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Pistons tie team record with 17 3-pointers, top Magic

Mon, 18 Dec 2017 00:41:23 GMT

Reggie Bullock scored a career-high 20 points, and the Detroit Pistons tied a franchise record with 17 3-pointers in a 114-110 victory over the Orlando Magic on Sunday.

The Pistons have won three in a row after starting December with a seven-game losing streak. They almost let this game slip away when Orlando went on a 19-0 run to cut the lead to five late in the fourth, but Detroit was able to hold on.

Nikola Vucevic had 24 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists for the Magic. They have dropped five straight and 16 of 19.

RAPTORS 108, KINGS 93

TORONTO (AP) - DeMar DeRozan scored 21 points, Jonas Valanciunas had 13 points and a season-high 16 rebounds and Toronto won its ninth straight home game, beating Sacramento.

Kyle Lowry added 16 points and Norman Powell had 14. An NBA-best 11-1 at home, Toronto won for the ninth time in its past 10 and improved to 11-4 against Western Conference opponents.

Bogdan Bogdanovic and Garrett Temple each scored 18 points for the Kings.

___

For more NBA coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball




McCoy breaks 10,000, leads Bills to 24-16 win over Dolphins

Sun, 17 Dec 2017 22:18:02 GMT

LeSean McCoy scored twice and surpassed 10,000 career-yards rushing, while helping the Buffalo Bills stay in the thick of the AFC playoff hunt with a 24-16 win over the Miami Dolphins on Sunday.Tyrod Taylor also scored on a 9-yard touchdown run and Shareece Wright and Jordan Poyer intercepted Miami's Jay Cutler on consecutive drives to start the second half in a game Buffalo never trailed. Rookie Tre'Davious White sealed the win by intercepting Cutler with 28 seconds remaining - and a play after Miami punter Matt Haack recovered an onside kick at Miami's 37.The Bills have won three of four and improved to 8-6 to match the team's best start through 14 games during Buffalo's 17-year playoff drought - the longest active streak in North America's four major professional sports. The Bills were 8-6 in both 2004 and 2014 but missed the playoffs with 9-7 finishes.Buffalo also finished 6-2 at home to match its best finish at Orchard Park since 1999.Buffalo must now hit the road to continue its playoff pursuit in closing the season at New England next week and then at Miami on Dec. 31.The loss all but mathematically eliminated the Dolphins (6-8) from playoff contention, and after they ended a seven-year drought last season.McCoy opened the scoring with a 4-yard run to cap Buffalo's opening drive. Then, he put Buffalo up 14-6 with a 16-yard catch with 6:05 left in the second quarter on a drive during which McCoy became the 30th player to break the 10,000-yard rushing milestone.The ninth-year player reached the plateau with a 14-yard burst off right guard. McCoy was shaken up on the play while being tackled by Kiko Alonso.After missing just one snap, McCoy returned to the field and scored two plays later.This time, McCoy found his footing on dry turf, a week after braving the wintry elements while rushing for 156 yards on a snow-covered field and sealing Buffalo's 13-7 overtime win over Indianapolis.McCoy finished with 50 yards rushing, upping his career total to 10,011, and had four catches for 46 yards.Taylor showed no signs of a bruised left knee that forced him to miss one game. He went 17 of 29 for 224 yards and added 42 yards rushing.Miami was undone by familiar inconsistencies at quarterback and on defense, while looking nothing like the team that stunned New England in a 27-20 win Monday night.Cutler's two interceptions came after he threw for three touchdowns and no interceptions against the Patriots.Miami's defense surrendered 328 yards offense to Buffalo, a week after holding New England to 248 yards.Even discipline was an issue.Early in the fourth quarter, receiver Jarvis Landry was flagged for pass interference to negate Kenny Stills' 12-yard reception. Then, Landry argued the call and was penalized again for unsportsmanlike conduct. Rather than being first-and-10 at Buffalo's 40, the Dolphins faced first-and-35 at their own 23 in a drive that led to them punting three plays later.Kenyan Drake had 78 yards rushing and scored on a 1-yard run. Cutler finished 28 of 49 for 274 yards and three interceptions.Cody Parkey also hit 28- and 41-yard field goals.TAYLOR TOUCHDOWNSTaylor scored a touchdown rushing and passing in the same game for the 10th time since taking over Buffalo's starting job in 2015. He joins Carolina's Cam Newton and Washington's Kirk Cousins as the only other players to do that 10 times since 2015.THIRD-DOWNAfter the Dolphins limited their past two opponents to converting just one of 24 third-down chances, the Bills converted their first two as part of a 10-play, 81-yard scoring drive capped by McCoy's four-yard run. Buffalo converted seven of 15 third-down chances.DOLPHINS IN DECEMBERMiami dropped to 9-4 in games played at Orchard Park, New York, in December or later.INJURIESDolphins: CB T.J. McDonald left in the fourth quarter with a shoulder injury.Bills: CB E.J. Gaines was carted off in the fourth quarter with a knee injury.INACTIVES:Dolphins: Running back Damien Williams missed his third consecutive game with [...]



Jaguars thump Texans 45-7 for 1st playoff berth since 2007

Sun, 17 Dec 2017 22:17:31 GMT

The Jacksonville Jaguars are returning to the playoffs for the first time in a decade thanks to a 45-7 drubbing of rival Houston on Sunday.

Once the NFL's poster child for futility and a punchline for potential relocation, the Jaguars (10-4) are now one of the league's top turnaround stories.

Blake Bortles threw three touchdowns passes, including two to a reserve receiver who slept in his car earlier this season. The Jaguars won for the seventh time in eight games to clinch a postseason berth for the first time since 2007.

Bortles finished with a season-high 326 yards and the best QB rating (143.8) of his career, including 186 yards and a touchdown to rookie Keelan Cole. Primary punt returner Jaydon Mickens, who stepped in for injured starter Marqise Lee in the first quarter, caught four passes for 61 yards and two scores against the Texans (4-10).

It was a career day for Mickens, who said this week he spent nights in his car outside the facility while on the practice squad in September and October. He did it to save money, not knowing how long he would remain in town.

Now, he and teammates will be getting playoff checks.

That's a huge change for Jacksonville. The Jaguars were an NFL-worst 22-74 over the previous six years, more a laughingstock than a postseason contender.

Owner Shad Khan fired coach Gus Bradley one year ago Sunday, following a close loss at Houston. Khan hired Tom Coughlin to oversee football decisions and made interim Doug Marrone the head coach. Coughlin and Marrone added several key players and changed the culture with a grueling offseason and training camp.

The Jags got off to an up-and-down start, but have hit their stride down the stretch.

Bortles has been better than expected of late, with seven touchdown passes and no turnovers the last three games. Cole and fellow rookie Dede Westbrook have been equally impressive.

The Jags didn't even need rookie Leonard Fournette on Sunday. He was inactive because of a sore right quadriceps muscle.

Jacksonville's defense has been the glue all season and was dominant again. Jacksonville led 31-0 for the biggest halftime lead in team history.

The defense had one lapse, when DeAndre Hopkins beat Jalen Ramsey for gains of 40 and 25 yards in the third quarter. The second one went for a touchdown.

T.J. Yates, making his first start since 2015, was mostly ineffective in place of Tom Savage (concussion). Yates completed 12 of 31 passes for 128 yards, with the TD and an interception.

INJURIES

Texans: Center Nick Martin (ankle) and right guard Jeff Allen (concussion) left in the second half. Linebacker Benardrick McKinney injured a shoulder making a touchdown-saving tackle on a punt return.

Jaguars: Lee injured his right ankle in the first quarter and was later ruled out. Ramsey (groin), defensive end Dante Fowler Jr. (hamstring) and safety Peyton Thompson (foot) left the game but later returned.

QUESTIONABLE CALL

The Texans could have run out the clock trailing 24-0 late in the first half, but with 53 seconds remaining and three timeouts, coach Bill O'Brien decided to try to get something going. Yates threw an interception, and the Jaguars scored three plays later.

UP NEXT

Texans: Host Pittsburgh next Monday in the team's home finale.

Jaguars: Play at San Francisco on Sunday.

___

For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_NFL




Brazil great Kaka says he is retiring from soccer at 35Crew win 1-0, spoil Kaka's final game with Orlando CityKaka scores twice, Orlando City rolls past RevolutionOrlando City hosts Puerto Rico national team to raise money after Hurricane Maria

Sun, 17 Dec 2017 19:46:48 GMTMon, 16 Oct 2017 02:12:24 GMTThu, 28 Sep 2017 02:19:05 GMTSun, 05 Nov 2017 03:47:37 GMT

Former Ballon d'Or winner Kaka says he is retiring from soccer at age 35.

Kaka, who played for Brazil, AC Milan and Real Madrid, told Brazil's Globo TV on Sunday that "my last word is that the cycle of my career as a player ends here."

"I needed time to think and take a decision calmly," Kaka said. "I have arrived to the conclusion that now is the moment to finish my career as a professional player."

A graceful midfielder, Kaka won 92 caps for Brazil, scoring 29 goals and featuring at three World Cups. He was part of the Brazil squad that lifted the trophy in 2002.

Kaka said that he would like to remain linked professionally to soccer, perhaps as a manager or sports director of a team.

The dangerous playmaker won the Ballon d'Or and FIFA's World Player award in 2007 while playing for Milan. Kaka was part of the Milan team that won the 2007 Champions League final against Liverpool.

Kaka joined Real Madrid in 2009 for 67 million euros ($78.7 million) but had an up-and-down stint due to injuries.

Kaka was a free agent after leaving MLS team Orlando City in October

Ola Kamara scored his 17th goal of the season on his birthday and the Columbus Crew beat Orlando City 1-0 on Sunday to spoil Kaka's final game with the Lions.

Kaka had two goals, Yoshimar Yotun and Dominic Dwyer each had a goal and two assists and struggling Orlando City beat short-handed New England 6-1 on Wednesday night.

The season is over, but there was still time to play one more soccer game for Orlando City SC Saturday night, facing off against the Puerto Rico national team.




Scott Frost among AP coach of year finalistsScott Frost confirms he will coach Knights in Peach BowlScott Frost to leave UCF for Nebraska's head coaching jobHusker fans catch Frost Fever, awaiting coach, favorite son

Sun, 17 Dec 2017 17:38:56 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 23:33:49 GMTSun, 03 Dec 2017 04:31:40 GMTTue, 28 Nov 2017 22:31:38 GMT

UCF's Scott Frost, Georgia's Kirby Smart and Clemson's Dabo Swinney are the finalists for The Associated Press Coach of the Year award.

The winner will be announced Monday.

Frost led the Knights to an unbeaten regular season before taking the Nebraska job. Frost plans to coach No. 10 UCF in the Peach Bowl against Auburn.

Last week, Frost won the Eddie Robinson Award as the national coach of the year.

Smart, in his second season with Georgia, guided the Bulldogs to a 12-1 record and their first Southeastern Conference championship since 2005. No. 3 Georgia will face No. 2 Oklahoma in the College Football Playoff at the Rose Bowl.

Swinney has the defending national champion Tigers back in the playoff for a third straight year. No. 1 Clemson won the Atlantic Coast Conference, finished 12-1, and will face No. 4 Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.

Scott Frost was at practice Tuesday with the UCF Knights for the first time since announcing he was leaving the University of Central Florida football team for a head coaching position at Nebraska.

Scott Frost is expected to be named the next head coach at Nebraska, sources confirmed to ESPN Saturday.

Nebraska fans are gearing up for what to them seems the imminent arrival of native son Scott Frost as the Cornhuskers new football coach.




Lindsey Vonn strikes back with Val d'Isere World Cup win

Sat, 16 Dec 2017 14:29:47 GMT

She endured a week marred by an injury scare and controversy, but Lindsey Vonn hit back in emphatic fashion to clinch her 78th World Cup win in Val d'Isere.At 33, Vonn became the second oldest woman -- after Elisabeth Goergl (33) -- to win a World Cup race and closed the gap on the all-time record of victories.She trails record holder Ingemar Stenmark of Sweden by just eight World Cup wins.It was Vonn's first victory since a downhill in Garmish-Partenkirchen, Germany, in January. She last won a super-G in Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy in January 2016.The American clocked one minute 4.86 seconds on a shortened course in Val d'Isere, with Italian Sofia Goggia second in 1:05.17 and Norwegian Ragnhild Mowinckel third in 1:05.25 for her first career podium.On the men's circuit in Val Gardena, Italy, Norway's Aksel Lund Svindal won his second downhill of the season following an earlier victory at Beaver Creek.'Exceptionally happy'Vonn has begun this season slowly and crashed twice. She also injured her back during a labored super-G run in St. Moritz last weekend and pulled out of a second race at the Swiss resort to rehabilitate."I just had some bad luck and things weren't just lining up the first few races of the season," said Vonn, who began last season late after suffering a badly broken arm and nerve damage in a December 2016 training crash."But I knew that my skiing was there, I just had to execute on race day. I'm exceptionally happy with today and back on track. "My goal now is to continue to take this self-confidence and this momentum through to February."Vonn pulled out of Sunday's second super-G in Val d'Isere to rest her right knee, on which she wears a brace for skiing after previous injuries."Unfortunately I'm not racing today. Knee is a bit sore from yesterday so to be on the safe side I'm going to give my body some rest," she wrote on Twitter Sunday. "My focus is on the Olympics so no need to risk anything now. Still going home very happy after my win yesterday."Vonn is targeting a second Olympic gold medal and third in all at the Winter Olympics in South Korea. She missed out defending her Olympic downhill crown from Vancouver in 2010 when she was sidelined with a knee injury ahead of the Sochi 2014 Games.Austrian Anna Weith (nee Fenninger), the world and Olympic super-G champion, won Sunday's race for her first victory since March 2015 after rehabilitating from a serious knee injury. Tina Weirather of Liechstenstein was second and Goggia third.'Put aside our differences'Ahead of the St. Moritz race weekend Vonn told CNN's Alpine Edge she would not be representing US President Donald Trump at the 2018 Winter Olympics and would refuse an invitation to the White House.Her comments were met with a strong response, some of them negative and wishing her ill."My recent comments opened up my eyes as to how divided we are right now," wrote Vonn in a lengthy Instagram post this week."It is hurtful to read comments where people are hoping I break my neck or that God is punishing me for being 'anti-Trump.'"We need to find a way to put aside our differences and find common ground in communicating. Is it wrong to hope for a better world?"'Building confidence'The 34-year-old Svindal beat close friend and compatriot Kjetil Jansrud by 0.59 seconds on the famous Saslong course for his 33rd World Cup win. Austria's Max Franz was third.Svindal, the 2010 Olympic downhill champion, missed all of last season with a knee injury and still has to limit how much skiing he does in training. He said he avoided going off the big jumps in training in Val Gardena because he knew the landings would hurt his knee, adding "race day is different." "I didn't feel good in the beginning of the week, I couldn't do much in the last 10 days, I'm building confidence every day," Svindal told reporters.Germany's Josef Ferstl scored his maiden World Cup win in Friday's super-G at Val Gardena, ahead of Franz and fellow Austria[...]



Fans flock to Cure Bowl at Camping World StadiumLindsey Vonn strikes back with Val d'Isere World Cup winLillard, McCollum help Blazers hold off MagicWith ice-covered roads, college hockey player skates to schoolNorway's footballers sign historic equal pay agreement

Sat, 16 Dec 2017 23:17:47 GMTSun, 17 Dec 2017 14:53:38 GMTSat, 16 Dec 2017 03:08:08 GMTFri, 15 Dec 2017 19:23:57 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 14:57:49 GMT

It is officially bowl game season in college football, which means quite a few teams and fans making their way to central Florida to cap off the season.

Thousands came out for the AutoNation Cure Bowl between Western Kentucky and Georgia State.

This is the third year for the Cure Bowl in Orlando, one of only a few cities that gets to host three bowl games.

There was a lot of pink in the stands for the game, not because Georgia State or Western Kentucky have pink in their official colors, but because this game raises money for breast cancer research.

Over the past two years, this bowl game has raised more than $2 million toward the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, bringing people together to combat the disease, such as Debary resident Carol Lawrence, who was diagnosed in June.

"It goes to show you the strength of the human spirit," she said. "You never give up."

Camping World Stadium also plays host to Virginia Tech and Oklahoma State Dec. 28 for the Camping World Bowl Game, as well as the Citrus Bowl on News Year's Day between Notre Dame and LSU.

She endured a week marred by an injury scare and controversy, but Lindsey Vonn hit back in emphatic fashion to clinch her 78th World Cup win in Val d'Isere.

Damian Lillard scored 21 points, C.J. McCollum had 20 and the Portland Trail Blazers withstood a late rally to beat the Orlando Magic 95-88 on Friday night.

The roads in Moorhead, Minnesota, were so slick on Wednesday that a Concordia College student decided to skate to class, the Fargo Forum reported.

In London on Wednesday, pen was put to paper on a historic deal which could prove significant in the fight for equality in sport.


Media Files:
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Ex-wife of NBA player Lorenzen Wright charged in his 2010 slaying

Sat, 16 Dec 2017 20:24:03 GMT

In Memphis, Lorenzen Wright was a favorite son. He grew up there and was a star basketball player in high school and at the University of Memphis.At 6-foot-11, he was a first-round pick in the NBA draft and played 13 seasons in the league, including a stint with the Memphis Grizzlies.But Wright's retirement ended in a shocking, violent manner.His bullet-ridden body was found in a swampy field outside Memphis in July 2010. He was 34 and had been out of basketball a year.The city mourned, and thousands attended a memorial service in the FedEx Forum, where the Grizzlies play. But police could not figure out who killed him. Years went by.The Lorenzen Wright slaying became Memphis' most famous cold case. Two arrests made On Saturday, Memphis Police Director Mike Rallings announced two indictments in the case. Wright's ex-wife, Sherra Wright-Robinson, 46, was taken into custody in Riverside, California, and charged with conspiring with a Memphis-area man to kill her former husband. She was indicted on charges of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder. Billy Turner, also 46, of the Memphis suburb of Collierville, was arrested December 5 and charged with the same offenses, Rallings said. CNN affiliate WREG reported that Turner pleaded not guilty on Tuesday. He remains in the Shelby County Jail on $1 million bond. Rallings didn't say exactly what led police to make the arrests and didn't provide a motive for the killing. He said more people may be charged. When asked about the relationship between the suspects, Rallings said, "It's safe to say they knew each other." CNN could not immediately reach lawyers for the two suspects for comment. Gunfire on 911 call Wright, who had a home in Atlanta, was last seen at his former wife's home in Collierville, near Memphis, shortly before midnight on July 18, 2010, investigators said. He was visiting his children. A 911 call was placed from his phone in the early hours of July 19, but the call was interrupted by gunfire, police said. The 911 center in Germantown, a Memphis suburb, fielded the call and didn't share the information with Memphis police for days. His mother reported Wright missing July 22. When Memphis police finally got the 911 call and determined which cell tower transmitted the call, they were able to locate the body on July 28 in a field near Hacks Cross Road and Winchester Road, about 24 miles east of the middle of Memphis. By then, the body had badly decomposed under the sun and rain. Wright was so famous in the city that hundreds of Wright's fans rushed to the spot where the body was found. Gun found in a lake Major Darren Goods of the city's Multi-Agency Gang Unit, who helped lead the investigation, said a major break came this fall when investigators got a tip about a lake near Walnut, Mississippi. The renewed investigation was dubbed Operation Rebound. "In basketball when you get a rebound, that gives you a second chance," he said. "This would give us a second chance to bring some closure to this case and give this grieving family some relief." The lake had previously been searched, but this time the unit asked for help from an FBI dive team, which found a pistol on November 9, he said. That pistol was examined in the crime lab and determined to be one of the weapons used to shoot Wright, he said. In a news release, police said Carter and Sherra Wright-Robinson had also tried to kill Wright between April 1 and July 17 at Wright's home outside Atlanta. They recruited another, unidentified co-conspirator, the news release said. Wright was a forward/center for several teams during his professional basketball career. He played with the Los Angeles Clippers, Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies and Sacramento Kings before finishing his NBA career in 2008-2[...]



'Sunday Night Football' takes big hit as NFL ratings still struggleReporter: NFL Network asked if she plans on 'getting knocked up'NFL Network, ESPN suspend ex-players amid sexual harassment suit

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 22:59:45 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 20:26:32 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 18:18:37 GMT

The NFL's premiere game of the week took a big hit in TV ratings on Sunday night, despite it being a close game.

NBC's "Sunday Night Football" match up between the Baltimore Ravens and the Pittsburgh Steelers brought in 17.2 million viewers on Sunday night. That number was down 35% from last year's Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants game, which was the most-watched prime time regular season since Thanksgiving 2015.

The drop for the NBC broadcast is troubling for a league that has been plagued by down ratings nearly all season. It's even more surprising since the Ravens and the Steelers are bitter rivals and the game ended with the Steelers beating the Ravens 39 to 38.

NBC wasn't the only one to see its NFL ratings take a dip. CBS' slate of games over the weekend were down 27% from last year, while ESPN was down 9%. Fox was the only network to see its ratings go up from last year with its numbers up 6%.

Overall, the ratings for the NFL's season are down 9% from last year.

For most of the season, the league's critics, including President Trump, have pointed to the declines as a sign that players kneeling during the national anthem in protest are hurting the league's popularity. The reason why the league's viewership has taken a tumble may be harder to pinpoint, but one pain point is that many of the league's star players have been injured and out of games.

Richard Sherman, Deshaun Watson, J.J. Watt, Odell Beckham, Andrew Luck, Carson Wentz and Aaron Rodgers have all been injured at some point throughout this season. The suspension of Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott may have also had an impact since the Cowboys, one of league's most popular and watched teams, have been lackluster in his absence.

The shortage of stars may mean that casual fans are less likely to tune into big games of the week like "Sunday Night Football."

Yet, the numbers are still down across the board for the NFL and it now looks the end of the season and the playoffs to help turn around the ratings slide.

A female television sports reporter and host has shared her story following the news of NFL Network and ESPN suspending five former football players who are accused of sexual harassment while they worked for NFL Network.

Accusations of sexual harassment have already rocked politics, entertainment and media. Now a raft of sports stars have been hit with similar allegations.




Lillard, McCollum help Blazers hold off MagicLou Williams, DeAndre Jordan lead Clippers over MagicBazemore, Ilyasova lead Hawks past Magic, 117-110Nuggets beat Magic 103-89Fournier leads Magic, but injures ankle in OT win over Hawks

Sat, 16 Dec 2017 03:08:08 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 04:31:33 GMTSun, 10 Dec 2017 03:22:28 GMTSat, 09 Dec 2017 02:51:26 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 03:18:00 GMT

Damian Lillard scored 21 points, C.J. McCollum had 20 and the Portland Trail Blazers withstood a late rally to beat the Orlando Magic 95-88 on Friday night.

The Trail Blazers led by 17 with 7:26 left in the game, but needed late contributions from Al-Farouq Aminu and Jusuf Nurkic to slam the door. Aminu had 15 points and got a breakaway dunk with 23 seconds to play to seal the game. Nurkic had nine points and 11 rebounds.

Nikola Vucevic led Orlando with 26 points and 14 rebounds. Johnathon Simmons added 15 points and D.J. Augustin had 14.

Aaron Gordon, who was returning to the Magic lineup after missing two games with a concussion, limped off the court with 7:45 left in the game and the Magic trailing 85-69. He strained his calf after colliding with Trail Blazers rookie Zach Collins.

Each team made a big run in the fourth quarter, but one negated the other. Portland scored 11 straight to push take an 86-69 lead with 7:26 to play

Orlando responded by scoring 12 straight points, the last basket a layup by Vucevic that made it 86-81 with just over 3 minutes to go.

The teams traded baskets the rest of the way, with Orlando never getting closer than five. Aminu settled the matter with an uncontested dunk.

Lillard had 13 points in the third quarter when Portland slipped away from the Magic. The Trail Blazers point guard was too quick for Orlando's Elfrid Payton and created all four of his field goals off the dribble and got Payton to foul him on a 3-pointer.

That helped the Trail Blazers build a 69-52 advantage on a layup by Evan Turner with 5 ½ minutes left in the period.

Vucevic started dominating in the paint to help the Magic cut the deficit to 75-69 early in the final period, before Portland's run to push the lead back into double digits.

TIP-INS

TRAIL BLAZERS: Aminu is 18 of 31 on 3-pointers in his last five games. . Nurkic returned after missing three games with an ankle sprain. He played 25 minutes. . Portland gave up 113.4 points during its recent five-game losing streak, but has held its last two opponents under 100, both wins.

MAGIC: The Magic haven't won a game this season (0-9) when they score less than 100 points. . Rookie Johnathan Isaac practiced Thursday, but was held out of the game by team doctors. Isaac has missed 17 games with an ankle injury. . Evan Fournier (ankle), Terrence Ross (knee) and Aaron Afflalo (back) were inactive.

UP NEXT

TRAIL BLAZERS: At Charlotte on Saturday.

MAGIC: At Detroit on Sunday to face former coach Stan Van Gundy.

___

For more NBA coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball

The Los Angeles Clippers needed someone to provide points and Lou Williams filled that role.

Ersan Ilyasova scored 26 points on 9-for-9 shooting and the Atlanta Hawks overcame Nikola Vucevic's triple-double to beat the Orlando Magic 117-110 on Saturday night.

Kenneth Faried scored 20 points and the Denver Nuggets rebounded from a poor first quarter to beat the Orlando Magic 103-89 on Friday night.

Evan Fournier scored 27 points but injured his right ankle as the Orlando Magic rallied to beat the Atlanta Hawks 110-106 in overtime Wednesday night.




Sexual harassment allegations swirl around ESPNDisney doubles down on sports, despite ESPN woesNFL Network, ESPN suspend ex-players amid sexual harassment suitESPN is laying off 150 more people

Sat, 16 Dec 2017 01:53:47 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 21:26:48 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 18:18:37 GMTWed, 29 Nov 2017 15:26:39 GMT

ESPN is denying allegations of sexual harassment against one of its anchors, John Buccigross.In addition to denying the allegations, ESPN also on Thursday released text messages between the alleged victim and Buccigross to show that they had, in ESPN's words, a "consensual, personal friendship that spanned months."The Boston Globe had reported Thursday evening that Adrienne Lawrence, a former on-air personality, lodged a complaint in which she claimed she was sexually harassed by Buccigross and then faced retaliation from ESPN for having brought his alleged actions to the attention of superiors and HR.ESPN said in a statement that it "conducted a thorough investigation and found these claims to be entirely without merit." It also said it didn't renew Lawrence's contract at around the same time that it cut 100 other on-air personalities in April.The decision to release the text messages was unusual but an ESPN spokesperson said it was made to show ESPN's confidence in its investigation and position.But Lawrence provided CNNMoney with what she says is the full archive of messages between herself and Buccigross, as opposed to what ESPN released, which it acknowledged were "portions" of the message history between the two. The archive that Lawrence claims is the full exchange between the two provides important details lacking in the messages released by ESPN, like shirtless photos Buccigross took of himself and sent to her.ESPN addressed the discrepancies in a statement to CNNMoney."While we didn't include every message submitted in the legal proceeding, we felt the released portions capture the nature of the friendship over a period of months. We purposefully excluded the pictures each party shared in the course of the text conversation."The archive of messages released by ESPN begins with a message from Lawrence, who appears to initiate the conversation.But screenshots of direct messages from Twitter that Lawrence provided to CNNMoney show Buccigross reaching out to Lawrence first.Lawrence also shared with CNNMoney screenshots of two shirtless photos that Buccigross sent her.Though the text messages Lawrence provided to CNNMoney, and which were released by ESPN, do suggest a friendly relationship, they also show that Buccigross had started referring to Lawrence as "dollface" within a month of their beginning to text each other. In the stream of messages, Buccigross also said he missed Lawrence's "pretty face," called her "doll" and texted her "#dreamgirl."Buccigross is also shown, in the message cache released by Lawrence, responding to one of her social media posts with smiley-face emojis with heart eyes.The text messages are dated from June 2016 through September of that year. Lawrence is shown repeatedly discussing her career and seeking advice on how to navigate ESPN. The two also discussed more personal matters, including dinner plans with each other and teams for which they were rooting.Within three months of the start of the text messages, Buccigross sent Lawrence shirtless photos of himself on two separate occasions. To the first, Lawrence replied, "Lol!!!!!!" and then "You need to wear clothes, sir." After further conversation, including talk of making plans to see each other that weekend, on August 9th Buccigross sent the second shirtless picture of himself, and Lawrence responded, "You're too funny! Have a good show tonight."According to the screenshots Lawrence provided to CNNMoney, she did not send him any further texts until the next day, when -- in an exchange not released by ESPN -- she texted him to offer condolences on the death of ESPN's John Saunders. Buccigross replied, "Thanks, doll. I ne[...]



With ice-covered roads, college hockey player skates to schoolSalvation Army volunteer rings bell with pet goatAIM officially shuts down, but its influence lives onKnicks hire 'Entourage' star as esports scoutUPS refunds $32 shipping after losing $846K inheritanceBridge project could 'dry up' Niagara Falls

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 19:14:14 GMTFri, 15 Dec 2017 17:39:08 GMTFri, 15 Dec 2017 17:13:12 GMTFri, 15 Dec 2017 16:26:33 GMTFri, 15 Dec 2017 15:09:49 GMTFri, 15 Dec 2017 14:00:31 GMT

The roads in Moorhead, Minnesota, were so slick on Wednesday that a Concordia College student decided to skate to class, the Fargo Forum reported.

Zach Doerring is a senior on the school's men's hockey team. The eight-second video captured by his friend was posted on Twitter, and it went viral.

"I don't really tweet a lot," Doerring told the Forum. "I just thought this was funny. It just kind of blew up."

{"url":"https://twitter.com/Doerangutang/status/940973946383499264","author_name":"Zach Doerring","author_url":"https://twitter.com/Doerangutang","html":"&#lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&#gt;&#lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&#gt;When you’re late for a final but the ice time is too good to pass up... &#lt;a href=\"https://t.co/cCC0Si76xA\"&#gt;pic.twitter.com/cCC0Si76xA&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/p&#gt;— Zach Doerring (@Doerangutang) &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Doerangutang/status/940973946383499264?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;December 13, 2017&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/blockquote&#gt;\n&#lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets\" charset=\"utf-8\"&#gt;&#lt;/script&#gt;\n","width":550,"height":null,"type":"rich","cache_age":"3153600000","provider_name":"Twitter","provider_url":"https://twitter.com","version":"1.0"}

The video on his Twitter page has nearly 100,000 views, as of Friday afternoon. On the Barstool Sports Instagram page, there are over 1.7 million views.

Doerring needed to get to campus, which sits on the Minnesota side of the Red River across from Fargo, North Dakota, but his car was blocked in by his roommate, Dalton Mills.

The two started talking about how icy it was from some freezing rain the area had received.

"This ice is better than our rink's ice, we can skate on this," Doerring said in the Forum report, quoting Mills.

So Doerring put on a pair of ice skates, grabbed his books and took off down the driveway and onto the street while Mills captured the event.

A New Hampshire man brings his pet goat when he volunteers with the Salvation Army.

Years before Mark Zuckerberg built Facebook, he was focused on another technical project: tinkering with his AOL Instant Messenger account.

"Entourage" actor Jerry Ferrara may be the New York Knicks' newest scout, but he won't be watching prospective players for the NBA team.

A Canadian man was out more than $846,000 in inheritance after a bank draft got lost in the mail.

Niagara Falls. A mighty cascade of water. Font of hydroelectricity, tourism, romance, wildlife.




Knicks hire 'Entourage' star as esports scoutMorrissey denies supporting Spacey, WeinsteinDwayne 'The Rock' Johnson, girlfriend expecting baby girlKevin Hart spills about cheating on pregnant wifeEminem offering 'mom's spaghetti' in DetroitJean-Claude Van Damme gets kicks in Amazon series

Fri, 15 Dec 2017 16:24:28 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 18:00:50 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 15:48:31 GMTFri, 15 Dec 2017 16:10:18 GMTFri, 15 Dec 2017 15:57:52 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 20:33:21 GMT

"Entourage" actor Jerry Ferrara may be the New York Knicks' newest scout, but he won't be watching prospective players for the NBA team.

Instead, Ferrara, better known to fans of the HBO series as his character Turtle, will be scouting gamers for the Knicks' entry in the NBA 2K esports league.

Ferrara, who told ESPN his new gig came together naturally based on his love of both the Knicks and gaming, will also serve as a creative consultant.

The 38-year-old Brooklyn native will analyze gamers at a combine scheduled for February and help guide the team's March draft for the new esports league.

A total of 17 NBA teams will participate in the league, with a 16-week season beginning in May.

Singer Morrissey took to Facebook on Monday in an apparent attempt to set the record straight after he was criticized over reports that said he defended the alleged actions of Hollywood men accused of sexual assault and harassment.

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's life is about to get a lot more pink.

Kevin Hart says he's hopeful his wife can forgive him.

"Detroit! Come vomit up some spaghetti with me this weekend ..."

Amazon wins the weird-TV Olympics with "Jean-Claude Van Johnson," a surreal flight of comic fancy starring Jean-Claude Van Damme, which begins with lots of manic energy and pretty quickly runs out of gas. Think of it as the scripted version of a reality-TV show about a washed-up star, albeit one who secretly gets his kicks as a super-spy.




Notable deaths of 2017

Sun, 08 Jan 2017 18:24:15 GMT




Forbes' 2017 most valuable sports teams

Thu, 13 Jul 2017 17:51:44 GMT




Top 10 highest-paid entertainers of 2017

Mon, 12 Jun 2017 13:59:44 GMT




Disney doubles down on sports, despite ESPN woesNFL Network, ESPN suspend ex-players amid sexual harassment suitWhat the Disney-Fox deal means for Marvel, 'Avatar,' streaming'The Simpsons' predicted Disney would buy FoxESPN is laying off 150 more peopleDisney is buying most of 21st Century Fox for $52.4 billionDisney buys 21st Century Fox: Who gets whatDisney-Fox deal would be a media and entertainment earthquakeDisney finds lead for live-action 'Mulan'Disney's John Lasseter takes leave of absence, apologizes for unwanted gestures

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 21:11:45 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 18:18:37 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 16:40:00 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 15:39:00 GMTWed, 29 Nov 2017 15:26:39 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 14:45:42 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 13:05:53 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 17:30:23 GMTThu, 30 Nov 2017 20:38:04 GMTWed, 22 Nov 2017 07:49:56 GMT

These are hard times for ESPN, which has been losing viewers and subscribers and cutting hundreds of staff members.But on Thursday the network's owner, Disney, doubled down on sports, buying 22 regional sports networks as part of a $52.4 billion deal with 21st Century Fox.It's a sign Disney believes that, in an on-demand era that makes it hard to get viewers to watch advertisers' commercials, sports is one product that fans will still watch live. Assuming this deal goes through, Disney now will have significantly more sports programming than it has ever had before."We're looking at the acquisition of the 22 regional sports networks as being a perfect complement to ESPN's current offerings," said Disney CEO Bob Iger on a call with investors Thursday.ESPN has always been a national sports network, inking multi-billion-dollar rights deals with leagues rather than with specific teams.But fans watch most of the nation's major team sports primarily on local networks. The 22 networks included in this deal broadcast many of those games. They have rights deals with half of Major League Baseball teams, as well as 17 of 30 NBA teams and 12 of 30 NHL teams.ESPN will now control these rights, giving them access to even more sports fans. And local fans watching regional networks are particularly loyal."As a category, the regional sports networks receive the second highest level of subscriber fees in the country. ESPN is No. 1," said Lee Berke, CEO of LHB Sports Entertainment & Media, a sports media consulting firm. "On any particular night, in many markets in the country, the team's local game is the most watched piece of programming."ESPN has long been the most profitable part of Disney, dwarfing the profits from theme parks or movies.But while the sports network still commands top dollar from cable operators for each subscriber, the number of U.S. subscribers has been dropping steadily, from a high of 100 million in 2010 to 88 million as of September.That's mostly because Americans are cutting the cord, ditching expensive cable or satellite television packages to watch streaming services. And fewer viewers means less advertising revenue. As a result, ESPN has laid off 250 staff this year, including some high profile on-air commentators. But it's still a relatively healthy business, generating most of the $7 billion Disney earned from its media networks in the last year."No question that their margins have shrunk, but they're better than many other media businesses," said Berke.Both Disney and ESPN are preparing for life after cable and satellite systems, buying a majority of BAMTech, a streaming technology company whose clients include HBO Now.Disney plans to launch a stand-alone streaming ESPN service in 2018. The service won't carry most of the top games that air on the network. But Iger said Thursday it will be ready to shift games to streaming as viewer habits change.Disney is "well-positioned to switch and distribute those programs direct to the consumer through the platforms that we've created," Iger said.This deal gives Disney a lot more sports programming to potentially stream in the future. But the company won't make that move in the near term, Berke said.For now, viewers generally need to subscribe to a cable or satellite TV service to watch ESPN online, which helps to shield pay-TV operators from the streaming onslaught."There's good reason for Disney to protect the cable operators -- ESPN gets a lot of subscriber fees," said Berke. "But if more people are watching strea[...]



Norway's footballers sign historic equal pay agreementChris Froome backlash: 'Major blow' to anti-doping fight, says rivalDisney buys 21st Century Fox: Who gets what'Mannequin Skywalker' takes flight on Blue Origin rocketJohn Lennon, Sally Ride, Mr. Rogers: New USPS stamps for 2018Carrie Fisher's French bulldog appears in 'Last Jedi'Zoo gets 'hippopotamus for Christmas'The Geminid meteor shower is upon us and might be one of the best everHere are the top Google searches for 2017Credit card debt is costing you nearly $1,000 per yearMerriam-Webster's word of the year for 2017 is 'feminism'

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 14:24:09 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 13:42:12 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 13:05:53 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 21:13:02 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 20:37:09 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 18:35:53 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 19:37:12 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 17:35:39 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 18:08:10 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 16:45:57 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 15:26:13 GMT

Throughout 2017 women's football teams have been standing up for parity with their male counterparts on the international stage -- but in London on Wednesday, pen was put to paper on a historic deal which could prove significant in the fight for equality in sport.At the Norwegian Embassy in Britain's capital, Norway's men's and women's captains -- Stefan Johansen and Maren Mjelde -- and representatives of the Norwegian Football Association (NFF) and Norway's players' association (NISO) signed an agreement on equal pay in a deal thought to be the first of its kind in international football.The agreement, says the Norwegian FA, will mean a pay rise of 2.5 million Norwegian kroner ($302,750) in 2018 for the women's team, with both national teams receiving six million kroner ($726,900) each next year.Parity was achieved after the 550,000 kroner ($60,000) Norway's male players receive for commercial activities was switched o the women's team."I am proud to be a Norwegian football player," Norway captain Maren Mjelde said in a statement issued on the Norwegian FA's website.Making the agreement all the more exceptional is that the proposal for equal pay came from the Norwegian FA, which did not officially recognize women's football until 1976.When the agreement was announced in October, one blogger -- froginthefjord -- quipped: "Norway, the Country where Men are Feminists. Even Footballers." 'Recognition for women's football' Pal Bjerketvedt, NFF's Secretary General, said: "It is very positive that Norway is a pioneer. "At the same time, this is a recognition for women's football in general, and it's amazing to see how much this means to the players and what enormous attention the issue has gained internationally. "Players in the women's team are increasingly being used in commercial contexts." Bjerketvedt was referring to players such as Lyon's Ada Hegerberg and Wolfsburg's Caroline Graham Hansen who are increasingly being used by sponsors and the FA to promote the national game. Norway's men's captain, Stefan Johansen, said the women's national team was as important as the men's. "I think it's very good that the women's national team get the same salary as us to play on the national team," he told the Norwegian FA's website. "Compared to the women's national team, the national team is very privileged from before. It was not difficult to say yes to give away some of the commercial bonus, as this was taken by both NISO and NFF." Mona Juul, Norway's ambassador to London, hoped the deal would inspire other associations. "The agreement that guarantees equal pay for national teams is historic and important for Norwegian football," she said. "I hope that the agreement can also be internationally inspired and I am proud to host this opportunity." Two-time European champions Norway have traditionally been one of the most successful teams in women's football, winning the World Cup in 1995. However, despite having reached the final four years previously, they failed to qualify from their group at Euro 2017. Norway's men have not qualified for a major tournament since Euro 2000, where they failed to progress from the group stages. The fight for equality The debate over equality in sport is ongoing and there have been many cases this year of international sportswomen taking a stand. In April, the U.S. women's national soccer team ended a long-running dispute over pay and [...]



Chris Froome backlash: 'Major blow' to anti-doping fight, says rivalChris Froome: Tour de France champion failed drug testDoping: Russia backs Winter Olympics athletesVonn, Shiffrin speak out against Russian dopingMan jumps on passing vehicle, strips naked fleeing accidentDennis Rodman proposes North Korea-Guam basketball game for peaceIs the taxman coming for your steak?3-D printing braces up sea turtle with gap in its shellWoman burns down house trying to kill bed bugsCanadian man charged $18,000 by Uber for 5-mile ride'Mannequin Skywalker' takes flight on Blue Origin rocket

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 12:39:05 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 15:45:01 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 15:38:03 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 20:44:52 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 15:29:31 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 16:08:52 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 15:33:02 GMTSun, 10 Dec 2017 18:10:35 GMTMon, 11 Dec 2017 16:13:21 GMTMon, 11 Dec 2017 15:39:38 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 21:13:02 GMT

The backlash against cyclist Chris Froome is well and truly under way -- with rival Tony Martin dubbing the handling of the case a "scandal."Martin, a four-time time-trial world champion and one of the most respected riders in the professional peloton, says he's "totally angry" and that a "double standard" is being applied to Froome.Four-time Tour de France winner Froome, who rides for Team Sky, was recently found to have double the allowed level of the legal asthma drug Salbutamol in his urine on a test taken on Sept. 7 during the Vuelta a España -- one of cycling's three Grand Tours -- which the 32-year-old went on to win.The sport's governing body, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), said the British rider was informed of an "Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF)" on September 20 and that an analysis of the B sample had confirmed the results of the rider's A sample."Other athletes are suspended immediately after a positive test," wrote Martin in a Facebook post."He and his team are given time by the UCI to explain it all. I do not know of any similar case in the recent past. That is a scandal, and he should at least not have been allowed to appear in the World Championships."Froome, Britain's most successful road cyclist, who won his fourth Tour de France in July, said: "It is well known that I have asthma and I know exactly what the rules are."I use an inhaler to manage my symptoms (always within the permissible limits) and I know for sure that I will be tested every day I wear the race leader's jersey."My asthma got worse at the Vuelta so I followed the team doctor's advice to increase my Salbutamol dosage. As always, I took the greatest care to ensure that I did not use more than the permissible dose."I take my leadership position in my sport very seriously. The UCI is absolutely right to examine test results and, together with the team, I will provide whatever information it requires."On Thursday, Froome tweeted: It's sad seeing the misconceptions that are out there about athletes & salbutamol use."My hope is that this doesn't prevent asthmatic athletes from using their inhalers in emergency situations for fear of being judged. It is not something to be ashamed of.That tweet drew this response from Dutch journalist Thijs Zonneveld: "It's not about asthma, you know that very well. It's about the question if you abused asthma to take more salbutamol than permitted." 'Wheeling and dealing' Martin also believes cycling has suffered a "major blow" in its anti-doping fight. "Not only the public but also I have immediately the impression that there is wheeling and dealing going on behind the scenes, agreements are being made and ways are being sought as to how to get out of this case. Do he and his team enjoy a special status?" he wrote. "We need a consequent and transparent approach by the UCI. What is going on here is inconsequent, not transparent, unprofessional and unfair." Both the UCI and Team Sky did not immediately respond to CNN's request for comment regarding Martin's comments. The UCI has previously said Froome was not suspended, but wanted more details from Team Sky and was investigating the case under the organization's anti-doping rules. Under World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) rules, Salbutamol is a permitted drug without the need for a therapeutic use exemption (TUE), but only at certain doses. The levels of the drug in Fro[...]



Disney buys 21st Century Fox: Who gets whatRecent big mergers and acquisitionsDisney is buying most of 21st Century Fox for $52.4 billionDisney-Fox deal would be a media and entertainment earthquakeComcast drops bid for 21st Century Fox assets21st Century Fox gets nearly $90 million from insurers to cover harassment claims21st Century Fox on the block

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 12:54:09 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 13:15:59 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 14:45:42 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 17:30:23 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 04:21:25 GMTTue, 21 Nov 2017 15:22:41 GMTFri, 17 Nov 2017 08:25:26 GMT

Disney is buying a huge chunk of 21st Century Fox.

The $52.4 billion deal will combine two of the biggest players in Hollywood.

Disney gets:

• 20th Century Fox, Fox 2000, Fox Searchlight movie and television studios

• Majority control (60%) of Hulu

• Several big movie franchises, including X-Men, Avatar and Deadpool

• Major TV franchises, including The Simpsons, This Is Us and Modern Family

• International media businesses, including Star India and 39% of Sky

• FX and National Geographic Partners

• Fox's regional sports networks, including YES

• $13.7 billion of Fox's debt

• An estimated $2 billion in cost savings

• Bob Iger's contract extended through 2021

Fox gets:

• 25% of Disney shares

• $8.5 billion cash dividend from the spun-off company

Fox's spinoff company keeps:

• Fox broadcasting

• Fox News

• Fox Business News

• FS1 & FS2 sports networks

• Big Ten Network

Restaurants, retailers, media, tech companies and handbag designers have agreed to be purchased.  Check out some other mega mergers and acquisitions from the last few years.

Disney is buying a huge chunk of 21st Century Fox in a deal that promises to reshape the media industry and help the entertainment giant fend off digital rivals such as Netflix.

If all goes as the media world expects, at some point this week or next Disney will announce that it is purchasing a large chunk of 21st Century Fox in what would be one of the largest media deals in recent years.

Comcast is dropping out of the running to buy a majority of 21st Century Fox, clearing the path for Disney to complete an acquisition should it choose to do so.

Insurers will pay 21st Century Fox almost $90 million to cover the cost of settlements related to sexual harassment and racial discrimination.

Rupert Murdoch is serious about selling 21st Century Fox, and he has suitors.




Lou Williams, DeAndre Jordan lead Clippers over Magic

Thu, 14 Dec 2017 04:31:33 GMT

The Los Angeles Clippers needed someone to provide points and Lou Williams filled that role.Williams scored 31 points Wednesday night to lead the Clippers to a 106-95 victory over the Orlando Magic."We've had some guys go down with injuries and somebody has to step in and fill that scoring void," Williams said. "I've been able to do it."DeAndre Jordan added 16 points and 20 rebounds and the Clippers opened a four-game road trip with their third straight victory. The Clippers shot 54 percent in the second half in a matchup of injury-riddled teams.Much of the scoring power of both teams was sidelined by injuries, and guard Austin Rivers was added to the Clippers' injury list with a concussion."We don't have the luxury of talent where we're going to out-talent the other team. Every night we find somebody to help us score. Tonight Sam (Dekker) helped us. Lou was Lou," Clippers coach Doc Rivers said.Jonathon Simmons scored 20 points for the Magic, who have lost 14 of 17. Mario Hezonja added 17 points and nine rebounds in his second start of the season.Making only eight of their first 30 shots, the Clippers fell behind by 12 points midway through the second quarter. But Williams connected on three 3-pointers and Austin Rivers added one during a 14-0 run, and the Clippers (11-15) outscored Orlando 24-7 over the final seven minutes of the first half."I tend to earn the trust of my coaches," said Williams, who made 11 of 22 shots and added eight assists. "This is my 13th year. I'm a veteran guy. Teams that sign me understand what they're getting and I don't think it's any different for Doc."Nikola Vucevic hit a mid-range jumper to put the Magic (11-18) up 55-54 midway through the third quarter, but Williams answered quickly with a basket to regain the lead for the Clippers permanently."We got up 10 or 12, then didn't play with enough energy," said Vucevic, who had 14 points and 12 rebounds. "There wasn't much excitement, there wasn't much going on. It was just flat out there. We could never get a good flow or good rhythm. Even if we get a block, we wouldn't run it down the court the way we can."The shooting of Williams and Dekker, both of whom came off the bench, helped the Clippers expand their lead to 16 points with three minutes left.Austin Rivers left the game in the final seconds of the first half after running into the elbow of Simmons. He did not return and will not play in the Clippers' next game.TIP-INSClippers: F Danilo Gallinari is not on the road trip due to a left glute contusion. ... F Blake Griffin missed his seventh straight game with a left MCL strain.Magic: With F Aaron Gordon (concussion) and G Arron Afflalo (back spasms) out, the active roster included four players from the G League's Lakeland Magic. One was rookie F Wes Iwundu, who made his first NBA start. ... Rookie F Jonathan Isaac hopes to return to practice Thursday after missing 17 games with a sprained right ankle.EVERY GAME IS DIFFERENT"The one thing when you have all these injuries: Every game is different," said Doc Rivers. "You can't plan on being the team you're going to be the next night. You've just got to figure it out during the game, play combinations you thought you'd never play and just try to steal the game."UP NEXTClippers: Visit Washington on FridayMagic: Host Portland on Friday[...]



Reporter: NFL Network asked if she plans on 'getting knocked up'Men accused of sexual harassment after Harvey WeinsteinNFL Network, ESPN suspend ex-players amid sexual harassment suitHoyer calls for investigation into Nevada Democrat accused of sexual harassmentArizona GOP Rep. Trent Franks to resign following sexual harassment claimKihuen says he's not resigning over harassment charges

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 12:41:58 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 16:30:22 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 18:18:37 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 19:28:13 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 23:59:59 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 07:00:08 GMT

A female television sports reporter and host has shared her story following the news of NFL Network and ESPN suspending five former football players who are accused of sexual harassment while they worked for NFL Network."I've been quiet about this for too long," Lindsay McCormick wrote in an Instagram post. "In my last interview with NFL Network a few years ago, the head of hiring talent said to me, 'If we hire you, do you plan on getting knocked up immediately like the rest of them?'"'Them' as in badass working women who deserve to have a family life as well? 'Them' as the women who work their tails off to be taken seriously in a man's world? Or 'them' who bring you a new audience and a tremendous amount of viewership?"Because while I don't plan on 'getting knocked up,' I do plan on being like the rest of those brilliant women that our future daughters will one day look up to and see you can have it all."McCormick said later in the post: "Kudos to NFL Network for eventually removing this man from his position and for the actions they've taken this week."On Monday, a former wardrobe stylist for NFL Network filed a suit alleging sexual harassment and wrongful termination. The suit involves current and past on-air talent for the network.The ex-employee, Jami Cantor, has some explosive allegations in her lawsuit, claiming instances of groping, lewd comments and that she was sent explicit photos, videos and texts by co-workers.In a statement to CNN, NFL Network says three former NFL players have been suspended with pay while there is an investigation. Those three are Pro Football Hall-of-Famer Marshall Faulk, Ike Taylor and Heath Evans, all on-air talent for the network.Donovan McNabb and Eric Davis, who now work for ESPN, were also named in the suit. ESPN said in a statement to CNNMoney that the network is investigating, adding that the two former players will not appear on its networks as that investigation proceeds.Also named in the suit is Hall-of-Famer Warren Sapp, who was fired by the NFL Network in 2015 after he was arrested in Phoenix on allegations of propositioning a prostitute after covering the Super Bowl.One non-athlete named in the suit was a former executive producer at the network, Eric Weinberger, who is now president of The Ringer, a sports and popular culture website.The Ringer has placed Weinberger on indefinite leave "until we have a better understanding of what transpired during his time at the NFL, and we will conduct our own internal investigation," the site said in a statement.None of the men accused in the suit responded to CNNMoney's requests for comment on Tuesday.The NFL Network, which is owned by the National Football League, has yet to respond to CNN's request for comment on McCormick's post.Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly said that The Ringer is owned by Vox Media. It has a business relationship with Vox, but is not owned by it.A look at the men in powerful positions who have been accused of sexual harassment since news of producer Harvey Weinstein broke.Accusations of sexual harassment have already rocked politics, entertainment and media. Now a raft of sports stars have been hit with similar allegations.The number two House Democrat called for an ethics investigation of freshman Nevada Democratic Rep. Ruben Kihuen, following reports alleging a campaign aide resigned after he sexually harassed her.[...]Arizona Republican Rep. Trent Franks announced in a statement Thursday night he will resign from Congres[...]



NFL Network, ESPN suspend ex-players amid sexual harassment suitMen accused of sexual harassment after Harvey WeinsteinTrump lashes out at senator amid calls to resign over sexual misconduct allegationsNew Yorker fires star political reporter over alleged 'improper sexual conduct'Mario Batali steps away from business, TV show amid sexual misconduct allegationsJohn Oliver grills Dustin Hoffman about sexual harassment allegations

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 18:02:38 GMTThu, 14 Dec 2017 16:30:22 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 20:20:01 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 00:07:21 GMTMon, 11 Dec 2017 15:53:44 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 18:40:03 GMT

Accusations of sexual harassment have already rocked politics, entertainment and media. Now a raft of sports stars have been hit with similar allegations.The NFL Network and ESPN have suspended five former football players, including Hall of Famer Marshall Faulk, due to allegations in a court filing Monday accusing them of repeated sexual harassment when they were at the NFL Network.Other ex-players named in the suit include Ike Taylor and Heath Evans, who along with Faulk were suspended by the NFL Network, as well as Donovan McNabb and Eric Davis, who now work for ESPN. The NFL Network says it is investigating the allegations and that its three current employees have been suspended with pay. ESPN says it is investigating these allegations, and that neither McNabb nor Davis will appear on air during the network's probe.Also named in the suit is Hall of Famer Warren Sapp, who was fired by the NFL Network in 2015 after he was arrested in Phoenix for propositioning a prostitute after covering the Super Bowl.The NFL Network is owned by the National Football League, which has been struggling with lower ratings and criticisms by President Trump and others of players who kneeled during the national anthem to protest.The suit was filed in California superior court in Los Angeles by Jami Cantor, a former wardrobe stylist at the NFL Network."My client is a courageous woman to come forward with these claims," said her attorney, Laura Horton. "I'm proud of her and I am committed to continuing the important national conversation on sexual harassment. Shining a spotlight on these claims is another step forward in achieving a respectful workplace for women."Among the allegations in the suit are that:Faulk fondled Cantor's breasts, invited her to his hotel room and pulled out his genitals in front of her and asked, "when are you going to get on this already?" He also is alleged to have pinned her to the wall and demanded oral sex while he pulled down his pants.Ike Taylor allegedly sent Cantor inappropriate pictures of himself including a nude video of him masturbating in the shower.Heath Evans allegedly sent Cantor nude pictures of himself on at least two separate occasions, told her "you're making me horny," and that he "needed to get in you deep and hard."Sapp allegedly gave Cantor sex toys as a Christmas gift three years in a row, and showed her nude photos of women he said he had slept with. She said when the network required her to work in the men's bathroom preparing clothes, Sapp also allegedly came in and urinated in front of her.Eric Davis is accused of sliding his hand between Cantor's legs, grabbing her, rubbing up against her and making lewd comments to her. She alleges when she once slapped his hand away he aggressively told her never to push his hand away again.Donovan McNabb is accused of sending inappropriate text messages.The suit also alleges when Cantor complained about the behavior to the network's talent coordinator she was told "It's part of the job when you look the way you do."One non-athlete named in the suit was a former executive producer at the network, Eric Weinberger, who is now president of The Ringer, a sports and popular culture web site.Weinberger is alleged to have also sent Cantor nude photos of himself and pressed his crotch against her shoulder, asking her to touch him He is also alleged to have touched her crotch, groped her breasts and to have reached down her pants to "check if she was wearing underwear."We[...]



Google's top searched words for 2017

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 15:42:16 GMT




Chris Froome: Tour de France champion failed drug testReporter: NFL Network asked if she plans on 'getting knocked up'Doping: Russia backs Winter Olympics athletesRaelene Castle becomes first woman to head rugby governing bodyDiego Maradona statue provokes mirth on social mediaVerizon will stream NFL games on any network next year

Wed, 13 Dec 2017 10:08:45 GMTWed, 13 Dec 2017 20:26:32 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 15:38:03 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 18:26:25 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 17:31:10 GMTMon, 11 Dec 2017 15:14:11 GMT

The world's best cyclist Chris Froome has asthma -- and he recently failed a drugs test in one of the sport's most prestigious races because of the condition.Four-time Tour de France winner Froome, who rides for Team Sky, was found to have double the allowed level of the legal asthma drug Salbutamol in his urine on a test taken on September 7 during the Vuelta a España, which the 32-year-old went on to win.In a statement, the sport's governing body, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI), said the British rider was informed of an "Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF)" on September 20 and that an analysis of the B sample had confirmed the results of the rider's A sample.Froome, Britain's most successful road cyclist, who won his fourth Tour de France in July, said: "It is well known that I have asthma and I know exactly what the rules are."I use an inhaler to manage my symptoms (always within the permissible limits) and I know for sure that I will be tested every day I wear the race leader's jersey."My asthma got worse at the Vuelta so I followed the team doctor's advice to increase my Salbutamol dosage. As always, I took the greatest care to ensure that I did not use more than the permissible dose."I take my leadership position in my sport very seriously. The UCI is absolutely right to examine test results and, together with the team, I will provide whatever information it requires."Thanking his fans for their messages of support, Froome later tweeted: "I am confident that we will get to the bottom of this."Unfortunately I can't share any more information than I already have until the enquiry is complete." 'Committed to establishing the facts' The UCI said Froome was not suspended, but wanted more details from Team Sky and was investigating the case under the organization's anti-doping rules. Under World Anti-Doping Authority (WADA) rules, Salbutamol is a permitted drug without the need of a therapeutic use exemption (TUE), but only at certain doses. The levels of the drug in Froome's urine test were at 2,000 nanograms per millilitre (ng/ml) -- double WADA's 1,000 ng/ml threshold. The test was conducted following Stage 18 of the three-week Vuelta. Froome was the first Briton to win the Spanish event and his success also made him the first cyclist since 1978 to complete the Tour de France and Vuelta double in the same year. Along with the Tour de France and the Giro d'Italia, the Vuelta is one of cycling's Grand Tours. The Kenyan-born rider is the first to win back-to-back Grand Tours since Marco Pantani won the Giro d'Italia and the Tour de France in 1998. Froome's team principal, Sir Dave Brailsford, said in a statement: "There are complex medical and physiological issues which affect the metabolism and excretion of Salbutamol. We're committed to establishing the facts and understanding exactly what happened on this occasion. "I have the utmost confidence that Chris followed the medical guidance in managing his asthma symptoms, staying within the permissible dose for Salbutamol. Of course, we will do whatever we can to help address these questions." A common inhaler for asthmatics Riders have in the past received bans for excessive levels of Salbutamol, a common inhaler used to relieve asthma symptoms. It opens up the airways to make i[...]



Doping: Russia backs Winter Olympics athletesFamous Olympic torchbearersWhite House: US 'looks forward to participating' in Olympics in South KoreaVonn: I won't represent US President at Winter OlympicsVladimir Putin won't tell Russian athletes to boycott Winter OlympicsRussia ban adds to South Korea's Winter Olympics woesRussia banned from Winter Olympics but 'clean' athletes can compete

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 10:17:42 GMTWed, 01 Nov 2017 15:23:45 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 20:56:45 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 05:11:41 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 17:08:46 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 08:48:56 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 21:31:41 GMT

Russian athletes wanting to participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea will have the unanimous support of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), the body said Tuesday.Last week Russia was banned from taking part in February's Games after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) found the country had engaged in "systemic manipulation" of anti-doping rules, though Russian athletes who can prove they are clean will be "invited" to compete under the name "Olympic Athlete from Russia" (OAR).Following the IOC's decision on December 5, Russian President Vladimir Putin said the country's athletes would not be told to boycott the Games, which will take place in PyeongChang from February 9-15. He did, however, call the ban a politically motivated decision.At Tuesday's meeting in Moscow, attended by some of the country's top athletes and presidents of winter sports federations, the Russian Olympic Committee said it was "united" and "supported" its athletes."Everyone had the same opinion, we believe our athletes should go to South Korea and win medals for our country," said ROC president Alexander Zhukov, who has been suspended as a member of the IOC."The bottom line is that Russian athletes expressed their willingness to participate in the PyeongChang Games despite these very difficult conditions and the decision made by IOC which is unfair to a large extent and that is what everyone said." 'Complex questions' Zhukov added that the ROC would take "all necessary measures" to ensure the country's athletes could compete in South Korea and would assist in "resolving all managerial, technical, financial and other issues." The ROC will also provide "overall support" to athletes not invited to compete under the neutral flag or who will refuse to participate in the Games, he said. Zhukov said the IOC has established a special task force which will meet a Russian delegation in Lausanne, Switzerland, on December 15 to discuss the "complex questions" of Russian participation. On Monday, the ROC athletes commission made a single statement on behalf of Russia's winter sports athletes, explaining they were "fully prepared" to take part in the Games under a neutral flag. Ilya Kovalchuk, an ice hockey player for SKA Saint Petersburg, told reporters before Tuesday's announcement: "We are Russian athletes, so it's quite clear: they can take away the flag and the anthem, but they can not take away the honor and the conscience. "Patriotism and love for your country is in your heart, so no one can take it away from us. So we must go there and fight with double energy." From first to fourth A 17-month IOC investigation, carried out by the former president of Switzerland, Samuel Schmid, was tasked with looking at whether or not the Russian government and authorities had played a part in covering up doping of the country's athletes during the 2012 London Olympics and 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. Schmid's report confirmed "the systemic manipulation of the anti-doping rules and system in Russia" -- and that it had come under the authority of the Russian sports ministry. The Schmid report was itself created to look into the findings of reports by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren whic[...]



Scott Frost confirms he will coach Knights in Peach BowlUCF students camp out for Peach Bowl ticketsUCF to face Auburn in 50th annual Peach Bowl New Year's DayScott Frost to leave UCF for Nebraska's head coaching job

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 23:33:49 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 13:45:58 GMTSun, 03 Dec 2017 20:44:28 GMTSun, 03 Dec 2017 04:31:40 GMT

Scott Frost was at practice Tuesday with the UCF Knights for the first time since announcing he was leaving the University of Central Florida football team for a head coaching position at Nebraska.

The football team is preparing to face Auburn University (10-3) in the Peach Beach Bowl game Jan. 1.

Frost was hired as Nebraska's coach shortly after UCF won 62-55 in double-overtime to defeat Memphis and capture the American Athletic Conference title.

After resigning from UCF, Frost said he still planned to coach his team in the bowl game. But after UCF athletic director Danny White announced Josh Heupel as the Knight's new head coach, fans and sports commentators began asking if Frost should still be the one to coach the bowl game.

Frost is taking seven UCF assistant coaches with him to his new head-coaching job. The Orlando Sentinel also reports that those coaches have already begun recruiting for the Cornhuskers.

In an online poll posted to ClickOrlando.com 77 percent of participants voted "yes," saying that Frost should coach the Knights in their final game.

At Spectrum Stadium on Tuesday, Scott reaffirmed his decision and said he will lead the Knights in the Peach Bowl on New Year's Day.

"I'm grateful to have this opportunity. UCF has been unbelievable to me and to be up there one more time is special to me," Frost said. "This is a great place and a great university and it's unusual circumstances but our staff is completely committed and we're going to do everything we can for this football team."

Frost said that despite his leaving the players are excited for the bowl game and were energized on the field Tuesday.
 
"Like I said these aren't ideal circumstances but we're all dialed in and committed," Frost said.

Scott Frost Responds to Nebraska reports

Hundreds of UCF students line up for a chance to secure discounted ticket to the Peach Bowl.

Central Florida's favorite football team is headed to the Peach Bowl.

Scott Frost is expected to be named the next head coach at Nebraska, sources confirmed to ESPN Saturday.




Raelene Castle becomes first woman to head rugby governing bodyNFL Network, ESPN suspend ex-players amid sexual harassment suitDiego Maradona statue provokes mirth on social mediaDoping: Russia backs Winter Olympics athletesVerizon will stream NFL games on any network next yearLaVar Ball tweets at Trump

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 13:18:03 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 18:18:37 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 17:31:10 GMTTue, 12 Dec 2017 15:38:03 GMTMon, 11 Dec 2017 15:14:11 GMTFri, 08 Dec 2017 15:52:33 GMT

It was a historic moment in world rugby when Raelene Castle was named as the first woman chief executive of a national governing body Tuesday.New Zealander Castle was announced as the new boss of Rugby Australia and will also become the first woman to oversee a major Australian sporting code.The experienced sports administrator will take up her post in January, replacing Bill Pulver, whose contract was due to expire in February."Raelene is an extremely impressive executive who covered every base as far as what the board was looking for in a chief executive officer to lead our game into an important new chapter," said Rugby Australia chairman Cameron Clyne, who said Castle was the standout candidate from more than 200 applicants."She offers an incredible wealth of experience in sports administration and business, with an outstanding track record in commercial, marketing and communications roles." 'Gender equity' Castle, who was born in Australia to Kiwi parents, was previously in charge of Netball New Zealand, as well as being the first female CEO of an Australian Rugby League club when she took over the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs in 2013. "I am especially looking forward to getting out into the rugby communities across Australia and meeting the diverse range of people that make the game tick," she told reporters at a news conference in Sydney. She was, however, keen to downplay the significance of her gender. "The reality is sport has gender equity in it," she added. "There's people from both really delivering, particularly at grassroots level... so I don't think it's an enormous step to have a female chief executive, I'm excited about the opportunity." Clyne added that Castle would bring a "fresh set of eyes" to rugby union in Australia, while Steve Tew, chief executive of New Zealand Rugby, called her appointment "a new era for international rugby". "We congratulate Raelene on her appointment, which is an acknowledgement of her strength as a leader, and her ability to drive success both on and off the field," he said. "I have known Raelene for a number of years, and have a huge regard for her and we are really looking forward to working with her." Rugby union in Australia faces fierce competition from the four football codes -- Rugby League, Australian Rules Football and soccer -- and despite the national team's success it is often seen as a niche, middle-class sport, domestically. "For many, rugby union is still a class-based game -- and it hasn't been able to break these shackles," wrote Steve Georgakis, a senior lecturer at the University of Sydney, in 2015.Accusations of sexual harassment have already rocked politics, entertainment and media. Now a raft of sports stars have been hit with similar allegations.It's been quite the year for football's gods being honored with statues -- not least in the reaction they have provoked.Russian athletes wanting to participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea will have the unanimous support of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), the body said Tuesday.Next month, you'll be able to watch NFL games on your smartphone, regardless of your carrier.[...]Furthering his public feud with President Donald Trump, LaVar Ba[...]



Diego Maradona statue provokes mirth on social media'Fearless Girl' joined briefly by 'Peeing Pug' statueNew Ronaldo bust actually looks like himUS Navy admits aircrew drew phallic drawing in skySomeone defaced a New York street sign to spell 'Crooked Hillary'

Tue, 12 Dec 2017 11:29:55 GMTTue, 30 May 2017 21:41:26 GMTTue, 28 Nov 2017 04:57:31 GMTFri, 17 Nov 2017 20:39:25 GMTFri, 16 Jun 2017 18:09:07 GMT

It's been quite the year for football's gods being honored with statues -- not least in the reaction they have provoked.

Famously known for his "Hand of God" goal against England in the 1986 World Cup, Diego Maradona is the latest football great to be immortalized, this time with a 12-foot statue in India.

The Argentine was on hand for the bust's recent unveiling in Kolkata.

The bronze representation is of a youthful Maradona, with a head of hair that appears to make him look more like one of the Beatles than a footballer, holding aloft the World Cup trophy.

Almost single handed, the Argentine guided his country to their 1986 World Cup success with a series of stunning individual performances.

"I am not god of football but a simple footballer," said Maradona after the unveiling. "It's amazing to have my statue here."

However, the statue has provoked plenty of mirth on social media, with Maradona's visage prompting comparisons with singer Susan Boyle, grandmas and a youthful Roy Hodgson, who now manages English Premier League club Crystal Palace.

'Total bust'

Earlier this year Portuguese artist Emanuel Santos designed a sculpture of Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo's head to commemorate an airport being renamed after him.

Some social media users said the bust looked more like other athletes, obscure art and the character Sloth from the film "The Goonies." It was like something from a horror movie, one football podcast joked on Twitter.

2017 has been a year when Ronaldo has had not one, but two busts of himself unveiled. The good news for the Portuguese star is the second one actually looks like him.

Situated at Real's Santiago Bernabu Stadium in Madrid, Spain, the bronze figure -- made by famous Spanish sculptor Jose Antonio Navarro Arteaga -- shows a more striking likeness of Ronaldo with naturalistic eyes dreamily looking into the distance, thick arched brows, a beauty mark resting above lifelike curved lips and perfectly coiffed hair, among other details.

Maradona, who is now 57 years old, is one of the greatest players in soccer history, having helped Napoli win two Italian league titles after a difficult two-year stay at Barcelona -- both clubs signed him for world-record fees.

But his career was marred by controversy over drug use -- he was thrown out of the 1994 World Cup after testing positive for ephedrine -- and he suffered from subsequent health problems.

There's another statue of Maradona in his former club Boca Juniors' museum. Unveiled in 2006, the fiberglass and cement bust was made by sculptor Elizabeth Eichhorn.

Fearless Girl and the Charging Bull were joined briefly on Monday morning by a third statue, a urinating dog.

Soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo's good looks are finally immortalized with a bust that actually looks like him.

In case there was any doubt, the US Navy has confirmed that there is "zero training value" in drawing penises in the sky.

Crooked Hill Road seemed like any other average American street name.




Verizon will stream NFL games on any network next yearNFL owners extend Roger Goodell's contractWhy some NFL jerseys are getting a new look

Mon, 11 Dec 2017 14:14:37 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 22:48:33 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 20:25:25 GMT

Next month, you'll be able to watch NFL games on your smartphone, regardless of your carrier.

Verizon signed a new multi-year agreement with the NFL to carry football games on mobile phones. Unlike its previous contracts, Verizon will allow other carriers' customers to watch the action, too.

Starting in January, anyone with a smartphone will be able to watch games airing in their local market. So if you live in Wisconsin, you can watch Packers games. You'll also be able to watch nationally televised matches, including Thursday, Sunday and Monday Night Football games, the playoffs and the Super Bowl.

Fans will be able to stream games on three apps: Yahoo Sports, Verizon's go90 and NFL Mobile.

Streaming NFL games on smartphones had been a Verizon exclusive since 2010. Two years ago, Verizon added the ability for its customers to stream in-market and nationally televised games for free. Since then, Twitter and Amazon have also streamed Thursday night games.

"Starting with the upcoming playoffs and for seasons to come, live NFL action directly on your mobile device - regardless of carrier - will give millions of fans additional ways to follow their favorite sport," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a prepared statement.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell just scored a major win.

Look out for a new feature on NFL jerseys.




Injured Vonn pulls out of St. Moritz raceLindsey Vonn goes for gold in memory of her grandfatherVonn, Shiffrin speak out against Russian dopingVonn: I won't represent US President at Winter OlympicsVonn crashes as Shiffrin scores first downhill podium in Lake LouiseHow Lindsey Vonn mixes style with speed in Lake Louise

Sun, 10 Dec 2017 12:15:11 GMTFri, 08 Dec 2017 16:02:10 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 20:44:52 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 05:11:41 GMTSat, 02 Dec 2017 13:59:37 GMTThu, 30 Nov 2017 20:28:28 GMT

She's targeting a historic season but Lindsey Vonn pulled out of a race in St. Moritz after injuring her back Saturday.The 33-year-old, who is trying to become the most successful ski racer of all time, hurt her back during her run in Saturday's super-G in the glitzy Swiss resort.She made it to the bottom but slumped to the snow after crossing the finishing line and received lengthy treatment at the course.Vonn later tweeted she had an "acute facet (spinal joint) dysfunction. I got compressed on the 6th gate and my back seized up."Vonn said she would see how she responded to treatment overnight, but she tweeted again Sunday morning ahead of a second super-G: "Unfortunately I will not be able to race today."I am extremely disappointed but my biggest goal this season is the Olympics and I need to take care of myself now so I can be ready for next week, and more importantly, for February."Vonn finished 24th in Saturday's race, more than a second behind winner Jasmine Flury of Switzerland, who clinched her first ever World cup podium. Another Swiss Michelle Gisin was 0.1 seconds back, ahead of Liechtenstein's Tina Weirather.Sunday's super-G was subsequently canceled because of bad weather.Vonn began her season by failing to qualify for the second run of a giant slalom race in Solden, Austria, and she crashed in the opening downhill in Lake Louise before finishing 12th in a second downhill at the Canadian resort. She fell again in a subsequent super-G at Lake Louise.America's Vonn has suffered a catalogue of injuries over her career and began last season's World Cup campaign late after breaking her arm in training last December and then suffering associated nerve problems in her hand.Vonn is bidding to break Swede Ingemar Stenmark's record of 86 World Cup race wins. She trails by nine and is the most decorated women's ski racer. She is also targeting February's Winter Olympics in South Korea after missing the defence of her Olympic downhill title in Sochi in 2014 following knee problems. 'Represent US' Earlier this week the two-time Olympic medalist told CNN she would "absolutely not" visit the White House if invited post-Games, but stressed her passion for her country was undiminished. "Well, I hope to represent the people of the United States, not the president," Vonn told CNN's Alpine Edge. She added: "I take the Olympics very seriously and what they mean and what they represent, what walking under our flag means in the opening ceremony. "I want to represent our country well. I don't think that there are a lot of people currently in our government that do that." In St. Moritz Friday, Vonn told reporters: "I was asked my opinion and I gave it. "I mean, it's not necessarily my place to be sticking my nose in politics, but as an athlete I do have a voice." On the men's World Cup circuit, home favourite Alexis Pinturault won a giant slalom in Val d'Isere, France, just along the Tarentaise Valley from his native Courchevel.When Lindsey Vonn goes for gold at next year's PyeongChang Olympics, she will do so in the memory of her late grandfather.[...]Leading US skiers Lindsey Vonn and [...]



Jaguars beat Seahawks to take outright lead in AFC South

Mon, 11 Dec 2017 01:13:54 GMT

Blake Bortles threw two perfect passes for touchdowns, Jaydon Mickens set up another score with a 72-yard punt return and the Jacksonville Jaguars beat the Seattle Seahawks 30-24 on Sunday.The Jaguars (9-4) intercepted three passes by Russell Wilson, including two on deep balls, and won for the sixth time in their last seven games. This victory, coupled with Tennessee's loss at Arizona, moved Jacksonville atop the AFC South.It's the first time since 2010 that the Jaguars have had the outright division lead this late in a season.The loss didn't sit well with the Seahawks (8-5), who had two players ejected in the final minute. Defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson was ejected for throwing a punch during a melee that included defensive tackle Michael Bennett and Jaguars running back Leonard Fournette.More pushing and shoving occurred after the next play, and defensive end Quinton Jefferson was tossed. Jefferson tried to climb into the stands after getting hit with what looked like a plastic bottle. Seattle coach Pete Carroll also got flagged for coming onto the field. Carroll walked into Seattle's huddle, possibly to calm his players down.The ending did little to ruin Jacksonville's celebration, which had a lot to do with Bortles and the league's top-ranked defense.Coming off one of the best games of his career, a 30-10 victory against Indianapolis, Bortles was equally efficient and effective against the Seahawks.Two of his better throws ended up in the end zone. He floated an 18-yarder early in the third quarter to rookie Dede Westbrook, the first for the 2016 Heisman Trophy finalist. Bortles' second one was even better, a deep pass that hit Keelen Cole in stride and went for 75 yards.Cole's second touchdown in as many weeks came on the ensuing play after Wilson connected with Doug Baldwin for a 26-yard score that tied it at 10.Jacksonville's third-quarter surge wasn't done. Mickens zigzagged through the middle of Seattle's coverage team and ended up getting stopped at the 1-yard line. Leonard Fournette handled it from there, scoring for the ninth time this season.That was enough - just barely - for Jacksonville's defense.Trailing 27-10, Wilson avoided a sack and hit Paul Richardson for a 61-yard score. Down 30-17, Wilson connected with Tyler Lockett for a 74-yarder.Wilson had a final chance to rally his team, but he failed to convert a fourth-and-9 pass from the Seattle 43.Fournette iced the victory by gaining 13 yards on a third-and-11 play with less than 2 minutes remaining.RARE MISTAKESWilson's early mistakes left Seattle in a huge hole. It was the first time this season and the fourth time in 105 career games that Wilson threw three interceptions. It was his first game with three or more picks since throwing five against Green Bay in December 2016.INJURIESSeahawks: All-everything LB Bobby Wagner left the game in the third quarter with a hamstring injury and did not return. ... LB K.J. Wright (concussion) left the field late in the third quarter and was ruled out. ... RB Mike Davis (ribs) was knocked out briefly but returned.Jaguars: RB Corey Grant injured his right shoulder while fumbling a kickoff. ... TE Marcedes Lewis jammed a finger o[...]



Bucs fail to hold off Lions down stretch; lose in a nail-biter

Mon, 11 Dec 2017 01:11:25 GMT

With the clock running down in a tie game, the Detroit Lions didn't have any qualms about the ball being in Matthew Stafford's injured throwing hand.They've come to expect their quarterback to find a way to lead them to victory in those situations, and Stafford didn't disappoint Sunday, when he threw for 381 yards and set up Matt Prater for a 46-yard field goal in the closing seconds to beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 24-21.The victory stopped a two-game skid and kept the Lions (7-6) in playoff contention with three games remaining."I just think we have a lot of confidence. I think guys that have been around here have understood that sometimes that's the way the game boils down. We go out there and make plays," Stafford said after directing a winning drive in the fourth quarter or overtime for the 32nd time in his career."When you have success, it breeds confidence," he added, "Frankly, there's been some times this year where we haven't been successful in those situations, some really close calls in some other games. It feels good to get back out there and have a two-minute drive, go down there and win the game."Stafford made his 109th consecutive start despite being limited in practice after his right hand was stepped on during the previous week at Baltimore. He completed 36 of 44 attempts against the Bucs (4-9), and the Lions overcame two interceptions and a fumble to stay alive for a playoff spot.Jameis Winston rallied Tampa Bay, which has lost eight of 10 following a 2-1 start, with a pair of fourth-quarter TD passes. But once again, the Bucs' defense couldn't hold off an opponent down the stretch.A week ago, the Bucs led by a field goal in the closing minutes of regulation before losing 26-20 in overtime at Green Bay."This team is always going to fight. We've just got to learn how to come out on the other side of these things," Tampa Bay defensive tackle Gerald McCoy said."We fought back last week. We fought back this week," McCoy, who left the game in the opening half with a biceps injury. "It's a fine line between winning and losing. The fine line was a field goal today."Stafford moved the Lions 49 yards in eight plays to set up Prater's winning kick with 20 seconds left - the fourth winning drive he's led this season."Tough guy who heals quickly. It's always been that way," Lions coach Jim Caldwell said. "He's a great leader. Did a tremendous out there for us under tough circumstances. ... He threw the ball pretty well. I'm sure it wasn't easy, but he did a nice job."Stafford threw a 5-yard TD pass to Golden Tate and Theo Riddick scored on runs of 2 and 18 yards to help the Lions take a 21-7 lead into the fourth quarter.Winston, who threw two interceptions and lost a fumble, led a 75-yard drive that he finished with a 2-yard scoring pass to O.J. Howard and then used a 40-yard pass interference call against Detroit cornerback DJ Hayden to set a 2-yard TD throw to seldom-used offensive lineman Leonard Wester to make it 21-21 with eight minutes remaining.Winston completed 26 of 38 passes for 285 yards. His fumble le[...]



Baker Mayfield wins Heisman Trophy

Sun, 10 Dec 2017 02:03:21 GMT

Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield won the Heisman Trophy on Saturday. The Sooners' fifth-year senior broke through after finishing third behind Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson and Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson last season and fourth in 2015 voting. Mayfield beat out his fellow finalists in Jackson and Stanford running back Bryce Love. Jackson was aiming to become the first repeat Heisman winner since Archie Manning in 1975. The trophy, which goes to college football's most outstanding player, was awarded Saturday night at the Downtown Athletic Club in New York.   Mayfield completed 71 percent of his passes for 4,340 yards with 41 touchdowns and five interceptions this season for the second-ranked Sooners (12-1), who will face No. 3 Georgia in a College Football Playoff semifinal at the Rose Bowl on New Year's Day. He also rushed for another 310 yards and five touchdowns.   Mayfield started his college career as a walk-on for Texas Tech in 2013 before transferring and once again walking-on for Oklahoma in the 2015 season. The 22-year-old Austin, Texas-native also won the Maxwell, Davey O'Brien and Walter Camp awards earlier this week along with being named the Associated Press Player of the Year.[...]



Police: WWE star arrested in Gainesville after dragging woman into vehicleActress Naya Rivera charged with domestic batteryDomestic violence affects 1 in 3 women; here's how to get helpFlagler council says legislative action, education needed to curb domestic violenceOrlando police officer arrested on domestic violence charge

Sun, 10 Dec 2017 15:52:07 GMTSun, 26 Nov 2017 09:55:05 GMTWed, 18 Oct 2017 22:16:00 GMTWed, 18 Oct 2017 22:42:00 GMTTue, 28 Nov 2017 19:38:07 GMT

A World Wrestling Entertainment wrestler was arrested in Gainesville late Saturday after he allegedly battered a woman, police said.

After a show at a nightclub in the area, the woman was riding in a vehicle with Richard Swann, 26, when he began critiquing her performance, according to the arrest report.

Authorities said the woman was frightened that the argument may escalate, so she got out of the vehicle while it was moving and began walking away in the middle of traffic.

A witness told police Swann didn't put the vehicle in park and it continued moving until it slammed into a telephone pole, according to the report.

Swann allegedly grabbed the woman by her arm, put his arm around her neck and put her in a headlock before dragging her back to the vehicle, police said.

Another witness told police the woman was banging on the window and screaming for help as Swann drove away, the report said.

Police said Swann denied grabbing the woman and putting in her in the vehicle, He told them she chose to get in the vehicle on her own, according to the report.

Swann is facing charges of battery and false imprisonment, police said.

Former "Glee" star Naya Rivera was arrested Saturday night for allegedly assaulting her husband in West Virginia, authorities said.

Central Florida organizations including Harbor House offer resources and guidance for women and men subject to domestic violence.

Since Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly called on the community in June to combat domestic violence, he said the problem has gotten worse.

An Orlando police officer was arrested Monday on a domestic violence charge in Seminole County, according to officials from the Orlando Police Department.




Bazemore, Ilyasova lead Hawks past Magic, 117-110Nuggets beat Magic 103-89Fournier leads Magic, but injures ankle in OT win over HawksHornets top Magic 104-94Nikola Vucevic has 34 points, Magic beat Knicks 105-100

Sun, 10 Dec 2017 03:22:28 GMTSat, 09 Dec 2017 02:51:26 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 03:18:00 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 03:23:12 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 01:26:48 GMT

Ersan Ilyasova scored 26 points on 9-for-9 shooting and the Atlanta Hawks overcame Nikola Vucevic's triple-double to beat the Orlando Magic 117-110 on Saturday night.

Vucevic had 31 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists, and Jonathan Simmons added a career-high 29 points for the Magic. They beat the Hawks 110-106 in overtime Wednesday night in Orlando.

Kent Bazemore scored six late points for Atlanta, with two baskets coming on dunks following steals.

With the game tied at 110, Bazemore stole a pass from Simmons to Vucevic and took it two-thirds of the court to dunk for the lead with 36 seconds remaining. He was fouled 21 seconds later after grabbing a rebounding on Shelvin Mack's airball, and made a pair of free throws.

After an Orlando timeout, Bazemore stole Mack's inbounds pass on the sideline, and raced for another dunk with 18 seconds left. That was good for a 116-110 lead.

The Hawks tied a season high with 17 3-pointers on 33 tries. Ilyasova hit all five of his from beyond the arc.

TIP-INS

Magic: Vucevic on back-to-back nights combined for 52 points and 30 rebounds after scoring 21 points and grabbing a season-high 17 rebounds in a 103-89 loss Friday to Denver. . . . Orlando starting forward Aaron Gordon missed the game after suffering a concussion against Denver. Guard/forward Mario Hezonja made his first start of the season. The Croatian scored seven points and on 3-of-9 shooting. . . . The Magic had difficulty traveling after Friday's game in Orlando because the Atlanta airport was snowed in, and the team did not arrive until Saturday morning. Then, they had delays with their team bus.

Hawks: Once again without injured big men Mike Muscala (left ankle sprain), John Collins (sprained shoulder) and Dewayne Dedmon (left tibia stress reaction), the Hawks started Miles Plumlee at center. ... Forwards Marco Belinelli (13 points) and rookie Tyler Cavanaugh (14 points- tried to pick up some of the slack inside.

UP NEXT

Magic: Host Los Angeles Clippers on Wednesday night.

Hawks: At New York on Sunday night.

___

For more NBA coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball

Kenneth Faried scored 20 points and the Denver Nuggets rebounded from a poor first quarter to beat the Orlando Magic 103-89 on Friday night.

Evan Fournier scored 27 points but injured his right ankle as the Orlando Magic rallied to beat the Atlanta Hawks 110-106 in overtime Wednesday night.

Kemba Walker had 29 points and seven assists in his return from a shoulder injury, Dwight Howard reached a rebounding milestone and the Charlotte Hornets defeated the Orlando Magic 104-94 on Monday to snap a four-game losing streak.

Despite missing two starters, the New York Knicks erased an early 17-point deficit to tie the Orlando Magic midway through the final quarter.




Japanese star Ohtani to sign with Angels

Fri, 08 Dec 2017 19:59:44 GMT

Japanese baseball star Shohei Ohtani will sign with the Los Angeles Angels, his agent said Friday.

"Shohei is humbled and flattered by all the time and effort that so many teams put into their presentations and sincerely thanks them for their professionalism," his agent, Nez Balelo, said in a statement. "In the end, he felt a strong connection with the Angels and believes they can best help him reach his goals in Major League Baseball."

Ohtani, 23, had also met with the Chicago Cubs, Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers, San Francisco Giants, San Diego Padres and Seattle Mariners.

The Japan Pacific League's Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters posted Ohtani for the maximum posting fee of $20 million last week. He had until the end of the day on Dec. 22 to agree to a MLB contract.

A two-way star known both for his pitching and his bat, Ohtani hit .332 with eight home runs and 31 RBIs in 65 games last season while battling various injuries. During the 2016 season, he hit .322 with 22 homers and 67 RBIs and also posted a 10-4 record with a 1.86 ERA while pitching in 21 games.

In 403 games over four seasons with the Fighters, he batted .286 with 48 homers, 166 RBIs and an .859 OPS. His pitching stats over that time include a 42-15 record with a 2.52 ERA over 85 games.

The Angels have a total of $2.315 million in international bonus pool money to spend on their contract offer to Ohtani after trading minor league outfielder Jacob Pearson to the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday for an extra $1 million worth of bonus pool money.

The Rangers had the most in their international bonus pool at $3.535 million. Teams were limited to that bonus pool money for signing Ohtani, although he could have signed a deal in excess of nine figures if he had waited to come over to the MLB after his 25th birthday.




Field goal try wide on final play, Army holds off Navy 14-13

Sun, 10 Dec 2017 00:48:23 GMT

Bennett Moehring narrowly missed a 48-yard field goal in the swirling snow on the final play and Army held off Navy 14-13 Saturday to win its first Commander-in-Chief's Trophy since 1996.Army (9-3) earned its second straight win over Navy (6-6) following 14 straight losses in the series.Ahmad Bradshaw pushed over the goal line on a quarterback sneak with 5:10 remaining and Blake Wilson kicked the extra point to put Army ahead.Quarterback Malcolm Perry, who ran for 250 yards and a 68-yard score in the second quarter, then led Navy to the Army 31 with 3 seconds left.Navy elected to try a field goal, and after about 10 players used their feet to clear the steady snow during a timeout, Moehring's kick was long enough but drifted barely left.Army cut its deficit in the series to 60-51-7 in a matchup of bowl-bound teams. The Black Knights claimed the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy thanks to an earlier victory over Air Force.In a game that included only three passes - Army completed its lone toss - the Black Knights produced a 13-play, 65-yard drive to take a late lead. John Trainor tiptoed the sideline for 8 yards one play before Bradshaw's 12th touchdown of the season.Navy took advantage of the ensuing kickoff going out of bounds and moved down the field. Perry dropped a shotgun snap on fourth down at the Army 37, but picked up the ball and ran for a first down. But Navy committed two false start penalties, making the final field goal attempt more difficult.Snow started falling in the late morning on the 29-degree day, leaving a coating on the field. Workers used blowers to uncover the lines and hashmarks during timeouts as a light snow fell throughout.The teams, both of whom run the triple-option, combined to complete only 58 passes all season. The snow made both coaches want to throw it even less.The first pass of the game came with under 9 minutes left in the second quarter. Army completed its only pass, a 20-yard wobbler from Bradshaw to Calen Holt, midway through the third quarter.The weather made one of sports' biggest rivalries an even more physical contest. Army's all-white uniforms - a nod to the 10th Mountain Division of World War II - served as almost camouflage in the snow.Perry was the star through three quarters. Getting the start at quarterback ahead of Zach Abey, his long touchdown run in the second quarter was his third rushing TD of more than 65 yards this season.Perry's shifty 46-yard run to the Navy 11 early in the third quarter put him over 1,000 yards for the season and led to Moehring's second field goal, from 24 yards, to make it 13-7.THE TAKEAWAYArmy: Coach Jeff Monken has Army on a major upswing. This victory will do wonders for a program that had suffered through the longest losing streak by either team in this rivalry.Navy: Perry was the fastest and most dangerous player on the field, but wasn't as effective in the second half. Still, he bought a dynamic missing in last year's Army game when Navy had 112 yards rushing. Perry had 130 yards on the ground himself with 11:28[...]



Nuggets beat Magic 103-89Fournier leads Magic, but injures ankle in OT win over HawksHornets top Magic 104-94Nikola Vucevic has 34 points, Magic beat Knicks 105-100Warriors rout Magic 133-112

Sat, 09 Dec 2017 02:48:50 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 03:18:00 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 03:23:12 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 01:26:48 GMTSat, 02 Dec 2017 02:50:18 GMT

Kenneth Faried scored 20 points and the Denver Nuggets rebounded from a poor first quarter to beat the Orlando Magic 103-89 on Friday night.

Will Barton added 19 points, Emmanuel Mudiay had 18 and Malik Beasley 12 for Denver.

After scoring only 14 points in the first quarter, the Nuggets (14-11) dominated the rest of the game, shooting 61 percent (28 for 46) in the second and third quarters. Denver had a 53-16 advantage in bench scoring en route to its second road victory since Oct. 29.

Nikola Vucevic led the Magic (11-16) with 21 points and 17 rebounds. Jonathan Simmons also scored 21 points, 11 of in the first quarter.

With Mudiay and Faried contributing 11 points each, Denver erased a 13-point deficit in the second quarter and led 49-48 at halftime. The Nuggets shot 58 percent (15 for 21) in the second quarter and had a 33-8 advantage in bench points in the first half.

Gary Harris scored six straight Denver points early in the second half to put the Nuggets ahead to stay. The last of those points started a 9-0 run that netted the Nuggets their first double-digit lead at 72-62.

Magic forward Aaron Gordon left with a concussion shortly after colliding with the Harris midway through the third quarter.

TIP-INS

Nuggets: It was the fourth straight game in which neither Nikola Jokic (left ankle) nor Paul Millsaps (left wrist) played. ... The Nuggets have won only six times in Orlando. They lost 15 straight here, a streak that ended in 2008.

Magic: G Evan Fournier (sprained left ankle) missed his first game of the season. ... G Arron Afflalo started his first game for the Magic since April 16, 2014, two months before being traded to Denver for Fournier.

UP NEXT

Nuggets: At Indiana on Sunday in the fourth game of a six-game trip.

Magic: At Atlanta on Saturday night in a rematch of the Magic's overtime victory Wednesday night.

___

For more NBA coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball

Evan Fournier scored 27 points but injured his right ankle as the Orlando Magic rallied to beat the Atlanta Hawks 110-106 in overtime Wednesday night.

Kemba Walker had 29 points and seven assists in his return from a shoulder injury, Dwight Howard reached a rebounding milestone and the Charlotte Hornets defeated the Orlando Magic 104-94 on Monday to snap a four-game losing streak.

Despite missing two starters, the New York Knicks erased an early 17-point deficit to tie the Orlando Magic midway through the final quarter.

Klay Thompson scored 27 points, Kevin Durant had 25 and Steph Curry 23 to help the Golden State Warriors rout the Orlando Magic 133-112 on Friday night.




LaVar Ball tweets at TrumpLaVar Ball says feud with Trump didn't affect businessLos Angeles Lakers to enforce so-called 'LaVar Ball rule'Trump calls LaVar Ball 'ungrateful fool'LaVar Ball responds to Trump: 'I say thank you when I see something'

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 23:54:02 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 16:52:55 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 18:52:49 GMTWed, 22 Nov 2017 12:52:13 GMTTue, 21 Nov 2017 15:08:58 GMT

Furthering his public feud with President Donald Trump, LaVar Ball on Thursday tweeted a gif that portrays a cartoon image of him dunking on Trump, accompanied by the hash tags "thetrumpdunk" and "stayinyolane."The two clashed following the detainment -- and later release -- of UCLA basketball players who were arrested last month on suspicion of stealing sunglasses from a Louis Vuitton store while the team was in China.One of the individuals involved in the incident was Ball's son, LiAngelo. {"url":"https://twitter.com/Lavarbigballer/status/938892276863877121","author_name":"Lavar Ball","author_url":"https://twitter.com/Lavarbigballer","html":"&#lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&#gt;&#lt;p lang=\"und\" dir=\"ltr\"&#gt;&#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/thetrumpdunk?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;#thetrumpdunk&#lt;/a&#gt; &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/stayinyolane?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;#stayinyolane&#lt;/a&#gt; &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;@realDonaldTrump&#lt;/a&#gt; &#lt;a href=\"https://t.co/MEjGptbiuS\"&#gt;pic.twitter.com/MEjGptbiuS&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/p&#gt;— Lavar Ball (@Lavarbigballer) &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Lavarbigballer/status/938892276863877121?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;December 7, 2017&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/blockquote&#gt;\n&#lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets\" charset=\"utf-8\"&#gt;&#lt;/script&#gt;\n","width":550,"height":null,"type":"rich","cache_age":"3153600000","provider_name":"Twitter","provider_url":"https://twitter.com","version":"1.0"} Trump publicly questioned whether the players would thank him for his help in their release, tweeting, "Do you think the three UCLA Basketball Players will say thank you President Trump? They were headed for 10 years in jail!" The President received the thanks of the players at a news conference later that day, where they also apologized for their behavior. But LaVar Ball days later told ESPN "Who?" when asked about Trump's role in the release of Ball's son and the other players. "What was he over there for? Don't tell me nothing. Everybody wants to make it seem like he helped me out," Ball said. The back-and-forth continued, and Trump eventually tweeted that he "should have left them in jail," referring to the players. Ball's tweet Thursday echoed remarks he had made on CNN last month in an interview with Chris Cuomo. "If you help, you shouldn't have to say anything," he [...]



Hope Solo running for US Soccer presidentRonaldo wins 5th Ballon d'Or to tie Messi's recordIs Russia ready to host the 2018 World Cup?Chapecoense qualifies for Copa Libertadores playoffsWorld Cup draw: Portugal lands SpainFIFA struggling to find sponsors for Russia 2018

Fri, 08 Dec 2017 16:43:05 GMTFri, 08 Dec 2017 15:39:09 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 17:45:10 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 16:34:57 GMTFri, 01 Dec 2017 18:01:40 GMTFri, 01 Dec 2017 19:02:40 GMT

Hope Solo announced Thursday that she is running for U.S. Soccer Federation president.The former U.S. women's national team goalkeeper made the announcement with a lengthy post on her official Facebook page.In doing so, Solo laid out four core principles of her campaign as well as described some of the financial struggles her family went through in order for her to play youth soccer."My whole life I knew that I was one of the few lucky kids living by the grace of others," she wrote. "I had so much support around me, but the reality was never lost on me. I very easily could have been just another kid lost to the system."She went on to criticize U.S. Soccer for putting "profit before progress.""The heart of what USSF must represent is the development of youth soccer in America," she said.Solo said she will campaign on creating a winning culture, fighting for equality and women's issues, making the game accessible to all, and engendering transparency in the organization.ESPN reported that a spokesperson for Solo confirmed that she has the required three nomination letters from voting members to officially enter the race.She joins an already crowded field to replace current president Sunil Gulati, who announced earlier this month that he will not seek re-election. Among those running in the Feb. 10 vote are former players Paul Caligiuri, Kyle Martino and Eric Wynalda, current USSF vice president Carlos Cordeiro, soccer executive Kathy Carter, attorneys Steve Gans and Mike Winograd and soccer entrepreneur Paul Lapointe.Solo made 202 appearances for the U.S. women's national team in her career, winning Olympic gold medals in 2008 and 2012. She also was part of the U.S. team that won the Women's World Cup in 2015.She made almost as much news off the pitch, some from making a stand with her teammates for pay equal to their male colleagues and more notoriously for her 2014 arrest on a charge of domestic violence involving her half-sister and nephew.She's also twice been suspended from the national team. First in 2015 when her husband, ex-NFL player Jerramy Stevens, was arrested for driving a U.S. team van while under the influence with Solo as a passenger and in 2016 when she called the Swedish team "a bunch of cowards" after the Swedes eliminated the U.S. in the Olympic quarterfinals in Rio.Cristiano Ronaldo claimed his fifth Ballon d'Or Thursday, equaling the record set by eternal rival Lionel Messi.Soccer fans will have their work cut out traveling between host cities at the 2018 World Cup.Just over a year since the plane crash that killed most of Chapecoense's players and staff, the Brazilian club's remarkable recovery continues.Cristiano Ronaldo won't need to do much scouting ahead of Portugal's opener at next year's football World Cup in Russia as the reigning European champions landed in the same group as Spain.[...]Sponsors for the 2018 World Cup in Russia are proving hard to [...]



Lindsey Vonn goes for gold in memory of her grandfatherWhite House: US 'looks forward to participating' in Olympics in South KoreaVonn, Shiffrin speak out against Russian dopingVonn: I won't represent US President at Winter OlympicsVladimir Putin won't tell Russian athletes to boycott Winter OlympicsHow Lindsey Vonn mixes style with speed in Lake Louise

Fri, 08 Dec 2017 09:59:37 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 20:56:45 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 20:44:52 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 05:11:41 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 17:08:46 GMTThu, 30 Nov 2017 20:28:28 GMT

When Lindsey Vonn goes for gold at next year's PyeongChang Olympics, she will do so in the memory of her late grandfather.Vonn's paternal grandfather passed away last month at the age of 88, and without him, the greatest female ski racer of all time may never have taken up the sport."If it wasn't for my grandfather I wouldn't be racing," Vonn told CNN's Alpine Edge as she prepared for races this weekend in St Moritz, Switzerland."My grandfather taught my father how to ski. It's because of him that it is in our family. It was a huge loss to me and my family. I think about him all the time, especially when I'm racing. And I feel closer to him when I'm skiing." Behind enemy lines Vonn said her grandfather had been stationed in what was then called Korea, not far from where the alpine events will be taking place at the Winter Games, which start in February in South Korea. "He was with the 10th Infantry of Engineers and he was over there building all the roads," she said. "He was behind enemy lines a few times and was held at gun point. I was really hoping that he would make it and be able to come with me over there. I had gone through the whole process of figuring out how to medically get him over there," she added. "But now I hope that I can win for him. Everyone in my family wants me to win for him. I hope I can make him proud." Genes Vonn is a former Olympic downhill champion and women's World Cup record holder with 77 victories, nine shy of the all-time record. But she is perhaps best known for her resilience and ability to bounce back from setbacks, including overcoming three potentially career-ending injuries, one of which kept her sidelined during the 2014 Sochi Olympics. It's all down to her genes, according to Vonn. "I think I have his work ethic," she said. "I feel like my adversities are nothing compared to what he went through. "So I keep that in mind whenever I have a setback. It's really nothing. You figure it out, you get over it and keep working." 'Breaking down at the gym' At times her rehabilitation from injury has been so intense this year that Vonn was reduced to tears because she was so exhausted. "I had almost eight weeks where I was just at the gym. I didn't travel anywhere, I didn't do anything, I was pretty lame to be around. "This summer was really important to make sure that I was as prepared as possible for this season. It's most likely my last Olympics so I don't want to have any regrets that I could have worked harder. "I literally pushed my body to its limit. I worked as hard as I possibly could. To the point where I was breaking down at the gym. But it's all worth it if I can bring home the gold medal." 'Devastating' These days the 33-year-old Vonn's knee needs "some tender loving care." "To be phy[...]



Ronaldo wins 5th Ballon d'Or to tie Messi's recordIs Russia ready to host the 2018 World Cup?Chapecoense qualifies for Copa Libertadores playoffsBenevento: Goalkeeper scores to make history against AC MilanWorld Cup draw: Portugal lands SpainFIFA struggling to find sponsors for Russia 2018

Fri, 08 Dec 2017 11:53:37 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 17:45:10 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 16:34:57 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 11:24:44 GMTFri, 01 Dec 2017 18:01:40 GMTFri, 01 Dec 2017 19:02:40 GMT

Cristiano Ronaldo claimed his fifth Ballon d'Or Thursday, equaling the record set by eternal rival Lionel Messi.Some of the biggest and best names to ever play the game were quick to congratulate the Portugal international.Brazilian Pele, considered by many to be the greatest footballer of all time, said: "I would love to have played on the same side as you!"High praise indeed. {"url":"https://twitter.com/Pele/status/938847251052597249","author_name":"Pelé","author_url":"https://twitter.com/Pele","html":"&#lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&#gt;&#lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&#gt;Congratulations to &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Cristiano?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;@Cristiano&#lt;/a&#gt; on winning this year's Ballon d'Or. I would love to have played on the same side as you! // Parabéns ao &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Cristiano?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;@Cristiano&#lt;/a&#gt; por conquistar o Ballon d'Or este ano. Eu adoraria ter tido a chance de jogar ao seu lado! &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/BallondOr?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;#BallondOr&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/p&#gt;— Pelé (@Pele) &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Pele/status/938847251052597249?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;December 7, 2017&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/blockquote&#gt;\n&#lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets\" charset=\"utf-8\"&#gt;&#lt;/script&#gt;\n","width":550,"height":null,"type":"rich","cache_age":"3153600000","provider_name":"Twitter","provider_url":"https://twitter.com","version":"1.0"} After a decade of dominance and winning the previous 10 Ballon d'Ors between them, people are beginning to wonder if anybody else apart from Ronaldo or Messi will ever win the title. {"url":"https://twitter.com/Shawnife_/status/939032250510745600","author_name":"Iseunife The First","author_url":"https://twitter.com/Shawnife_","html":"&#lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\"&#gt;&#lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&#gt;10 years of the Messi and Ronaldo dominance. It is okay. It's already becoming stale 😩&#lt;br&#gt;&#lt;br&#gt;They need new competition.&#lt;/p&#gt;— Iseunife The First (@Shawnife_) &#lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/Shawnife_/status/939032250510745600?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&#gt;December 8, 2017&#lt;/a&#gt;&#lt;/blockquote&#gt;\n&a[...]



Ex-USA Gymnastics doctor sentenced to 60 years on child porn chargesGabby Douglas: US Olympic star alleges abuse by Dr. Larry NassarEx-USA Gymnastics doctor apologizes, pleads guilty to criminal sexual conduct

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 18:50:46 GMTWed, 22 Nov 2017 18:34:02 GMTWed, 22 Nov 2017 17:14:28 GMT

Larry Nassar, the disgraced former USA Gymnastics team doctor who admitted to sexually abusing underage girls, has been sentenced to 60 years in federal prison on child pornography charges, a court official said Thursday. US District Judge Janet Neff essentially imposed a life prison term on the 54-year-old physician, sentencing Nassar to 20 years for each of three counts, which are to be served consecutively, according to the docket. But the child porn charges are not the most serious accusations against Nassar. In November, he pleaded guilty to seven counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and admitted to using his position to sexually abuse underage girls. Three of those charges related to victims who were under age 13. He will be sentenced on those state charges in January.More than 140 women and girls have accused him of sexual misconduct, including several American gymnasts on the "Fierce Five" team that won gold at the 2012 Olympics.Nassar pleaded guilty in July to receiving child pornography in 2004, possessing child pornography from 2003 to 2016 and destroying and concealing evidence in 2016 as he was under investigation, according to the US attorney's office for the Western District of Michigan.Rachael Denhollander, a former Michigan gymnast who filed the first criminal complaint against Nassar, said after the sentencing that the case represented failures on many levels, from university athletics programs to sports governing bodies. "It is victim blaming and victim blaming at its finest," Denhollander told reporters. "And that should terrify us. Because ladies and gentlemen, this is the culture of abuse. This is what keeps victims silent. This is what keeps predators in power. And this is what's endangering the next generation of girls." John Manly, an attorney representing more than 100 victims, said he was proud of McKayla Maroney and other victims for overcoming their fear and facing their perpetrator in court. "The system failed these women for 20 years," he said. Andrew Birge, acting US Attorney for the Western District of Michigan, called Nassar an "insidious, hands-on predator" who "treated his license to practice medicine as a license to sexually molest.""He's getting a natural life sentence," he said. "He is never getting out of prison. He should never have another opportunity to pose a threat to another child."In a sentencing memorandum last week, prosecutors asked the judge to consider the "full scope" of Nassar's criminal behavior."(T)here is a close link between the defendant's child pornography activities and his prolific molestation of children," prosecutors wrote. "The seriousness of his conduct, and the devastating impact it has had on the lives of so many, cannot be overstated."Nassar was the team doctor for USA Gymnastics through four Olympic Games, and he worked at Michigan State University from 1997 to 2016 as an associate professo[...]



Vonn, Shiffrin speak out against Russian dopingVonn: I won't represent US President at Winter OlympicsWhite House: US 'looks forward to participating' in Olympics in South KoreaVladimir Putin won't tell Russian athletes to boycott Winter OlympicsRussia ban adds to South Korea's Winter Olympics woesRussia banned from Winter Olympics but 'clean' athletes can compete

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 16:56:44 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 05:11:41 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 20:56:45 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 17:08:46 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 08:48:56 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 21:31:41 GMT

It's been called an unprecedented attack on the integrity of the Olympic Games and sport, prompting the most wide-ranging punishment ever meted out to a participating nation.Now leading US skiers Lindsey Vonn and Mikaela Shiffrin have joined the chorus of those backing the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) decision to ban the country from next year's Winter Olympics."Doping and what the Russians did is just not acceptable," Vonn, the most decorated American skier in history, told CNN's Alpine Edge. "We have to make that clear and make sure that it doesn't happen again.""I don't question the integrity of the Olympic Games as much as the specific nations that host the Games," said Shiffrin, referring to Russia, which staged the Winter Olympics in Sochi in 2014."If you're working with a nation who's willing to go to those ends to have a successful Olympics, that's really sad for me," added the 22-year-old Shiffrin, who is the Olympic slalom champion and winner of the last three slalom World Championships. 'Right thing' Having consistently denied the allegations of a state-backed doping campaign, Russia was banned from PyeongChang 2018 on Tuesday over the country's "systemic manipulation" of the rules, following a 17-month investigation carried out by the former president of Switzerland, Samuel Schmid. Russian athletes who can incontrovertibly prove that they are untainted by doping will be "invited" to compete at February's Winter Games but won't be allowed to display any national symbols -- something President Vladimir Putin has previously said would be an humiliation. They'll instead compete under the name "Olympic Athlete from Russia" (OAR), and the Olympic anthem will be played at any medal ceremonies for Russian athletes. "I mean, if even a small percentage of that is true, I would think the IOC did the right thing," said Vonn, telling CNN she was "not surprised" to learn of the lengths Russia went to in pursuit of victory, "Obviously there are potential athletes that are clean but they have the option now to compete under a neutral flag, which I think is a good solution." 'Not about the medals' As the scandal rumbles on, the Oswald Commission -- headed by another Swiss, the IOC member Denis Oswald -- is dealing with the specific cases and determining sanctions against individual athletes. It has so far handed out lifetime bans to 25 Russian competitors since the start of November and stripped 11 medals, which means Russia has dropped from first in the Sochi medal table, to fourth behind Norway, Canada and the US. Richard McLaren, whose reports into Russian doping provided much of the basis for Tuesday's decision, told CNN that the scandal was a "sad comment[...]



Why some NFL jerseys are getting a new lookNFL owners extend Roger Goodell's contractBeyonce surprises Colin Kaepernick with awardAfter failed attempt, Silverdome finally implodes

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 17:17:53 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 22:48:33 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 15:47:22 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 14:16:36 GMT

Look out for a new feature on NFL jerseys.Players who have received the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award will sport a special patch on their uniforms.Drew Brees, who won the award in 2006, will become the first player to sport the patch when the New Orleans Saints play the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday night. It's a silhouette of a football player wearing a sideline coat, meant to look like a cape. The patch was modeled after the trophy for the award.Man of the Year is given to players who demonstrate a dedication to their communities off the field while excelling in the sport."It's just like a captain's patch," Brees told CNNMoney. "Guys who have a captain's patch wear that with pride, and I think they will wear the Walter Payton Man of the Year patch with pride as well."Brees won the award for his work with his foundation, which raises money to help find a cure for cancer and help cancer patients.The award is typically given to one player a year, nominated by his teammates. Each of the 32 teams picks a player, and three finalists are selected in January. The winner is announced the night before the Super Bowl.Last year, Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald and New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning both won the honor.Fitzgerald credited his mother with encouraging him to be active in his community and give back. He told CNNMoney that he's honored by the award and that his mother, who passed away in 2003, would be proud of him.While he's a "bit shy" about wearing a patch to commemorate his volunteer work, he said the winners discussed it closely with the NFL. The league wanted to be sure players were comfortable displaying their award on their jerseys."The consensus was that the guys were OK with it," he said. "It's about trying to get guys on the same page to continue to inspire and motivate others to get active and have a presence in their communities."He wouldn't say who he thought deserved to be this year's winner, but he complimented Houston Texans defensive end JJ Watt for the work he did to raise more than $37 million for victims of Hurricane Harvey.Past winners who are still playing will wear the patch on their jerseys. Other winners who are still active include Carolina Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis and Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten.All winners will get to wear the uniform patch for the rest of their careers. This season's nominees will be announced Thursday. They will get to wear a Man of the Year decal on their helmets for the rest of the season.The award has been around since 1970 but was renamed for Hall of Famer Walter Payton in 1999 after his death. Payton was known for his amazing skill as a player and his humanitarian work with at-risk youth.[...]NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell just[...]



Vonn: I won't represent US President at Winter OlympicsFamous Olympic torchbearers2018 Olympic flame lit in ancient OlympiaVonn crashes as Shiffrin scores first downhill podium in Lake LouiseWhite House: US 'looks forward to participating' in Olympics in South KoreaHow Lindsey Vonn mixes style with speed in Lake LouiseVladimir Putin won't tell Russian athletes to boycott Winter OlympicsRussia ban adds to South Korea's Winter Olympics woesRussia banned from Winter Olympics but 'clean' athletes can compete

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 22:53:37 GMTWed, 01 Nov 2017 15:23:45 GMTTue, 24 Oct 2017 15:29:18 GMTSat, 02 Dec 2017 13:59:37 GMTThu, 07 Dec 2017 20:56:45 GMTThu, 30 Nov 2017 20:28:28 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 17:08:46 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 08:48:56 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 21:31:41 GMT

A number of US athletes have spoken out against Donald Trump during his presidency -- and skier Lindsey Vonn has become the latest to have her say.Targeting Olympic gold at February's Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, Vonn is in St. Moritz, Switzerland, where she spoke passionately about what it means to compete for the US ski team."I hope to represent the people of the United States, not the president," Vonn told CNN.The 33-year-old Vonn is getting ready for the final act of a long and illustrious career.As well as competing for a second Olympic gold medal in South Korea, she is attempting to break the record of 86 World Cup victories held by Ingemar Stenmark since 1989.Away from the slopes, Vonn also appears willing to put her head above the parapet and speak out about US politics."I take the Olympics very seriously and what they mean and what they represent, what walking under our flag means in the opening ceremony," she added."I want to represent our country well. I don't think that there are a lot of people currently in our government that do that."This year Trump has been embroiled in a controversy with the NFL and some of the NBA's top players -- a spat with significant racial and cultural undertones -- after he blasted prominent athletes for kneeling during the national anthem and refusing to come to the White House.And Vonn revealed she wouldn't accept an invitation to the White House if she were to win gold at Pyeongchang."Absolutely not," said Vonn. "No. But I have to win to be invited. No actually I think every US team member is invited so no I won't go. Serious injuries Pyeongchang will be Vonn's first Games since Vancouver 2010, where her downhill triumph turned her into a global star and one of the world's best-paid winter athletes with a net worth, according to Forbes, of about $3 million. Vonn has battled with a number of serious injuries throughout her career, including a knee injury in 2013 that kept her out of the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Last year, she broke her arm and sustained nerve damage during a preseason training crash in the US, delaying the start of her season until January. Vonn endured an underwhelming start to the new season, crashing out of last week's opening downhill event at Lake Louise.With the Olympic torch arriving in South Korea on Wednesday to mark 100 days until the PyeongChang Games, take a look at some of the famous names who have carried the torch over the years.The Olympic flame for the 2018 PyeongChang Games was lit Tuesday in Olympia, Greece, the birthplace of the ancient Olympics.She had been expected to add to her Lake Louise legend, but Lindsey Vonn crashed in the women's World Cup downhill opener as Mikaela Shiffrin scored her first podium in the speed event Friday.[...]



NFL owners extend Roger Goodell's contractBeyonce surprises Colin Kaepernick with awardAfter failed attempt, Silverdome finally implodesColin Kaepernick honored with ACLU awardNFL's Thanksgiving games take a ratings hitJerry Jones addresses Roger Goodell's contract, Trump

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 21:59:32 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 15:47:22 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 14:16:36 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 17:50:48 GMTTue, 28 Nov 2017 20:58:59 GMTWed, 22 Nov 2017 15:30:31 GMT

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell just scored a major win.He signed a contract extension, holding onto his job despite a number of controversies swirling around the league.A source familiar with the matter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the deal extends Goodell's contract into 2024. It was set to expire after next season.The move was announced in a letter sent to all NFL owners Wednesday by the league's compensation committee, which is comprised of six owners: Arthur Blank of the Falcons, Clark Hunt of the Chiefs, Robert K. Kraft of the Patriots, John Mara of the Giants, Bob McNair of the Texans and Art Rooney of the Steelers."Our Committee unanimously supports the contract and believes that it is fully consistent with "market" compensation and the financial and other parameters outlined to the owners at our May 2017 meeting, as well as in the best interests of ownership," the letter, which was obtained by CNNMoney, reads.Goodell has faced criticism over how he has handled domestic violence issues as well as players protesting racial injustice on the field.When some players kneeled during the National Anthem, many felt the gesture was disrespectful. While Goodell made it clear he believed players should stand, he didn't create a rule requiring them to stand, which sparked a backlash.By far the biggest obstacle to his contract extension was posed by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. He was a vocal critic of the deal and even threatened to sue his fellow owners in an attempt to block negotiations.Members of the committee told Jones that his actions were "damaging the league," and that he should stop trying to sabotage their work.Eventually Jones stepped back from his threat of a lawsuit.The letter from the compensation committee sent Wednesday describes the decision to re-up Goodell's contract as a move to "avoid further controversy," though it did not explicitly state to which controversy it was referring.One thing working in Goodell's favor was the timing of his contract's expiration.The league's collective bargaining agreement with players expires after the 2020 season, and several lucrative TV deals end in 2021 and 2022.If the NFL had decided to bring in a new commissioner, that person would only have had a year or so to get up to speed. And they might not be as skilled at negotiating as Goodell. The past two TV deals he did were favorable for owners, according to former NFL attorney Jodi Balsam.The league is also dealing with declining TV ratings and growing concerns about brain injuries caused by high-impact hits to the head.While it's unclear how much Goodell will be making with his new contract, a source familiar with the deal said 85% of his compensation will be performan[...]



Fournier leads Magic, but injures ankle in OT win over HawksHornets top Magic 104-94Nikola Vucevic has 34 points, Magic beat Knicks 105-100Warriors rout Magic 133-112Gordon has 40 and 15, Magic beat Thunder to end 9-game skid

Thu, 07 Dec 2017 03:18:00 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 03:23:12 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 01:26:48 GMTSat, 02 Dec 2017 02:50:18 GMTThu, 30 Nov 2017 04:37:27 GMT

Evan Fournier scored 27 points but injured his right ankle as the Orlando Magic rallied to beat the Atlanta Hawks 110-106 in overtime Wednesday night.Aaron Gordon had 24 points and 15 rebounds and Nikola Vucevic added 22 points and 16 rebounds for the Magic, and Jonathon Simmons scored 15 points.Fournier, the team's second-leading scorer, left with an injured ankle after falling on Vucevic's foot on the first possession in overtime.Dennis Schroder led Atlanta with 26 points and seven assists. Taurean Prince had 19 points and Tyler Cavanaugh 13 for the Hawks.The Magic hit 6 of 10 shots in overtime, five of them layups against a tired and ineffective defense.Orlando's D.J. Augustin hit a 3-pointer with 6.2 seconds left in regulation to send the game to overtime. It ended a difficult final two minutes of regulation for both sides.Fournier hit a driving layup to put Orlando up 93-92 with 1:59 to play, and both teams struggled to execute from there.Bazemore hit a 3-pointer with 1:33 left, but it was waved off after a review because of a shot-clock violation. Gordon then was charged with an offensive foul as he made a layup, but Schroder and Ersan Ilyasova both missed layups at the other end for Atlanta.Schroder ended the run of bad offense by hitting two free throws with 27.3 seconds left for a 94-93 lead, and Bazemore hit two more with 14 seconds left to give Atlanta a 96-93 edge.Augustin got free at the top of the key and drilled his tying 3-pointer.TIP-INSHAWKS: C Dewayne Dedmon missed his fourth straight game with a leg injury and F John Collins missed his third straight with a shoulder strain. ... F Marco Belinelli hit his 900th career 3-pointer in the third period.MAGIC: Rookie F Johnathan Isaac missed his 13th straight game with a sprained ankle. ... The Magic haven't won a game this season when they scored less than 100 points.UP NEXTHawks: Play the Magic again Saturday night at home.Magic: Host Denver on Friday night. The Nuggets defeated Orlando 125-107 on Nov. 11.___More AP basketball: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketballKemba Walker had 29 points and seven assists in his return from a shoulder injury, Dwight Howard reached a rebounding milestone and the Charlotte Hornets defeated the Orlando Magic 104-94 on Monday to snap a four-game losing streak.Despite missing two starters, the New York Knicks erased an early 17-point deficit to tie the Orlando Magic midway through the final quarter.Klay Thompson scored 27 points, Kevin Durant had 25 and Steph Curry 23 to help the Golden State Warriors rout the Orlando Magic 133-112 on Friday night.Aaron Gordon never got out of control, and that made all the difference for the Magic.[...]



Aussie official: Serena Williams has entered to playCould teen prodigy Cori Gauff be next Serena Williams?Bulgaria rejoices in Grigor Dimitrov's ATP Finals victoryFormer Wimbledon champion Jana Novotna dies aged 49

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 12:53:41 GMTTue, 28 Nov 2017 17:13:50 GMTMon, 20 Nov 2017 22:19:06 GMTMon, 20 Nov 2017 15:03:55 GMT

Serena Williams has entered to play in the first grand slam of the season at January's Australian Open, according to the tournament's organizers.

Defending champion Williams, 36, gave birth to her daughter Alexa in September and married Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian in a star-studded New Orleans wedding in November.

Last week Williams' coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, told CNN Sport that a decision would be made during an upcoming training session in Florida on whether or not the 23-time grand slam champion would make her comeback and compete in Melbourne, where play starts on January 15.

However, at a Tennis Australia event on Wednesday, the Australian Open's tournament director, Craig Tiley, was optimistic of Williams defending her Melbourne title and continuing in her quest to break Margaret Court's all-time singles record of 24 grand slams.

"She has got her visa, she has entered, she's practicing, and she probably just needs a bit more space for a bigger entourage," Tiley told reporters.

"There is no question she will be ready in our view.

"She wants to break the record owned by Margaret Court and it would be a significant accomplishment for her to be able to do that."

Currently ranked No.22 in the world, Williams told CNN in July she was intending to return to tennis -- echoing the words of her spokespeople -- and if the American does show up in Melbourne, it would come about four-and-a-half months after she gave birth.

The American won this year's Australian Open in the early stages of pregnancy and then stepped away from the game.

American tennis prodigy Cori Gauff is only 13 years old but she already has Serena Williams' long-time coach by her side.

Grigor Dimitrov was already a big deal in Bulgaria, but his ATP Finals victory in London has secured him 'rock star' status.

Former Wimbledon champion Jana Novotna has died at the age of 49 after a long battle with cancer, the World Tennis Association (WTA) has announced.




Vladimir Putin won't tell Russian athletes to boycott Winter OlympicsRussia ban adds to South Korea's Winter Olympics woesRussia banned from Winter Olympics but 'clean' athletes can competeHow Lindsey Vonn mixes style with speed in Lake Louise

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 14:59:57 GMTWed, 06 Dec 2017 08:48:56 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 21:31:41 GMTThu, 30 Nov 2017 20:28:28 GMT

Russian President Vladimir Putin says the country's athletes won't be told to boycott the 2018 Winter Olympics following the International Olympic Committee's decision to ban the Russian Olympic team from competing in PyeongChang next February. One of the world's major winter sports powers, Russia was on Tuesday banned from taking part in February's Winter Olympics after the IOC found the country had engaged in "systemic manipulation" of anti-doping rules. However, Russian athletes who can prove that they are clean will be "invited" to compete under the name "Olympic Athlete from Russia" (OAR). "We, without doubt, will not declare a blockade, we will not prevent our Olympians from taking part [in the Games], if one of them wants to take part in a personal capacity," said Putin on Wednesday, according to the state run RIA news agency. It had been unclear whether the Kremlin would allow Russian athletes to compete in South Korea as Putin had said in the past that it would be a humiliation to compete without any national symbols. Speaking at the Gorky Automobile Plant, where he announced he will run for re-election next year, Putin drew attention to the fact that many athletes, including those he knew personally, had been preparing for the Winter Olympics throughout their careers. "This is very important for them," he added. "Based on these considerations, of course, we will not forbid anything to anyone, block anything, making any impossible conditions for participation."The Russian President called the ban a politically motivated decision, saying: "It all looks like an absolutely staged and politically motivated decision. We see this, for me there is no doubt about it."He also questioned how the Games would be organized and said it was not yet fully understood on the Russian side how the team competitions would be organized. "Under what symbols will they go? This is also not an idle question," he said. "But in the end, the athletes will have to make a decision themselves, each of them for themselves, both in the team and individually: who and how will participate."Will Russian stars compete?Looking ahead to the process of determining which Russian athletes were "clean," WADA President, Sir Craig Reedie, said on Tuesday that it must be proven that the athletes had not been "implicated in the institutionalized scheme and have been tested as overseen by the panel."Prior to Putin's statement, some prominent Russian Olympians had said they had not yet decided if they would compete. Evgenia Medvedeva, a two-time world figure-skating champion, told reporters after the IOC's decision that it was "too early" for her to decide whether she would take part.Figure skating is one of the most popu[...]



Beyonce surprises Colin Kaepernick with awardColin Kaepernick honored with ACLU awardNFL's Thanksgiving games take a ratings hit

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 14:14:54 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 17:50:48 GMTTue, 28 Nov 2017 20:58:59 GMT

A surprise presenter proved to be a showstopper at the 2017 Sports Illustrated Sportsperson of the Year Awards, generating as much chatter as Tuesday night's big winners.

Superstar Beyonce turned up to give the Muhammad Ali Legacy Award to former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

Introduced by "Daily Show" host Trevor Noah, the singer said she felt "so good to be here on such a special night of appreciation."

She thanked Kaepernick for his "selfless heart," "conviction" and "personal sacrifice."

The football player became a lightning rod in 2016 when he began kneeling during the national anthem before games to protest police brutality and racial inequality.

"Colin took action with no fear of consequence or repercussion only hope to change the world for the better," Beyonce said. "To change perception, to change the way we treat each other, especially people of color. We're still waiting for the world to catch up."

Quoting an often-shared message from social media, she added, "It's been said that racism is so American, that when we protest racism, some assume we are protesting America."

"So, let's be very clear. Colin has always been very respectful of the individuals who selfless serve and protect our country and our communities and our families," she said. "His message is solely focused on social injustice for historically disenfranchised people."

Kaepernick spoke of Ali's legacy as "being that of a champion of the people."

He said he began protesting, an act that many feel may have cost him his career in the NFL, because of his love for people. (No NFL team has signed Kaepernick after he became a free agent.)

"With or without the NFL's platform I will continue to work for the people because my platform is the people," he said.

Aside from Beyonce's surprise appearance, SI's Sportsperson of the Year honors went to two Houston athletes -- Texans defensive end J.J. Watt and Astros shortstop Jose Altuve -- who brought hope to the city after Hurricane Harvey's devastation.

As Colin Kaepernick made his way to the podium, a surprised crowd broke into thunderous applause.

The NFL didn't have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, at least not when it comes to its TV ratings.




Should Scott Frost coach UCF Knights in Peach Bowl?UCF welcomes Josh Heupel as new head football coachUCF students camp out for Peach Bowl ticketsUCF to face Auburn in 50th annual Peach Bowl New Year's DayScott Frost to leave UCF for Nebraska's head coaching job

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 15:05:29 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 23:36:11 GMTMon, 04 Dec 2017 13:45:58 GMTSun, 03 Dec 2017 20:44:28 GMTSun, 03 Dec 2017 04:31:40 GMT

After an undefeated season, the University of Central Florida Knights plan to play a final game with their former coach, Scott Frost, but sports commentators are asking if its right for Frost to coach the Peach Bowl.

UCF coach Scott Frost was hired as Nebraska's coach shortly after UCF won 62-55 in double-overtime to defeat Memphis and capture the American Athletic Conference title on Saturday.

The 12th-ranked UCF Knights will face off against the 7th-ranked Auburn Tigers in Atlanta on Jan. 1.

Frost has said he will coach his team in the bowl game. But on Tuesday after UCF Athletic Director Danny White announced Josh Heupel as the Knight's new head coach, fans and sports commentators began asking if Frost should still be the one to coach the bowl game.

“This is like breaking up with your boyfriend or girlfriend and then going to the prom together,” Orlando Sentinel sports columnist George Diaz wrote Wednesday.

Frost is taking seven UCF assistant coaches with him to his new head-coaching job. The Sentinel also reports that those coaches have already begun recruiting for the Cornhuskers.

Heupel said Tuesday during a news conference that he would watch the Peach Bowl from White’s luxury suite.

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UCF has its new head coach.

Hundreds of UCF students line up for a chance to secure discounted ticket to the Peach Bowl.

Central Florida's favorite football team is headed to the Peach Bowl.

Scott Frost is expected to be named the next head coach at Nebraska, sources confirmed to ESPN Saturday.




Russia ban adds to South Korea's Winter Olympics woesRussia banned from Winter Olympics but 'clean' athletes can compete

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 07:05:37 GMTTue, 05 Dec 2017 21:31:41 GMT

South Korean Olympic organizers have expressed shock after Russian was banned from taking part in the upcoming Pyeongchang Winter Games.The absence of one of the world's major winter sports powers from the competition adds another stress for the hosts, who are already dealing with lackluster ticket sales in the shadow of the ongoing North Korea crisis.Lee Hee-beom, President of the Pyeongchang Organizing Committee, said in a radio interview Tuesday he did not expect the International Olympic Committee (IOC) "to go this far.""We plan to meet with the chairman of the IOC and deliver our message. The message that it's better to allow as many nations, as many athletes to compete," he told South Korea's CBS Radio. 'Murder of our national sport' Under the IOC's ruling, which found Russia had engaged in "systemic manipulation" of anti-doping rules, "clean" sportspeople will be able to participate in the Games under the designation "Olympic Athlete from Russia" (OAR). Lee said the organizing committee respects the IOC's decision, and that allowing Russians to compete in a personal capacity was the next best option, beyond full participation. Some prominent Russian Olympians say they haven't yet decided if they'll compete. Evgenia Medvedeva, a two-time world figure-skating champion, told reporters after the IOC's decision that it was "too early" for her to decide whether she would take part. Figure skating is one of the most popular Winter Olympics events, and the loss of Medvedeva -- widely tipped for a gold medal -- would be a major blow to fans. In a speech to the IOC panel before the ruling came down, Medvedeva seemed to indicate she would not compete as a neutral athlete, saying she "could not accept" that option. "I am proud of my country, it is a great honor for me to represent it at the Games," she said. "It gives strength and inspires me during the performances." Medvedeva told panel members as a "clean" athlete she never dreamed she could be banned from the Olympics. "In 2014, I was 14 years old. I had not even entered the adult national team of my country," she said. For me personally, Pyeongchang should be the first chance to plunge into the unique atmosphere of the Olympic Games. I do not understand why my Russian teammates and I can lose this chance." Other Russian athletes have reacted similarly. According to state-run broadcaster RT, Irina Avvakumova, a member of the ski jumping team, said she "did not prepare for so many years just to [...]



Russia banned from Winter Olympics but 'clean' athletes can compete

Tue, 05 Dec 2017 12:57:03 GMT

Russia has been banned from the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea over the country's "systemic manipulation" of anti-doping rules.However, Russian athletes who can prove that they are clean will be "invited" to compete in Pyeongchang, the International Olympic Committee said on Tuesday.It is the most wide ranging punishment ever meted out by the IOC on a participating nation, let alone a powerhouse of the Olympic movement.Russia's Olympic Committee has also been ordered to pay $15 million to reimburse the IOC's costs of investigating the doping scandal and help set up the new Independent Testing Authority (ITA).Vitaly Mutko -- the Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, former Minister of Sport and chairman of the organizing committee for soccer's 2018 World Cup in Russia -- has been barred from attending any future Olympic Games and so has his former deputy, Yuri Nagornykh.'Drawing a line'The "clean" Russian athletes must meet strict guidelines to make it to South Korea and will compete under the name "Olympic Athlete from Russia" (OAR). They will wear a uniform with that name on it and the Olympic anthem will be played at any medal ceremonies for Russian athletes."This was an unprecedented attack on the integrity of the Olympic Games and sport," said IOC President Thomas Bach, who is a friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin. "The IOC has issued proportional sanctions for this systemic manipulation while protecting the clean athletes. This should draw a line under this damaging episode and serve as a catalyst for a more effective anti-doping system led by the World Anti-Doping Agency."As an athlete myself, I feel very sorry for all the clean athletes from all [National Olympic Committees] who are suffering from this manipulation. Working with the IOC Athletes' Commission, we will now look for opportunities to make up for the moments they have missed on the finish line or on the podium."Having consistently denied the allegations of a state-backed doping campaign, Russia could now decide to block the offer of exemptions and boycott the Pyeongchang Olympics altogether. Putin has previously said it would be a humiliation to compete without any national symbols.According to the Russian news agency TASS, the All-Russia State Broadcasting Company [VGTRK] will not broadcast the Winter Olympics in the absence of the Russia team from the event."What is left of the principles of Olympism, from the spirit of the Olympics, from the idea of the Olympic Games?!" asked two-time Olympic pole vault champion, Elena Isinbayeva, on her Instagram account."Without Russia it's a lame Olympics! #nor[...]



Willie Taggart named head football coach at FSU, reports say

Tue, 05 Dec 2017 21:20:56 GMT

Willie Taggart has been named head coach of Florida State University football. 

Taggart comes to Tallahassee after one year as head coach at the University of Oregon. He finished the season with a 7-5 record.

Before Oregon, Taggart coached at the University of South Florida. Taggart was able to change the University of South Florida team from 2-10 to 10-2 in just two years.

Taggart, a native of Bradenton, Florida, will be the Seminole's first full-time African-American head coach. 




UCF welcomes Josh Heupel as new head football coachOrlando City Soccer goalkeeper diagnosed with bone cancerSoccer Team Gives Refugees an Outlet to Socialize, Integrate and Hone Their Skills

Thu, 30 Nov 2017 15:26:54 GMTWed, 15 Nov 2017 19:51:33 GMTTue, 31 Oct 2017 20:39:16 GMT

After what University of Central Florida athletic director Danny White described as a "fast and furious" few days, the university announced Tuesday that it has hired Josh Heupel as the Knights' new head football coach.Heupel, who played quarterback at the University of Oklahoma and was the offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach at Missouri for the past two seasons, is the 11th head coach in UCF's history.White announced Saturday that Scott Frost stepped down from his position as head football coach with the Knights to be named the next head coach at Nebraska.The Knights won the American Athletic Conference title Saturday and are 12-0. The team will play Auburn Jan. 1 in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl in Atlanta.White described UCF's new head coach as one of the "brightest offense minds in the game."Heupel was officially introduced by UCF President John Hitt and White at an afternoon news conference.White said the speedy selection process started Sunday when he met with UCF football players to learn what they needed from a new head coach."They really wanted to continue the family atmosphere at UCF," White said. "A player's coach."White said Heupel shares the same vision for UCF football program of building not only great athletes, but successful students. UCF has one of the highest student-athlete graduation success rates at 92 percent for football players.In 2015, prior to Heupel’s arrival, Missouri ranked 124th in the nation in total offense. In 2016, the Tigers led the Southeastern Conference and were ranked No. 13 in the nation, averaging 500.5 yards per game. In 2017, Mizzou is currently ranked No. 7 in the nation in total offense, averaging 511.5 yards per game. The Tigers are currently No. 10 in the nation in scoring at 39.3 points per game."Looking at what his Missouri offense did this season, I can’t wait to see the scoreboard light up at Spectrum Stadium," Hitt said.Heupel spoke at the news conference Tuesday about his vision for the Knights and called being selected "a fulfillment of a dream to be the head football coach of a university and to play for championships."Heupel's wife, Dawn and their two children Hannah, 9, and Jace, 7, joined the new Knight's coach Tuesday in Orlando. Jace was already sporting a UCF Knights baseball cap."He's ready for the black and gold," Heupel said beaming.Heupel spoke about instilling a competitive environment that he wan[...]



Tiger Woods through the years

Tue, 29 Dec 2015 22:03:45 GMT




Gordon has 40 and 15, Magic beat Thunder to end 9-game skid

Thu, 30 Nov 2017 04:37:27 GMT

Aaron Gordon never got out of control, and that made all the difference for the Magic."I think that's what was special about his night — he wasn't out there trying to play superhero," coach Frank Vogel said. "He played within himself for the most part, and as a result he shot a high percentage."Gordon had 40 points and 15 rebounds Wednesday to help Orlando end a nine-game losing streak with a 121-108 win over the struggling Oklahoma City Thunder."I was just aggressive, taking opportunities, not passing anything up. If the open pass presented itself, then I was making the right read," he said.Gordon made 13 of 23 shots (57 percent) and scored 20 points in each half. He played the entire second half."He played under control, that was the biggest thing," Magic guard D.J. Augustin said. "It didn't even look like he had that many points because he wasn't forcing anything."Russell Westbrook hit five 3-pointers and scored 20 of his 37 points in the fourth quarter for the Thunder, who lost for the fifth time in six games. Westbrook shot 7 for 10 on 3s and added 11 rebounds, five assists and five steals."It's my responsibility to make sure we're ready to play on both sides of the ball," Westbrook said. "To get us out of this funk we've got to lock in. That starts with me and I'll take ownership because I've been here (and) I know the standards we set."Elfrid Payton had 19 points and Evan Fournier added 16 for the Magic, who shot 59 percent in winning for the first time since Nov. 10.The Thunder went without a field goal for more than five minutes late in the third period, then went scoreless for the first 3 1/2 minutes of the fourth. They were outscored 28-5 during that span."When the ball moves and you generate assists ... you're going to shoot a relatively high percentage," Thunder coach Billy Donovan said. "I thought in the second half we weren't really able to do that consistently."Fournier's free throw with 4:22 left in the third quarter put Orlando ahead to stay.The Magic led 100-80 when Westbrook made the first of his fourth-quarter 3s, and his last one cut Orlando's lead to 109-99 with 4:01 remaining. But Nikola Vucevic hit an open jumper and Payton sank a free throw to turn back the Thunder's comeback attempt.Paul George scored 22 points for the Thunder, who went 0-7 on the road in November.TIP-INSThunder: The game end[...]



ESPN is laying off 150 more people

Wed, 29 Nov 2017 14:33:00 GMT

ESPN is laying off about 150 more people.

Most of the affected jobs are in studio production, digital content and technology, ESPN President John Skipper told staff on Wednesday.

"We appreciate their contributions, and will assist them as much as possible in this difficult moment with severance, a 2017 bonus, the continuation of health benefits and outplacement services," Skipper said in a memo posted online by the network.

The cuts amount to about 2% of ESPN's workforce.

This is only the latest round of layoffs for the sports broadcaster. The network is trying to shift its focus to digital programming as growing numbers of viewers unsubscribe from cable. But ESPN is also locked into costly long-term TV deals with sports leagues.

In April, ESPN laid off several TV, radio and online personalities. In all, 100 on-air personalities and writers were cut.




VIDEO: Wingsuit flyers jump into plane mid-air

Wed, 29 Nov 2017 19:38:56 GMT

This video may be the craziest thing you'll ever see.

Red Bull, a company that is known for sharing crazy stunts, posted a video on its website of two French wingsuit flyers jumping off the top of Switzerland's Jungfrau Mountain and landing inside a moving plane.

Fred Fugen and Vince Reffet said the trained for they stunt for months, and when it was finally executed they were "very emotional." 

Can't get an idea of how insane it is? Check it out for yourself:

 

allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/YL9sNrOlK-I" width="560">




First figure skater competes wearing a headscarfTiger Woods is 'loving life' and pain free ahead of returnCould teen prodigy Cori Gauff be next Serena Williams?

Wed, 29 Nov 2017 01:26:33 GMTTue, 28 Nov 2017 18:35:28 GMTTue, 28 Nov 2017 17:13:50 GMT

The United Arab Emirates (UAE), a Persian Gulf state where temperatures soar as high as 48 degree Celsius (118.4 Fahrenheit) during summer, is famous for hosting the Formula 1, The Dubai World Cup horse race, camel races -- and even international cricket and skydiving tournaments.It is hard to imagine, however, that this desert country where heavy snowfall is considered a national phenomenon, could become the first Arab state to join the International Skating Union (ISU), which administrates ice skating sports.But that's exactly what has happened.And it's thanks to Zahra Lari, aged 22, who is not only the first skater from a Persian Gulf state to participate in international figure skating competitions, but the first to do so wearing a headscarf. Ice princess If you think that pairing the ornate but revealing figure skating costume with a modest headscarf is unusual, you are not alone. And that was not the only hurdle Lari faced when she started figure skating 10 years ago in her home emirate of Abu Dhabi. "I began skating when I was 12 years old, after watching the Disney movie 'Ice Princess'," Lari tells CNN over email. She was a student at the time, and recalls waking up at 4.30am to train before going to school, and then practicing again in the afternoon. Lari trained at the only rink in Abu Dhabi, located within Zayed Sports City. In a conservative Muslim country, however, where Emirati women are expected to wear abayas -- wide fitting robes -- and headscarves in public, Lari performing routines in a tight-fitting figure skating outfit in front of men was not an easy task. "My father felt that it went too much against our normal traditions and culture for a girl to compete in sports," recalls Lari. At first, she decided not to skate competitively to avoid annoying her father. "As a family, we went to competitions only to cheer for my friends that were competing." But after seeing his daughter's enthusiasm for her colleagues on the ice rink, he gradually relented, and gave Lari permission to enter competitions. "Now he is my biggest supporter," she says. The fashion question Today when Lari competes in professional figure skating competitions she wears a modified version of the figure-skating outfit. See-through fabrics such as Lycra are replaced with opaque cloth, she covers her toned legs with thick leggings and wears a[...]