Sports briefs 6-25-14: Cavaliers mull over options with No. 1 draft pick

TOM WITHERS AP Sports Writer Published:

CLEVELAND -- The Cavaliers have had plenty of practice picking first in the NBA draft.

That doesn't mean they've gotten better at it.

For the second straight year, third time in four years and fourth time since 2003 -- when they selected a high school phenom named LeBron James -- the Cavs own the No. 1 overall selection. On Thursday night, the Cavs, who only chose new coach David Blatt last week, will once again be the first team on the clock.

They've been lucky. Now, they need to be good.

Cleveland is expected to select either Duke forward Jabari Parker or Kansas forward Andrew Wiggins, considered a pair of can't-miss prospects who could help push the Cavs back to respectability. Either of them could also make their roster more appealing in case James, who opted out of his Miami Heat contract on Tuesday, is thinking about bringing his talents back to his native Ohio.

• Football

Flowers to Chargers: The San Diego Chargers have agreed to a deal with former Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Brandon Flowers.

The team announced the deal Tuesday. Terms weren't disclosed.

Kansas City released Flowers earlier this month after three weeks of voluntary workouts during which the former starter was conspicuously absent.

Carey hired: Former NFL referee Mike Carey has been added to the telecasts of Thursday night and Sunday football games as a rules expert.

Carey was hired Tuesday by CBS. He will provide rules analysis, interpretation and explanations.

• Golf

UT coach leads: University of Toledo coach Jamie Broce shot a 1-under 71 to increase his lead to three strokes in the PGA Professional National Championship.

The 37-year-old Broce had three birdies and two bogeys at The Dunes Golf & Beach Club to reach 5-under 211.

Without pain: Tiger Woods says he is without pain for the first time in two years as he embarks on his latest comeback.

Nearly three months after having back surgery to alleviate a pinched nerve, Woods returns to competition this week in the Quicken Loans National at Congressional.

• Elsewhere

Opts out: LeBron James delivered his message loud and clear, without actually saying a word.

He's willing to leave Miami, if that's what it will take to win more championships. And what happens next will likely be up to not just the Heat, but Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh as well.

Through his agent, James informed the Heat he has decided to opt out of the final two years of his contract, a move that means he becomes a free agent on July 1.

Advocate scholarships: The Big Ten said Tuesday that it supports guaranteed four-year scholarships and improved medical coverage for its athletes.

The league announced in a statement signed Tuesday by its 14 presidents that it proposes working within the NCAA structure to provide greater academic security for its athletes by guaranteeing scholarships for four years, even if an athlete can no longer compete or has left for a professional career.

Reaches 700 wins: For a set and a half, Rafael Nadal looked in danger of tumbling out in the first round of Wimbledon for the second year in a row. The left-hander dominating play on Centre Court was not the 14-time Grand Slam champion, it was 51st-ranked Martin Klizan of Slovakia.

But the top-ranked Nadal dug deep, pulling out a 4-6, 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 victory -- the 700th tour-level match win of his career.

Marshall has surgery: Cincinnati Reds left-handed reliever Sean Marshall had season-ending shoulder surgery on Tuesday.

Marshall has been dealing with shoulder problems for the last two years. He had no record and a 7.71 ERA in 15 appearances this season.

Manager Bryan Price says he was told the surgery went very well.

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