
Wally Parks, an automobile enthusiast who founded the National Hot Rod Association and helped turn drag racing into a legitimate sport, has died. He was 94. Parks died Friday at Providence St. Joseph’s Medical Center of complications from pneumonia, said Michael Hollander, a spokesman with the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum in Pomona.
A jury asked for hundreds of pages of testimony and documents before finishing its first full day of deliberations Friday in the sexual harassment case brought by a former top New York Knicks executive against coach Isiah Thomas. The jury asked for transcripts of testimony of four men, including Thomas, along with e-mails sent by the plaintiff, Anucha Browne Sanders, to the president of Madison…
Mario Elie, who played on championship teams for the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs, was hired as an assistant coach by the Dallas Mavericks on Friday. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Elie was an assistant coach with Golden State for the 2004-05 and 2005-06 seasons. He also was an assistant with the Spurs for the 2003-04 season.
Billy King bought a season ticket to the hottest team in town. Too bad it’s not his own. But when King watches the Philadelphia Phillies chase a postseason berth like he did this week, the 76ers team president sees a lot of the same qualities that he believes are in players like Andre Iguodala and Andre Miller: An unselfish group that plays hard, plays together and tosses out outside expectations.
The New York Mets’ meltdown reached the absurd Friday night. Out of first place and nearly out of time, they’re going to need help just to make the playoffs. All-Star third baseman David Wright couldn’t find the bag to make an important force play, Oliver Perez hit a pair of batters with the bases loaded and the Mets stumbled out of the NL East lead with a 7-4 loss to the last-place Florida…
Jonathan Papelbon danced barefoot in the infield. Daisuke Matsuzaka smiled and bowed to a group surrounding him. And the sound system played “Don’t Stop Believin’.” Ecstatic fans joined in to savor Boston’s first division title in 12 years, and the end of the New York Yankees’ long run on top. More than an hour after the Red Sox beat Minnesota 5-2, the Yankees lost at Baltimore to make it official.
They lost on the field, fought in the dugout, fell out of contention before the season’s midpoint. Then, the Chicago Cubs did something that defied their long history of failure and disappointment. Somehow, they pulled together and won the division. Chicago’s two biggest offseason investments took them the final step toward the playoffs on Friday night.
Brendan Shanahan scored twice to lift the New York Rangers to a 5-2 victory over the New York Islanders in a preseason game Friday night that lacked the star power and brawling of their previous matchup. Shanahan, playing alongside Scott Gomez and Nigel Dawes, scored on a pair of snap shots from either side of the Islanders zone in the middle period.
The NHL violated antitrust laws and is acting like “an illegal cartel” by monopolizing control of team promotions, Madison Square Garden claimed in a lawsuit Friday. MSG, which owns the New York Rangers, said it filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Manhattan because the NHL would begin fining the organization $100,000 per day starting Friday if the company did not give the league complete…
Oakland Raiders quarterback Josh McCown will miss Sunday’s game against the Miami Dolphins with a broken toe on his left foot, giving Daunte Culpepper the start against his former team. McCown has not practiced all week but coach Lane Kiffin waited until Friday to officially declare that he would not be able to play Sunday.