Kings try to rebound against Lakers
SACRAMENTO, Calif., May 20 (UPI) -- After snatching home-court advantage from the Sacramento Kings in the opening contest of the NBA Western Conference finals, the Los Angeles hope to put them in a serious 0-2 hole Monday night when they play Game Two at the Arco Arena.
Kobe Bryant scored 30 points and Shaquille O'Neal added 26 Saturday as the Lakers extended their road playoff winning streak to 12 games with a 106-99 victory. Los Angeles, which swept Sacramento in the conference semifinals last year on the way to its second straight NBA title in 2001, never trailed in its fourth victory in five games against the Kings this season.
Bryant did most of his damage in the first half with 16 points, and O'Neal had a huge third quarter with 14.
Los Angeles made nine of its first 10 shots, capped by a jumper by Rick Fox that made it 19-10, and led, 36-22, at the break.
Sacramento pulled to within five points four times in the final two minutes, but Los Angeles had an answer each time.
Chris Webber had 28 points and 14 rebounds for Sacramento, which fell to just 3-3 at home in the playoffs. The Kings had the league's best home record in the regular season at 36-5.
Saturday's crowd reached noise levels as high as 112 decibels, but it did not faze the two-time defending champions after their quick start. The Lakers shot 67 percent (16-of-24) in the opening quarter.
The Kings played without All-Star forward Peja Stojakovic, who also is expected to miss Game Two, as he continues to recover from a severely sprained right ankle. Hedo Turkoglu got the start in Stojakovic's place, but missed all eight shots from the floor and did not score. That cannot happen again if the Kings hope to have a fighting chance.
Colorado tries to get even at Detroit
DETROIT, May 20 (UPI) -- Colorado will need veteran goalie Patrick Roy to continue his career trend of bouncing back from bad games with a good one Monday night when it visits Detroit for Game Two of the NHL Western Conference finals.
On Saturday, rugged right wing Darren McCarty recorded his first career hat trick and six-time Vezina Trophy winner Dominik Hasek made 27 saves as the Red Wings beat the Avalanche, 5-3, in the series opener. It was the 10th time that Roy has surrendered at least five goals in a playoff game with Colorado. The previous nine times he has followed up with a win, with the Avalanche outscoring their opponents, 45-9.
Most recently, Roy allowed at least five goals in three games against the San Jose Sharks in the Western Conference semifinals and bounced back with wins each time.
Hasek stopped 12 of Colorado's 13 shots in the second period and faced only seven shots in the third when McCarty exploded, scoring three times in the first 15:55 to give the Wings a three-goal advantage.
Hasek, who is seeking his first Stanley Cup, has won nine of his last 10 starts. He stopped both of Peter Forsberg's shots Saturday as the Red Wings contained the NHL's leading playoff scorer. Forsberg had a nine-game points streak snapped, but his 19 points are tied with Toronto's Gary Roberts for the most in the league.
On Sunday, defenseman Niclas Wallin scored his second overtime goal of this year's playoffs to give the Carolina Hurricanes a 2-1 win and a split of the first two games with the Toronto Maple Leafs in the Eastern Conference finals.
Woods wins Deutsche-SAP Open again
Woods won on the third playoff hole when a visibly weary Montgomerie found water with his second shot out of the bunker.
Montgomerie settled for a double bogey on the hole and Woods sank a short par putt to give him his third win in the tournament in four tries.
Woods, the top-ranked player in the world, entered the final day of the tournament one shot behind Montgomerie before firing a 4-under-par 68 to finish regulation play at 20-under 268.
Montgomerie, just past his prime, was seeking his 27th career title on the European PGA Tour. The 38-year-old Scot, who has battled lingering back problems, was able to keep up with the 26-year-old Woods through 74 holes at St. Leon-Rot Golf Club, but finally faltered when the two golfers played the 18th hole for the fourth time.
Justin Rose shot a 66 to take third place at 267 and fellow Englishman Greg Owen was one shot back after firing a 68.
Bucs sign Oben
TAMPA, May 20 (UPI) -- Roman Oben, who started 29 games at left tackle for the Cleveland Browns over the last two seasons, Monday signed a one-year contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Contract terms were not disclosed.
The 29-year-old Oben, who spent his first four NFL seasons with the New York Giants before signing with the Browns in 2000, was the only Browns lineman to stay on the field for every regular season snap. He has played in 82 NFL games with 77 starts. He was released in February.
Oben, a collegiate star at Louisville, joins an offensive line that will return both tackles from 2001 -- Kenyatta Walker and Jerry Wunsch.
The signing continues the revamping of the Bucs' offense under new Coach Jon Gruden.
Titans sign C Jeff Smith
NASHVILLE, Tenn., May 20 (UPI) -- Veteran center Jeff Smith has signed as a free agent with the Tennessee Titans.
The 28-year-old Smith, who played collegiately at the University of Tennessee, started all 16 games for the Jaguars last season. He spent his first four NFL seasons with Kansas City before joining Jacksonville in 2000. He started 28 games in Jacksonville and played in 31 games with five starts in Kansas City from 1996-99.
Smith, who also plays guard, will be one of only two players on the roster with NFL experience at center. Tennessee is also considering re-signing veteran center Kevin Long.
Smith, a 6-3, 326-pounder from Decatur, Tenn., said playing for the Titans said playing for the Titans "will be like a dream come true," according to his agent, Ralph Cindrich.