Update on the latest sports

first_imgIn the Western Conference: Houston and Oklahoma City will meet in the first round, meaning Rockets guard Russell Westbrook and Thunder guard Chris Paul get the chance to face their former teams. Other West matchups that got clinched on Wednesday include the second-seeded Los Angeles Clippers against No. 7 Dallas, and No. 3 Denver against No. 6 Utah.In the East, Miami and Indiana will meet in the first round — after the clubs close the regular season on Friday against one another to decide which team will be seeded No. 4 and which will be No. 5. No. 3 Boston will play No. 6 Philadelphia in a meeting between longtime rivals, and the Pacers are now locked into an East opening series against the Heat — with the potential of those teams playing nine times in a span of 10 games. The other East matchups were known previously: No. 1 Milwaukee plays No. 8 Orlando, and No. 2 Toronto plays No. 7 Brooklyn.In the West, Houston and Oklahoma City will be in the 4-5 matchup and Utah will be the No. 6 seed. The Jazz were locked into that slot by the Thunder defeating Miami, and Denver became the No. 3 seed when they lost to the Clippers.The full list of matchups won’t be known until at least Saturday, when the West play-in series begins. Portland, Memphis, Phoenix and San Antonio are bidding for those two spots. Those four teams play on Thursday to decide which two clubs get spots in the play-in series to determine the No. 8 seed. The winner of that series will take on the top-seeded Los Angeles Lakers in the first round.NHL-SCHEDULE Associated Press Update on the latest sports The NCAA is in the process of changing its rules to permit athletes to earn money off their names, images and likenesses for things like endorsements and appearances. The association has asked for help from Congress to relieve pressure from state lawmakers. California, Florida and Colorado have already passed bills. Florida’s would take effect in 2021.Federal lawmakers have said they intend to get involved but are wary of granting antitrust protections to the NCAA, which wants to provide athletes with rights regarding name, image and likeness but with some regulation.MLB-NEWSPittsburgh closer Kela set to returnUNDATED (AP) — Pittsburgh closer Keone Kela is set to rejoin the team after recovering from a positive COVID-19 test. Lightning, Blue Jackets face off again after 5-overtime gameUNDATED (AP) — The Tampa Bay Lightning and Columbus Blue Jackets are facing one more challenge than the rest of the teams in the pandemic-altered NHL playoffs. Tampa Bay and Columbus will be back on the ice less than 48 hours after the Lightning outlasted the Blue Jackets with a five-overtime win in the fourth-longest game in league history.Game 2 on Thursday will come quickly for second-seeded Tampa Bay and seventh-seeded Columbus in their Eastern Conference series that opened with a game that needed six-plus hours to determine a winner. Columbus coach John Tortorella showed some mercy, keeping his players off the ice Wednesday.Also in the Eastern Conference playoffs, fourth-seeded Boston and fifth-seeded Carolina will have a quick turnaround after needing multiple overtimes to decide a series-opening game. The Bruins and Hurricanes will face off Thursday night, about 30 hours after Patrice Bergeron (pah-TREES’ BEHR’-zhehr-ahn) scored in in double overtime to lift Boston to a 4-3 win. Game 1 was postponed 15 hours to a late-morning start because Tampa Bay and Columbus were playing on the same sheet of ice at Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena.Two Western Conference teams will have a shot to take two-game leads in their series when top-seeded Vegas faces eighth-seeded Chicago and sixth-seeded Calgary plays third-seeded Dallas on Thursday night. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditNBA-PLAYOFF MATCHUPSNBA sees seven of the eight first-round matchups setLAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — The NBA playoff bracket is nearly set. Wednesday’s results filled in five of what were the six unknown matchups for Round 1 of the postseason, which starts next week at Walt Disney World. August 13, 2020 The Golden Knights pulled away to beat the Blackhawks 4-1 in Game 1, allowing just 20 shots to get to goaltender Robin Lehner against one of his former teams. The Flames opened their series with a 3-2 victory against the Stars after Dillon Dube scored twice in the first period and Rasmus Andersson scored the go-ahead goal in the second period.NCAA-COMPENSATING ATHLETESSenators lay out plan for college athletes bill of rightsWASHINGTON (AP) — A group of senators led by Cory Booker of New Jersey and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut has released a plan for reforming college sports with an athletes bill of rights. It calls for college athletes to have the ability to earn money for their names, images and likenesses with “minimal restrictions.” The senators also want to ensure for the athletes long-term medical coverage and treatment, enforceable medical standards, academic freedom and revenue sharing agreements. Booker and Blumenthal were joined in the statement by fellow Democrats Chris Murphy from Connecticut and Kamala Harris from California. TENNIS-NEWSNo. 1 Novak Djokovic says he’ll play at US Open, after allUNDATED (AP) — Novak Djokovic (NOH’-vak JOH’-kuh-vich) says he will enter the U.S. Open and the hard-court tuneup tournament preceding it in New York this month. The No. 1-ranked Djokovic initially complained about the U.S. Tennis Association’s plans to try to protect people from the coronavirus pandemic with such measures as limiting the size of players’ entourages and said he didn’t know whether he would participate. Djokovic tested positive for COVID-19 after participating in an exhibition tour he organized. The U.S. Open is scheduled to begin Aug. 31, without spectators. Djokovic has won three of his 17 Grand Slam titles at the U.S. Open. Djokovic has won three of his 17 Grand Slam titles at the U.S. Open and was the runner-up there five times. By playing this year, he will have a chance to narrow the gap between him and the only two men with more major trophies: Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. Federer, who has won 20 Slam championships, is sidelined for the rest of 2020 after having two operations on his right knee. Nadal, who owns 19 major titles and is the reigning champion in New York, said he was pulling out of the U.S. Open because of concerns about traveling amid the pandemic. In other tennis news:— Serena and Venus Williams renew their rivalry when they play each other Thursday at a hard-court tournament in Kentucky. It is the 31st time the sisters meet in a tour-level match. Their last matchup came nearly two years ago, when Serena beat Venus in the third round of the U.S. Open. This is a chance for each Williams to gauge where her game is after nearly six months because the tour was on hiatus during the coronavirus pandemic. It is also a chance for tennis fans to see what they have been missing. Kela will return to the injury-ravaged Pirates for a four-game series that starts Thursday in Cincinnati. Six Pittsburgh pitchers are on the injured list, including relievers Kyle Crick, Clay Holmes and Nick Burdi. The last-place Pirates were 27th in the majors in ERA (5.32) this week and the turnover in the bullpen has been particularly jarring. Nearly two dozen pitchers took the hill for Pittsburgh through 16 games.In other baseball news:— Braves outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. will miss the weekend series in Miami because of a sore left wrist. The 2018 NL Rookie of the Year was a late scratch prior to Tuesday’s series opener at Yankee Stadium and was evaluated further yesterday, revealing inflammation in his wrist.— The Yankees will see how star Aaron Judge is progressing, a day after he was out of the lineup because of tightness in his lower body. It’s uncertain whether the oft-injured slugger will be back Friday night for the start of a weekend series against Boston. Judge was leading the majors with nine home runs and tied at the top with 20 RBIs before he sat out.last_img read more