Predators beat Blackhawks 6-2

Nashville Predators salute the crowd after beating the Chicago Blackhawks 6-2 in Game 2 of an NHL hockey first-roiund playoff series Friday, April 17, 2015, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Getting the first victory in three weeks is nice. Beating the Chicago Blackhawks to avoid an 0-2 deficit before hitting the road is much, much sweeter.

Athletics fall to Royals 6-4

Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Jeremy Guthrie throws during the first inning of a baseball game against the Oakland Athletics, Friday, April 17, 2015, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Brett Lawrie and Alcides Escobar played together in the minor leagues, and Lawrie always makes a point of greeting his old buddy whenever their teams play each other.

RCR takes Newman penalties to final appeals officer

Craig Dalton checks tire pressures before practice for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series auto race at Bristol Motor Speedway, Friday, April 17, 2015, in Bristol, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)

BRISTOL, Tenn. (AP) — Richard Childress Racing appealed NASCAR’s penalties against Ryan Newman’s team to the highest level on Friday, and crew chief Luke Lambert was eligible to return to work at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Baseball Standings for April 17

———NATIONAL LEAGUEEast Division WLPctGBWCGBL10StrHomeAwayNew York83.727——7-3W-65-03-3Atlanta73.700½—7-3W-13-34-0Washington56.45532½5-5W-33-22-4Miami38.27354½3-7L-21-52-3Philadelphia38.27354½3-7L-63-30-5Central Division WLPctGBWCGBL10StrHomeAwaySt. Louis63.667——6-3W-33-13-2Chicago54.55611½5-4L-13-32-1Cincinnati55.5001½25-5L-24-21-3Pittsburgh46.4002½34-6W-12-22-4Milwaukee28.2004½52-8L-31-51-3West Division WLPctGBWCGBL10StrHomeAwayColorado73.700——7-3L-11-26-1Los Angeles73.700——7-3W-56-11-2San Diego74.636½½7-3W-35-22-2Arizona65.5451½1½6-4W-23-33-2San Francisco39.250552-8L-80-53-4

No clear favorite for NBA title

Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry (30) shoots over Memphis Grizzlies' Beno Udrih during the second half of an NBA basketball game Monday, April 13, 2015, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Sweet-shooting Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors have the best record, an unmatched home-court advantage, and the understanding that means nothing now.

Playoffs now a goal for Jazz

FILE - In this March 12, 2015, file photo, Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert blocks the shot of Houston Rockets forward Josh Smith (5) during an NBA basketball game in Salt Lake City. The Jazz wrapped up a better-than-expected season Wednesday, April 15, and now look to a future in which expectations have risen. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Utah Jazz are ahead of schedule and now general manager Dennis Lindsey has a decision to make.

Rockets beat Jazz 117-91

Houston Rockets' Josh Smith is fouled by Utah Jazz's Joe Ingles, rear, during the second quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, April 15, 2015, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden and the Houston Rockets won’t take long to celebrate winning their first division title since 1994 and clinching the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference.

Davis leads Pelicans past Spurs and into playoffs

New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis dunks during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the San Antonio Spurs in New Orleans, Wednesday, April 15, 2015. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — After Anthony Davis’ final flurry of clutch shots, blocks and rebounds ensured the Pelicans’ first postseason berth since before he was drafted, the 22-year-old All-Star known as the “unibrow” was ready to admit how much it meant to him.

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