Sports Briefs 1-23-14

TOM WITHERS AP Sports Writer Published:

CLEVELAND -- The Browns' coaching search -- or is it a scramble? -- could be nearing a conclusion.

Team officials interviewed Buffalo defensive coordinator Mike Pettine for the second time on Tuesday night in Mobile, Ala., and although the sides did not reach a deal during their four-hour meeting, the 47-year-old has emerged as the front-runner to become Cleveland's seventh full-time coach.

Pettine, who spent one season with the Bills after four on Rex Ryan's staff with the New York Jets, told Cleveland.com that he "should have some feedback on my interview by the end of the day."

A person familiar with the Browns' plans told the AP late Tuesday night that the team intended to interview an unknown candidate on Wednesday. The club was expected to meet with Atlanta offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter at some point.

Pettine is the first candidate known to have a follow-up interview with Browns owner Jimmy Haslam, CEO Joe Banner, general manager Michael Lombardi and team president Alec Scheiner.

• Basketball

Bulls beat Cavs: D.J. Augustin scored 27 points in a start for Kirk Hinrich and Taj Gibson matched a career high with 26 filling in for Carlos Boozer as the Chicago Bulls improved to 7-2 since trading Luol Deng with a 98-87 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday night.

Kyrie Irving scored 26 to lead Cleveland, which has dropped the first two games of a five-game homestand.

Pistons lose: Caron Butler scored 30 points and the Milwaukee Bucks rallied from a 13-point deficit in the third quarter for a 104-101 home victory over Detroit that snapped a nine-game losing streak.

The Bucks trailed 76-63 in the third quarter, largely due to Brandon Jennings, who finished with 30 points.

Josh Smith missed two foul shots with about 5 seconds left, and Rodney Stuckey missed a desperation 3 at the buzzer to tie.

• Elsewhere

Detroit wins shootout: Darren Helm scored on Detroit's sixth attempt in the shootout and Jonas Gustavsson stopped Andrew Shaw's shot, lifting the Red Wings past Chicago 5-4 at Detroit.

Gustavsson, playing for the injured Jimmy Howard, made 31 saves in his first game in nearly a month.

Super Bowl streams: The Super Bowl will again be streamed live online.

Fox said Wednesday that it would offer free access to all users on computers and tablets through its app for the NFL championship on Feb. 2. For other playoff games this season, only subscribers to certain cable companies could watch through Fox Sports Go.

On smartphones, the game will be available through Verizon's NFL Mobile app.

NASCAR changes: NASCAR is overhauling its qualifying process and will go to a knockout format similar to Formula One and IndyCar.

The new format will not be used for the Daytona 500, non-points events in the Sprint Cup Series and the Truck Series event at Eldora Speedway in Ohio.

Watching for cheaters: Olympics officials have asked Nevada gambling regulators to help watch for cheating at the Winter Games in Sochi.

Casinos are not allowed to take Olympic wagers in the gambling capital of the U.S., but regulators also monitor illegal and offshore sports books.

Schmidt is sick: Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt is dealing with an undisclosed health issue and will not be a guest instructor for the Philadelphia Phillies at spring training this year.

Schmidt still plans to visit camp in the middle of March, the team says in a statement. However, the former third baseman won't serve as an instructor for the first time in more than decade so he can "remain near his doctors."

Li Na advances: Li Na has advanced to her third Australian Open final and will have to beat Dominika Cibulkova to win her first title at Melbourne Park.

No. 4-seeded Li won the first give games to set up a 6-2, 6-4 win over 19-year-old Canadian Eugenie Bouchard in the first semifinal Thursday before No. 20-seeded Cibulkova trounced 2012 Wimbledon finalist Agnieszka Radwanska 6-1, 6-2.

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