Andersen target of investigation
DENVER — Denver Nuggets reserve center Chris "Birdman" Andersen has been excused indefinitely from all team-related activities after Douglas County sheriff's deputies searched his home on Thursday as part of an investigation by the department's Internet Crimes Against Children unit.
Andersen wasn't on the bench when the Nuggets face the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 6 of their playoff series on Thursday.
The team issued a statement saying Andersen has been "excused from all team-related activities indefinitely as he deals with the reported investigation" and declined further comment.
Thunder's Harden named top 6th man
OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma City's James Harden is the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year after leading all bench players in scoring this season.
Atlanta to host 3 NCAA title games
ATLANTA — All three divisions of NCAA men's basketball will see their 2013 national champions crowned during Final Four weekend in Atlanta.
The NCAA has announced that for the first time, the Division II and Division III titles will be awarded in the same city and over the same weekend as the culmination to the Division I tournament.
Senate vote clears Vikings' stadium
ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Minnesota Vikings are on the brink of getting a new stadium after the state Senate approved a plan that relies heavily on public financing.
Gov. Mark Dayton has said he'll sign the measure, which makes Thursday's Senate approval the final hurdle for the nearly $1 billion stadium. The House passed it overnight.
The team has been chasing a new stadium for nearly a decade. Dayton led the charge this year, fearing the team might leave the state if it didn't get a replacement for the 30-year-old Metrodome.
NFL looking at replacement refs
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — The NFL is looking for potential replacement officials while it negotiates with the officials' association on a new contract.
The previous contract expired after last season and another negotiating session is expected later this month, NFL Referees Association executive director Tim Millis says. Millis says he is "surprised by the timing" of a league memo to its officiating scouting department to begin identifying possible replacements.
USFL relaunching, Biletnikoff involved
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — The USFL is back in business, with Hall of Fame receiver Fred Biletnikoff among its advisers.
Biletnikoff will consult on football operations for the league, which went out of business in 1987 after losing millions of dollars and, despite winning a lawsuit against the NFL, being awarded just $3 in indemnities. The USFL plans to kick off next March in eight cities and play a 14-game season.
Nadal loses, wants blue clay scrapped
MADRID — Rafael Nadal lost to Spanish countryman Fernando Verdasco for the first time in the Madrid Open, then he and top-ranked Novak Djokovic threatened not to return if the new blue clay-court wasn't discarded. Nadal blew a 5-2 lead in the third set in losing 6-3, 3-6, 7-5.