Update on the latest sports
Sixers win battle of attrition
UNDATED (AP) – The Philadelphia 76ers were able to win a battle of undermanned teams.
Joel Embiid (joh-EHL’ ehm-BEED’) had 45 points and 16 rebounds as the Sixers outlasted the Heat, 137-134 in overtime. Dakota Mathias’ only basket of the game was a go-ahead 3-pointer with 26.1 seconds left. Ben Simmons had five points and 12 assists in his return from injury, but the 76ers continued to play without Tobias Harris, Seth Curry and Shake Milton due to heath and safety protocols involving COVID-19.
With Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo (ad-eh-BY’-oh) and Goran Dragic (DRAH’-gihch) among the Heat sitting out for COVID-related reasons, Tyler Herro (HEE’-roh) paced the team with 34 points while Duncan Robinson had 26.
In Tuesday’s other NBA action:
– LeBron James scored 26 points in just more than three quarters of the Lakers’ 117-100 rout of the Rockets. Anthony Davis added 19 points and 10 rebounds in three quarters to help Los Angeles clobber Houston for the second time in three days. The Lakers led by 20 or more for most of the game on a night James Harden made just 5 of 16 shots and the Rockets were outrebounded 55-42.
– Kevin Durant’s 34 points, 13 assists and nine rebounds keyed the Nets’ 122-116 comeback over the Nuggets. Brown scored 16 points, including the tying and go-ahead baskets down the stretch after Brooklyn trailed by as many as 18. Nikola Jokic (nih-KOH’-lah YOH’-kihch) had 23 points, 11 assists and eight boards for Denver, which was trying to sweep a three-game road trip before being outscored 68-46 in the second half.
– The Jazz completed a 4-2 road trip as Donovan Mitchell scored 27 points in a 117-87 pounding of the Cavaliers. Jordan Clarkson had 21 points and eight rebounds off the bench and Bojan (BOY’-ahn) Bogdanovic added 20 points for Utah. Mitchell and Clarkson each made five 3s as Utah went 24 of 45 beyond the arc.
– Myles Turner’s 22-point effort included a go-ahead 3-pointer with 2:59 to play in the Pacers’ 104-95 verdict over the Warriors. Turner also had 11 rebounds and four blocks for Indiana, playing a back-to-back following a 127-122 loss to the Kings that kicked off a five-game road trip out West. Golden State guard Stephen Curry had 20 points on 7 of 17 shooting, one game after missing 14 of 16 attempts.
– Lonnie Walker IV scored 24 points and the Spurs finished 4-1 on their road trip by topping the Thunder, 112-102. Keldon Johnson added 18 points for the Spurs, committed a season-low four turnovers and earned their 2,200th victory since joining the NBA in 1976. Patty Mils chipped in 17 points, including a 3-pointer that gave San Antonio its largest lead at 85-75 with 10:49 left.
New NBA rules to combat COVID
UNDATED (AP) – With five games called off this week already and more teams dealing with virus-related issues, the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association have enacted additional rules in the hope of keeping the season going safely.
Among the new policies: for “at least the next two weeks,” the league and union said Tuesday, players and team staff will have to remain at their residence when in their home markets and will be prohibited from leaving their hotels or having outside guests when on the road.
Tonight’s matchup in Chicago between the Bulls and the Boston Celtics has been postponed because of coronavirus concerns. Tomorrow’s Wizards-Jazz game in Washington is the latest to be scrubbed.
Two Wizards go on health list
WASHINGTON (AP) – The Washington Wizards say two of their players are going on the NBA’s health and safety protocols list.
The Wizards canceled their Tuesday practice, saying that decision was made “out of an abundance of caution.” They beat the Suns on Monday and are scheduled to host the Jazz on Wednesday. The Wizards did not identify the two players.
In other NBA news:
– The Nets and the NBA are looking into Kyrie Irving’s actions after a video showed the point guard at an indoor gathering while not wearing a mask. Irving missed Tuesday’s game against Denver, his fourth straight for what the Nets are calling personal reasons. He will likely face a quarantine period upon his return and could be fined if the NBA determines he violated the rules in place during the coronavirus pandemic.
T25 MEN’S BASKETBALL-SCHEDULE
Michigan clobbers Wisconsin
UNDATED (AP) – A top-10, Big Ten matchup became a mismatch as Michigan stayed unbeaten.
The seventh-ranked Wolverines are 11-0 following a 77-54 drubbing of No. 9 Wisconsin.
The Wolverines turned it into a blowout by reeling off a 43-6 run bridging the two halves. Michigan led just 26-23 before scoring the last 14 points of the first half.
Mike Smith had 16 points and six assists, while Franz Wagner added 15 points and 10 boards.
Michigan became the first team in college basketball history to beat three ranked teams in a row by at least 19 points.
The Badgers had won seven of their previous 10 visits to Ann Arbor. D’Mitrik Trice had a game-high 20 points for Wisconsin, which fell to 10-3.
Checking out the other top-25 action:
– Cade Cunningham scored 18 points and Oklahoma State held off a late rally to beat No. 6 Kansas, 75-70. The Cowboys squandered a 16-point lead in the second half before scoring the final eight points. Bryce Williams scored 17 points and Avery Anderson III added 14 for Oklahoma State.
– Tyrece Radford had 18 points and 12 rebounds to carry 20th-ranked Virginia Tech to a 74-67 victory over No. 19 Duke. The Hokies jump to an 18-point, first-half lead and hold off Duke’s second-half rally to win for the sixth time in seven games. Keve Aluma added 17 points and seven rebounds, and Jalen Cone finished with 14 points for Tech.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-COLLEGE BASKETBALL
Tennessee-Vanderbilt game postponed
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Southeastern Conference has postponed the Tuesday night basketball game between in-state rivals Tennessee and Vanderbilt. It’s because of a combination of positive coronavirus tests, contact tracing and quarantining within the Commodores’ program.
The game was a late addition to the schedule because of COVID-19 issues at Missouri, where Vanderbilt had been scheduled to play, and at South Carolina, Tennessee’s originally scheduled opponent.
Vanderbilt is still set to visit Tennessee on Saturday night as originally scheduled.
In other virus-related developments in college basketball:
– The Big 12 announced Tuesday that West Virginia has postponed its next two men’s basketball home games due to COVID-19 concerns. The announcement came a day after the 13th-ranked Mountaineers called off their game Tuesday night at No. 2 Baylor.
– No. 22 Oregon has paused all team-related activities because of COVID-19 protocols. The Ducks won’t play planned games at home against Arizona State on Thursday and Arizona on Saturday. The games will be rescheduled.
– The Nebraska men’s basketball game at Maryland scheduled for Saturday has been postponed because of a COVID-19 outbreak in the Cornhuskers’ program.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL-ALABAMA CELEBRATION
Alabama fans ignore precautions for celebration
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) – Thousands of excited football fans ignored pandemic precautions and partied in streets around the University of Alabama after the Crimson Tide defeated Ohio State for the national championship.
City officials had urged people to watch the game at home and celebrate privately to prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19. But students and others poured out of jam-packed bars near campus as time expired in Miami.
The massive crowd that resulted was recorded by traffic cameras and images posted on social media. Many of the fans screaming and cheering in the middle of the street didn’t take basic precautions like wearing face masks.
Burrow says he’s on track for Week 1
UNDATED (AP) – Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow expects to start running on his surgically repaired left knee next month and is confident he’ll be ready to start next season. The timetable is based on zero setbacks in the rigorous rehab of his knee.
The rookie quarterback suffered torn ligaments in a Nov. 22 loss to Washington and had surgery in early December.
Checking out other NFL tidbits:
– Offensive tackle Jared Veldheer is back with the Packers. The move gives the 33-year-old veteran an opportunity to compete in playoff games for different teams on back-to-back weekends. Veldheer was the Colts’ starting left tackle for their 27-24 AFC first-round playoff loss to the Bills last weekend. Green Bay plays the Rams on Saturday.
– As they wait for Pro Bowl guard Joel Bitonio and top cornerback Denzel Ward to return from COVID-19 and join their playoff run, the Browns have lost their replacements to injuries. Cleveland placed guard Michael Dunn and cornerback Robert Jackson on injured reserve, losing two players who started Sunday’s playoff win at Pittsburgh. Bitonio and Ward remain sidelined with the virus.
– The Bills have reached an agreement to sign running back Devonta Freeman to their practice squad. However, he must first undergo the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols before being allowed to practice, making it unlikely he’ll be available for this weekend’s playoff game against the Ravens.
– Colts left tackle Anthony Castonzo has announced his retirement after 10 NFL seasons. His decision came three days after the Colts were eliminated from the playoffs with a 27-24 wild-card round loss at Buffalo and less than two weeks after he had season-ending ankle surgery.
– Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers says he will be a guest host on “Jeopardy!” during the offseason. The show is currently using a series of interim hosts to replace Alex Trebek, who died of cancer on Nov. 8. Rodgers was a winning “Celebrity Jeopardy!” contestant in 2015.
Wild’s Foligno gets extension
UNDATED (AP) – Marcus Foligno (foh-LEE’-noh) has a new contract following the best season of his career.
The Minnesota Wild have worked out a three-year, $9.3 million extension with the forward, who had 25 points, a plus-8 rating and a team-high 184 hits last season despite playing in only 59 games. He is ninth in the league with 1,446 hits since the start of the 2013-14 season.
Also around the NHL:
– The league says 17 of the 27 players that have tested positive for the coronavirus are on the Stars. The NHL says most of the 17 Stars players are asymptomatic and all are recovering without complication. Commissioner Gary Bettman on Monday said the testing numbers so far were very good.
– Blackhawks coach Jeremy Colliton has agreed to a two-year contract extension on the eve of his third season with the team. Colliton is 62-58-17 since he replaced Joel Quenneville in November 2018. He guided Chicago into the postseason last year, winning a four-game series against Edmonton before being eliminated by Vegas.
– The Bruins say they will retire Willie O’Ree’s jersey No. 22 prior to their Feb. 18 game against the Devils. O’Ree became the league’s first Black player when he suited up for Boston on Jan. 18, 1958, against Montreal. Legally blind in one eye, he played two seasons for the Bruins and retired as a player at age 44 in 1979 following long stints with the San Diego Gulls and Los Angeles Blades of the Western Hockey League.
Rockies avoid arbitration with Senzatela
DENVER (AP) – Antonio Senzatela and the Colorado Rockies has avoided salary arbitration by working out a one-year, $3 million contract.
Senzatela was 5-3 with a 3.44 ERA in 12 starts last year. He earned $212,407 prorated from a $573,500 salary and had been eligible for arbitration for the first time.
Masters plans for a limited number of spectators in April
AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) – Augusta National Club chairman Fred Ridley says the Masters intends to have a limited number of spectators when it is played April 8-11.
He says the club still plans to operate the tournament the way it did in November with healthy and safety standards set because of the coronavirus pandemic. Those standards included mandatory COVID-19 testing for everyone on site, along with CDC guidelines such as social distancing and wearing masks.