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Last Update on October 31, 2014 05:32 GMT

CLEVELAND (AP) -- LeBron James struggled from the start in his first game with Cleveland in four years, and the New York Knicks ruined the megastar's emotional homecoming with a 95-90 victory over the Cavaliers on Thursday night.

James, who returned to the Cavs and his native Ohio this summer after winning two NBA titles in Miami, finished with 17 points on 5-of-15 shooting. He also committed eight turnovers and never looked comfortable on a night when the entire city -- and a star-studded crowd -- celebrated his comeback.

Carmelo Anthony scored 25 points and buried a jumper with James in his face with 25 seconds left to give the Knicks a 92-87 lead.

Kyrie Irving scored 22 and Kevin Love added 19 points and 14 rebounds for the Cavs, who have some work to before they can start thinking about any titles.

National Sports News

Last Update on October 31, 2014 13:03 GMT

NBA-SCHEDULE

UNDATED (AP) -- The New York Knicks ruined LeBron James' much ballyhooed return to Cleveland by beating the Cavaliers 95-90 as James was limited to 17 points on 5-of-15 shooting from the field. Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 25 points and six assists.

James returned to the Cavs and his native Ohio this summer after winning two NBA titles in Miami. He also committed eight turnovers and never looked comfortable on a night when the entire city -- and a star-studded crowd -- celebrated his comeback.

Kyrie Irving scored 22 and Kevin Love added 19 points and 14 rebounds for the Cavs, who have some work to do before they can start thinking about any titles.

In other NBA action:

---- Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has his first victory as owner of the L.A. Clippers. They held off the 0-2 Oklahoma City Thunder 93-90. Blake Griffin scored 23, including the two clinching free throws with 5.8 seconds left. Chris Paul added 22. Perry Jones led all scorers with 32 for the Thunder, who are without injured superstars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook in the early weeks of the season.

-- Thaddeus Young scored 19 points and hit a big 3-pointer with 90 seconds to play to lift the Minnesota Timberwolves to a 97-91 victory over the Detroit Pistons.

---- Washington beat Orlando 105-98. John Wall had 30 points and 12 assists. Marcin Gortat (MAHR'-chin GOHR'-tot) added 20 points and 12 rebounds.

---- Dallas bopped Utah 120-102. Dirk Nowitzki (noh-VIHT'-skee) scored 21 points. Tyson Chandler, the center and emotional leader when Dallas beat Miami for the title three years ago, had 13 points and six rebounds in his first home game since returning to the Mavs.

NFL-PANTHERS

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- A person familiar with the situation says Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy's domestic violence appeal trial set for Nov. 17 has been postponed until after the NFL season, meaning his career with Carolina could be over. The person said the new trial date has not been set.

The person told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday because the decision has not been publicly announced.

The Panthers placed Hardy on the exempt-commissioner's permission list on Sept. 17 after being convicted in July of assault on a female and communicating threats.

The NFL and the Panthers have said Hardy would not play until after his trial was resolved, although he is still collecting $13.1 million this season as Carolina's franchise player.

T25-SCHEDULE

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) -- Florida State, the nation's second-ranked team, rallied from an early 21-point deficit to beat upset-minded Louisville 42-31 to win its 24th straight game. Florida State remained in the national championship conversation by improving to 8-0.

Jameis (JAYM'-his) Winston threw three touchdowns to offset a three-interception start. Dalvin Cook had two long scoring runs.

All of Winston's TD passes were big. He hit Travis Rudolph for 68 yards, Ermon Lane for 47, and Freddie Stevenson for the 35-yard clincher with 26 seconds.

Louisville fell to 6-3.

NHL-SCHEDULE

UNDATED (AP)-- On NHL ice, Chris Kunitz had two goals in a three-point game to lift the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 3-0 victory over the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings 3-0. Marc-Andre Fleury (marhk-ahn-dray FLOOR'-ee) made 35 saves in his 30th NHL shutout.

Kris Letang scored his first goal of the season. Evgeni Malkin became the fifth player in Penguins history to register 400 assists.

In other NHL action:

-- Jacob Josefson scored the lone goal in the shootout, and Cory Schneider made it stand up as the New Jersey Devils beat Winnipeg 2-1. The Devils earned the shootout victory after losing all 13 last season and one other this season.

-- Steven Stamkos had two goals and an assist, and the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Philadelphia Flyers 4-3.

---- The St. Louis Blues blanked Anaheim 2-0. Alexander Steen and Ryan Reaves scored. Jake Allen stopped 24 shots in his second NHL shutout.

-- Brad Marchand had two goals, including at 1:20 of overtime and the Boston Bruins won their third straight road game, 3-2 over Buffalo.

-- Scottie Upshall scored in the third period and Roberto Luongo made 32 saves and the Florida Panthers earned a 2-1 win over Arizona.

-- Mikko Koivu (MEE'-koh KOY'-voo) and Jason Pominville scored in the shootout and the Minnesota Wild beat the San Jose Sharks 4-3.

---- Colorado blanked the New York Islanders 5-0. Nathan MacKinnon scored his first two goals of the season. Semyon Varlamov stopped 40 shots for his 14th NHL shutout.

----Vancouver edged Montreal 3-2 in overtime. Daniel Sedin (seh-DEEN') ended it with his 11th career overtime goal.

-- Marian Hossa had a goal and an assist in the Chicago Blackhawks' 5-4 shootout win over Ottawa.

MLB-FREE AGENTS

NEW YORK (AP) -- Baseball's business season began Thursday when 121 players become free agents, a group that includes Pablo Sandoval, Michael Morse, Jake Peavy, Sergio Romo and Ryan Vogelsong of the World Series champion San Francisco Giants.

James Shields, Nori Aoki and Jason Frasor of the AL champion Kansas City Royals also were among the players who became free.

Approximately 28 more players can become eligible, depending on contract options.

Top free agent pitchers also include Max Scherzer and Jon Lester. Among the top hitters are shortstop Hanley Ramirez, outfielder Nelson Cruz and designated hitter Victor Martinez.

MLB-CONTRACTS

UNDATED (AP) -- The St. Louis Cardinals have exercised their 2015 contract option on pitcher John Lackey. The right-hander was 14-10 with a 3.83 ERA last year with the Red Sox and Cardinals and was 1-0 in two postseason starts for the NL Central champions. He was acquired from Boston at the trade deadline in July.

Elsewhere:

-- The Reds exercised Johnny Cueto's (KWAY'-tohz) $10 million contract option. Cueto also made $10 million last season, when he went 20-9 with a 2.25 ERA, the Reds' first 20-game winner since Danny Jackson in 1988. Cueto can become a free agent after next season.

-- The Boston Red Sox have signed All-Star closer Koji Uehara (KOH'-jee yoo-ee-HAR'-ah) for two more years for $18 million. He was a key part of the 2013 World Series winners, but struggled at times this season. He finished with a 6-5 record and an ERA of 2.52 that was more than twice the previous season's.

-- The Seattle Mariners have picked up the option the $7 million on Hisashi Iwakuma's contact for next season. Iwakuma missed the first month of the 2014 season but went 15-9 with a 3.52 ERA in 28 starts. In 91 career games with Seattle, Iwakuma is 38-20 with a 3.07 ERA.

-- Dodgers pitcher Dan Haren has exercised his $10 million player option for next season. The right-hander was 13-11 with a 4.02 ERA in his first season with the Dodgers.

-- The Angels have exercised their $7 million contract option on closer Huston Street. The veteran right-hander was acquired from San Diego on July 19. He picked up 17 saves with a 1.71 ERA for the Angels.

-- The Washington Nationals have exercised their $9 million option for 2015 on center fielder Denard Span who hit .302 and tied for first in the National League with 184 hits. The team declined options on first baseman Adam LaRoche and reliever Rafael Soriano. The 34-year-old LaRoche's deal included a $15 million mutual optional for next season, but Washington instead chose to pay him a $2 million buyout. Soriano's contract included a $14 million club option for 2015.

-- The Orioles have exercised a $4.75 million option on left-hander Wei-Yin Chen and a $4.25 million option on right-hander Darren O'Day.

-- The San Diego Padres have declined right-hander Josh Johnson's $4 million option for 2015. Johnson didn't throw a pitch for the Padres in 2014 while making $8 million. He suffered an elbow injury during spring training.

MLB-HALL OF FAME

COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. (AP) -- Gil Hodges, Luis (LOO'-ee) Tiant and Maury Wills are among 10 candidates on the Hall of Fame ballot for its Golden Era committee. Dick Allen, Ken Boyer, Jim Kaat (kaht), Minnie Minoso, Tony Oliva and Billy Pierce also are on the ballot. The only non-player is Bob Howsam, the late Cincinnati Reds general manager.

A 16-member committee will convene Dec. 7-8 at the winter meetings in San Diego to consider the candidates, whose most significant impact was from 1947-72.

In another Hall of Fame note, Madison Bumgarner's World Series performance earned him a spot in the Hall of Fame -- well, at least for his caps. The San Francisco Giants ace donated caps he wore during his Game 1 and Game 5 wins against Kansas City plus his hat from his Game 7 save Wednesday night.

MLB-RATINGS

NEW YORK (AP) -- An estimated 23.5 million people watched the San Francisco Giants' 3-2 win over the Kansas City Royals in Game 7, enabling the matchup to escape the distinction of least-watched World Series. According to Neilsen's overnight ratings, the Game 7 viewership was 10 million more people than tuned in to any of the previous six games between the Giants and Royals.

T25-WOMEN'S BASKETBALL

UNDATED (AP) -- The preseason Associated Press women's Top-25 basketball poll is out and the top team is Connecticut. The Huskies received all 35 first-place votes after a season of going 40-0. The second-ranked school is South Carolina with Notre Dame third, Tennessee fourth and Texas A&M fifth.

The second five in the pre-season poll consists of Stanford, Duke, Baylor, Texas and Maryland.

PGA-CIMB

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) -- Billy Hurley III made six birdies on his front nine en route to a 5-under 67 that gave him a two-shot lead after the second round of the PGA's CIMB Classic. Hurley matched his score from Thursday for a 10-under total of 134, two strokes ahead of fellow American Kevin Streelman in the jointly sanctioned PGA Tour and Asian Tour event.

A group of seven players was one stroke further back at 7 under, including defending champion Ryan Moore

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