Nadal reigns in Mexico

Updated 04 March 2013
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Nadal reigns in Mexico

ACAPULCO, Mexico: Rafael Nadal blasted past top seed and defending champion David Ferrer 6-0, 6-2 in yesterday’s final of the Mexican Open in a powerful performance that indicated he has quickly returned to near his best after a long-term knee injury.
Ferrer was a three-time defending champion and had won 19 straight matches in this event, but he could find no answer to Nadal, losing to his Spanish compatriot in just one hour and five minutes.
Nadal surprised himself with the one-sided victory.
“I did not do anything wrong today, I had a great match, almost perfect,” Nadal said. “I would have never imagined playing at the level that I played today, I’m leaving happy and surprised.
“I played a great match against one of the top players in the world, a specialist in clay who did not look like himself out there, he had a bad day.” The women’s final was similarly one-sided with Italy’s Sara Errani beating Carla Suarez-Navarro of Spain 6 — 0, 6-4.
Nadal missed seven months with a left knee injury before making his comeback in the Latin American clay court season.
He has played three tournaments: making the final but surprisingly losing to Horacio Zeballos in Chile, taking out the Brasil Open by beating David Nalbandian and now cruising past Ferrer for his 38th clay title. Seven of those 38 have been against Ferrer.
So well had his knee stood up that Nadal was ready to test it on the more jarring hardcourt surface at the upcoming Indian Wells tournament after an exhibition appearance at Madison Square Garden.
“Indian Wells is one of my favorite tournaments and I want to keep competing because the knee is holding up and my heart says that I can do it, and compete is what I want to do now,” Nadal said.
“Those seven months are in the past, hopefully forever. I played like that did not happened, but it did happen.” The 11-time major champion broke Ferrer five times from eight opportunities, winning 58 percent of his return points. He improved his record against Ferrer to 17-4.
Ferrer had successfully defended titles already this year at Auckland and Buenos Aires but was not able to make it four straight Mexican Opens.


LeBron’s last-second shot gives Cavs 98-95 win in Game 5

James pushes the Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs. (Getty Images/AFP)
Updated 26 April 2018
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LeBron’s last-second shot gives Cavs 98-95 win in Game 5

  • James' 3-pointer buzzer beater puts Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs
  • James finished with 44 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists.

CLEVELAND: LeBron James hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer, a crowning moment for another brilliant performance, to give Cleveland a 98-95 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday night in Game 5, putting the Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Moments after blocking Victor Oladipo’s possible go-ahead driving layup, James caught the inbounds pass, took two dribbles and dropped the winner over Thaddeus Young.
As Cleveland’s sellout crowd exploded, James hugged rookie teammate Cedi Osman before jumping on the scorer’s table to celebrate another of those moments that will define his career.
James finished with 44 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists and went 15 of 15 from the line.
Kyle Korver added 19 points and Cleveland’s much-maligned defense tightened just in time as the Cavaliers seized their first lead in the first-round series after being down 1-0 and 2-1.
Cleveland can close out Indiana with a win Friday night in Indianapolis.
Domantas Sabonis scored 22 points, and Young had 16 for the Pacers, who battled back to tie it 95-all on Sabonis’ 15-foot jumper with 33 seconds left. Indiana, which held Cleveland without a field goal for more than seven minutes during their fourth-quarter rally forced James into a turnover and had a chance to re-take the lead.
Oladipo, who shot just 2 of 15, drove the left side and was at the rim when James swooped in for a block on a play reminiscent of his Game 7 block on Andre Iguodala in the 2016 NBA Finals.
Oladipo’s shooting woes continued. He’s only 12 of 50 from the field in the last three games. He scored 32 in the Pacers’ Game 1 win, but the Cavs have been double-teaming him ever since.
The third quarter has been a major problem for Cleveland all season. The Cavs had tried everything to try and shake things up after halftime, even doing layup lines at the break in Game 4 like a high school squad.
Turns out, all it took was some defensive intensity.
Down by seven at half, the Cavs swarmed the Pacers in the third quarter, forcing five turnovers in the first six minutes and holding Indiana to one field goal over the first 6:52 while opening with a 19-3 run.
Cleveland outscored Indiana 32-17 in the third, when the Pacers shot just 5 for 16 (31 percent) and committed seven turnovers.
The Cavs were again without starting point guard George Hill, who missed his second straight game with back spasms.
DWYANE’S WORLD
James had enough to worry about with the Pacers that he didn’t want to discuss close friend Dwyane Wade’s future.
Miami’s star is mulling retirement after the Heat were eliminated Tuesday in Philadelphia. James spent four years playing in Miami with Wade, who began this season with the Cavs before being traded.
James said that following his last game against Wade he told him, “’If it’s like our last time going against each other, then it’s been everything and more.” James wants to wait for Wade to make his decision and will then “give a more in-depth analysis of his career if he decides to hang ‘em up.”
TIP-INS:
Pacers: Following Lance Stephenson’s aggressive, wrestling-like takedown of Jeff Green in the waning moments of Game 4, coach Nate McMillan said he reminded the fiery forward to be careful. “The officials are going to be watching that, Lance knows that and there are some times where I think they (the Cavs) are taking advantage.” ... Dropped to 2-12 in their last 14 games in Cleveland. ... James’ triple-double in Game 4 was the sixth against Indiana in the playoffs. James has done it to the Pacers three times.
Cavaliers: With his 21st 40-point game in the playoff, James tied the logo — Jerry West — for the second-most all-time. Michael Jordan scored at least 40 in 38 postseason games. .... Hill’s back has improved in the past few days, but he didn’t look close to playing while sitting stiffly in his locker-room chair before the game. ... Browns Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown sat courtside.
UP NEXT
Game 6 is Friday night at Indianapolis.