Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Nadal surprised to still be on top of the game
Australian Open top seed Rafa Nadal entered his third decade as a professional ranked No. 1 in the world and the 33-year-old Spaniard says he is surprised to be at the summit of the men's game given his long and varied history of injuries. Enjoying a rare period of full fitness, Nadal is bidding for his second title in his 15th appearance at Melbourne Park, as well as the added carrot of matching Roger Federer's all-time record of 20 Grand Slam titles.
NBA roundup: Doncic, Mavs shoot past Blazers
Luka Doncic made a career-best eight 3-pointers and recorded 35 points, eight rebounds and seven assists to lead the Dallas Mavericks to a 120-112 victory over the visiting Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night. Tim Hardaway Jr. made five 3-pointers while scoring 29 points, and Seth Curry tallied 16 points off the bench as the Mavericks won their fourth straight game. Jalen Brunson added 13 points and Maxi Kleber scored 10 for Dallas.
NHL roundup: Crosby's OT goal lifts Penguins
Sidney Crosby scored on a tip-in during an overtime power play, and the visiting Pittsburgh Penguins edged the Detroit Red Wings 2-1 on Tuesday. Crosby redirected an Evgeni Malkin shot for his third goal in as many games. Bryan Rust had a goal and an assist for the Penguins, and Matt Murray made 28 saves. Malkin was credited with a team-high six shots and assisted on both goals.
Golf: Scheffler, Fowler shoot matching 64s for La Quinta lead
Scottie Scheffler shot an eight-under-par 64, despite chalking up a double bogey at his ninth hole, to tie Rickie Fowler for the second-round lead of The American Express in La Quinta, California, on Friday. Scheffler narrowly missed an eagle at his last hole, the ninth, to match Fowler's score as they completed the Nicklaus Tournament Course at 15-under 129.
ATP roundup: Rublev wins second title of 2020
Andrey Rublev claimed his second title of the new year, defeating unseeded South African Lloyd Harris 6-3, 6-0 at the Adelaide International in Australia on Saturday. No. 3 seed Rublev, a 22-year-old Russian, blitzed past Harris in just 56 minutes, saving all four break points he faced along the way.
Undercooked Federer hopes for fast start at Melbourne Park
Roger Federer is bidding for a third title in four years at Melbourne Park and a record-extending 21st Grand Slam trophy but having not played competitive tennis since November the Swiss is keeping a lid on expectations. Unlike his main rivals, Federer, who won his last Grand Slam in 2018 at Melbourne Park, opted out of the inaugural ATP Cup to spend more time with his family before launching his 22nd season on Tour.
Blistering Kuchar jumps into Singapore lead after birdie binge
Matt Kuchar will take a three-shot lead into the final round of the Singapore Open following his blistering nine-under-par 62 at the Sentosa Golf Club on Saturday. The Rio Olympic bronze medalist sank four birdies in his front nine and five in his inner-nine for a three-day total of 17-under-par 196.
Top 25 roundup: Michigan State's Winston sets Big Ten assist mark
Senior Cassius Winston handed out four assists on Friday night, leading No. 15 Michigan State to a 67-55 victory over visiting Wisconsin and becoming the Big Ten's all-time leader in career assists with 817. It was, otherwise, a tough night for Winston, who scored six points on 3-for-12 shooting in East Lansing, Mich. But Winston had plenty of help, particularly from junior Xavier Tillman, who scored 15 points, grabbed nine rebounds and had four assists for the Spartans (14-4, 6-1 Big Ten).
More seasoned, less fearless, Osaka set for Australian Open defense
Naomi Osaka has learned to appreciate her victories more after enduring the "toughest" year of her fledging career and the Japanese world number three says mentally she is in a better place to launch her Australian Open title defense. Osaka started 2019 by winning her second straight Grand Slam title in Melbourne following her success at the 2018 U.S. Open but suffered early exits at Roland Garros and Wimbledon.
Barty wins Adelaide title in Australian Open boost
World number one Ash Barty beat Dayana Yastremska 6-2 7-5 to win the Adelaide International on Saturday in a major boost before launching her Australian Open campaign. Barty, who swept aside Yastremska in one hour and 25 minutes, is bidding to end Australia's long wait for a homegrown champion at the year's first Grand Slam. The last was Chris O’Neil, who claimed the women’s title at the 1978 tournament.