Update on the latest sports 4/12/2023
NFL draft dominated early by QBs, including top pick Young
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Quarterbacks dominated the first part of the NFL draft. Bryce Young, C.J. Stroud and Anthony Richardson were among the top four picks Thursday night, an expected result in a league where teams know finding a franchise QB is the quickest path to success. The Carolina Panthers selected Young, the slender and dynamic Alabama quarterback, with the No. 1 pick, seven weeks after making a blockbuster trade with Chicago to move up to get their choice of potential franchise players. The Panthers chose the 2021 Heisman Trophy winner over Ohio State’s Stroud, Florida’s Richardson and Kentucky’s Will Levis. New coach Frank Reich said earlier in the week that the organization reached a consensus Monday after several weeks of deliberation.
Ravens agree to 5-year, $260M deal with QB Lamar Jackson
OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP) — The Baltimore Ravens agreed in principle with Lamar Jackson on a five-year deal on Thursday, making their star quarterback the highest-paid player in NFL history. The Ravens and Jackson agreed on a $260 million, five-year deal with $185 million in guaranteed money, a person familiar with the terms told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the contract hasn’t been signed. The deal keeps the 2019 NFL MVP in Baltimore for the foreseeable future and ends a contract negotiation saga that was dominating the team’s offseason. Jackson’s contract tops the $255 million, five-year deal the Philadelphia Eagles gave Jalen Hurts earlier this month. Hurts got $179.3 million in guarantees.
Levis, Hooker among top prospects for Day 2 of NFL draft
Kentucky’s Will Levis and Tennessee’s Hendon Hooker are two quarterbacks who are tantalizing prospects for teams on Day 2 of the NFL draft. Levis and Hooker slipped into the second round as the run on quarterbacks came to a screeching halt after the Colts selected Florida’s Anthony Richardson Jr. with the fourth overall pick. The 2023 NFL draft began with the Panthers making Alabama’s Bryce Young the top overall pick and the Texans chose Ohio State’s CJ Stroud next. Levis was projected to go as high as that No. 2 pick but instead fell to Day 2.
NFL Draft 2023 Live | Young goes first, all 1st round picks
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Follow along for real-time updates on the NFL draft with live updates by Associated Press journalists around the country. The draft in Kansas City has begun and is being broadcast by the NFL Network, ABC, ESPN and ESPNDeportes. The Carolina Panthers kicked off Thursday night’s proceedings by taking quarterback Bryce Young with the first pick.
Celtics pull away, beat Hawks 128-120 for 4-2 series win
ATLANTA (AP) — Al Horford hit a huge 3-pointer against his former team and the Boston Celtics broke open a tight game in the closing minutes to beat the Atlanta Hawks 128-120. The Celtics win the opening-round playoff series four games to two and advance to face the Philadelphia 76ers. Game 1 is Monday night in Boston. The Celtics ripped off an 11-0 run that included three straight 3-pointers. Horford’s big shot was sandwiched around treys from Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. Brown led the Celtics with 32 points, while Tatum had 30. Trae Young paced Atlanta with 30 points but made only one field goal in the second half.
Bring on Philly! Celtics fend off Hawks, face 76ers next
ATLANTA (AP) — Bring on Philly. The Boston Celtics finally finished off the Atlanta Hawks, winning the opening-round series in six games with a 128-120 victory. Now, the Celtics can turn their attention to the well-rested Philadelphia 76ers for a matchup between the two highest-seeded teams left on the Eastern Conference side. Game 1 is Monday night in Boston. With top-seeded Milwaukee stunningly knocked out by Miami, the Celtics-76ers winner will surely be viewed as a big favorite to advance to the NBA Finals. Boston has essentially been in championship-or-bust mode since losing to Golden State in last year’s finals.
Brittney Griner gets emotional discussing Russian detainment
PHOENIX (AP) — Brittney Griner got emotional quickly while speaking to reporters for the first time since her nearly 10-month detainment in Russia on drug-related charges. The WNBA star had to take a moment to compose herself after being asked about her resiliency through the ordeal. Griner’s first news conference drew more than 100 people, including Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs, members of the Phoenix Mercury organization and Griner’s wife, Cherelle. Griner was arrested in February 2022 at a Moscow airport after Russian authorities said a search of her luggage revealed vape cartridges containing cannabis oil. She pleaded guilty and was sentenced to nine years but was released in a prisoner swap in December.
Edwards’ lawyer: Assault charges baseless; chair was in way
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The attorney for Minnesota Timberwolves star Anthony Edwards says his client will “vigorously defend” himself against misdemeanor third-degree assault charges. Edwards allegedly swung a folding chair that struck two Denver arena employees after the series-ending loss to the Nuggets. Edwards’ attorney Harvey Steinberg criticized the Denver Police Department’s decision to “inexplicably” charge Edwards after Game 5. Steinberg said Edwards’ exit from the court was partially obstructed by the chair and that he did not intend to hurt anyone. Edwards did not participate in season-ending news conferences at team headquarters.
Heat-Knicks: A playoff rivalry that’s about to get rekindled
MIAMI (AP) — They brawled in 1997. Jeff Van Gundy clung to Alonzo Mourning’s leg in 1998. Allan Houston got a friendly bounce in 1999. Clarence Weatherspoon didn’t get one in 2000. Amare Stoudemire lost a fight with a glass-enclosed fire extinguisher in 2012. Something always happens when it’s Knicks vs. Heat. And here we go again. There are more storied rivalries in the NBA — Lakers-Celtics and 76ers-Celtics among them — but there is just something about a Heat vs. Knicks matchup that brings out something extra in Miami and New York. They’re about to meet in the NBA playoffs for the sixth time. Game 1 of an Eastern Conference semifinal series is Sunday at Madison Square Garden.
Field narrows to 6 teams in Premier League’s relegation race
The math is changing in the scramble to avoid relegation from the Premier League. There was an unlikely nine-team scrap at the end of March but the field looks to have slimmed to six candidates with a month to go in the season. Last-place Southampton looks doomed so it appears to be two from the other five for the other relegation spots. Those teams are Everton, Leicester, Nottingham Forest, Leeds and West Ham. Everton is a nine-time English champion which has been in the top division in its various guises since 1954. Leicester was a league champion at preseason odds of 5,000-1 only seven years ago.