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29 minutes ago

Victor Wembanyama stars, Scoot Henderson leads G League Ignite to victory in No. 1-vs.-No. 2 matchup of NBA draft prospects

HENDERSON, Nevada -- With Chris Paul and A'ja Wilson watching courtside, French basketball star Victor Wembanyama, the uncanny 7-foot-5 center and projected No. 1 NBA draft pick, put on a showcase in a 37-point performance Tuesday night at the Dollar Loan Center against the G League Ignite and Scoot Henderson, the projected No. 2 pick. Henderson scored 28 points and led his team to a 122-115 victory. At halftime, Wembanyama's Metropolitans 92 team, a pro squad from France, was down 71-52 before his second-half burst helped his team take the lead and battle the Ignite down the stretch. "At some point, it was just about taking over because our team needed players to step up because we were down [21 points], I think," said Wembanyama, who admitted playing longer quarters for the first time (games in Europe are 40 minutes versus 44 minutes in the NBA and G League) affected his stamina. "Coming back from such a lead, it's a tough task. ... There are times, you...
29 minutes ago
1 hour ago

Zion Williamson makes return in New Orleans Pelicans' preseason win

CHICAGO -- The Zion Williamson show is officially back. Even if it was just for a preseason viewing. The New Orleans Pelicans forward returned to the court Tuesday night, scoring 13 points in a 15-minute performance at the United Center in a 129-125 win over the Chicago Bulls. Earlier on Tuesday, Williamson told ESPN his mindset was to treat this like just another preseason game, but he admitted it was hard to ignore the messages blowing up his phone and appearing on social media about the year-plus he missed. Williamson showed flashes of his old self during the contest. He drove baseline on Bulls forward Patrick Williams for a slam. He had what some on the Pelicans bench thought should have been a chase-down block just a minute earlier in the first quarter on Williams that was ruled goaltending. Still, he was flashing the skills that made him a household name. After Tuesday's game, he said he was most excited about playing the game he loves. That didn't...
1 hour ago
October 04

New York Yankees star Aaron Judge launches 62nd home run, sets AL's single-season record

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The American League has a new single-season home run king. New York Yankees star Aaron Judge launched his 62nd home run of the season Tuesday night on the road against the Texas Rangers, breaking the AL record he shared with Roger Maris. After depositing a Tim Mayza sinker into the Toronto Blue Jays bullpen to tie Maris' mark last Wednesday, Judge went without a home run during the Yankees' final regular-season homestand -- a three-game series against the Baltimore Orioles. Back on the road, Judge, who had gone 2-for-9 with two singles in two games against the Rangers through Game 1 of Tuesday's doubleheader, took Texas pitcher  Jesus Tinoco deep in the first inning of the nightcap to reach No. 62. "It's a big relief. I think that everyone can sit back down in their seats and watch the ballgame, you know? No, but it's been a fun ride so far," Judge said. "Getting a chance to do this, with the team we've got, the...
October 04
October 04

Aaron Judge sets new AL record with 62nd home run

The outfielder broke former Yankee Roger Maris' long-held record.
October 04
New York Yankees' Aaron Judge, left, hits a solo home, his 62nd of the season, in front of Texas Rangers catcher Sam Huff and home plate umpire Chris Segal during the first inning in the second baseball game of a doubleheader in Arlington, Texas, Oct. 4, 2022.
October 04

Five reasons the sharps are smart

When I do the NFL line moves columns on Friday ( here's the one from last week), I inevitably get an insight into games that I wouldn't have been thinking about otherwise. Sometimes it's an old betting axiom -- like wise guys fading West Coast teams traveling east for 1 p.m. starts -- and other times, it's just hearing sharps talk about these teams. Even though I write about gambling every day, my default thought process is who will win and who will lose, not necessarily who will cover and why. That's why I call handicappers -- and tell you what they tell me. As I've often said, think of it as a bet-for-a-life philosophy rather than a bet-for-the-day philosophy. This past week was especially interesting. Tim Trushel, who is at the top of the charts in the Hilton Super Contest, made these points about the weekend games: 1. The San Francisco 49ers will suffer from the west-to-east travel (he was right). 2. The Chicago Bears will not show up; the...
October 04
October 04

Phoenix Suns likely to fetch record sale price for an NBA team, bankers say

As Robert Sarver prepares to sell the NBA's  Phoenix Suns and the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury, investment bank officials who have managed the sales of professional sports franchises told ESPN that they expect the transaction's final price to set a record. "It'll be the highest price ever paid for an NBA team," one investment bank official said. Joe Tsai bought the Brooklyn Nets for an NBA-record $2.35 billion in 2019. Prior to that sale, Tilman Fertitta purchased the Houston Rockets for $2.2 billion in 2017, with Steve Ballmer buying the LA Clippers for $2 billion in 2014. Factors playing into a potential record bid could be the Suns' warm-weather climate and proximity to Los Angeles, Las Vegas and the Bay Area, as well as the team's new practice facility and renovated arena. Additional factors include a new television rights deal and CBA on the horizon, plus the NBA's young and growing global audience and the potential for new expansion teams in...
October 04
October 04

Denver Broncos QB Russell Wilson expects to play Thursday night against Indianapolis Colts

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Though Denver Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson was officially listed as "limited" on the team's injury report for consecutive days this week with a right shoulder injury, Wilson said Tuesday he expects to be a full go for the Broncos' Thursday night game against the Indianapolis Colts. Wilson, who had his first three-touchdown game as a Broncos quarterback in Sunday's loss to the Las Vegas Raiders, has been listed on the team's lengthy injury report over the last two days. By league rules, though the Broncos have only had walk-through practices, they had to project what players' statuses would be if they had practiced fully. As a result, Wilson was listed as limited both Monday and Tuesday. He led the team in rushing Sunday with 29 yards on four carries, including a 3-yard touchdown run. He landed hard on the scoring run as well as on a second-half scramble when he tried to reach the ball past the first-down marker. "We're just...
October 04
October 04

Jacob deGrom could start regular-season finale for New York Mets if first place in NL East on the line

NEW YORK -- If the Mets have a shot at finishing in first place in the National League East on Wednesday, manager Buck Showalter said that ace Jacob deGrom could start the season finale. "He's available to pitch [Wednesday]. Potentially could," Showalter said. "It's one of many options that have been communicated with him and Max and all the guys." If the Mets choose to start deGrom, they would forgo the opportunity to give their ace extra time to rest for one of the first two games of a potential wild-card series. "We'll make the adjustment. I'm OK with that," Showalter said. "Just keep trying to stay organized for any pivots you have to make. There are lot of potential scenarios." Showalter said he was fine with the possibility of playing the season finale on Thursday -- potentially a day before the wild-card series is supposed to kick off -- because it would mean the division is still at play. "It's a good thing, right?" Showalter said. "What's the downside of...
October 04
October 04

Jacob deGrom could start regular season finale for New York Mets if first place in NL East on the line

NEW YORK -- If the Mets still have a shot at finishing in first place in the National League East on Wednesday, manager Buck Showalter said that ace Jacob deGrom could start the season finale. "He's available to pitch [Wednesday]. Potentially could," Showalter said. "It's one of many options that have been communicated with him and Max and all the guys." If the Mets choose to start deGrom, they would forgo the opportunity to give their ace extra time to rest for one of the first two games of a potential Wild Card series. "We'll make the adjustment. I'm OK with that," Showalter said. "Just keep trying to stay organized for any pivots you have to make. There a lot of potential scenarios." Showalter said he was fine with the possibility of playing the season finale on Thursday -- potentially a day before the Wild Card series is supposed to kick off -- because it would mean the division is still at play. "It's a good thing, right?" Showalter said. "What's the...
October 04
October 04

Indianapolis Colts RB Jonathan Taylor hopes to play Thursday night despite ankle injury

INDIANAPOLIS -- Colts running back Jonathan Taylor is hopeful he'll be able to play Thursday night against the Denver Broncos despite a badly twisted right ankle suffered in Sunday's loss to the Tennessee Titans. The All-Pro running back said Tuesday he is rehabbing furiously and has seen definite improvement since Sunday. "I definitely do plan to play, but if you can't go you can't go," Taylor said. "That's why you have to get as much treatment as you can." Taylor was wearing a boot on his right lower leg during Tuesday's light practice, during which he was a spectator. Taylor is not at risk for further injury based on what team doctors have told coach Frank Reich. "From what I understand, the discussions that I've had, that's not a concern at this point," Reich said. "It's an injury where he's not ready to go right now, but we'll see if he'll be ready to go Thursday night." Taylor added that a turf toe injury that limited him during practice...
October 04
October 04

Sources: New York Islanders, Mathew Barzal have 8-year, $73.2M deal

Mathew Barzal signed an eight-year extension that will keep the star forward with the New York Islanders. The contract is worth $73.2 million, carrying an average annual value against the NHL salary cap of $9.15 million, his agent confirmed to ESPN's Emily Kaplan. In six seasons with the team, Barzal has 311 points in 362 games, including 91 goals. He's a two-time NHL All-Star selection. Barzal, 25, was drafted 16th overall by the Islanders in 2015 and won the Calder Trophy as the rookie of the year in 2017-18. Barzal's 85 points were the third most of any Islanders rookie behind Hall of Famers Bryan Trottier (95 points in 1975-76) and Mike Bossy (91 points in 1977-78). His previous contract with the Islanders was signed in January 2021 and carried a cap hit of $7 million. Barzal was in the last year of that deal and was set to become a restricted free agent next summer before committing to this new contract. With this re-signing, the Islanders now have $71.375 million...
October 04
October 04

RB TreVeyon Henderson expected to return for Ohio State Buckeyes' game at Michigan State

Ohio State starting running back TreVeyon Henderson is expected to return this week at Michigan State after missing last Saturday's win over Rutgers. Coach Ryan Day said Tuesday that Henderson is on track to return, although the team's medical staff will make the final decision. Day said a minor issue during warm-ups before the Rutgers game caused Ohio State to hold out the sophomore. After a Sept. 17 win over Toledo, Henderson was seen leaving Ohio Stadium with a walking boot on his foot. He returned the following week against Wisconsin and recorded season highs in both carries (21) and rushing yards (121) in a 52-21 victory. Henderson, who last season rushed for 1,248 yards and 15 touchdowns, has 318 rushing yards and three touchdowns in four games this year. He set an Ohio State freshman record with 19 touchdowns (15 rushing, four receiving) in 2021. Backup running back Miyan Williams started against Rutgers and tied Ohio State's single-game...
October 04
October 04

NBA GMs see Milwaukee Bucks winning title, first MVP for Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic

The Milwaukee Bucks are slight favorites to win the 2023 NBA championship, and Luka Doncic was tapped as most likely to win the 2023 Most Valuable Player award in NBA.com's annual survey of all 30 of the league's general managers. The 21st edition of the survey was released Tuesday and saw Milwaukee receive 43% of the vote. The other teams to receive votes were the defending champion Golden State Warriors with 25%, the LA Clippers with 21% and the Boston Celtics with 11%. Not surprisingly, the Bucks were the clear favorites to win the East. They were followed by the defending Eastern Conference champion Celtics, the Philadelphia 76ers, Brooklyn Nets, Miami Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers. Those six teams were the only ones to receive votes to finish among the top four seeds in the East this season. Out West, meanwhile, nine teams received votes. The Clippers finished slightly ahead of the Warriors for...
October 04
October 04

Pittsburgh Steelers list rookie Kenny Pickett atop quarterback depth chart

PITTSBURGH -- The Kenny Pickett era is officially here. The Pittsburgh Steelers listed their 2022 first-round pick as the starter on the depth chart -- ahead of Mitch Trubisky -- for Sunday's game at the Buffalo Bills. "I don't want to dump the responsibility of what transpired at Mitch's feet," coach Mike Tomlin said Tuesday. "That's not fair to him. He's played better than that description, but we haven't. And so in an effort to be better, in an effort to score more points, in an effort to move the ball more fluidly, we decided to go to Kenny in the hope that he would provide a spark for us ... not only in terms of our ability to move the ball, but just in terms of energy. "And so, hopefully, that's a catalyst for us as we try to move forward and change the outcome of some of these games." Pickett will be the first rookie quarterback to start for the team since undrafted free agent Devlin Hodges started six games in the 2019 season. Searching...
October 04
October 04

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says QB Dak Prescott not ready yet, but leaves door open for Sunday

FRISCO, Texas -- Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones would not rule out Dak Prescott from playing Sunday against the Los Angeles Rams, but he acknowledged the quarterback's grip on a football is "not well enough to play" at the moment. Speaking on 105.3 The Fan in Dallas, Jones said Prescott's surgically repaired right thumb is improving. "I don't know that you could ask for better news technically, physically in how it's responding, how it's healing so to speak," Jones said. "So all of those things are on go and I don't know that as we bid bye to each day if considering the injury, considering the location of the injury, I don't know that you could make any more progress. There's some things here about healing that again I often say only the man upstairs knows how that works, but he'll have a big week and he'll be hard on himself getting it ready to go." Prescott is scheduled to meet with the doctors Tuesday. He had surgery Sept....
October 04
October 04

BRIEF-Soccer-Wigan versus Bolton match postponed due to weather

LONDON, Dec 21 - Wigan Athletic's Premier League match against Bolton Wanderers scheduled for Monday (2000 GMT) has been postponed due to icy conditions around the stadium. Wigan said on their website (www.wiganlatics.co.uk) they had called the game off after consultation with police even though the DW stadium and the pitch are in perfect condition. The decision was made because the club has "a mile of private roads and 10 acres of car parks to maintain, much of which are still under ice, and with weather forecasts predicting a temperature drop down to minus six degrees tonight." (Writing by Ken Ferris; Editing by Sonia Oxley; To query or comment on this story email sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)
October 04
October 04

'It was great': LA Clippers' Kawhi Leonard makes long-awaited return from injury in preseason win over Portland Trail Blazers

SEATTLE -- After waiting 476 days to return to NBA action, Kawhi Leonard needed only 15 seconds to launch and drill a 3-pointer again. In his first game in 15-plus months, Leonard began his return to the court by hitting his first shot from behind the arc before finishing with 11 points and four rebounds in the Clippers' 102-97 preseason win over the Portland Trail Blazers at Seattle's Climate Pledge Arena on Monday night  "It was great," Leonard said of playing again for the first time since tearing his right ACL in Game 4 of the Clippers' second-round playoff series against the Utah Jazz on June 14, 2021. "Just being able to put all that hard work that I did throughout the, 14, 16 months, just able to put it to test and playing against NBA talent, it was good. "Just being out there with the guys and talking, I missed it. It was a great experience for me." Leonard played only 16 minutes, all in the first half, as Clippers coach Ty Lue opted to...
October 04
October 04

Nick Bosa says San Francisco 49ers' defense has the personnel to be 'best in the league'

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Much like he wouldn't when given a clear path to an opposing quarterback, San Francisco 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa didn't hesitate Monday night when he was asked what the ceiling for this Niners defense can be. "I think it's best in the league," Bosa said. "That's kind of our mindset every year, and this year we have the personnel to do it. Not that we haven't in the past, but just all three levels are elite players." Given what the Niners' defense did to the NFC West rival Los Angeles Rams in Monday night's 24-9 win -- on top of what it has accomplished through the season's first four weeks -- Bosa's belief is backed by plenty of evidence. The Niners have won seven consecutive regular-season games against the Rams, though they lost the most meaningful contest between the teams in January's NFC Championship Game. It's their longest win streak against the Rams since winning 17 consecutive regular-season contests from 1990 to...
October 04
October 04

Ben Simmons makes Brooklyn Nets debut: 'I'm grateful just to be able to step on that floor'

NEW YORK -- Brooklyn Nets guard Ben Simmons made his long-awaited debut with his new team on Monday after almost a year and a half away from the game. After pushing for a trade out of Philadelphia while citing mental health concerns and then dealing with offseason back surgery, Simmons said he felt "amazing" while scoring six points, making five assists and grabbing four rebounds over 19 minutes in Monday's 127-108 preseason loss to the 76ers. "I'm grateful just to be able to step on that floor," Simmons said. "Step on an NBA floor again. I had a lot of fun out there." While Simmons showed some understandable rust at times, he seemed to be moving up and down the floor well after a 470-day break between games. Prior to Monday, Simmons last played in an NBA game in June 2021 when the Sixers lost in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals to the Atlanta Hawks. "That's the one thing, I thought I was going to be nervous," Simmons said. "But I wasn't...
October 04
October 03

'We're not done': Confident Philadelphia Phillies win, secure first postseason berth in 11 years

HOUSTON -- When the Philadelphia Phillies fired manager Joe Girardi after a 22-29 start to the season, it was hard to imagine that Bryce Harper, Kyle Schwarber and interim manager Rob Thomson would be dancing in a champagne shower come October. But this team persevered through the tough start and an injury that took Harper out for two months to do just that, beating the Houston Astros 3-0 Monday night to clinch its first playoff berth in 11 years. "This is the goal,'' Harper said. "This is what you play for.'' Aaron Nola took a perfect game into the seventh inning, and Schwarber homered to propel the Phillies to the victory. "It hasn't been an easy season,'' Schwarber said. "We went through a manager change, went through the MVP being down ... and we went through people saying that our season's over, that don't even count the Phillies and they can't catch the baseball ... and for us to get all of our guys back and healthy and for them to...
October 03
October 03

Los Angeles Rams' Bobby Wagner, Takkarist McKinley handle fan who gets onto field during Monday Night Football

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- Shortly before halftime of the Los Angeles Rams' 24-9 Monday night loss to the San Francisco 49ers, a fan ran across the field with what appeared to be a device letting out pink smoke. As the fan sprinted toward the Rams sideline, Bobby Wagner said he noticed that security at Levi's Stadium could use some help. Rams linebacker Takkarist McKinley came toward the person then Wagner stepped in and laid him out with a big hit. "That's not making a play," Wagner said. "That's just keeping it safe. You don't know what that fan got or what they're doing. You see it all the time, and we don't know what they're carrying in their pockets. It's whatever that little smoke stuff is, but that s--- could be dangerous. "One of the guys on the other side, it looked like he got hurt, and security looked like he was struggling, so I was frustrated, so I took it out on him." The collision left a noticeable mark on the field near the...
October 03
October 03

Luis Severino tosses seven innings of no-hit ball as New York Yankees defeat Texas Rangers

ARLINGTON, Texas -- New York Yankees starter Luis Severino was in full ace form at Globe Life Field on Monday night, when he completed seven innings in his longest career no-hit bid. Severino threw 94 pitches and struck out seven batters in the Yankees' 3-1 victory over the Texas Rangers. Miguel Castro, fresh off the 60-day injured list due to shoulder issues, came on in relief of Severino and struck out the first batter he faced, Rangers designated hitter Adolis Garcia. Third baseman Josh Jung then came up and lined a 98 mph fastball just over the reach of infielder  Isiah Kiner-Falefa for the first Rangers' hit of the evening. The Rangers went on to score their first run off Castro on a Kole Calhoun groundout. New York manager Aaron Boone was seen having an extended conversation with Severino in the dugout after he closed out the seventh inning with a 99 mph fastball for a strikeout. Boone could be seen on the...
October 03
October 03

St. Louis Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols hits 703rd career home run

PITTSBURGH --  Albert Pujols hit his 703rd career home run Monday night. The 42-year-old slugger connected for the St. Louis Cardinals off Pittsburgh Pirates right-hander Mitch Keller, pulling a two-run shot into the left-field stands to snap a scoreless tie in the sixth inning of the Cards' eventual 3-2 loss. It was Pujols' 35th career home run at PNC Park, his most at any visiting ballpark. The drive gave Pujols 2,216 RBIs, which ranks second all time behind Hank Aaron's 2,297. Babe Ruth unofficially drove in 2,214 runs, but many were not counted because the statistic was not recognized by baseball until 1920. "Seeing him hit a home run in that situation was fun to watch," Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol said. "You feel pretty good about where you're at whenever he swings, and his home runs have been very meaningful." Pujols, who plans to retire after the season, has 24 home runs this year -- his most since hitting 31 for the ...
October 03
October 03

Wisconsin to pay fired football coach Paul Chryst an $11 million buyout

Former Wisconsin football coach Paul Chryst will receive a reduced buyout of $11 million, the school said Monday. Chryst, fired Sunday following a 2-3 start to the season, had approximately $20 million left on a contract that paid him through January 2027. But athletic director Chris McIntosh said Sunday that Chryst had agreed to take a reduced payout, while not revealing the specifics. Chryst will be paid his buyout no later than Feb. 1, and all funds will come from the University of Wisconsin Foundation, the school's fundraising organization. McIntosh reached the decision to change coaches after a lengthy discussion Sunday with Chryst, who won 72% of his games (67-26) at his alma mater. Wisconsin named defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard, a three-time All-America defensive back at the school, as interim coach for the remainder of the season. Chryst's firing surprised many around college football. Illinois coach Bret Bielema, the former Wisconsin coach whose team...
October 03
October 03

Ark.-Pine Bluff-Kansas St. Preview

Kansas State coach Frank Martin was thrilled with the way his team navigated a pair of difficult road games. Martin's 17th-ranked Wildcats shouldn't have many problems continuing their strong start during a three-game homestand that begins Monday night against winless Arkansas-Pine Bluff. Behind Jacob Pullen's hot shooting, Kansas State (10-1) won at then-No. 18 UNLV 95-80 on Dec. 12 and followed with an 87-74 victory over Alabama in Mobile, Ala., a week later. Pullen, who leads the Wildcats with 20.2 points per game, scored a season-best 28 points and made a career-high seven 3-pointers against the Rebels. He topped that point total Saturday night with 30, which included a 6-for-9 performance from beyond the arc. When the Wildcats took a 40-20 lead late in the first half, Pullen had scored as many points as the entire Crimson Tide team. "He's the best shooter I've ever been around," Kansas State forward Jamar Samuels said. Before that game, Kansas State had already...
October 03
October 03

NFL under fire over following Tua Tagovailoa's back-to-back head injuries

The league said it is exploring changes to its policy on head injuries.
October 03
Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is examined during the first half of the team's NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, on Sept. 29, 2022, in Cincinnati.
October 03

Denver Broncos RB Javonte Williams out for season, LB Randy Gregory to miss multiple weeks

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- The  Denver Broncos' loss to the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday came with a staggering price tag as running back Javonte Williams will miss the remainder of the season and outside linebacker Randy Gregory will miss multiple weeks, both due to right knee injuries.  Coach Nathaniel Hackett said Monday if the team had practiced, quarterback Russell Wilson (right shoulder) would have been limited. The Broncos, who play Thursday night against the Indianapolis Colts, released an injury report with projections of the players' participation had the team actually been on the field. Hackett said he expects Wilson to play against the Colts. "He got dinged up in the game, he's just a little sore,'' Hackett said. " ... Right now, he's playing.'' Williams' injury will have a significant impact on the team's offense. Sources said Monday that Williams tore the ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) and LCL (lateral collateral ligament)...
October 03
October 03

Tony La Russa stepping down as Chicago White Sox manager because of health concerns

CHICAGO -- Tony La Russa is stepping down as Chicago White Sox manager because of health concerns that kept him out of the dugout for the final five weeks of the season, he announced in a statement released Monday.  La Russa, who will turn 78 on Tuesday, hasn't managed a game since abruptly leaving Guaranteed Rate Field on Aug. 30 after doctors told him he needed to undergo further testing related to a heart issue. According to La Russa on Monday, there was an issue with the pacemaker he had implanted in February that forced him to step away from the team. During his absence, a second issue was diagnosed, forcing him to take an indefinite leave. He was under contract through the 2023 season.  "At no time this season did either issue negatively affect my responsibilities as White Sox manager," La Russa said in the statement. "However, it has become obvious that the length of the treatment and recovery process for this second health issue makes it impossible for me to be...
October 03
October 03

Sources: Minnesota Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns was on bed rest for days due to throat infection

Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns was hospitalized last week with a throat infection that caused him trouble breathing and forced him to be on bed rest for days, sources told ESPN. Towns spoke to the media Monday for the first time since falling ill and said his weight was down to 231 pounds (he's listed at 248), but he didn't reveal the nature of the non-COVID-19 illness. Towns, who missed all of the Timberwolves' training camp, said he didn't get clearance to walk again until Saturday, when he attended a team event. "I'm still recovering. I'm still getting better," Towns told reporters in Minneapolis before the team left on a 10-day preseason road trip. "There was more drastic things to worry about than basketball [during the illness]." Timberwolves coach Chris Finch said Monday that Towns wouldn't play in Tuesday's preseason opener against the Heat in Miami as he works on ramping up his conditioning. During the offseason, Towns had ...
October 03
October 03

Tony La Russa stepping down as Chicago White Sox manager due to health concerns

CHICAGO -- Tony La Russa is stepping down as White Sox manager due to health concerns that kept him out of the dugout for the final five weeks of the season, he announced in a statement released Monday.  La Russa, who will turn 78 on Tuesday, hasn't managed a game since abruptly leaving Guaranteed Rate Field on Aug. 30 after doctors told him he needed to undergo further testing related to a heart issue. According to La Russa, there was an issue with the pacemaker he had installed back in February which forced him to step away from the team. During his absence, a second issue was analyzed which forced him to take an indefinite leave. He was under contract through the 2023 season.  "At no time this season did either issue negatively affect my responsibilities as White Sox manager," La Russa said in the statement. "However, it has become obvious that the length of the treatment and recovery process for this second health issue makes it impossible for me to be the White Sox...
October 03
October 03

Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Todd Bowles explains handling of TE Cameron Brate's concussion

TAMPA, Fla. -- The  Tampa Bay Buccaneers' handling of Cameron Brate's concussion against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday night raised some eyebrows, but coach Todd Bowles said Monday that the team initially believed the tight end injured a shoulder and did not show concussion symptoms until halftime, which is why he remained in the game. With 1 minute, 35 seconds to go in the second quarter, Brate's head collided with teammate  Chris Godwin's shoulder as he was running across the field. Brate flung backward onto the ground, drawing a collective gasp from the crowd. "He went on the sideline. He complained of shoulder discomfort, nothing about his head," Bowles said Monday. "He was checked out three times. You just say, 'Give him a minute.' Nothing came up. He went back in until the end of the half. At halftime, he started having symptoms, but they were delayed. He started complaining about that. We tested him, he's in the protocol, and we kept him...
October 03
October 03

LSU defensive back Sevyn Banks to miss 5-6 weeks after sustaining spinal cord bruise in win against Auburn

LSU defensive back Sevyn Banks, who was strapped to a stretcher and carted off the field Saturday during the win at Auburn, sustained a spinal cord bruise, coach Brian Kelly told reporters Monday. "Nothing else," Kelly said. "No structural issues." Kelly said it was a "scary situation" and thanked Auburn's medical staff for its support. Banks, a graduate transfer from Ohio State, was injured during the opening kickoff of the game and quickly taken to a hospital. Kelly said Banks would be out five to six weeks. Kelly said the recovery timeline is similar to that of fellow defensive back Major Burns, who suffered a neck injury last month. Burns will resume non-contact drills next week, Kelly said. Kelly said starting offensive lineman Garrett Dellinger, who missed the Auburn game with a broken hand, will be back at practice this week. Kelly also updated the status of quarterback Jayden Daniels, who got banged up against Auburn. "He felt good...
October 03
October 03

Carolina Panthers QB Sam Darnold's return from IR not close, coach Matt Rhule says

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Carolina Panthers have little option but to stick with Baker Mayfield at quarterback for the NFL's lowest-ranked offense, with 2021 starter Sam Darnold at least another week from being ready to return from injured reserve. "Not close right now,'' coach Matt Rhule said Monday of Darnold, who suffered a high ankle sprain in late August. "Not this week. Maybe he starts the window maybe the next week. This was a doctor thing. He's not going to be practicing this week.'' Darnold was eligible to be activated off injured reserve Monday, but a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter it's "still going to be a while.'' "Baker is our quarterback,'' Rhule said. "We have to continue to find ways to help him.'' Mayfield has the NFL's lowest QBR through four weeks at 15.4. His 55.4 completion percentage is third worst in the league, only better than that of two 2021 first-round draft picks -- the Chicago Bears' Justin Fields (50.7) and...
October 03
October 03

Saint Joseph's 77, Lehigh 66

PHILADELPHIA -- Darrin Governs scored 15 points and led five players in double figures in Saint Joseph's 77-66 win over Lehigh on Sunday night. Saint Joseph's (4-6) trailed 52-47 with 10:13 to play before scoring 13 straight. Bryant Irwin put the Saint Joseph's ahead 60-52 on a jumper with 6:46 remaining. Chris Prescott, Carl Baptiste and Carl Jones scored 13 points apiece for Saint Joseph's. Irwin added 11 points and Garrett Williamson tallied 11 rebounds for Saint Joseph's, which has won 14 straight in the all-time series. Lehigh, which trailed 40-38 at halftime, opened the second half on a 10-3 run, including eight straight points from Dave Buchberger. Buchberger, who finished with 13 points, put Lehigh (4-6) ahead 48-43 on a jump shot with 13:32 left in the game. Gabe Knutson chipped in 13, Michael Ojo 12 and CJ McCollum 10 for Lehigh, which had 12 turnovers in the second half.
October 03
October 03

LSU defensive back Sevyn Banks to miss 5-6 weeks after suffering spinal cord bruise in win against Auburn

LSU defensive back Sevyn Banks, who was strapped to a stretcher and carted off the field Saturday during the win at Auburn, suffered a spinal cord bruise, coach Brian Kelly told reporters Monday. "Nothing else," Kelly said. "No structural issues." Kelly said it was a "scary situation" and thanked Auburn's medical staff for its support. Banks, a graduate transfer from Ohio State, was injured during the opening kickoff of the game and quickly taken to a hospital. Kelly said Banks would be out five to six weeks. Kelly said the recovery timeline is similar to that of fellow defensive back Major Burns, who suffered a neck injury last month. Burns will resume non-contact drills next week, Kelly said. Kelly said starting offensive lineman Garrett Dellinger, who missed the Auburn game with a broken hand, will be back at practice this week. Kelly also updated the status of quarterback Jayden Daniels, who got banged up against Auburn. "He felt good...
October 03
October 03

Miami Dolphins say QB Tua Tagovailoa ruled out for Week 5 game vs. New York Jets

MIAMI -- Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa has been ruled out for Sunday's game against the New York Jets as he continues to progress through concussion protocol, coach Mike McDaniel said Monday. There's no "definite timeline" for Tagovailoa's return after he left the Dolphins' 27-15 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 4. Teddy Bridgewater will start Sunday in his place. Tagovailoa was taken to a local hospital after his head hit the turf late in the second half of Thursday's game in Cincinnati. He was diagnosed with a concussion but was discharged from the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and allowed to fly home with the team early Friday morning. McDaniel said Tagovailoa's scans came back "clean" -- including the MRI he underwent in Miami -- but it's still too early to start thinking about his return to the field. "Right now he is in the building. He's had a couple good days, but he's just trying to go through with the...
October 03
October 03

Nick Saban says Alabama Crimson Tide star QB Bryce Young day-to-day with shoulder injury

Alabama star quarterback Bryce Young is day-to-day as he recovers from a shoulder injury, coach Nick Saban said Monday. Saban reiterated the injury -- a sprained AC joint suffered during the Saturday win over Arkansas -- is not expected to have long-term ramifications. As far as when Young resumes throwing, Saban said, "I can't tell you if that's going to be today, tomorrow or the next day." Alabama, which passed Georgia to take the No. 1 spot in the AP poll over the weekend, hosts Texas A&M on Saturday. The Aggies upset the Crimson Tide at home last season. Young won the Heisman Trophy last season and is in contention to be the top quarterback in next year's NFL draft. A junior, he has thrown for 1,204 yards and 14 touchdowns with three interceptions. He has also rushed for three scores. Saban said he would encourage Young to avoid high-risk plays. Young injured his shoulder scrambling against Arkansas. "The only thing I would tell Bryce is, 'Don't put yourself in a...
October 03
October 03

Sources: Denver Broncos RB Javonte Williams out for season with torn ACL, LCL

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Denver Broncos running back Javonte Williams, who is the Broncos' leading rusher, will miss the remainder of the season because of a torn ACL in his right knee, sources told ESPN. Sources said Williams will have surgery in the coming weeks. Williams underwent tests, including a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) exam that also showed a tear in his right LCL (lateral collateral ligament), sources said. Outside linebacker Randy Gregory, meanwhile, will undergo arthroscopic surgery to trim the meniscus in his right knee, sources told ESPN, confirming a report by NFL Network. Gregory's ACL is intact and he is expected to miss two to six weeks. Gregory was sent for an MRI on Monday after he suffered the injury with just under six minutes remaining in the game on a 9-yard scramble by Raiders quarterback Derek Carr. Gregory, who signed a five-year, $70 million contract with the Broncos in March, had knee surgery after the 2021 season...
October 03
October 03

Georgia Bulldogs star defensive tackle Jalen Carter out 'a week or two' with knee injury

No. 2 Georgia will be without star defensive tackle Jalen Carter for "a week or two" as he deals with a knee injury, coach Kirby Smart told reporters Monday. A 6-foot-3, 310-pound junior, Carter is projected to be a top pick in next year's NFL draft. ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. lists him as the third-best prospect overall. Smart said Carter injured an MCL last Saturday at Missouri. Georgia came back in the fourth quarter, scoring 14 unanswered points to win 26-22. "We don't know how long it's going to be," Smart said of Carter's recovery, "but it's doesn't look good for this week." Georgia hosts Auburn on Saturday and Vanderbilt the following week. Then, after a bye week, Georgia plays rival Florida in Jacksonville. The Bulldogs, who are 5-0 this season, expect to welcome back starting defensive back Javon Bullard on Saturday, Smart said. Bullard did not travel to Missouri as part of a one-game suspension he received following his arrest Sept. 25, when he was charged...
October 03
October 03

Source: Denver Broncos RB Javonte Williams out for season with torn ACL, LCL

Denver Broncos running back Javonte Williams has a torn ACL and LCL and will miss the rest of the season, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter. Williams was taken to the locker room on a cart after he suffered the injury to his right knee in Sunday's 32-23 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. Williams, who entered the game as the Broncos' leader in carries and rushing yards, stayed down on the field after a 1-yard loss on the first play of the second half. Mike Boone replaced Williams in the Broncos' lineup right after Williams went down. Melvin Gordon III had split time with Williams over the first three games of the season, but Gordon fumbled in the second quarter and the Raiders' Amik Robertson returned it 68 yards for a touchdown. It was Gordon's fourth fumble of the season -- the Broncos have lost two of them. Gordon did get some carries on the Broncos' next possession. Information from ESPN's Jeff Legwold was used in this report.
October 03
October 03

Carolina Panthers QB Sam Darnold's return from IR not close, source says

Despite Baker Mayfield's struggles with the NFL's lowest-ranked offense, the Carolina Panthers will not be able to turn to Sam Darnold anytime soon. Darnold is eligible to be activated off injured reserve Monday but is not close to being fully recovered from the high ankle sprain he suffered in late August, a source told ESPN's Adam Schefter. It's still "going to be a while" before Darnold will be able to return, the source said.  Panthers head coach Matt Rhule said Monday that Darnold won't be ready to come off IR this week, but said, "maybe next week.'' Mayfield has the NFL's lowest QBR through four weeks at 15.4, and his 55.4 completion percentage is third worst in the league, only better than that of two 2021 first-round draft picks -- the Chicago Bears' Justin Fields (50.7) and the San Francisco 49ers' Trey Lance (48.4), who is out for the season with an ankle injury. Sunday's 26-16 loss to the Arizona...
October 03
October 03

LB Jamie Collins joins New England Patriots for fourth time

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Veteran linebacker Jamie Collins has proved that players can go home again. And again. And again. And again. Collins has agreed to a contract to return to the New England Patriots, his agent David Canter of GSE Worldwide Football confirmed Monday. It will be Collins' fourth stint with the Patriots, where he began his career as a second-round draft choice (2013-2016), returned in 2019 and then again in 2021. The Patriots have dual options in bringing Collins aboard -- active roster or practice squad -- as they look to address their run defense that has allowed 325 yards over the past six quarters in losses to the Baltimore Ravens and Green Bay Packers. Collins, 32, had visited with the Patriots on Sept. 21. As part of the trickle-down effect of his arrival, the club has informed practice squad linebacker Harvey Langi that he is being released, according to sources. The 6-foot-3, 255-pound Collins has appeared in 122...
October 03
October 03

CB Jimmy Smith retiring after 11 seasons with Baltimore Ravens

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- In announcing his retirement Monday, Baltimore Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith acknowledged that he endured many injuries and wants fans to think about the type of player he was when he was on the field. "But, ultimately, I want them to remember -- championship," Smith said as he flashed the Super Bowl ring on his right hand. Smith, 34, spent 11 seasons in Baltimore and will forever be remembered for stopping Michael Crabtree from making a catch on a fourth-down goal-line stand, which preserved the Ravens' 34-31 Super Bowl XLVII victory over the San Francisco 49ers in February 2013. On Monday, Ravens coach John Harbaugh recounted the start of the 2012 season when Smith was coming back from a sports hernia injury and was limited to special teams. Smith was frustrated about not playing defense, and Harbaugh told him that he would "make the play that wins us the Super Bowl" if he stuck with it. "This is not a lie," Smith said. "I didn't...
October 03
October 03

Miami Hurricanes sticking with quarterback Tyler Van Dyke despite rough outing vs. Middle Tennessee State

After starter Tyler Van Dyke was benched in an ugly loss to Middle Tennessee two weeks ago, Miami head coach Mario Cristobal said Monday there is no quarterback controversy in Coral Gables. "We are honest about the fact that Tyler has played great football here for a long time and you don't turn on your quarterback because we had a bad day." Cristobal said on WQAM's Joe Rose Show in his first public comments on the QB job since Miami's 45-31 loss to MTSU on Sept. 24. "You make sure you do things and install things and work on things that the quarterback and supporting cast feels comfortable with." Miami's offense stagnated in the Week 3 loss at Texas A&M, and Van Dyke struggled again early against MTSU. Over the two-game stretch, he completed just 51% of his throws with one touchdown and two interceptions. Van Dyke, who threw for at least 300 yards and three touchdowns in each of his final six games of 2021, was pulled midway through the loss to MTSU in favor of former...
October 03
October 03

Phoenix Suns lose preseason opener to Australia's Adelaide 36ers in shocking upset at home

The Phoenix Suns lost their preseason opener at home to a hot-shooting Adelaide 36ers team from Australia's National Basketball League 134-124 on Sunday night. The Suns, whose last game at Footprint Center was a 33-point loss to the Dallas Mavericks in Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals, became the first team to lose a preseason game against a non-NBA team since the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2016 against Real Madrid. Current Mavs superstar Luka Doncic played on that Real Madrid team, scoring 3 points in his squad's 142-137 overtime victory against OKC. The 36ers -- who normally play at the FIBA 3-point line, about 18 inches closer than the NBA's -- shot 24-of-43 from long distance. They were led by Craig Randall, who played briefly at the University of Memphis and then at Tennessee-Martin before a stop in the G League, and Robert Franks, who combined for 67 points and 15 triples between them. Randall connected on 13 of 21...
October 03
October 02

Atlanta Braves complete sweep of New York Mets, move closer to another National League East title

ATLANTA -- Dansby Swanson and Matt Olson homered for the third straight game, Travis d'Arnaud hit a go-ahead two-run single in the third inning and the  Atlanta Braves beat the New York Mets 5-3 on Sunday night to win a critical tiebreaker in their season series. The defending World Series champion Braves swept the three-game series and moved two games ahead of New York in the National League East. Any combination of one Atlanta win or one Mets loss would give the Braves their fifth straight division title. "It's a clubhouse full of guys who want to win," Olson said. "That's all it's been since the moment I walked in. That's No. 1 on the program." New York will play its final games of the season against the visiting  Washington Nationals, who are last in the division. Atlanta will play at the  Miami Marlins. Both series start Monday.  Should the season end Wednesday in a tie, Atlanta would take the NL East because it...
October 02
October 02

Wisconsin fires football coach Paul Chryst, names defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard interim coach

Wisconsin fired football coach Paul Chryst on Sunday after the team's 2-3 start. Athletic director Chris McIntosh said in a news conference Sunday night that he met with Chryst in the morning and had an extensive discussion with him, leading to the decision to make a change. "It's a big decision and it's got implications that are not lost on me, but really, really thankful to have been able to work side by side with Coach Chryst through some incredibly exhilarating, positive moments, and some tough ones like today," McIntosh said. Defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard will serve as interim coach. McIntosh, Chryst and Leonhard met with the players Sunday night to inform them of the change. "It's my role to have the position of our program always on my mind," McIntosh said. "We just reached a point where today I felt was the right time to make that decision. It's not one I take lightly; it's an incredibly tough day for us all. But I'm incredibly optimistic that today is the first day...
October 02
October 02

QB Aaron Rodgers after Green Bay Packers' OT escape vs. New England Patriots: 'This way of winning, I don't think, is sustainable'

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Aaron Rodgers didn't figure he would play another terrible half on Sunday against the New England Patriots, and the Green Bay Packers quarterback was right. And Packers coach Matt LaFleur hopes he doesn't make what he called "the worst decision of the day" again when it comes to an ill-advised replay challenge. They got away with it -- just barely -- in Sunday's 27-24 overtime win against the Patriots at Lambeau Field. But had they not been facing a third-string rookie quarterback in Bailey Zappe for most of the game, they might not have. "This way of winning, I don't think, is sustainable because it puts too much pressure on our defense," Rodgers said. "And obviously, I've got to play better and will play better." While fully appreciating that he is fortunate for his team to be 3-1 heading into next Sunday's game against the New York Giants in London, Rodgers did not shy away from the reality of what...
October 02
October 02

Denver Broncos RB Javonte Williams to have MRI after injuring knee in loss to Las Vegas Raiders

LAS VEGAS -- Broncos running back Javonte Williams was taken to the locker room on a cart after he suffered a right knee injury in Sunday's 32-23 loss to the  Las Vegas Raiders. Williams, who entered the game as the Broncos' leader in carries and rushing yards, stayed down on the field after a 1-yard loss on the first play of the second half. Athletic trainers checked his right knee before he was helped to the injury tent on the Broncos' sideline. Williams was not able to put his full weight on his leg as he was helped to the sideline. A few minutes later he was taken to the Broncos' locker room on a cart and ruled out for the remainder of the game. Williams left the Broncos locker room in Allegiant Stadium on crutches as some of his teammates offered quiet encouragement. Broncos coach Nathaniel Hackett said Williams will be sent for an MRI on Monday morning. "We're still evaluating,'' Hackett said. " ... We want to be sure we get MRIs and get a...
October 02
October 02

QB Zach Wilson 'doesn't flinch,' rallies New York Jets to victory in season debut

PITTSBURGH -- Quarterback Zach Wilson's season debut included a historic touchdown catch, a two-quarter slump that nearly doomed the New York Jets and the biggest fourth-quarter comeback of his young career. "That was an ugly win, but that was some of the most fun I've had playing football," Wilson said Sunday after a 24-20 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers at Acrisure Stadium. It was a wild game. The Jets led by 10 points in the first quarter and trailed by 10 in the fourth, but Wilson rallied them with 81- and 65-yard touchdown drives on their final two possessions to pull out their second come-from-behind win on the road. Wilson returned to the huddle after a preseason knee injury that required arthroscopic surgery on Aug. 16. With only three days of full practice, he was predictably rusty (18-for-36, 252 yards, two interceptions), but he made several clutch throws in the fourth quarter. Sunday's game was the first time since 1988 that the...
October 02

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