Update on the latest sports
Player reps send new CBA to union members for approval
UNDATED (AP) — The NFL has moved a step closer to labor peace for another decade.
Player representatives have voted to send a new labor deal approved by the owners to the full union membership. A simple majority of some 2,000 players must accept the agreement for it to go into effect this year.
The new CBA calls for a 17-game regular season, which is expected to begin in 2021; more roster spots; a shortened preseason; a higher percentage of revenues for players; and upgraded pensions for former players. The owners approved it last Thursday, though not unanimously.
It seems likely that the players will accept the deal, or else their leadership would not likely have made this move.
The NFL Players Association’s executive committee voted 6-5 against the contract on Friday.
In other NFL news:
— Former TCU and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Trevone Boykin has been sentenced to three years in prison after pleading guilty to charges from the 2018 beating of his girlfriend. Boykin and prosecutors agreed to the sentence in return for his guilty plea Wednesday to aggravated assault and witness tampering charges. Boykin’s attorney says his client will be eligible for parole in less than a year. Shabrika Bailey alleged that Boykin broke her jaw in two places in the March 2018 beating. The Seahawks cut Boykin in the wake of the allegation.
— The New York Giants have released linebackers Alec Ogletree and Kareem Martin, clearing significant salary cap space with the departure of their two most expensive defensive players. The Giants, rebuilding under rookie head coach Joe Judge, gained more than $13 million in salary cap savings by jettisoning the two. Ogletree was acquired by the Giants two years ago in a trade for two third-day selections in 2018. Ogletree was twice elected a team captain and accumulated a team-high 173 tackles as the starter at inside linebacker over two seasons with the Giants.
Hornets’ Monk suspended indefinitely
UNDATED (AP) — Philadelphia 76ers All-Star center Joel Embiid (joh-EHL’ ehm-BEED’) left Wednesday night’s game against Cleveland with an injured left shoulder. Embiid appeared to collide with Cavaliers center Ante Zizic while being fouled late in the first quarter. The 7-footer held his shoulder when he went to the foul line and was in obvious pain as he missed two free throws. Embiid scored a career-high 49 points Monday against Atlanta.
In other NBA news:
— Hornets guard Malik Monk has been suspended without pay for violating the terms of the NBA/NBPA’s anti-drug program. Monk’s suspension will begin with Wednesday’s game against the New York Knicks and continue until he is determined to be in full compliance with the program. The third-year reserve guard had been playing better of late, averaging 18.2 points over the last seven games.
— The NBA fined Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (joh-EHL’ ehm-BEED’) $25,000 Wednesday, two days after he made an obscene gesture on the court and used profane language during a live television interview. In announcing the fine, the NBA noted that the amount “reflects his multiple prior violations of acceptable on-court decorum.” The gesture occurred with 17 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter of the Sixers’ 129-112 victory over the Hawks on Monday night. With the clock winding down, Atlanta’s Kevin Huerter came from behind and swiped the ball from Embiid, who was trying to dribble it out. Embiid responded by flashing a middle finger at Huerter. He later apologized. Embiid scored a career-high 49 points in the game.
UNDATED (AP) — The Toronto Maple Leafs have suffered another setback on defense with the loss of Jake Muzzin (MUH’-zihn) to a broken hand.
The Leafs announced Wednesday that Muzzin will be out about four weeks after suffering the injury during a win over the Tampa Bay Lightning Tuesday night. If Muzzin misses four weeks, he’ll return with six games left in the regular season.
On Monday, the 31-year-old signed a four-year contract extension with an average annual value of just over $5.6 million. He has six goals and 17 assists in 53 games with the Leafs this season.
Toronto also is missing defensemen Morgan Rielly and Cody Ceci because of injuries.
In other NHL news:
— St. Louis Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester has been ruled out from returning to play in the regular season or in the playoffs. Bouwmeester spoke to reporters for the first time since he collapsed on the bench in the first period during a game at the Anaheim Ducks on Feb. 11. The 36-year-old Edmonton native was hospitalized and spent five nights in the hospital.
— Montreal Canadiens defenseman Victor Mete will miss the rest of the season with a broken foot. Mete suffered the injury during the game in Detroit on Feb. 18. The 21-year-old Mete had four goals and 11 assists in 51 games this season. He has four goals and 27 assists in 171 games with Montreal. Mete was a fourth-round pick of the Canadiens in 2016.
— Peter Laviolette (lah-vee-uh-LET’) is returning to the bench after being selected as the coach of the United States men’s national team competing at the world hockey championships in May. The move was announced by USA Hockey on Wednesday, seven weeks after Laviolette was fired by the Nashville Predators. Laviolette ranks 16th in NHL wins with 637 covering four teams over 18 seasons, including the 2006 Stanley Cup champion Carolina Hurricanes. He also coached the New York Islanders and Philadelphia Flyers.
MLB-STANTON, VERLANDER TO MISS OPENING DAY
Stanton, Verlander will likely miss opening day
UNDATED (AP) — Oft-injured New York Yankees slugger Giancarlo Stanton will likely miss opening day because of a strained right calf. Manager Aaron Boone says Stanton was injured near the end of defensive drills yesterday. And, Yankees star pitcher Luis Severino needs Tommy John surgery and will miss the entire season. The AL East champion Yankees open on March 26 at Baltimore. Stanton played in just 18 games after a number of injuries last season, batting .288 with three homers in 59 at-bats. He signed a $325 million, 13-year contract after the 2014 season.
The Yankees put a major league-record 30 players on the injured list last year, with Stanton missing most of the season.
Meanwhile, Justin Verlander’s spring training debut will be postponed at least a few more days while the Houston Astros ace deals with tightness in his groin. Verlander had been scheduled to start Thursday against Washington. Instead, he will throw a simulated game at the Astros’ complex prior to that exhibition. Houston manager Dusty Baker said the tightness first appeared a couple of days ago. Baker says he isn’t worried about the injury lingering. Verlander won his second Cy Young Award last season by going 21-6 with a 2.52 ERA.
Elsewhere in the majors:
— South Korean star Kwang Hyun Kim is proving problematic for major league hitters so far. The 31-year-old left-hander retired all six Miami batters he faced in his first Grapefruit League start for the St. Louis Cardinals. It came after he threw one shutout inning of relief against the New York Mets on Saturday. Kim struggled with control of his off-speed pitches in the first inning, but he found his rhythm in the second. He kept batters off balance mixing a fastball that touched 95 mph with his curve. The Marlins didn’t get a ball out of the infield against Kim.
— Ubaldo Jimenez took another step in his comeback attempt with the Colorado Rockies, pitching two innings against the Texas Rangers. The 36-year-old threw 21 pitches, 14 for strikes. He gave up two hits and one run, with no walks or strikeouts. Jimenez said it was a meaningful day. He said he had to tell himself to relax and not do too much. The best year of Jimenez’s career was 2010 with the Rockies. He was 19-8 with a 2.88 ERA and started the All-Star Game for the National League. He last pitched in the majors in 2017 for Baltimore.
— Miguel Sano has volunteered to move across the diamond to accommodate Twins newcomer Josh Donaldson. Sano gave up his regular spot at third base, moving to first base, and let Donaldson take his place at third. Sano bounced back from a winter injury last season and hit a career-high 34 home runs. His power helped the Twins set a major league record with 307 homers and win the AL Central.
— Houston’s Alex Bregman was hit on the back by a breaking ball from St. Louis reliever Ramon Santos, the seventh Astros player plunked in five spring training games. Some opposing players have called for retaliation against the Astros following Major League Baseball’s finding that Houston broke rules against electronic sign-stealing en route to its 2017 World Series title and again in 2018. Dustin Garneau was hit Sunday against Washington, and José Altuve was grazed Monday against Detroit, when Osvaldo Duarte and Alex De Goti also were hit. Aledmys Díaz and Jake Meyers were hit Tuesday by Miami.
— The Houston Astros continued to get booed on the road in spring training as they visited the home of the New York Mets. Former World Series MVP George Springer was heckled as part of Houston’s split squad. Fans are calling the Astros cheaters, and doing it loudly in the wake of their sign-stealing scam. Springer had to hear it for a bit longer on Wednesday. The star leadoff man stepped into the batter’s box a minute before the game was scheduled to begin, giving the crowd extra time to boo him.
Japan baseball will play in empty stadiums, Irelands rugby match, Asian soccer postponed
UNDATED(AP) — Japan’s professional baseball league says it will play its 72 remaining preseason games in empty stadiums because of the threat of the spreading coronavirus. The regular season is to open on March 20. The virus that began in China is disrupting all of the country’s sports schedules and has raised concerns about the Tokyo Olympics. They are to open on July 24. Representatives of the baseball league’s 12 teams made the move at a special meeting.
Meanwhile, Ireland’s Six Nations rugby match against Italy in Dublin has been postponed because of concerns about the spreading virus in Europe. The Italians were scheduled to play at Ireland on March 7, part of annual rugby competition that also includes England, France, Scotland and Wales. A women’s game the following day was also postponed.
And Asian soccer leaders have postponed two key meetings because of the outbreak.
MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL NEWS
Former Penn coach slapped with 15-year show-cause penalty
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Former Penn coach Jerome Allen was hit a 15-year show-cause penalty after he accepted $300,000 in bribes to get a wealthy Florida businessman’s son into the University of Pennsylvania. The Quakers also were slapped by the NCAA with two years of probation, fined $5,000 and suffered recruiting punishments.
Allen went 66-104 with the Quakers. He was hired by the Boston Celtics in 2015 and remains on the coaching staff.
Allen’s show-cause penalty is meant to limit a coach’s ability to work in college sports after breaking NCAA rules.
TRANGENDER SPORTS BAN
Idaho moves closer to ban on transgender women in athletics
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho moved closer Wednesday to banning transgender women from competing in women’s sports despite warnings that such a law is unconstitutional. A measure that overwhelmingly passed in the Republican-led state House of Representatives would apply to all sports teams sponsored by public schools, colleges and universities. A girls’ or women’s team would not be open to a student who was born male, even if they identify as female. It now goes to the GOP-dominated Senate. Republican Gov. Brad Little’s spokeswoman said he had no comment on whether he would sign it into law.