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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Phoenix Fails to Rise As Ainge Takes Charge

CHICAGO -- Danny Ainge lost in his debut as an NBA coach as the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Phoenix Suns, 102-88.

Phoenix dropped to 0-9 to tie a franchise record for most consecutive losses at the start of a season. They are the only winless team in the league.

Ainge, a first-year assistant with no previous coaching experience, took over the Suns when Cotton Fitzsimmons resigned after Thursday night's loss at Vancouver.

The Lakers scored 18 straight points bridging the first and second quarters. Shaquille O'Neal had 16 points and 13 rebounds before leaving the game with a sprained ankle.

Blazers 88 Pacers 83. Arvydas Sabonis scored 18 points and Cliff Robinson made four free throws in the final 17 seconds Sunday as the Portland Trail Blazers held off the Indiana Pacers 88-83.

Portland led by 12 points with 6:32 remaining, but Reggie Miller and Travis Best scored 6 points each in a 12-0 run as the Pacers tied it 79-79.

Sabonis countered with a hook shot and Aaron McKie's three-pointer put Portland up by five before Best made an arching layup over Sabonis to bring Indiana within 84-81.

After a miss by Robinson, the Pacers had a chance to tie it, but Miller couldn't handle a pass from Best. Robinson then sealed Portland's win at the free-throw line.

Miller led the Pacers with 30 points. Rasheed Wallace added 17 points and Robinson had 16 for the Blazers.

SuperSonics 91, Grizzlies 81. At Seattle, Hersey Hawkins scored eight points in the fourth quarter as Seattle won its seventh straight.

Gary Payton had 21 points and five steals, and Sam Perkins added 15 points off the bench for the Sonics.

Seattle held the Grizzlies without a field goal for a 9:35 span in the second and third quarters, but Vancouver was still in the game in the fourth.

The Grizzlies got to 81-74 on Roy Rogers' basket with 3:04 left. But Hawkins hit a three-pointer with 2:41 left, and Shawn Kemp had a free throw and putback to give Seattle an 87-74 lead.

Bulls 97, Hawks 69. Michael Jordan, held to two points in the first 21 1/2 minutes, finished with 25 as the Chicago Bulls remained unbeaten with a 97-69 victory over the undermanned Atlanta Hawks on Saturday.

The Hawks, without starting guards Mookie Blaylock and Steve Smith, had their lowest point total since scoring 68 against Cleveland on Jan. 26, 1995.

Dennis Rodman added 15 rebounds for the Bulls.

(For other results, see Scorecard.)

French club Brive beat visiting Welsh opponents Llanelli 35-14 in Sunday's European quarterfinal clash. They join Cardiff, Leicester and Toulouse in the semifinals. On Saturday, Cardiff beat English side Bath 22-19, Leicester won the all-English clash with Harlequins 23-13 and Toulouse came back to beat fellow-French side Dax 26-18

Rugby Dispute Evolves

LONDON -- England have called an emergency meeting of the

International Board in London on Tuesday in the wake of the latest

break-up of the Rugby Football Union's dispute with the leading English clubs.

Delegates from around the world will be attending as England try to

convince the other nations that they are right in the feud. The RFU

believes that millionaire club owners have introduced a fighting

fund of ?700,000 that will be paid to England players before

Christmas as a weapon to keep the Five Nations squad locked into the

clubs before they commit themselves to an England contract. So far

no England player has signed the proffered England deal for 70,000

as an ever-present this season.

Italian boxer loses fight for life

PISA, Italy -- Italian boxer Fabrizio De Chiara was officially

pronounced dead here early Monday, after being in a coma since

collapsing in the ring after a national middleweight title bout

Saturday night. The 25-year-old was brain dead Sunday night, but

under Italian law was kept alive artificially until being pronounced

dead Monday morning.

De Chiara was floored by a welter of blows to the face and body

in the 12th and final round from Vincenzo Imparato and was stopped

by the referee although he managed to get back to his feet. But he

collapsed seconds later.

By the time the defending NBA champions return to the United Center on Dec. 5, they might own yet another league record -- the longest undefeated streak to start a season. Washington set the mark with 15 in 1948 and Houston tied it in 1993.

Eddie Jones scored 18 points and rookie Kobe Bryant finished with a season-high 16 points, hitting four of the Lakers' 10 3-pointers.

Michael Finley had 20 points for Phoenix, which has yet to score 100 points in a game this season.