Update on the latest sports
Johnson scores 23 points to help Raptors top Nuggets 117-109
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — Stanley Johnson scored 19 of his 23 points in the second half and the Toronto Raptors closed out their regular season with a 117-109 victory over the slipping Denver Nuggets. Both teams entered the game already locked into playoff positions.
Denver has lost three straight but is the No. 3 seed in the Western Conference. Toronto is the No. 2 in the Eastern Conference after winning seven of its eight games played in the NBA’s bubble in Central Florida.
Denver’s PJ Dozier highlighted his team-high 20-point performance by hitting five of six 3-point shots.
Magic say Mo Bamba out for year; center had COVID-19 in June
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — Mo Bamba will not play for the Orlando Magic in this season’s playoffs, after the team announced Friday that he has left the bubble for testing related to his previous bout with coronavirus.
Bamba was diagnosed with COVID-19 on June 11. The 22-year-old appeared in 62 games with the Magic this season but logged only 11 minutes of action in Orlando’s first two seeding games at Walt Disney World. He did not appear in any of Orlando’s final six seeding games.
The 7-foot Bamba averaged 5.4 points and 4.9 rebounds for the Magic this season. He was the No. 6 overall pick in the 2018 draft.
Orlando plays Milwaukee in the first round of the NBA playoffs.
In other NBA news:
—Miami Heat forward Derrick Jones Jr. was carted off the court and fitted for a neck brace after colliding with Indiana Pacers center Goga Bitadze late in the third quarter of their game. Jones lay on his stomach for several minutes with his right hand over the back of his head. He had a towel over his face as he was carted off the court.
—The Chicago Bulls have fired coach Jim Boylen after the team missed the playoffs again. The Bulls were 22-43 and were one of the eight teams that didn’t qualify for the NBA’s restart at Walt Disney World. That meant they wouldn’t make the postseason for the fourth time in five years. Boylen finished 39-84 as Bulls coach.
Tatar, Kotkaniemi scores twice, Canadiens rout Flyers 5-0
TORONTO (AP) — Tomas Tatar and Jesperi Kotkaniemi each scored twice, Carey Price stopped 30 shots and the Montreal Canadiens rebounded without coach Claude Julien to rout the Philadelphia Flyers 5-0 on Friday and tie the series at a game apiece.
Julien was home in Montreal a day after a stent was placed in a coronary artery. The team said doctors expect a full recovery. Julien was rushed to St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto overnight Wednesday with chest pain. He had surgery Thursday. Kirk Muller will serve as interim head coach for the rest of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal series. Game 3 is Sunday night.
In other Friday action:
Andre Burakovsky scored late in the third period, Philipp Grubauer stopped 30 shots and the Colorado Avalanche beat the Arizona Coyotes 3-2 to take a 2-0 lead in their Stanley Cup playoff series. The Coyotes were far more aggressive in Game 2 after being tentative against Colorado’s offensive firepower to in the opener. Game 3 in the best-of-seven series is Saturday in the Edmonton bubble.
Mets scratch deGrom because of neck tightness
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The New York Mets have scratched two-time NL Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom from his start against the Phillies on Friday.
DeGrom says he has neck tightness, but “everything is fine structurally” and he doesn’t plan to go on the injury list. The right-hander felt soreness playing catch after his last start. He threw from the mound Thursday and thought he could still pitch the opener of a three-game series in Philadelphia but will skip the outing as a precaution. DeGrom is 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA in four starts this season.
In other MLB news:
—The Cleveland Indians activated pitchers Zach Plesac and Mike Clevinger from the restricted list and optioned them to the team’s alternate training site. The starters had been placed on the restricted list for violating Major League Baseball protocols related to the coronavirus pandemic. Chris Antonetti, Cleveland’s president of baseball operations, said both players drove to Detroit and met with the teammates in an “open forum.”
—Oft-injured Yankees star Aaron Judge was placed on the injured list with a right calf strain before Friday night’s game against Boston and manager Aaron Boone is optimistic the outfielder will not miss significant time. The move was retroactive to Wednesday and Boone described the strain as mild after an MRI revealed the injured.
5 NFL officials take a leave of absence for 2020 season
UNDATED (AP) — The NFL’s longest-serving on-field official is among five who have opted to take a leave of absence for the 2020 season. Line judge Jeff Bergman, who was entering his 29th year of service, headlined the list released Friday by the NFL.
Also in the group is back judge Steve Freeman, who was entering his 20th year. Freeman is a former NFL player who spent 12 of his 13 seasons with the Bills. His son, Brad, is a back judge is entering his seventh season. Also opting out are field judges Greg Gautreaux and Joe Larrew and back judge Tony Steratore.The league said additional officials will be hired and announced.
Officials are allowed to opt out under the protocols negotiated by the NFL and NFL Referees Association (NFLRA) because of the coronavirus pandemic.
In other NFL news:
— Browns starting center JC Tretter underwent a surgical procedure on his knee and could be out for an extended period. First-year coach Kevin Stefanski didn’t provide many details. Tretter is also the NFLPA president and has been heavily involved in talks over the past few months between the union and NFL to get training camps ready during the COVID-19 pandemic.
— The Las Vegas Raiders have taken edge rusher Maxx Crosby off the reserve/COVID-19 list. Crosby was placed on the list last week. He was removed on Friday and took part in his first practice. The list was created for players who either test positive for COVID-19 or have been in close contact with an infected person.
— The Atlanta Falcons have re-signed tight end Luke Stocker. He appeared in 15 games for the Falcons last season, including eight starts. Stocker had eight catches for 53 yards. The 32-year-old Stocker spent six seasons with Tampa Bay and two with Tennessee before signing with the Falcons before the 2019 season.
— Denzel Mims might have to wait a little while before catching passes from Sam Darnold again. The rookie wide receiver was sidelined at practice Friday with a hamstring injury that could keep him out at least a few days. Mims, the team’s second-round pick in April, was hurt earlier this week while running routes during drills.
—The Dallas Cowboys are holding training camp in the Texas heat because the pandemic kept them from traveling to cooler California. It’s the first Cowboys camp to be held entirely in the Dallas area. It’s also the first for new coach Mike McCarthy. He was fired midseason in Green Bay two years ago and was out of the game in 2019. McCarthy is replacing Jason Garrett.
Hoge remains tied for Wyndham lead halfway through round
GREENSBORO, N.C. (AP) — Tom Hoge (HOH’-gee) was still tied with two others for the lead halfway through the second round of the Wyndham Championship on Friday.
Hoge was part of a three-way tie with Roger Sloan and Harold Varner III at 8-under par after the first round of the weather-impacted tournament. Hoge shot 68 in the second round to move to 10-under and was tied with Si Woo Kim and Talor Gooch. Kim and Gooch both shot 65s to move atop the leaderboard. The three were a shot in front of British Open champion Shane Lowry and Harris English. Lowry shot a 63 and English a 67.
Sloan remained at 8-under after a 70. Varner is part of the afternoon starters.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-BASKETBALL HALL OF FAME
Basketball Hall induction moved and delayed to ’21
UNDATED (AP) — Kobe Bryant and the rest of this year’s Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame class won’t be inducted in 2020 — or at the birthplace of basketball. The Hall announced Friday that the enshrinement ceremony will be held May 13-15, 2021, and the entire festivities will be moved to Mohegan Sun Casino in Connecticut.
This year was to be a highlight for the Hall of Fame, located in Springfield, Massachusetts. Bryant, killed in January in a helicopter crash, headlined a decorated class featuring Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett that would have been enshrined in the recently renovated museum. But the coronavirus pandemic scuttled those plans and hit the Hall so hard that it eliminated several full-time positions and cut senior management pay in the 25-40% range.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-COLLEGE SPORTS
Charleston Southern suspends 2020 football
UNDATED (AP) — Charleston Southern is suspending its 2020 football season. The school is part of the Division I Big South Conference and competes in the Football Championship Subdivision. The school said Friday the environment with COVID-19 was too “uncertain” to go forward in the fall, and the decision will let the football team prepare for games in the spring. The Big South and the NCAA have canceled plans for a fall championship, although the league did let member institutions play non-conference games if they wanted in the fall.
In other pandemic-related sports news:
— The ASUN Conference says it is postponing all fall sports. The nine-team league, formally known as the Atlantic Sun Conference, operates mostly in the Southeast and does not play football. Friday’s announcement from the ASUN’s Presidents’ Council says that providing a spring season for men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s soccer and volleyball is a priority. League schools may continue with such activities like training and practice in accordance with NCAA, local and state guidelines.
— Marshall and East Carolina have moved their football game from Aug. 29 to Sept. 12. Both teams had Sept. 12 as an open date after earlier opponents changed their schedules. Marshall was supposed to host Atlantic Coast Conference opponent Pittsburgh that day while East Carolina was traveling to play South Carolina of the Southeastern Conference. The game will be held at East Carolina’s Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium. No time for the game has been determined.
— North Carolina State has administered 1,360 tests for COVID-19 to athletes, coaches and athletic staff with just eight people testing positive. The update came Friday with the school saying that out of the last 765 tests administered since it last released results, only one person has come up positive for the coronavirus.