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Kobe, daughter die in helicopter crash

(AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

LOS ANGELES (AP) Kobe Bryant, the 18-time NBA All-Star who won five championships and became one of the greatest basketball players of his generation during a 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, died in a helicopter crash Sunday. He was 41.

Bryant died in the foggy hills above Calabasas, California, about 30 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press. A different person familiar with the case confirmed Bryant's 13-year-old daughter Gianna also was killed. Authorities said nine people were on the helicopter and that all were presumed dead. No names were released.

Both of the AP's unnamed sources spoke on condition of anonymity because few details of the crash had been released publicly. The crash happened around 10 a.m.


Jokic has 24-12-11, Nuggets top Rockets

DENVER (AP) Nikola Jokic turned in his ninth triple-double of the season, Jerami Grant scored a season-high 25 points and the Denver Nuggets held off the Houston Rockets 117-110 on a melancholy Sunday as players and fans learned about an hour before the game of the helicopter crash that killed NBA great Kobe Bryant.

The mood was somber all afternoon. A few of the Nuggets sat at their lockers before the game, staring at their phones in disbelief with the Bryant news starting to appear. The 41-year-old Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, were among the nine people killed in the crash near Calabasas, California, about 30 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles.


Raptors seek 7th win in row, visit Spurs

Just when it looked like the San Antonio Spurs had things on track, they took another step back in a home loss to Phoenix on Friday. Now, things really get tough for the perplexing Spurs as they host surging Toronto on Sunday afternoon.

San Antonio sleepwalked through the second quarter on Friday, allowing the Suns to forge a 29-9 run that turned a seven-point lead into a 12-point halftime deficit from which it never recovered in a 103-99 loss.


LeBron passes Kobe for 3rd in scoring

PHILADELPHIA (AP) LeBron James was a teenager when he first met Kobe Bryant at a youth basketball camp, in awe of his idol and ears open as the Los Angeles Lakers star offered advice to the prodigy that has lasted to this day.

"I was just listening," James said. "I was just trying to soak everything up I could. I remember one thing he said was that if you want to try and be great at it, and want to be one of the greats, you've got to put the work in."


Jazz beat Mavs for 14th win in 15 games

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) Once again, Rudy Gobert was there to clean up the mess.

On the final few possessions, the two-time Defensive Player of the Year made a tip-in, blocked a layup just before it hit the glass, got a key rebound and made a free throw.


Schroder, Paul help OKC win 5th straight

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) With veterans banged up, Oklahoma City’s young players are gaining valuable experience and learning how to win on the road.

Having Chris Paul around to stabilize things certainly helps, too.


Irving scores 45, Nets top Pistons in OT

DETROIT (AP) Kyrie Irving took over, scoring on an array of shots and even over a backboard that was simply in his way.

Irving scored 17 of his 45 points in the third quarter to overcome a double-digit deficit and the Brooklyn Nets went on to beat the Detroit Pistons 121-111 in overtime Saturday night.


LaVine has 44-10-8, Bulls rally by Cavs

CLEVELAND (AP) Zach LaVine fell just short of a perfect night Saturday.

LaVine scored 44 points and the Chicago Bulls defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 118-106. The 6-foot-5 guard also finished with 10 rebounds and eight assists, barely missing his first career triple-double.


Waiters takes blame for suspensions

MIAMI (AP) Dion Waiters spoke about his issues for the first time in months Sunday, accepting responsibility for the matters that led him to being suspended by the Miami Heat on three separate occasions already this season.

Waiters didn't specifically address any incidents, including his decision to take cannabis-infused gummies on the team plane and needing emergency medical attention when that flight landed in Los Angeles. That led to a 10-game suspension in November; his other banishments were for the season opener after complaining about playing time, then a two-week one in December for continued violations of team policy.


Mavs complete trade for Cauley-Stein

DALLAS (AP) The Dallas Mavericks completed a trade Saturday to acquire 7-foot center Willie Cauley-Stein from Golden State for a second-round draft pick this year.

The Mavericks needed help on their front line after starting center Dwight Powell tore his right Achilles tendon, ending his season.

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