KING JAMES WINS AP’S MALE ATH­LETE OF THE YEAR AWARD

The Denver Post - - OFF & RUNNING -

cleve­land» LeBron James ended Cleve­land’s 52-year cham­pi­onship drought in 2016 and capped his big year by be­ing named the As­so­ci­ated Press male ath­lete of the year.

James led the Cavs to a his­toric come­back in the NBA Fi­nals, where they over­came a 3-1 deficit to stun the de­fend­ing cham­pion Golden State War­riors. James pre­vi­ously won AP’s award in 2013.

James col­lected 24 first-place votes, beat­ing out a pair of Olympic leg­ends: Michael Phelps (16) and Usain Bolt (9), the fastest men in wa­ter and on land.

Chicago Cubs third base­man Kris Bryant, the NL MVP who led his team to its first World Se­ries ti­tle since 1908, tied for fourth with Golden State star guard Stephen Curry, last year’s win­ner.

The Bron­cos’ Von Miller, Cris­tiano Ron­aldo and Andy Mur­ray re­ceived one vote apiece.

Blackhawks send Hossa to IR

B chicago» The Blackhawks ac­ti­vated cen­ter Artem Anisi­mov off in­jured re­serve and placed vet­eran right wing Mar­ian Hossa on IR retroac­tive to Dec. 20.

Both for­wards have been side­lined by up­per-body in­juries.

Anisi­mov was put on in­jured re­serve last Thurs­day and missed three games. His 14 goals and 27 points both rank third on the team.

Hossa has been out since leav­ing early in a loss to Ot­tawa a week ago. He leads the Blackhawks with 16 goals.

Coach Joel Quen­neville said Hossa will prob­a­bly miss Chicago’s next three games and will “hope­fully be ready to come back” when the Blackhawks face the St. Louis Blues in the NHL Win­ter Clas­sic at Busch Sta­dium on Jan. 2.

• Buf­falo Sabres top-line cen­ter Ryan O’Reilly is out in­def­i­nitely af­ter hav­ing his ap­pen­dix re­moved dur­ing the NHL’s hol­i­day break this past week­end.

With­out pro­vid­ing de­tails, the Sabres said the ap­pen­dec­tomy was suc­cess­ful and there is no timetable for O’Reilly’s re­turn.

McRoberts out in­def­i­nitely

B mi­ami» Josh McRoberts of the Mi­ami Heat has been di­ag­nosed with a stress frac­ture in his left foot, and the team said the oft-in­jured for­ward will be side­lined in­def­i­nitely.

McRoberts broke that foot dur­ing last sea­son’s East­ern Con­fer­ence semi­fi­nal se­ries against Toronto, and had a stress re­ac­tion in the same foot that kept him out for train­ing camp and the first seven games of this sea­son.

McRoberts had ap­peared in 19 con­sec­u­tive Heat games, his sec­ond-long­est streak in his three sea­sons with the club.

Hayes leads Badgers over Rut­gers

B madi­son, wis.» Nigel Hayes scored 20 points, Zak Showal­ter added 18 and No. 14 Wis­con­sin used an ac­tive start on the de­fen­sive end to build an early lead and de­feat Rut­gers 72-52.

Hayes scored 12 points in the first half, when the Badgers opened with a 16-4 run over the first 12 min­utes to take con­trol in both team’s Big Ten opener.

Wis­con­sin needed the cush­ion af­ter the Scar­let Knights ral­lied from a 20-point deficit with 14 min­utes left.

Allen records a ca­reer first

B chat­tanooga, tenn.» Lind­say Allen recorded her first ca­reer triple­dou­ble and Bri­anna Turner scored 24 points to help No. 2 Notre Dame beat Chat­tanooga 79-58 for its 15th con­sec­u­tive road vic­tory.

Allen had 11 points, 11 re­bounds and 12 as­sists for the Ir­ish.

Foot­notes.

Kasper Krog made 34 saves and Den­mark held on to up­set Fin­land 3-2 in pre­lim­i­nary-round play at the world ju­nior hockey cham­pi­onship. … FC Dal­las signed free agent mid­fielder Javier Mo­rales, a three­time MLS All-Star who had 49 goals in 240 ap­pear­ances with Real Salt Lake. Den­ver Post staff and wire ser­vices

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