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Last Update on November 25, 2014 06:32 GMT

MAGIC-CAVALIERS

CLEVELAND (AP) -- LeBron James scored 29 points, including 16 in the first quarter, and the Cleveland Cavaliers broke a four-game losing streak with a 106-74 win over the Orlando Magic on Monday night.

After bluntly assessing his own play at Monday's shootaround, saying, "I stink," James took control early and sparked his team to a much-needed comfortable win.

After averaging 18.5 points and shooting 41 percent from the field in the losing streak, James was 9 for 17 from the field Monday and tied a season-high with 11 assists while not playing the fourth quarter.

James hit four shots from the field, including a 3-pointer, made all seven of his free throws and had four assists in the opening period. He finished the first half with 22 points, including a fadeaway jumper from the top of the key to end the second quarter.

Anderson Varejao scored 14 points while Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving each added 12.

BENGALS-ANDY & AJ

Bengals' Dalton and Green finally get it going

CINCINNATI (AP) -- A.J. Green is playing at a Pro Bowl level again, one of the biggest reasons the Bengals are holding onto first place in the AFC North.

The receiver missed three games and most of another one with an injured big right toe. He had only 23 catches in his first six games, making few big plays along the way.

In the past two games, Green has 18 catches and is forcing defenses to focus on him again. He had a season-high 12 catches for 121 yards on Sunday during a 22-13 win over the Houston Texas that kept Cincinnati (7-3-1) atop the tightly bunched division.

Quarterback Andy Dalton is no longer hesitating to go to his best receiver when he's covered.

BROWNS-BOUNCE BACK

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Brian Hoyer's crucial mistakes nearly cost the Browns a win. However, the interceptions did not come close to getting the quarterback yanked off the field.

Browns coach Mike Pettine said Monday that he never considered taking Hoyer out of Sunday's game in Atlanta and replacing him with rookie Johnny Manziel. Hoyer threw three picks against the Falcons, but shook them off and led the Browns on a late drive to set up Billy Cundiff's winning field goal on the final play.

Pettine praised Hoyer's "resolve" and for being accountable.

Wide receiver Andrew Hawkins said although Hoyer may have been briefly shaken by the interceptions, "the entire team has so much confidence in him."

Hoyer improved to 10-4 as a starter in two seasons with the Browns (7-4), who will play Buffalo next Sunday.

BROWNS-GIPSON INJURY

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Browns starting safety Tashaun Gipson's season could be over after he sustained a severe sprain to his right knee in Sunday's win over Atlanta.

Gipson, who leads the NFL with six interceptions, was hurt when he collided with teammate Joe Haden near the goal line while defending a pass in the fourth quarter. Gipson's knee took the brunt of the force and his leg bent back awkwardly.

Browns coach Mike Pettine said Monday that the team has not yet decided whether to place Gipson on injured reserve. Pettine said the uncertain timetable for Gipson's return combined with having just five games left in the regular season makes it difficult.

Gipson was unable to put any weight on his knee and was carted off.

Veteran Jim Leonhard replaced Gipson against the Falcons and will likely take over his spot.

BROWNS-MANZIEL

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Police say a Browns fan who says he wanted to give Johnny Manziel "a hug" was struck by the rookie quarterback's entourage at a downtown hotel and was left with a swollen eye and lip.

Police were called to The Metropolitan at The 9, where Manziel has a luxury apartment, after a fight broke out at 2:25 a.m. Saturday.

According to a police report, Chris Gonos told police he was assaulted by "Johnny Football and his entourage." The 33-year-old fan said he and his girlfriend approached Manziel and he told the popular first-round draft pick that he was a big fan and wanted to give him a hug.

Gonos said he took one step toward Manziel and was punched by a man listed on the report as Dana Kirk. Kirk said Gonos tried to assault Manziel.

No arrests were made.

HALL OF FAME-BENSON GIFT

CLEVELAND (AP) -- New Orleans Saints owner Tom Benson has pledged $11 million in donations to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.

The Hall announced Benson's two gifts Monday, saying the contributions are the largest by any individual in the institution's 51-year history.

Benson says it's important to "recognize the origins of our game and embrace the future."

The Hall says $10 million will be earmarked to the immediate renovation of adjacent Fawcett Stadium, which will be renamed Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium.

Benson made a $1 million donation after learning of plans for a Hall of Fame Village. It includes a residence for Hall of Famers and former NFL players, a sports and entertainment complex, hotel and conference center, a youth center and playing fields.

MURRAY ST-XAVIER

CINCINNATI (AP) -- Trevon Bluiett scored 19 points and Xavier easily cruised past Murray State 89-62 on Monday.

Xavier (4-0) scored the first 11 points of the game and ran out to a 22-5 lead en route to a 52-32 lead at the break. It was more of the same in the second half as a 9-0 run over 4:23 in the middle of the half pushed the lead over 30.

Matt Stainbrook was 8 of 10 from the floor and ended with 19 points and eight rebounds. Dee Davis added 13 points with five assists for the Musketeers, while Jalen Reynolds had 12 points and 11 rebounds and James Farr scored 10 points with 14 boards.

Murray State (2-2) was led by Cameron Payne with 23 points and seven rebounds. Jarvis Williams had 14 points and Tyler Rambo added 11.

BUCKNELL-TOLEDO

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) -- Julius Brown had 20 points and seven assists on Monday night, and Toledo scored the first 16 points on its way to a 92-65 win over Bucknell in a sub-regional of the Progressive Legends Classic.

Toledo (2-2) led by 38 points midway through the second half before Bucknell (1-4) went on a 15-2 run for its only substantial scoring sequence.

Nathan Boothe scored 15 points, J.D. Weatherspoon 14, Justin Drummond 11 and Jonathan Williams 10.

The Rockets had 13 offensive rebounds and a 43-28 overall edge on the boards.

Bucknell missed its first six shots -- four of them from the 3-point line -- and got on the board when J.C. Show made a jumper at the 13:46 mark of the first half.

Show led the Bison with 10 points. Chris Hass and Cory Starkey added nine apiece.

National Sports News

Last Update on November 25, 2014 23:39 GMT

He suffered the injury in a game against the New York Knicks last week.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Wizards forward Nene (nuh-NAY') is sidelined with a right foot injury.

Nene is sitting out tonight's game against the Atlanta Hawks with plantar fasciitis (fah-SHEE'-eye-tihs) and could also miss Wednesday's game against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Nene left with six minutes remaining in the first quarter of the Wizards' win over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday. He did not practice on Monday and was sent to a doctor to have the foot checked out.

Nene is averaging 10.6 points and 4.7 rebounds this season.

MLB-SIGNINGS

UNDATED (AP) -- The Chicago White Sox have added some pop to the line-up by agreeing with first baseman Adam LaRoche to a two-year, $25 million contract. LaRoche gives Chicago sorely needed power from the left side. He hit .259 with 26 homers and 92 RBIs in 140 games this year for NL East champion Washington.

He's likely to be used as a designated hitter, because Jose Abreu (ah-BRAY'-oo) is firmly entrenched at first after his rookie-of-the-year season.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox clean up some contract issues by finalizing their five-year deal with Pablo Sandoval. The third baseman gets a $3 million signing bonus payable by Jan. 15, $17 million in each of the first three seasons and $18 million apiece in 2018 and `19. Boston has a $17 million option for 2020 with a $5 million buyout.

At a news conference in Boston, Sandoval indicated he needed a new challenge and that's why he left the World Series champ Giants.

The Red Sox also agreed to a deal with Hanley Ramirez, a baseball official with knowledge of that agreement said, speaking on the condition of anonymity because Ramirez hadn't yet passed a physical.

MLB-NEWS

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- A person with knowledge of the arrangements says free agent left-hander Jon Lester has plans to meet with the San Francisco Giants next week.

San Francisco has need for a front-line starting pitcher and was expected to get busy in the free agent market after losing slugging third baseman Pablo Sandoval to the Boston Red Sox.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity Tuesday because there was no authorization to publicly disclose the meeting.

Lester was dealt by the Red Sox to the Oakland Athletics at the trade deadline in July and helped the A's reach the playoffs for the third straight year before a 9-8, 12-inning loss to Kansas City in the one-game wild card.

Giants right-hander Matt Cain is recovering from elbow surgery and righty Ryan Vogelsong is a free agent.

In other baseball news:

-- The Reds hired former Arizona general manager Kevin Towers as a special assistant for player personnel. Towers spent the last four years as general manager of the Diamondbacks and was Padres GM before that.

-- The Minnesota Twins have announced three more assistants for new manager Paul Molitor, adding pitching coach Neil Allen, bullpen coach Eddie Guardado and bench coach Joe Vavra.

---- Longtime San Francisco Giants third base coach Tim Flannery is retiring. The 57-year-old Flannery, 57, had been on Bruce Bochy's (BOH-cheez) coaching staff dating to their San Diego days and they moved to San Francisco together in 2007.

NFL-LIONS

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) -- Detroit center Dominic Raiola says he hasn't been fined by the NFL for his cut block during a kneel-down at the end of the Lions' loss to New England on Sunday.

Raiola says he didn't intentionally try to hurt anybody or try to do anything out of the ordinary, and he "would have gotten a FedEx letter" if he had. Raiola spoke with reporters Tuesday but tried to keep the focus on Thursday's game against Chicago.

The Patriots scored a late touchdown in their 34-9 win over Detroit. Raiola later told the Detroit Free Press he took the action after the Patriots went for a late game touchdown in the one-sided win instead of running out the clock.

NFL-UNION MEETING

NEW YORK (AP) -- NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell (guh-DEHL') and players' union chief DeMaurice (deh-MOR'-his) Smith are meeting to discuss the league's personal conduct policy.

The NFL Players Association has been unhappy with what it calls "lack of transparency" in the policy. Smith has said the only way to have a fair policy is if the NFL and owners "commit to collective bargaining."

The NFL counters that the union agreed to the policy during labor negotiations to end the 2011 lockout. That collective bargaining agreement runs through 2021.

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Sports Director Clay Hall

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