National Sports Headlines from NBC Sports

Ivanovic ousts Serena in 4th round at Australian Open

MELBOURNE, Australia -- Serena Williams' long winning streak has come to an end in an upset 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 loss to Ana Ivanovic in the fourth round of the Australian Open.

Williams hadn't lost a match since August, one of only four defeats in 2013, and came into the fourth round with 25 straight wins. It was her 70th match at Melbourne Park, a record in the Open era, and she set the mark for most match wins ever at the Australian Open with her third-round victory.

Ivanovic hadn't taken a set off Willliams in their previous four matches.

The other quarterfinal will feature two women who'll turn 32 next month, with two-time finalist Li Na wrapping up a fourth-round win over No. 22 Ekaterina Makarova in less than an hour Sunday to set up a quarterfinal against Flavia Pennetta at the Australian Open.

The 2011 French Open champion broke Makarova's serve five times and fended off four break points on her own serve during a 59-minute, 6-2, 6-0 win to reach the quarterfinals here for the fourth time in five years.

Pennetta's late-career revival continued as she reached her first Australian Open quarterfinal with a 6-1, 4-6, 7-5 win over ninth-seeded Angelique Kerber of Germany.

The 28th-seeded Pennetta has played some of her best tennis since returning last February from a wrist injury that caused her ranking to drop as low as No. 166.

Li and Pennetta both turn 32 next month, one day apart.

"You know what, at least she is one day older than me. So I will play an older player," Li, who had back-to-back wins over the two youngest players in the tournament tin the first two rounds, joked in an on-court interview. "Not like couple rounds (before), always younger than me. Nobody talked about the age."

Pennetta reached her first Grand Slam semifinal at the U.S. Open last year and has followed that by reaching her first quarterfinal at Melbourne Park in 11 appearances.

"I'm a little old so I'm starting to enjoy (tennis) more," she said. "When you are young you want to win so much."

Pennetta broke Kerber to take a 5-3 lead in the third set but tightened up as she was serving for the match, giving the break right back. She recovered, however, to take a 6-5 lead and then broke Kerber to close out the match.

Five-time champion Serena Williams was facing former No. 1-ranked Ana Ivanovic in fourth-round match on Rod Laver Arena later Sunday.

After setting a record for most match wins at the Australian Open with her 61st this week, Williams will better another mark Sunday by playing her 70th match at Melbourne Park, topping Lindsay Davenport's former record of 69.

On the men's side, three-time defending champion Novak Djokovic was set to take on Italian Fabio Fognini for a place in the quarterfinals.

Djokovic is attempting to make his 19th consecutive appearance in the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam -- the third-longest streak in the Open era after Roger Federer's 36 and Jimmy Connors' 27.

Agent: Rodman checks into rehab for alcohol abuse

Dennis Rodman has checked into an undisclosed alcohol rehabilitation center to treat his long-time struggle with alcoholism, his agent says.

Darren Prince declined on Saturday to say which facility will treat Rodman and how long he will be there. Rodman recently returned to the United States from his latest trip to North Korea.

He later apologized for comments he made in North Korea about a detained American missionary, saying he had been drinking and was under pressure as he organized an exhibition game there. He also sang "Happy Birthday" to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at the start of the friendly game.

"What was potentially a historic and monumental event turned into a nightmare for everyone concerned," Prince said. "Dennis Rodman came back from North Korea in pretty rough shape emotionally. The pressure that was put on him to be a combination `super human' political figure and `fixer' got the better of him.

"He is embarrassed, saddened and remorseful for the anger and hurt his words have caused."

Rodman won five NBA championships with the Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls and was one of the NBA's fiercest rebounders and most colorful personalities. Detroit selected Rodman in the second round of the 1986 draft out of Southeastern Oklahoma. The native of Trenton, N.J., also played for Chicago, San Antonio, the Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas. He was enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame in of 2011.

He stamped his name on "Dennis Rodman - The original Bad Ass Premium Vodka," late last year. It was in the works before his relations with North Korea, but has taken off since.

Rodman, known as much for his piercings, tattoos and bad behavior as he was for basketball, was the highest-profile American to meet Kim since Kim inherited power from father Kim Jong Il in 2011. He traveled to the secretive state for the first time last February with the Harlem Globetrotters for an HBO series produced by New York-based VICE television.

But the 52-year-old Rodman has been denounced for not trying to use his influence with Kim to secure the release of Kenneth Bae, an American missionary with health problems who is being held in North Korea on charges of "anti-state" crimes.

He organized a group of retired NBA players to travel to North Korea for that exhibition game. Rodman dedicated the contest to his "best friend" Kim, who along with his wife and other senior officials and their wives watched from a special seating area. The capacity crowd of about 14,000 at the Pyongyang Indoor Stadium clapped loudly as Rodman sang a verse from the song.

Rodman had an angry meltdown before the game on CNN, defending his decision to travel to North Korea.

"People forget Dennis is just an entertainer and retired NBA star," Prince said. "The fact remains that a basketball game was played in North Korea live in front of 14,000 people and hundreds of millions around the world viewed clips of the game."

Li Na through to Australian Open quarterfinals

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Two-time finalist Li Na has advanced to the Australian Open quarterfinals for the third time in four years with a 6-2, 6-0 win in just 59 minutes over Ekaterina Makarova on Sunday.

No. 4 Li, who broke No. 22-seeded Marakova's serve five times, lost to Victoria Azarenka in the 2013 final at Melbourne Park.

Li started this year by successfully defending her title at Shenzen and on Sunday improved her record at the Australian Open to 31 wins from 39 matches.

Li will play the Flavia Pennetta in the quarterfinals on Tuesday. Pennetta earlier beat No. 9 Angelique Kerber.

NBA fines Cuban $100,00 for yelling at referees

NEW YORK (AP) The NBA fined Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban $100,000 on Saturday for confronting referees and using inappropriate language toward them.

Cuban confirmed the fine on his Twitter feed, saying he couldn't let Commissioner David Stern leave without a proper farewell.

"Its been a fun 14 years of trying to create change and donating to the donut fund!" Cuban wrote.

Cuban went onto the court and yelled at the officials after the Mavericks blew a 17-point lead in the final 5 minutes of a 129-127 loss at the Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday. He called it "speaking his mind" in another Twitter post.

He tweeted that he would donate an equal amount to charity once he reached 2 million followers, which he is about to reach.

Cuban has been fined more than $1.5 million by the league, often for his outbursts about the officiating.

Stern is retiring on Feb. 1. Cuban had told ESPN.com he wanted one more fine before Stern left.

No. 9 Oklahoma State falls to No. 15 Kansas

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) After beating Kansas in Allen Fieldhouse last season, and after Marcus Smart left a lasting impression with a celebratory backflip, Oklahoma State nearly pulled off the feat again.

This time, the Cowboys couldn't quite make it all the way back.

Le'Bryan Nash had a chance to win the game at the buzzer, but he was stripped by the Jayhawks' Frank Mason as he went up for the shot near the 3-point line, allowing the 15th-ranked Jayhawks to hold on for an 80-78 victory over the ninth-ranked Cowboys on Saturday.

"Down two (Nash) was trying to get to the basket," Smart said. "He looked up at the clock and realized he didn't have much time so he had to hoist it up there."

Smart's layup with 24 seconds remaining had gotten Oklahoma State within 79-75, and after Mason missed a free throw, Phil Forte hit a 3-pointer with 5.7 seconds remaining to make it a one-point game.

Mason was fouled and made the first of two free throws, and the Cowboys raced up court with the rebound on the miss. But the potential winning shot never made it toward the rim.

"I don't think it's a moral victory," Oklahoma State coach Travis Ford said, "but we'll walk out of here with our heads held high, no matter what."

Naadir Tharpe scored 21 points to lead the Jayhawks (13-4, 4-0 Big 12) while Joel Embiid added 13 points, 11 rebounds and eight blocks.

Forte hit seven 3-pointers and finished with 21 points for Oklahoma State (15-3, 3-2). Smart added 16 points, but he was just 3 of 14 from the field and 0 for 6 from the 3-point arc.

"I knew coming into this game they were going to try to do everything in their will not to let me come out and score," Smart said. "So I had to become a facilitator."

Markel Brown finished with 15 points for Oklahoma State, but he also received two of the six technical fouls handed out in the game. He wound up fouling out in the closing minutes.

The animosity between the teams really started to simmer last season, when the Cowboys came into Allen Fieldhouse and ended the Jayhawks' 33-game home win streak. Smart celebrated by doing a backflip, a stunt captured on film that Kansas coach Bill Self showed his team this week.

It reached a rolling boil shortly before the season, when Smart declared that Kansas' Andrew Wiggins had yet to warrant the considerable hype that the star freshman had been receiving.

Naturally, most figured that Smart and Wiggins would be the leading characters when their teams met. Instead, they were relegated to supporting roles - Wiggins scored just three points.

"I don't know of a team that's more talented in the country as deep as they are," Ford said. "We just let them play to their strengths."

Tarik Black took the spotlight first, fueling a 13-0 run for Kansas midway through the first half. The backup forward's basket for a 29-15 lead left a sellout crowd that included Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers roaring its approval.

In fact, the noise was so deafening that Brown didn't hear Ford call a timeout. He instead raced up court and found himself in the midst of the Kansas huddle, triggering a benches-clearing fracas that the officials had to separate.

Brown and the Jayhawks' Jamari Traylor were each hit with technical fouls.

Things didn't cool off, either. Later in the half, Smart was hammered by Wayne Selden on his way to the rim. Selden was shoved by the Cowboys' Stevie Clark, drawing another technical.

The Cowboys tried to mount a comeback on the second half. Forte got hot from behind the arc, and Brown hit four 3-pointers in the span of a few minutes to make it 59-56 with 11:02 left.

Kansas stoically answered the challenge.

Mason's 3-pointer triggered seven straight points by the Jayhawks, and when Smart finally hit his first field goal with 5:53 left, Embiid answered with a thunderous jam.

As the Jayhawks slowly rebuilt their lead, Oklahoma State began to lose its poise. Brown was whistled for a foul on Embiid, and voiced his frustration within earshot of official John Higgins, earning his second technical of the game and a seat on the bench.

The Cowboys got within 77-73 on a basket by Smart with 1:29 left, but Tharpe answered again with a 3-pointer from the top of the key. The Jayhawks then held on in the closing seconds to put some distance on one of its biggest threats in the Big 12 race.

No. 2 Syracuse holds off No. 22 Pitt to stay unbeaten

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) Freshman point guard Tyler Ennis scored 16 points, including two driving layups and two free throws in the final 2 minutes, and No. 2 Syracuse beat No. 22 Pittsburgh 59-54 on Saturday in a battle for first place in the ACC between the two former Big East rivals.

Syracuse (18-0, 5-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) entered the game 2-0 against former Big East rivals, with victories over St. John's and Villanova. The Orange made it three straight and remained one of only three unbeatens in Division I.

In four of the past five seasons, Syracuse has started with at least 13 consecutive wins, and twice in the last four years Pitt (16-2, 4-1) had stopped those streaks.

In a seesaw game that was tight all the way, Ennis, encouraged by coach Jim Boeheim to take more shots, won it by hitting a scoop with 1:47 left and a lefty layup with 30.6 seconds to go as the crowd of 30,046 shook the Carrier Dome with deafening roars.

Flyers sign goalie Mason to contract extension

PHILADELPHIA (AP) Flyers goaltender Steve Mason has signed a contract extension reportedly worth $12.3 million over three years.

The 25-year-old Mason is 19-11-5 with a 2.48 goals-against average and .917 save percentage entering Philadelphia's game against the New York Islanders on Saturday night. Mason was acquired from Columbus last April, and has become the team's No. 1 goalie.

Mason played well despite the team's poor start and has helped the Flyers into playoff contention. The Flyers are 23-12-5 since a 1-7 start.

Mason was the NHL's Rookie of the Year in 2008-09 when he was 33-20-7 for the Blue Jackets.

Arsenal, Man City march on in Premier League

MANCHESTER, England (AP) - Arsenal and Manchester City showed no sign of slowing up in the race for the Premier League title by grabbing routine home wins on Saturday to stay 1-2 in the standings.

Spain playmaker Santi Cazorla scored second-half goals in a five-minute span for Arsenal in a 2-0 victory over lowly Fulham that keeps the Gunners in the lead by a point.

"We have played 22 games and have 51 points. If you compare that to any other season you will see that it is one of the best, if not the best ever," Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said after his side's fifth straight league win. "So let's just continue."

City put on another attacking clinic to breeze past Cardiff 4-2 and pass the 100-goal mark this season in all competitions - after just 34 matches. Edin Dzeko, Jesus Navas, Yaya Toure and Sergio Aguero netted for City, which has now scored four or more goals in a game on 12 occasions this campaign.

"It's not easy to score 103 goals by the middle of the season," City manager Manuel Pellegrini said. "It reflects how we think this team must play. We are always an attractive team."

The Chelsea side of last season had been the previous fastest to reach a century of goals in the Premier League era, after 42 games, but Pellegrini's entertainers have set a high bar.

The defeat dumped Cardiff into last place and ensured a miserable return to Manchester for its coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who spent 11 successful years across the city at United.

Third-place Chelsea will look to stay a point behind City by beating Manchester United at home on Sunday in the standout game of the weekend.

Liverpool lost ground in fourth by drawing 2-2 at home to Aston Villa, which raced into a two-goal lead after 36 minutes thanks to strikes by Andreas Weimann and Christian Benteke.

Daniel Sturridge and Steven Gerrard - from the penalty spot - salvaged a draw for Liverpool, which is now eight points behind Arsenal after spending Christmas Day on top of the table.

The scrap for survival is even tighter than the battle for first place, with three teams now locked on 18 points in the relegation zone.

Crystal Palace started the day in last place but Jason Puncheon made up for his awful penalty miss against Tottenham last week by converting from the spot against Stoke, sealing a 1-0 win.

Sunderland remains second from bottom after coming from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Southampton and West Ham makes up the bottom three following a 3-1 loss to Newcastle, for whom France midfielder Yohan Cabaye scored twice while compatriot Loic Remy netted the other.

Norwich climbed five points clear of the drop zone thanks to a 1-0 win over Hull, secured by Ryan Bennett's 87th-minute goal.

Although Arsenal is maintaining the remarkable consistency it enjoyed in 2013, it will be difficult to stop City on current form.

Solskjaer was part of a string of wonderfully attacking teams during his time at Old Trafford, but none of them were as rampant as City's class of 2013-14.

Edin Dzeko brought up City's century of goals with a scruffy opener that dribbled just over the line in the 14th minute at Etihad Stadium, with the validity of the strike confirmed by the Goal Decision System on the giant screens in the corner of the ground.

Craig Noone equalized for Cardiff in the 29th minute but Jesus Navas restored City's lead three minutes later and second-half goals by Yaya Toure and substitute Sergio Aguero kept up the team's 100 percent home record in the league.

"We are playing fantastic football at the moment," Pellegrini said. "We play with fantastic intensity and that is how we must continue. The best way to play is the way we are playing now."

With Theo Walcott out for the rest of the season with a knee problem and Aaron Ramsey still not fully recovered from injury, it was Cazorla's turn to chip in with goals from midfield to ease the burden on chief striker Olivier Giroud.

Cazorla delivered instinctive finishes in the 57th and 62nd minutes, the first to complete a flowing move and the second after latching onto a clearance to break down the stubborn resistance of a Fulham side that arrived at Emirates Stadium with the league's leakiest defense.

"He is one of the players who can create something special, either through his pass or through his finishing," Wenger said of Cazorla.

Former NFL star Sharper arrested in Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES (AP) Former NFL star defensive back Darren Sharper has been arrested on suspicion of rape, the Los Angeles Police Department said.

Sharper was arrested and booked Friday and released on $200,000 bail just before midnight, according to the LAPD. He faces a Feb. 14 court appearance.

LAPD said it is investigating Sharper in connection with two sexual assaults that occurred in October and earlier this month in the West Los Angeles area.

New Orleans Police Department spokeswoman Remi Braden said Saturday in a statement that NOPD is also investigating an allegation of sexual assault filed against Sharper on Sept. 24.

Sharper, 38, played 14 seasons in the NFL (1997-2010), mostly with Green Bay. He also played with Minnesota and New Orleans and retired after the 2010 season.

Sharper was selected All-Pro six times and chosen for the Pro Bowl five times. He played in two Super Bowls, one with the Packers as a rookie and a second with the Saints after the 2009 season.

He has been working as an analyst for the NFL Network.

"Darren has been suspended without pay until further notice, effective immediately," said Alex Riethmiller, spokesman for NFL Network, in an email Saturday.

Vikings' Metrodome deflates for last time

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The Minnesota Vikings' Metrodome has deflated for the last time.

Officials from the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority opened the stadium's relief vents to begin the deflation at 7:15 a.m. Saturday in downtown Minneapolis. Fans providing the air that supports the roof were turned off. The 10 acres of Teflon-coated fabric were done deflating in 35 minutes.

Bill McCarthy, vice chairman of the authority, called it "a sad and exciting day at the same time." The deflation and the demolition of the Dome beginning next week will make way for construction of a new $1 billion Vikings stadium.

The muffin-shaped dome opened in 1982 and was once a focal point of Minnesota professional sports. In addition to being the home field for the Vikings and the Twins - who won two World Series there - the Timberwolves played their first NBA season in the Metrodome in 1989. The Twins left in 2009 for Target Field, leaving only the Vikings as the Metrodome's major tenant.

The authority gave the go-ahead despite concerns about weather conditions. According to the National Weather Service, between 4 and 5 inches of snow fell in the area overnight. Winds were a steady 5 to 10 mph Saturday morning.

The roof silently deflated under gray, snowy skies, sagging first in the middle. When the process was done, the stadium looked like a concave dish, rimmed with snow.

The morning snow was both a help and a safety concern, said Steve Maki, the authority's director of facilities and engineering. "We moved it up to do it as soon as we were ready," he said, noting officials were concerned that if the winds increased, the deflation would have been delayed.

Officials were worried that stiff winds could have turned the roof into "a big sail," Maki said.

While Saturday was the fifth time the Dome's roof has collapsed, it was the first time it was deflated intentionally. On four prior occasions, the roof collapsed due to extreme weather conditions, including the Dec. 11, 2010, incident where excessive snow caused the roof to cave in.

Crews will begin demolishing the rest of the building Monday. The new stadium is expected to be ready in time for the 2016 NFL season and will be located in roughly the same spot as the Metrodome. The team plans to play at the University of Minnesota's TCF Bank Stadium during the 2014 and 2015 seasons.

St. Paul-based excavator Frattalone Companies will recycle the Dome's roof fabric, cutting it up to be used in future construction projects. The entire roof deflated without the fabric ripping, Maki said.

Already the turf and most of the bright-blue seats have been removed, leaving a kind of concrete shell inside the stadium.

Few people were out and about in the early morning hours, and those who were walking by the Dome didn't notice the deflation occurring.

"Really? That's crazy," said Jon Silveira, a Minneapolis resident who was going to work as the roof silently sunk. "I didn't notice it."

When asked if he was sad to see the Dome go, he replied, "No, but I'd rather not pay for the new one."

Clemson's Swinney gets 8-year deal, raise

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) Clemson coach Dabo Swinney received a new, eight-year contract Saturday and a raise that increased his total pay for next season to $3.15 million.

The agreement had been in the works since the end of the season. The school announced the reworked contract that ties Swinney to the Tigers through 2021. Swinney's previous deal paid him a total of $2.55 million and was good through 2017.

The agreement was approved this week by Clemson University's Board of Trustees compensation committee.

Clemson had its second straight 11-2 season, finishing up with a 40-35 victory over Ohio State in the Orange Bowl. It was Clemson's third consecutive season with double-digit victories.

"Dabo is one of the top coaches not only in the ACC but in the entire nation," Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich said. "His teams have succeeded on the field, in the classroom and in the community. We're excited to have him lead our program for a long time into the future."

Swinney's total pay will increase by $150,000 the 20015 and 2016 seasons. Automatic raises after that will be determined by how many victories the football team has that season, starting with $100,000 increase for nine wins and up to $300,000 for 12 wins.

Should Clemson win the Atlantic Coast Conference in any of the next three seasons, Swinney's pay would jump to $3.5 million the following year.

Swinney's contract is filled with incentives, including one of $400,000 for reaching the College Football Playoff. He would also earn $75,000 if his team's APR score was over 950.

Should the university terminate Swinney without cause this season, it would owe the coach $24 million. That figure is significantly reduced with each year of the deal.

Swinney, 44, would owe Clemson $5 million should he leave for another head coaching spot the next three seasons. That also gets reduced over the length of the contract.

Swinney came to the Tigers in 2003 as a receivers coach under Tommy Bowden and became the school's interim coach when Bowden was let go in the middle of the 2008 season. Swinney earned the fulltime job that fall, his first year's salary only $800,000.

Since then, Swinney's won three ACC Atlantic Division titles, an ACC championship and a BCS bowl game. While the Tigers have gone 51-23 overall and 33-12 in ACC play with Swinney, there have been some notable clunkers during his time.

Clemson has lost three of its past four games with national champion Florida State, including a 51-14 embarrassment at Death Valley this past October. There was the 70-33 Orange Bowl debacle against West Virginia following the 2011 ACC title season. And then there's that first-ever, five-game losing streak to South Carolina that has Swinney continually getting "five-bombed" while posing for photographs, as Gamecock fans flash five fingers while posing to show their program's recent domination.

"While we have accomplished many goals, we still have several out there to reach and we will continue to work to get there," Swinney said.

Swinney told a sold-out crowd at halftime of last week's 72-59 Tigers victory over Duke that his staff would not rest until the football program was tops in the state and nationally.

Swinney's long-term deal will also likely keep the spicy back and forth going with South Carolina's Steve Spurrier. The Gamecocks coach received a one-year contract extension and raise this week that pushed his total salary to $4 million a year through 2018.

Spurrier crowed while receiving the Capital One Bowl trophy for beating Wisconsin 34-24 on New Year's Day that it was nice, "but that state championship ain't bad either."

Swinney answered back after the Ohio State victory, saying Clemson was the only school in the state with the BCS bowl win.

Murray advances to 4th round with win over Lopez

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Three-time finalist Andy Murray advanced to the fourth round at the Australian Open for the sixth straight year with a 7-6 (2), 6-4, 6-2 win over No. 26-seeded Feliciano Lopez of Spain on Saturday.

Murray, playing only his second tournament since minor back surgery in September, was only broken once in a 2-hour, 15-minute match.

Fourth-seeded Murray, who broke some Grand Slam droughts for British men when he won the U.S. Open in 2012 and Wimbledon last year, is still aiming for his first Australian title. He has lost the finals at Melbourne Park in three of the last four years.

He next faces Stefane Robert, a lucky loser from qualifying who made the main draw after Philipp Kohlschreiber withdrew with an injury on the second morning of the tournament.

Durant scores 54, Thunder beat Warriors

OKLAHOMA CITY -- Kevin Durant scored a career-high 54 points to help the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Golden State Warriors 127-121 on Friday night.

Durant made 19 of 28 field goals and 11 of 13 free throws in his third straight game with at least 36 points.

Serge Ibaka had 21 points and eight rebounds, Reggie Jackson scored 14 points and Kendrick Perkins added 12 rebounds for the Thunder (30-10), who won for the third time in four games. Oklahoma City shot 58 percent from the field and scored a season-high point total.

Stephen Curry had 37 points and 11 assists and Klay Thompson added 26 points for the Warriors (25-16), who shot 52 percent but simply couldn't match up with Durant.

Federer advances to 4th round at Australian Open

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Four-time champion Roger Federer has advanced to the fourth round at the Australian Open for the 13th consecutive year following a 6-2, 6-2, 6-3 win Saturday over Teymuraz Gabashvili.

The win may be a good omen for the sixth-seeded Federer. The only other time the two have played - in the first round at Wimbledon in 2007, when the Russian also lost in straight sets - Federer went on to win the title.

Federer was back in familiar territory Saturday at Rod Laver Arena. On Thursday, he won his second-round match at the secondary Hisense Arena, the first time in a decade that Federer was not given prime billing at the 15,000-seat Rod Laver where he had played his previous 63 consecutive Australian Open matches.

Blackhawks cool off Ducks with 4-2 victory

CHICAGO (AP) Marian Hossa scored two goals, and Kris Versteeg and Bryan Bickell also tallied to lead the Chicago Blackhawks past Anaheim 4-2 on Friday night to end the Ducks' eight-game winning streak and hand them only their second loss in the past 20 games.

Corey Crawford made 19 saves to help the Blackhawks end a five-game losing streak against Anaheim - including three straight in Chicago - and beat the Ducks for the first time since December 2011.

With Chicago cruising 3-0, Anaheim's Ryan Getzlaf scored on a wrist shot to cap an odd-man break with 6:13 left in the third to end Crawford's shutout bid.

Then Kyle Palmieri connected on a 40-foot shot 53 seconds later to make it close before Hossa scored into an empty net with 7.6 seconds left.

Anaheim's run of 18 wins in 19 games began with a 3-2 shootout victory at Chicago on Dec. 6. It was the longest span of one-loss play since the 1967-68 Montreal Canadiens won a record 20 of 21.

Anaheim goalie Jonas Hiller was sharp and made 31 saves, but his 14-game winning streak ended. That run tied him for second-longest in NHL history with four other goalies.

Hiller hadn't lost since a shootout defeat to Los Angeles on Dec. 3.

Despite scuffling along at 1-1-3 in its past five games, defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago entered the game with the NHL's second-best point total.

Through most of the showdown against league-leading Anaheim, the Blackhawks were a step quicker and more-determined physically.

Chicago outshot the Ducks 35-21.

Versteeg collided with Bickell behind the Anaheim net at the end of the second period and didn't skate in the third.

Chicago outshot Anaheim 15-8 in the first period and led 2-0 after 20 minutes.

The Blackhawks dominated early, and Hossa opened the scoring with a short-handed goal at 10:34.

Toews skated quickly out of the Chicago zone and sent the puck to Hossa on right wing. As Toews streaked down the slot, Hossa faked, used Anaheim defenseman Cam Fowler as a screen and fired a low shot under Hiller's pads.

It was the first time the Blackhawks had opened the scoring since Jan. 3, a span of six games.

Versteeg made it 2-0 with 2:54 left in the period when he batted in a loose puck that two Ducks players couldn't handle.

Anaheim's Matt Beleskey knocked the puck away from Versteeg as he tried to cut in from the right corner, but it deflected off defenseman Sami Vatanen and toward the net. Versteeg got a piece of the flipping puck and directed it past Hiller.

Crawford made a point-blank pad save on Corey Perry with 1:13 left to maintain Chicago's two-goal lead. He stopped Saku Koivu on a short-handed 2-on-1 break early in the scoreless second.

Aided by three power plays, Blackhawks outshot the Ducks 11-3 in the middle period.

Bickell made it 3-0 at 10:13 of the third. He gained a step on Anaheim defenseman Ben Lovejoy, plowed down the slot and fired.

Hiller got a piece of the shot, but it rolled over him and into the net.

After Getzlaf cut it to 3-1 with 6:13 left, Palmieri fooled Crawford on a low 40-foot shot from the slot 53 seconds later to set up a wild finish. The Ducks pressured and pulled Hiller for an extra attacker with 1:10 left, but couldn't tie it.

NOTES: The Ducks announced D Sheldon Souray will miss the season after another operation on his right wrist. Souray, 37, was injured during summer training and he never got on the ice in his second year in Anaheim. ... Ducks D Bryan Allen returned after missing five games with a lower-body injury. ... Chicago leading scorer Patrick Kane has no goals and just three assists in nine games following a career-high 14-game point streak during which he had eight goals and 17 assists. ... Anaheim sent top goalie prospect John Gibson back to the minors without making his NHL debut and assigned long-injured D Luca Sbisa to the AHL on a conditioning loan before Friday's game.

Clayton Kershaw calls lucrative deal 'humbling'

LOS ANGELES (AP) Even Clayton Kershaw has trouble contemplating the enormity of a $215 million, seven-year contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers that makes him baseball's richest pitcher.

The team finalized the deal Friday, when Kershaw stayed home in Dallas. The 25-year-old ace said by phone that talking money is "a little bit uncomfortable for me."

Kershaw and his wife, Ellen, have been discussing how to spend the money, and most of their ideas revolve around charitable interests. The couple supports an orphanage in Africa and two groups that fund afterschool programs for children in Los Angeles and Dallas. They have no children of their own.

"Ellen and I understand the effects we can have on a lot of people with this money," he said. "We realize to whom much is given much is expected and that's what we're going to try and do."

Kershaw gets an $18 million signing bonus, payable in $6 million installments this April 15, July 15 and Sept. 15. He receives salaries of $4 million this year, $30 million next year, $32 million in 2016, $33 million in each of the next two seasons, $32 million in 2019 and $33 million in 2020.

He would earn a $1 million bonus each time he wins the Cy Young Award and $500,000 whenever he finishes second or third.

Kershaw said the money is both "a tremendous blessing and a tremendous responsibility."

His deal breaks the salary record for a pitcher of $180 million set by Justin Verlander last March for his seven-year contract with Detroit.

Kershaw's average salary of $30.7 million betters the previous high of $27.5 million, set by the New York Yankees' Alex Rodriguez as part of a 10-year agreement from December 2007. While Roger Clemens had a contract with a listed salary of $28 million with the Yankees in 2007, he joined the team in June and actually made $17.4 million.

"Obviously, there's going to be a lot of expectations, as it should be if your salary's out there and you're one of the highest paid players in the game," said Kershaw, a two-time NL Cy Young Award winner. "That's fine with me. I understand those expectations and I look forward to try to live up to them."

Kershaw regards the lucrative deal as a precedent-setter for future players.

"Hopefully somebody comes along and beats it," he said.

Kershaw would have been eligible for free agency after the upcoming season if the new deal hadn't been reached. He can opt out after five years, a contract provision he wanted.

"I always want to be able to see the end," he said. "Anything longer than that, I would have been overwhelmed trying to live up to the expectations."

The Dodgers first began talking with Kershaw's representatives last March. By summer, they were nearing a deal, but decided to put it off until after the season ended. The team had baseball's second-highest payroll at the end of the regular season last fall - more than $236 million.

"A big, big factor for us that really was a positive for us is Clayton's age," Dodgers President Stan Kasten said. "I'd feel differently doing this contract with a player that's in his mid-30s. It doesn't make it fool-proof, there are still risks."

Kershaw was 16-9 for the NL West champion Dodgers last year and led the league with 232 strikeouts, and his 1.83 ERA was the best in the major leagues since Pedro Martinez's 1.74 for Boston in 2000. He has led the NL in ERA in each of the last three years.

The Dodgers were eliminated after Kershaw pitched a rare clunker in a 9-0 loss to St. Louis in the NL championship series.

"I definitely feel pretty responsible for us ending our season," he said. "It leaves a little bit of a bitter taste in your mouth."

The Dodgers continue to talk to representatives of Japanese star pitcher Masahiro Tanaka. The 30-day window to sign the 25-year-old right-hander ends on Jan. 24.

Kershaw hasn't been asked by the Dodgers to help recruit Tanaka nor does he want to weigh in on potential player acquisitions.

"From what I hear, he seems like a great pitcher," he said. "If he's a great pitcher it definitely can never hurt."

Typical of his low-key personality, Kershaw didn't see any reason to celebrate the new deal.

"I had a few of my buddies over here," he said. "We played some pingpong and grilled some burgers."

NOTES: The Dodgers exchanged salary arbitration figures with C A.J. Ellis (he asked for $4.6 million, the team offered $3 million) and reliever Kenley Jansen ($5.05 million to the team's $3.5 million).

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AP Sports Writer Ronald Blum contributed to this report.

Browns' Bess charged in Fla. with officer assault

MIAMI (AP) Cleveland Browns and former Miami Dolphins wide receiver Davone Bess was arrested Friday on charges of assaulting a law enforcement officer at an airport, the latest in a series of personal problems for the NFL player.

According to a Broward Sheriff's Office arrest report, Bess was approached by Deputy Thomas O'Brien inside the Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport terminal because he was "acting irrationally, dancing, singing with his pants repeatedly falling down."

"I inquired if he was all right and received no response," O'Brien said in the report, adding later that Bess "appeared to be looking through me" while they talked.

Bess, 28, then picked up a cup of hot coffee from a counter and squeezed it, "which caused the cup to break with the liquid going all over my uniform," the deputy wrote. Bess then took up a "fighting stance," and O'Brien said he hit the player on the leg with a baton to no effect.

"Bess proceeded to take off his shirt and once again took up a fighting stance refusing my repeated orders to get on the ground," O'Brien said, adding that Bess was finally taken into custody when backup officers arrived.

Sheriff's office records show that Bess is charged with simple assault on an officer, resisting arrest without violence and disorderly conduct. It was not immediately clear whether Bess had a lawyer. Browns spokesman Zak Gilbert said the team was aware of the arrest and was gathering information.

Bess was released Friday morning on $100 bail. The three charges are all misdemeanors. He did not comment about the substance of the charges to waiting television news crews.

The Miami Herald reported Friday night that police were summoned to Bess' home in Florida last year before he was traded to the Browns. According to a report uncovered by the newspaper, six officers were needed to restrain Bess and his family reportedly had him hospitalized against his will.

The Browns signed Bess last year to a three-year, $11.5 million contract after acquiring him on draft day in April from the Dolphins. This season Bess had career lows with 42 catches for 362 yards.

The arrest comes one day after Bess posted a photo on his Twitter page of a small package containing what appears to be marijuana. The photo was later deleted. Last month, a photo posted on Bess' Instagram account showed him lighting a cigar or marijuana joint next to a photo of late reggae star Bob Marley, a Rastafarian flag around his shoulders.

On Dec. 19, the Browns placed Bess on the reserve/non-football illness list for what were described as personal reasons. He missed the final two games of the season.

Bess spent five seasons with the Dolphins. His best year was in 2010, when he caught 79 passes for 820 yards and five touchdowns. The Oakland, Calif. native starred at the University of Hawaii before joining the Dolphins in 2008 as an undrafted free agent.

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AP Sports Writer Tom Withers in Cleveland contributed to this story.

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Follow Curt Anderson on Twitter: http://twitter.com/Miamicurt

AP Source: Jets' Smith leaves plane after argument

NEW YORK (AP) A person familiar with the situation says New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith left his flight at Los Angeles International Airport after getting into an argument with an attendant.

Smith was on a Virgin America flight from Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on Friday when an attendant asked Smith to remove his headphones and an argument ensued, according to the person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because no official report was filed to or by the airport.

The person said Smith, who just finished his rookie season with the Jets, got up and asked to speak to a supervisor before leaving the plane on his own and speaking with police at the gate before leaving.

The Jets declined comment in a statement.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Rondo returns but Lakers beat Celtics 107-104

BOSTON (AP) Rajon Rondo returned from a knee injury and missed a 3-pointer for Boston that could have sent the game into overtime, allowing the Los Angeles Lakers to beat the Celtics 107-104 on Friday night.

Pau Gasol had 24 points and 13 rebounds for Los Angeles, and Kendall Marshall finished 19 points and 14 assists. Ryan Kelly scored 20 points and Wesley Johnson added 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Johnson made a 3-pointer with 69 seconds left to give the Lakers the lead for good. Kelly added a pair of clinching free throws with 9.4 seconds remaining as the Lakers snapped a six-game losing streak.

Kelly Olynyk scored a career-high 25 points for Boston. Rondo, who was limited to 20 minutes in his first game since tearing his anterior cruciate ligament on Jan. 25, 2013, had eight points, four assists and two rebounds.

Vanderbilt hires Stanford DC Derek Mason as coach

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Vanderbilt took less than a week before filling its vacant head football coaching position, announcing Friday the university had tabbed Stanford defensive coordinator Derek Mason.

Mason will be introduced at a news conference Saturday morning.

"I am so excited to be at Vanderbilt," Mason said in the release. "This university combines the best of what's good about college athletics and academics. We expect to be competitive and look forward to competing for an SEC East crown."

Mason, 44, has spent the past four seasons at Stanford where academic requirements and recruiting challenges are similar to Vanderbilt. He joined former coach Jim Harbaugh's staff in 2010 as a defensive backs coach after serving in the same position with the NFL's Minnesota Vikings from 2007-09.

He was promoted to co-defensive coordinator and associate head coach when David Shaw took over in January 2011. He has had complete control over the unit the last two years.

Mason replaces James Franklin who left for Penn State on Jan. 11. Vanderbilt wrapped up its search in exactly a week, and athletic director David Williams said they are very happy with their search. Williams said they found the football world is aware of Vanderbilt's progress, resulting in lots of interest in the job.

"We talked to outside experts and did our own evaluations and the person that always seemed to be in the spotlight was the same person that was at the top of our list and that was Derek Mason," Williams said..

Mason takes over a program that is in much better shape than the last time Vanderbilt hired a coach in 2010. Franklin took over a program that had gone 4-20 over the previous two seasons. Now Vanderbilt is 24-16 over the past three seasons, and the Commodores are 16-4 over the past 20 games - second in the Southeastern Conference only to Alabama.

Vanderbilt also has won consecutive bowl games for the first time in school history and finished in the final Associated Press poll each of the past two seasons, including No. 24 for 2013. Vanderbilt hadn't finished in the final AP poll before Franklin arrived since 1948 under Red Sanders.

But a recruiting class that had been ranked in the Top 25 before Franklin left has been losing commitments left and right, forcing Mason to try and salvage a class before signing day Feb. 5.

Vanderbilt Chancellor Nicholas Zeppos said they trust Mason to build on the work that has taken Vanderbilt football to "unprecedented heights."

"He embodies integrity, strategic thinking and a demonstrated commitment to success. He understands the important role that athletics plays in the life of a vibrant university, and that outstanding scholarly pursuits and top-notch sports are integral parts of the Vanderbilt experience," Zeppos said.

A fiery and energetic coach whose personality plays well with recruits, Mason has helped mold the Cardinal into one of the nation's best and most physical defenses.

Stanford allowed only 19 points per game last season, best in the offensive-oriented Pac-12 Conference and 10th nationally. The Cardinal also led the country with 44 sacks. Stanford has won the past two Pac-12 titles and is the only program to make a BCS bowl each of the last four years -- all during Mason's tenure.

Mason is a former cornerback at Northern Arizona and has been an assistant at various colleges the past 20 years, including stops at Ohio, New Mexico State, Saint Mary's, Utah, Weber State, Idaho State, Bucknell and San Diego Mesa College.

He has gained greater acclaim at Stanford for finding ways to slow down hurry-up offenses and read-option runs, especially against Pac-12 division rival Oregon, which Stanford has beaten the past two years. About a half-dozen NFL teams even sent coaches last summer to see Mason, who taught tutorials on his defensive schemes.

"We are so excited to be introducing him as our head football coach because we are confident he can build upon our successes on and off the field and that he will take us to the next level," Williams said.

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AP Sports Writer Antonio Gonzalez contributed to this report from California.

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