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CHASKA, Minn. -- Over the last two decades of European dominance in the Ryder Cup, perhaps no player has personified the teams seemingly baffling advantage over the Americans more than Lee Westwood.When the individual sport adopts the team dynamic for one weekend every two years, the 43-year-old Englishman who has never won a major championship almost always seems to rise to the occasion.He enters his 10th Ryder Cup with a 20-15-6 record, having felled some of the biggest American stars along the way. He needs 2 1/2 points to surpass Nick Faldo -- Westwoods first partner back in 1997 -- for the most career Ryder Cup points. Europe is 7-2 since Westwood joined the fray.Id be lying if I didnt say I wanted to get past Nicks record, because anybody involved in sport wants to break records, Westwood said Thursday. Thats what drives us all on, to be able to say youre the best at anything.But if you give me a choice of not winning any points and the Europeans winning the Ryder Cup, then that would definitely come first before getting in front of Nicks record or getting near it. Its all about the team this week.The camaraderie among the European players has always been viewed as a big reason for their success against the higher profile Americans, who have more often than not entered the weekend as the heavy betting favorites. And more often than not, the Europeans have been the ones accepting the concession handshakes.Westwood captures that spirit as well as any of them, pairing easily with partners across the board to take down some of Americas heaviest hitters. And this year, the Europeans are captained by Darren Clarke, one of Westwoods favorite playing partners over the years. They were 6-2 together, with three of those victories coming against American teams featuring players ranked Nos. 1 and 2 in the world.Weve had some crackers, Westwood said with a grin.None bigger than at Oakland Hills in 2004, when Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson took a 3-up lead early before Clarke and Westwood roared back, an upset that set the tone for an 18 1/2- 9 1/2 steamrolling that was the largest margin of victory in Europes history.So it is no surprise that Clarke made Westwood one of his captains picks. The Ryder Cup features one of the most raucous environments in golf, filled with heckling and jeering for the visitors from the first tee to the final putt. It can be a disorienting experience for players who are used to much more respectful and supportive galleries. But Westwood revels in it.I love the atmosphere out there. I like the rowdiness of it all, Westwood said. I was talking to my caddie, Billy (Foster). We were on the range and there was music playing and all that, and thats what golf should be about nowadays, I think. I think it needs to jazz itself up a bit and get a bit more atmosphere in there.As he has gotten older, Westwood has become a valued elder statesman. He has been paired with rookies in each of the last five Ryder Cups, serving as the big brother for the nervous youngsters who find their knees knocking and their hands shaking as they try to put the ball on the tee at No. 1.Clarke paired him with newcomer Thomas Pieters on Friday morning. They will face Dustin Johnson and Matt Kuchar.He brings a lot of calmness and peace into the team room, said Martin Kaymer, who was paired with Westwood as a rookie at Celtic Manor in 2010. But also a lot of strength, because if you see him as a person, hes a very strong character, a very strong player. And I think that mix is very rare.As Europe tries for its fourth straight victory in the biannual showdown, something that has never been done before, it may need Westwoods comforting guidance more than ever. Clarke brought six rookies with him to Hazeltine National, and they really have no idea what theyre in for.Weve all said how excited and nervous we are, and we dont know whats coming, Chris Wood said. Lee has said exactly the same. Hes excited. Hes nervous. But he knows whats coming.If history is any indication, what is coming is another win. Westwood has yet to win in 2016, having finished second at the Masters.Perhaps he was saving his best for this weekend, as he so often does. .C. -- Glenn Howard needed an extra end to move into the Masters Grand Slam of Curling final. . -- Derrick Rose shook off poor shooting early to hit clutch shots late and Carlos Boozer had 20 points and 13 rebounds to lead the Chicago Bulls to a 104-95 preseason victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night. .H. -- Matt Kenseth made it 2 for 2 in the Chase, holding off teammate Kyle Busch to win Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. . Irving scored 23 points, Tristan Thompson had 20 points and 10 rebounds and the Cavaliers beat the Denver Nuggets 117-109 on Friday night. . Louis Rams wide receiver Stedman Bailey last Sunday. The fine is the fourth this season for Goldson. He was fined $30,000 for a hit on the New York Jets Jeff Cumberland in Week 1. The theme of this years Major League Soccer playoffs might just be Oh Canada! Or maybe even New York, New York.Two of the eight teams playing in the conference semifinals tomorrow are from up north: Toronto FC and the Montreal Impact.Toronto, hosting a playoff game for the first time, beat the Philadelphia Union 3-1 in a knockout round match Wednesday to advance. Itll host New York City FC in the first leg of the conference semifinals on Sunday.The Impact eliminated D.C. United 4-2 on Thursday. Montreal will host the New York Red Bulls on Sunday.The Red Bulls and NYCFC got knockout-round byes as the top two seeds in the Eastern Conference.A look at all the two-legged MLS conference semifinals:WESTERN CONFERENCEColorado Rapids at the Los Angeles Galaxy: The second-seeded Rapids got a first-round bye after narrowly missing out on the Supporters Shield to FC Dallas. Known for a strong defense anchored by goalkeeper Tim Howard, the Rapids finished the regular season 15-6-13. Colorado, which won the MLS Cup in 2012, has scored the fewest goals of any team in the playoffs. The Galaxy are the more experienced side with Gio dos Santos, Robbie Keane and Steven Gerrard -- if his hamstring is healthy. Theres also Landon Donovan, who continues to make his MLS comeback. Los Angeles has won five MLS Cups, more than any other team. Los Angeles (12-6-16) beat Real Salt Lake on Wednesday in the knockout round.FC Dallas at the Seattle Sounders: The Sounders (14-14-6) had an amazing recovery in the Western Conference, going from last place and letting go of longtime coach Sigi Schmid, to a fourth-place finish in the regular season and a playoff berth. The upswing continued with the Sounders 1-0 victory over Sporting Kansas City 1-0 in the knockout round Thursday with a goal from Nelson Valdez in the 88th minute. With Clint Dempsey out because of a heart issue, the player to watch is Jordan Morris, who leads the Sounders with 12 goals.dddddddddddd FC Dallas (17-8-9) had a first-round bye as the top seed in the west after securing the leagues Supporters Shield for the best record in the regular season. The team is going for a first-ever Treble: the U.S. Open Cup, the Supporters Shield and the MLS Cup. Neither team has ever won the MLS Cup.EASTERN CONFERENCENew York Red Bulls at Montreal Impact: The Impact are making their second straight appearance in the conference semifinals. Last season Montreal fell in the round to the Columbus Crew. Montreal (11-11-12) may or may not have the services of striker Didier Drogba, who was officially out of the knockout round win over United with a back issue. The former Chelsea star has not played since he sat out of an Oct. 16 match against Toronto, reportedly because he wasnt starting. The closest the Red Bulls (16-9-9) have come to the MLS Cup was in 2008, when they were runners-up to the Crew. As the top seed in the East, the Red Bulls are led by Bradley Wright-Phillips, who scored a league-best 24 goals this season.New York City FC-Toronto FC: Toronto, coming off is first-ever playoff victory, is led by the talented trio of Sebastian Giovinco, Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley. Giovinco leads the team with 18 goals and 17 assists, including a goal and two assists in the victory over the Union. The Reds (14-9-11) finished the regular season as the third seed. The key to the playoff with NYCFC could be the battle between Bradley at Frank Lampard. Second-seeded NYCFC (15-10-9) has conceded more goals (57) than any other team in the playoffs. In just its second season in MLS, NYCFC leads the series against Toronto 2-0-3. It will be NYCFCs first-ever playoff game after the teams first-round bye. 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