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Quick Read: Lakers win 16th NBA title

Lakers win 16th NBA title LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Lakers won their 16th NBA championship, dramatically rallying from a fourth-quarter deficit to beat the Boston Celtics 83-79 Thursday night in Game 7 of the NBA finals. Kobe Bryant scored 2...

Lakers win 16th NBA title

LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Lakers won their 16th NBA championship, dramatically rallying from a fourth-quarter deficit to beat the Boston Celtics 83-79 Thursday night in Game 7 of the NBA finals. Kobe Bryant scored 23 points while winning his fifth title with the Lakers, who repeated as NBA champions for the first time since winning three straight from 2000-02.

Ron Artest added 20 points for the Lakers, who moved one championship behind Boston's 17 banners for the overall NBA lead.

Paul Pierce had 18 points and 10 rebounds for the Celtics and Kevin Garnett added 17 points.

Three lead U.S. Open

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PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- The scenery at Pebble Beach was as spectacular as ever. The U.S. Open was as tough as ever. Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson didn't make a single birdie between them Thursday, the first time that's happened with the world's best two players in the same tournament.

Shaun Micheel, Paul Casey and Brendon De Jonge all shot 2-under 69 to share the U.S. Open lead after the first round. Only nine players were under par, compared with 17 rounds under par after the first round at Pebble in 2000.

Woods finished with a 3-over 74 and Mickelson shot a 75.

Rockies top Twins

MINNEAPOLIS -- Ubaldo Jimenez allowed one run on eight hits in Colorado's 5-1 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Thursday, improving to 13-1 on the season, the best start by a pitcher since Roger Clemens went 14-0 in 1986. Jimenez struck out four and walked two, dropping his earned-run average to 1.15.

Ryan Spilborghs hit a two-run homer and Troy Tulowitzki added an RBI-triple and two runs for the Rockies, who avoided a three-game sweep in front of 40,741 fans at Target Field. Francisco Liriano (6-4) allowed three runs on five hits with three walks and six strikeouts in seven innings for the Twins.

Jimenez gave up a double to pinch-hitter Jim Thome and an RBI-single to Drew Butera in the eighth inning, but got pinch-hitter Joe Mauer to line into another double play to end the inning.

World Cup update

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JOHANNESBURG -- Gonzalo Higuain scored a hat trick and Argentina beat South Korea 4-1 at the World Cup on Thursday, putting the South Americans on the brink of qualifying for the next round.

-- Greece claimed its first World Cup win, rallying to beat 10-man Nigeria 2-1 in a World Cup Group B match.

-- Substitutes Javier Hernandez and Cuauhtemoc Blanco each scored in Mexico's 2-0 win over France.

Devils hire MacLean as coach

NEWARK, N.J. -- The fourth time apparently was the charm for John MacLean. A perennial candidate to lead the team he played for and coached as an assistant, MacLean was named the head coach of the New Jersey Devils on Thursday, replacing the retired Jacques Lemaire. MacLean was considered for the head coaching position with the Devils on three other occasions, but lost out to, in order, Claude Julien (2006), Brent Sutter (2007) and Lemaire (2009).

Huskies fall in 11

Despite rallying to tie the game and send it into extra innings, the Duluth Huskies fell 6-5 in 11 innings to the St. Cloud River Bats in a Northwoods League baseball game played before 499 spectators at Wade Stadium on Thursday night.

The River Bats led most of the way until the Huskies made it 5-5 in the ninth. Jeff Reynolds and Cody Asche led Duluth with three hits apiece, while pitcher Corey Maltz took the loss.

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