Update on the latest sports 4/12/2023
The losing is done, NBA teams now await 7-foot-3 Wembanyama
There are very specific rules that NBA teams must follow right now when it comes to mentioning the name of 7-foot-3 French star Victor Wembanyama. He’s got big-man height and elite guard skills and will be the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft. But since he’s not officially in the draft yet, teams can’t discuss him publicly. So they don’t. And they don’t have to, either. Everyone knows what the teams who’ll be in the NBA lottery next month are hoping to have happen. They want the No. 1 pick and the right to select Wembanyama.
Gilgeous-Alexander leads Thunder past Pelicans in play-in
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Shai Gilgeous-Alexander highlighted his 32-point night with a go-ahead baseline jumper and four clutch free throws in the final 29 seconds, and the Oklahoma City Thunder defeated the New Orleans Pelicans 123-118 to remain alive in the Western Conference play-in tourament. Josh Giddey had 31 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds for Oklahoma City, the only Western Conference team to advance to the postseason with a losing record. Brandon Ingram scored 20 of his 30 points in the second half. The loss eliminated the ninth-seeded Pelicans while 10th seed Oklahoma City advanced to play at Minnesota on Friday night for the right to enter the NBA playoffs as an eighth seed.
LaVine scores 39, Bulls beat Raptors 109-105 in play-in game
TORONTO (AP) — Zach LaVine scored 39 points, DeMar DeRozan had 23 against his former team and the Chicago Bulls overcame a 19-point deficit to beat the Toronto Raptors 109-105 in a play-in tournament game. The Bulls will visit the Miami Heat on Friday night for the chance to earn the eighth seed in the Eastern Conference playoff bracket, and a first-round playoff matchup with the Milwaukee Bucks. Nikola Vucevic had 14 points and 13 rebounds for the Bulls, who trailed 66-47 in the third quarter. Fred VanVleet had 26 points and 12 rebounds and Pascal Siakam scored 32 points but Toronto’s season ended in disappointment.
Shout it out: DeRozan’s daughter goes viral in play-in game
TORONTO (AP) — Diar DeRozan wanted to skip a day of school. Her father grudgingly went along with the plan. Turns out, the decision was worth shouting about. The 9-year-old daughter of Chicago guard DeMar DeRozan stole the show at the play-in tournament on Wednesday night. Her shrieks from the stands went viral, and quite possibly played in a role in helping the Bulls defeat the Toronto Raptors 109-105 in an Eastern Conference elimination game.
Rays win 12th straight to start season, 1 shy of MLB record
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — The Tampa Bay Rays won their 12th straight game to start the season, one short of the major league record, as Randy Arozarena hit a three-run homer in a 9-7 victory over the Boston Red Sox. The 1987 Milwaukee Brewers and 1982 Atlanta Braves both opened 13-0, tying for the best mark in big league history. Tampa Bay’s 12-game winning streak matches the team record set in June 2004. Taj Bradley won his major league debut for the Rays. The 22-year-old right-hander allowed three runs and struck out eight over five innings. Arozarena made it 3-0 with a homer off Chris Sale in the first. Tampa Bay leads the majors with 30 home runs and has outscored opponents 92-27.
Vinícius, Benzema lead Real Madrid past Chelsea 2-0 in CL
MADRID (AP) — Karim Benzema has scored again against Chelsea to lead Real Madrid to a 2-0 win in the first leg of the quarterfinals of the Champions League. Substitute Marco Asensio also scored for Madrid after Benzema had netted his sixth goal in five matches against the English club in the latest meeting between the last two European champions. Chelsea played the final half-hour with 10 men after Ben Chilwell was sent off for stopping a Madrid breakaway. It was a second consecutive defeat for new Chelsea interim manager Frank Lampard after he replaced Graham Potter amid the team’s disappointing results.
AP mock NFL draft: CJ Stroud goes to the Panthers
The Carolina Panthers have been on the clock since making a blockbuster trade to acquire the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL draft and get their choice of potential franchise quarterbacks. There’s still no general consensus on which QB will go first. Bryce Young or C.J. Stroud? The Panthers themselves are still trying to decide and they’re doing their due diligence on Anthony Richardson and Will Levis in the process. The Panthers traded four picks along with wide receiver DJ Moore to give new coach Frank Reich a quarterback to build around. The first edition of the AP’s 2023 mock draft says it’ll be Stroud.
Umpire hospitalized after getting hit in head by relay throw
CLEVELAND (AP) — Umpire Larry Vanover is being evaluated for a concussion and other injuries at a hospital after being struck in the head with a relay throw during Wednesday’s game between the New York Yankees and Cleveland Guardians. The 67-year-old Vanover was knocked down by the throw from Guardians All-Star second baseman Andrés Giménez. Vanover was positioned on the infield grass between second and the mound. MaJor League Baseball said Vanover is being checked for a head injury “and other potential medical issues. The timeline on his return is to be determined.” He’s expected to be hospitalized overnight. Plate umpire Chris Cuccione told a pool reporter Vanover had a large knot on his head.
Muncy hits 2 more homers, powers Dodgers past Giants 10-5
SAN FRANCSICO (AP) — Max Muncy hit a three-run homer and a solo shot to finish a three-game set against San Francisco with four homers and 11 RBIs, leading the Los Angeles Dodgers past the Giants 10-5 for a series win. Los Angeles rallied in the fifth on four straight walks against Taylor Rogers, with Freddie Freeman drawing a bases-loaded free pass to bring home Trayce Thompson for the go-ahead run. Clayton Kershaw allowed two earned runs over six innings, hanging tough until the Dodgers started slugging.
Vongtaveelap, Kinhult share LPGA Tour lead at windy Hoakalei
HONOLULU (AP) — Natthakritta Vongtaveelap eagled the par-5 fifth and closed with a chip-in birdie in fading light on the par-3 ninth for a 6-under 66 and a share of the first-round lead Wednesday in the LPGA Tour’s LOTTE Championship. Vongtaveelap had a bogey-free round at windy Hoakalei Country Club to join fellow afternoon starter Frida Kinhult atop the leaderboard. Vongtaveelap is making her second LPGA Tour start. In February, the 20-year-old Thai player won her first two events as pro on the Thai LPGA Tour, then was second behind Lilia Vu in the LPGA Thailand in her debut on the big tour. Kinhult finished with a bogey on No. 9, the 23-year-old Swede’s lone blemish in the difficult conditions.