Bulls boosted by Rip's return

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Bulls boosted by Rip's return

DEERFIELD -- Derrick Rose may still be struggling to stay healthy, but the Bulls have received a big boost from the return of Rip Hamilton.

In Tuesday's 98-86 win over the Knicks in Chicago, Hamilton poured in 20 points, his most since scoring 22 on Jan. 23 against the Nets. He also added five assists, four rebounds and a three-pointer in his fourth game back from a shoulder injury that forced him to miss almost a month of play.

The 13-year NBA veteran has missed 38 games this season due to injury and his return provides the Bulls with another scoring threat.

"I think it's critical for our team," head coach Tom Thibodeau said. "It gives us another guy that has a catch-and-shoot game like Kyle Korver has. But Rip also is very good in transition. He runs the floor extremely well.

"He's probably underrated in terms of all the things that he can do. He can post up some. He puts it on the floor very effectively. He competes defensively. He adds a lot and, obviously, he's been around a long time so he's been in a lot of tight situations, big games. He's unfazed by things. He's got great poise. So I think it's a big asset. Hopefully he can be healthy."

Now that Hamilton has returned, Thibodeau and the Bulls would have a complete rotation for the first time in a long while if Rose is able to return Thursday night. If he's not, the reigning NBA Coach of the Year isn't about to make any excuses.

"Obviously, you always prefer to be full strength," he said. "But we're fortunate. Our bench guys have been great all season. So whoever is out there, we expect them to get the job done."

Sky beat Atlanta to advance to WNBA semis

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Sky beat Atlanta to advance to WNBA semis

ROSEMONT, Ill. — Courtney Vandersloot scored 21 points with 13 assists, Jessica Breland had 20 points and 16 rebounds, and the Chicago Sky beat the Atlanta Dream 108-98 on Sunday to advance to the semifinals of the WNBA playoffs.

The Sky broke it open in the first five minutes of the third quarter. Tamera Young made fast-break layups on consecutive possessions during Chicago's 10-2 run to start the quarter for a 66-52 lead. Atlanta was outscored 31-20 in the quarter.

Chicago cruised in the fourth — setting a season-high for points — and will face Los Angeles in a best-of-five series beginning Wednesday in LA.

Reigning MVP Elena Delle Donne missed her sixth straight game for Chicago with a thumb injury but it didn't seem to faze the Sky on the offensive end. Chicago had 26 assists, made 55 percent of its shots, and Young and Cappie Pondexter each scored 16 points.

Chicago set a WNBA record for the most points in the first quarter of a playoff game when the Sky built a 37-25 lead. But Angel McCoughtry kept the Dream within 56-50 at halftime after scoring 21 points, including 10 of Atlanta's first 14 points.

Tiffany Hayes, who didn't play in the first round due to a one-game suspension for accrued technicals in the regular season, scored 30 points for Atlanta. McCoughtry finished with 27 points, six rebounds and nine assists.

Chicago Bulls guard Jimmy Butler was in attendance wearing a Cubs jersey.

Rory McIlroy wins Tour Championship, FedEx Cup in dramatic fashion

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Rory McIlroy wins Tour Championship, FedEx Cup in dramatic fashion

ATLANTA (AP) -- Rory McIlroy finally won the FedEx Cup when he least expected it.

McIlroy was three shots behind with three holes to play Sunday in the Tour Championship. Nearly two hours later, he holed a 15-foot birdie putt on the fourth extra hole to win at East Lake in a playoff and claim the $10 million FedEx Cup bonus.

In its 10th year, the FedEx Cup never had a finish like this.

McIlroy won on the 16th hole, where his stunning rally began in regulation when he holed out from 137 yards for eagle and then made birdie on the final hole for a 64 to join a three-man playoff with Ryan Moore (64) and Kevin Chappell (66).

Chappell was eliminated with a par on the first extra hole.