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Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Hoops and hockey the highlights tonight


NBA: The Bulls are a conference-best 23-4 at home, but they'll have their hands full tonight with a Bobcats team that routed the Lakers last night and has beaten the Bulls in each of their last three meetings. The Bulls' 13-4 mark since Jan. 8 is the best in the East, but two of those four losses were to Charlotte. ... Tyrone Corbin's first game as head coach of the Utah Jazz wasn't one to remember -- his team blew a double-digit halftime lead against the Suns on Feb. 11. He'll get a chance to avenge that loss, and win his first career game as a head coach, when the Jazz and Suns meet again tonight. Phoenix has won four straight against Utah. ... The formerly white-hot Hornets have struggled of late, dropping seven of their last nine games to fall to fifth place in the Wast. Chris Paul might be the key to their success tonight against the Warriors; he's averaged 24.7 points in nine games in Oakland.

Men's college basketball: The Ohio State Buckeyes were knocked out of the top spot in the rankings after suffering their first loss of the year Saturday at Wisconsin. The team that took over the top spot, Kansas, was upset by Kansas State three days later, so the Buckeyes might be able to win back No. 1 with a victory over visiting Michigan State tonight. The Spartans are 6-6 in Big Ten play and just 3-6 on the road. ... No. 14 Villanova will try to avoid a third straight loss tonight when it visits Seton Hall. The Wildcats have topped the Pirates eight straight times but they might have to play without senior guard Corey Stokes for a second straight game -- he's day to day with turf toe.

Women's college basketball: Just one ranked team in action tonight on the women's side, the No. 14 DePaul Blue Demons. They look to improve to 11-1 in the Big East with a win over visiting Rutgers. The 14-10 Scarlet Knights are coming off a blowout loss to Notre Dame on Saturday.

NHL: The Tampa Bay Lightning try to finish off a series sweep of the first-place Flyers with a win tonight in Florida. The Lightning have won eight of 10 to pull within four points of Eastern Conference-leading Philly. The Flyers added some more talent to an already packed roster on Monday, picking up forward Kris Versteeg in a trade with the Leafs. Versteeg helped the Blackhawks defeat his new team last year in the Stanley Cup finals. ... The Minnesota Wild look to pick up some much-needed points tonight when they host the Western Conference-leading Canucks. Minny is one spot out of the eighth and final playoff berth in the West, while Vancouver is sitting pretty on top -- but the Wild have defeated the Canucks four consecutive times at XCel Energy Center in St. Paul.