PARIS (AP) - Used to be that Venus Williams was the one who was highly ranked, the one considered a title contender, the one who would dominate foes so thoroughly that matches would be tidily wrapped up in an hour.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Gregg Popovich implored his San Antonio Spurs to get nasty to take control of the Western Conference finals.
MIAMI (AP) - Back and forth they went in overtime, Rajon Rondo and the Miami Heat.
NEW YORK (AP) - After a promise from players that the game will be more competitive, the NFL will hold the Pro Bowl in Honolulu next Jan. 27, a week before the Super Bowl.
LANDOVER, Md. (AP) - Brazil had its way with the U.S. soccer team, with the stars in the famous yellow jerseys dribbling past the Americans and generally pushing them around for the first half-hour.
DENVER (AP) - Carlos Gonzalez hit three home runs in his last three at-bats, Michael Cuddyer had a grand slam and Dexter Fowler also homered, leading the Colorado Rockies past the Houston Astros 13-5 on Wednesday night for their third win in a row.
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Justin Smoak hit two three-run homers against his former team and the Seattle Mariners used a pair of early eight-run innings to rout the Texas Rangers for the second straight game, winning 21-8 Wednesday night.
DENVER (AP) - Jamie Moyer was designated for assignment by the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday, the move being made about six weeks after he became the oldest starting pitcher to win a game in major league history.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Francisco Liriano needed a strong start in his return to the Minnesota Twins rotation. The punchless Oakland Athletics provided the perfect remedy for the vexing left-hander's recent struggles.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Kirk Gibson asked Ian Kennedy if he could keep going, and Arizona's ace delivered with a career-high 122 pitches.
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - East. West. It doesn't make a difference to the Los Angeles Kings.
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - The Golden State Warriors finally caught a break again in the NBA draft lottery.
SANTA CLARA (AP) - San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh insists the 49ers planned to have Alex Smith as their quarterback even while they examined the possibility of signing then-free agent Peyton Manning.
ANAHEIM (AP) - Albert Pujols and Mark Trumbo homered, Dan Haren pitched into the eighth inning, and the Los Angeles Angels extended their longest winning streak in nearly three years to eight games with a 5-1 victory over the New York Yankees on Tuesday night.
MIAMI (AP) - Anibal Sanchez allowed only an unearned run in seven innings to remain unbeaten in 19 starts against Washington, and the Miami Marlins beat the Nationals 3-1 Tuesday night to break the franchise record for victories in a month.
OAKLAND (AP) - The Oakland Athletics are stunned by their September collapse, yet stuck to find a solution.
ALAMEDA (AP) - For a player who generates so much attention from opposing defenses and gets paid handsomely by his own team, Marcel Reece somehow has become the forgotten man on the Oakland Raiders offense.
SANTA CLARA (AP) - Derek Carrier's decisions to attend a small liberal arts college in Wisconsin and drop basketball for football paid off when he earned a spot on the San Francisco 49ers this season after spending most of the last two years on NFL practice squads.
ATLANTA (AP) - Devin Hester high-stepped into the NFL record book. Matt Ryan had as many touchdown passes as incompletions. Julio Jones made a spectacular over-the-shoulder catch tumbling into the end zone.
JUPITER, Fla. (AP) - The next swing coach for Tiger Woods might be Tiger Woods.
PHOENIX (AP) - Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer head-butted his wife and broke her nose after she refused his sexual advances, and punched her in the face the next day, police said Thursday.
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (AP) - Adrian Peterson has had the potential to be that rare post-modern NFL running back playing productively into his 30s. After that extraordinary comeback from knee reconstruction, Emmitt Smith's career rushing record became a realistic if daunting target.
The Royal and Ancient Golf Club at St. Andrews is no longer just for men.
NEW YORK (AP) - Chivas USA might not play in 2015 and perhaps longer, a decision that won't be made until a new owner takes over the Major League Soccer team.
PHOENIX (AP) - Someone had been to the costume shop, and Matt Duffy was about to put on faux leather boots, chaps and a pink cowboy hat to complete his travel ensemble.
Nearly 11 years after Barry Bonds testified before a grand jury investigating the illegal distribution of performance-enhancing drugs, a group of judges will hear arguments Thursday on whether baseball's career home-run leader should have his obstruction of justice conviction thrown out.
NEW YORK (AP) - Umpire Joe West was suspended for one game without pay for grabbing the jersey of Philadelphia Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon.
ALAMEDA (AP) - As a rookie quarterback seeking his first NFL win against Bill Belichick's New England Patriots, Derek Carr has too much to worry about himself to focus on questions about his coach's job security.
SANTA CLARA (AP) - Colin Kaepernick said Wednesday he has been fined more than $11,000 by the NFL and he will appeal the penalty for what an official called "inappropriate language" by the 49ers quarterback following a fourth-quarter interception in Sunday's 28-20 loss to the Bears.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were supposed to be vastly improved this year. The standings show a big, fat zero in the win column.