Sports Desk

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The New York Sun

BASKETBALL

NASH WINS SECOND MVP AWARD, WALLACE TAKES DEFENSIVE HONOR Steve Nash won his second straight NBA MVP award yesterday, beating runner-up Le-Bron James of Cleveland by a comfortable margin. Nash is the ninth player to win consecutive MVP trophies and joins Magic Johnson as the only point guards to win the award more than once.

The 32-year-old Nash received 57 first-place votes and 924 points overall from a panel of 125 sports writers and broadcasters. James had 16 first-place votes and 688 points overall. Dirk Nowitzki of Dallas was third with 14 first-place ballots and 544 overall. Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers had the second-most votes for first place (22), but was fourth overall with 483 points.

Nash, the 11th player to win the MVP award more than once, had career highs in scoring (18.8 points), rebounding (4.2), field goal percentage (.512), and free throw percentage (a league-leading .921). He led the league in assists at 10.5 a game and finished sixth in 3-point percentage at 43.9.

Also yesterday, Detroit center Ben Wallace won the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year award for the fourth time in five years.Wallace joins Dikembe Mutombo as the only four-time Defensive Player of the Year in league history. Wallace, who was named as an All-Star for the fourth straight year, ranked fourth in the NBA in rebounding (11.3), ninth in blocks (2.2), and 10th in steals (1.78) – the only player among the top 10 in all three categories.

HOCKEY

DUCKS BLANK AVALANCHE FOR 2-0 SERIES LEAD Ilya Bryzgalov tied a 61-year-old NHL rookie record with his third consecutive playoff shutout, and three of his Anaheim teammates scored in the Mighty Ducks’ 3-0 victory over the Colorado Avalanche yesterday.

Ryan Getzlaf opened the scoring in the first period, and Ruslan Salei and Joffrey Lupul added goals in the second. Coming off a 5-0 win in the first game, the Ducks took a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven Western Conference semifinal. Game 3 is Tuesday night in Denver.

Bryzgalov, who had 22 saves in the victory, hasn’t allowed a goal in 229 minutes, 42 seconds, replacing Jean-Sebastien Giguere in the Ducks’ record book for scoreless minutes in the playoffs.

GOLF

FURYK OUTLASTS IMMELMAN FOR WACHOVIA TITLE A hard-luck loser in a fourhole playoff last year, Jim Furyk made an 8-foot par putt to force extra holes against Trevor Immelman of South Africa, then made a 6-footer for par on no. 18 in the playoff to win the Wachovia Championship in Charlotte, N.C.

– Associated Press


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