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James passes Jordan, Cavs back in Finals

(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

BOSTON (AP) The NBA Finals has its first "three-match," courtesy of a King who passed His Airness.

LeBron James scored 35 points and passed Michael Jordan to become the NBA's all-time playoff scoring leader as the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Boston Celtics 135-102 on Thursday night to claim their third straight Eastern Conference title and another trip to the NBA Finals to meet the Golden State Warriors.

Kyrie Irving added 24 points and Kevin Love finished with 15 for the Cavs, who never trailed and led by as many as 39 points in one of their most dominating wins of the series. The Cavs set an NBA record by winning their 13th consecutive series closeout opportunity.

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Kerr not ready to rejoin Warriors bench

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) Steve Kerr is involved in just about everything but the actual game-day coaching for the Golden State Warriors - film session, coaches meetings, game-planning and practice.

He's just not yet ready from a health standpoint to be back on the bench with the start of the NBA Finals a week away.

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Hawks hire Warriors' Schlenk as GM

ATLANTA (AP) The Atlanta Hawks hired Travis Schlenk as general manager and head of basketball operations on Thursday, giving the Golden State assistant GM control of personnel decisions.

Schlenk succeeds Wes Wilcox, who resigned May 5 as part of the restructuring of the Hawks' front office.

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Minus Thomas, Celtics no match for Cavs

BOSTON (AP) Avery Bradley one game. Kelly Olynyk another. Marcus Smart stepped into the starting lineup, and rookie Jaylen Brown helped out from the bench.

The Boston Celtics showed this postseason that they have players who could fill in for Isaiah Thomas when the star point guard was injured.

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Charlotte to host 2019 All-Star game

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The NBA All-Star game is headed back to Charlotte in 2019, a couple of years later than anticipated.

The NBA announced that the All-Star weekend will be held Feb. 15-17 in Charlotte and the game will be played at the Spectrum Center, home of the Charlotte Hornets.

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Bucks open GM search after Hammond exit

Boasting a budding star and an impressive roster of young talent, the Milwaukee Bucks are opening up their search for a new general manager to lead them into contention in the Eastern Conference.

After longtime GM John Hammond left to join friend Jeff Weltman in the Orlando Magic front office, the Bucks are bringing in respected league executive Rod Thorn to help with the search for a replacement, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the Bucks were not publicly discussing their search.

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Wolves hire former Gophers star Thomas

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) John Thomas grew up in Minneapolis, becoming a prep star at Roosevelt High School before playing at the University of Minnesota and bouncing around the NBA for five seasons.

One of those seasons toward the end of his career was with his hometown Timberwolves and he had always hoped to one day return to the organization. That day finally came on Thursday when the Wolves hired him as vice president of community engagement.

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Weltman: Magic position 'a dream job'

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Jeff Weltman was perfectly content as the general manager of the Toronto Raptors two weeks ago.

He was working alongside someone he considers a close friend, the ownership was first rate and his family was enjoying life in Toronto. A call from Orlando Magic president Alex Martins, however, convinced the veteran NBA executive to step out of his comfort zone and accept the challenging task of rebuilding a struggling franchise.

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Lakers hire celebrity trainer Peterson

LOS ANGELES (AP) A celebrity trainer known for getting the Kardashian clan into shape is going to work for the Los Angeles Lakers.

Gunnar Peterson is the Lakers' new director of strength and endurance training, the team announced Wednesday.

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Former Knicks asst. GM Childs dies at 84

DUBLIN, Calif. (AP) Hal Childs, a former assistant general manager for the New York Knicks and public relations director for the Golden State Warriors and Seattle Mariners, has died of complications from heart disease. He was 84.

Childs' wife, Jacqueline, said Wednesday that her husband died Sunday at his home in Dublin. Hal Childs served as assistant GM of the Knicks from 1987-91 and ran the Warriors' PR department during the organization's first championship season in 1974-75. He also worked in PR for the Mariners, Seattle SuperSonics and San Diego Clippers.

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