In Las Vegas, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver discusses keeping eye on gambling
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver says he believes all leagues have to continue to keep an incredibly close eye on gambling trends within their sport, mindful of issues that the NFL in particular has had to address in recent months.
Suspended Sarver says he's decided to sell Suns, Mercury
Robert Sarver says he has started the process of selling the Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury, a move that comes only eight days after he was suspended by the NBA over workplace misconduct including racist speech and hostile behavior toward employees.
Athletes react to the Supreme Court's abortion decision
U.S. national soccer team star Megan Rapinoe is among a group of leading sports figures who have expressed anger over the Supreme Court’s decision to strip the nation’s constitutional protections for abortion, decrying an erosion of rights that women have had for a generation.
US sports leagues cope with COVID-19 outbreaks amid variants
U.S. sports leagues are seeing rapidly increasing COVID-19 outbreaks with dozens of players in health and safety protocols, amid an ongoing surge by the delta variant of the coronavirus and rising cases of the highly transmissible omicron mutation.
Elgin Baylor, Lakers great and aerialist pioneer, dies at 86
LOS ANGELES – Elgin Baylor soared through the 1960s with a high-scoring, high-flying artistry that that became the model for the modern basketball player. With a silky-smooth jumper and fluid athleticism, Baylor played a major role in revolutionizing basketball from a ground-bound sport into an aerial show. Baylor’s second career as a personnel executive for 22 1/2 years with the woebegone Los Angeles Clippers was far less successful, but he remained a beloved basketball figure in Los Angeles and beyond. When the Lakers moved to Los Angeles in 1960, Baylor became the centerpiece of their Hollywood revival. A Los Angeles County jury unanimously ruled in the Clippers’ favor in March 2011, refusing to award any damages.
NBA tells teams rules will be relaxed for vaccinated persons
No one in the NBA will be considered fully vaccinated until two weeks after receiving the final vaccine dose. Once that happens, rules for some of those individuals will change, the NBA said in a memo sent early Thursday to teams and obtained by The Associated Press. Had they been fully vaccinated, they would not have had to miss any time even after being around someone who tested positive for COVID-19. Toronto’s Fred VanVleet revealed earlier this week that he tested positive for the virus and that his recovery process, at times, was not easy. More than 100 players have tested positive this season, nearly half of them doing so in November just before training camps around the league opened.
Heat trade Meyers Leonard to Thunder for Trevor Ariza
FILE - Miami Heat forward Meyers Leonard, center, greets his teammates before an NBA basketball game against the Milwaukee Bucks, Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2020, in Miami. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky, file)MIAMI – The Miami Heat have turned Meyers Leonard's contract into an opportunity to see if Trevor Ariza can help them for the rest of this season. AdThe Heat also said they wish Leonard and his wife Elle “the best of luck in the future.”“He's going to do everything that he possibly can to grow and get better from everything this week," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. Ariza has not played an NBA game since March 10, 2020, but the Heat clearly felt he was worth the low-risk gamble. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver fined Leonard $50,000 and barred him from being around the Heat for one week.
Pelicans say some players, staff received COVID-19 vaccine
They are the first NBA team to acknowledge a widescale receipt of the vaccine by members of a club. “In my opinion, the more people we can encourage to get vaccinated, the better off all of us are going to be," Van Gundy said. AdMany of the Pelicans’ players fall into that category, despite being NBA players and elite athletes. The NBA has been holding Zoom calls with teams for the past several weeks, educating players and staffers on the vaccine. “We need to understand where that comes from,” Van Gundy said.
NBA fines Meyers Leonard $50,000 for anti-Semitic slur
FILE - Miami Heat forward Meyers Leonard, center, greets his teammates before an NBA basketball game against the Milwaukee Bucks, Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2020, in Miami. Leonard made an ethnic slur while streaming a video game, a comment that was quickly condemned by the NBA shortly after it learned of the matter Tuesday, March 9, 2021. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky, file)MIAMI – The NBA has fined Meyers Leonard $50,000, the maximum allowed by league policy, and suspended him from using all Miami Heat facilities and activities for one week in response to his use of an anti-Semitic term. Commissioner Adam Silver, in announcing those sanctions Thursday, also said that he believes Leonard “is genuinely remorseful” for using the slur. “Meyers Leonard’s comment was inexcusable and hurtful and such an offensive term has no place in the NBA or in our society,” Silver said.
March 11, 2020: The night sports, as we knew them, ended
(AP Photo/John Locher)Nobody knew exactly what to say in Oklahoma City around 7:10 p.m. local time on March 11, 2020. The NBA was the first major league to stop play. A day later, so did the NHL, Major League Baseball and Major League Soccer. We had no idea the true impact of what happened.”AdThe global fight against COVID-19 didn’t begin that night in Oklahoma City, of course. Sports are games, and games are charted with numbers, and the numbers from the past year are incalculable.
NBA: Nobody tested positive for COVID-19 at All-Star Game
No players, coaches or game officials tested positive for COVID-19 while in Atlanta, the NBA said Monday after the final tests were processed and results were returned to the league and the teams involved. A barber both saw before going to Atlanta tested positive, and that meant Embiid and Simmons were potentially exposed to the virus. “All players, coaches, and game officials were tested for COVID three times after arriving in Atlanta, including a final test immediately prior to last night’s All-Star Game," the league said in a statement Monday. All players and coaches who were involved in the game arrived in Atlanta on Saturday and left late Sunday following the game. But the league and NBA Commissioner Adam Silver insisted throughout the planning for the game that players would be safe in Atlanta.
Silver: NBA may return to normal in '21-22, virus permitting
FILE - In this Feb. 15, 2020, file photo, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver unveils the NBA All-Star Game Kobe Bryant MVP Award during a news conference in Chicago. But otherwise, things may largely appear back to normal — with the NBA eyeing a return to the 82-game schedule, starting in October and ending in June. “Last season and this season has required a significant investment on the part of the team owners," Silver said. “One thing we've all come to understand over the last year is that the virus is firmly in charge," Silver said. “My sense is most will ultimately decide that it’s in their interest to get vaccinated," Silver said.
NBA All-Star 2021: The game no one seemed to want
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James, left, shoots as Phoenix Suns forward Dario Saric defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, March 2, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)ATLANTA – It's the NBA All-Star Game almost no one seemed to want. "It’s the All-Star Game, so there’s going to be some shenanigans out there. Team LeBron will play on behalf of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, while Team Durant represents the United Negro College Fund. Trae Young, a starter in 2020, was snubbed this season despite averaging 26.4 points — the most of any player not selected for the All-Star Game.
AP interview: Silver lays out reasons for NBA All-Star Game
(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)MIAMI – NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has heard all the reasons why the league should not have an All-Star Game in Atlanta next weekend. “It’s the largest factor, the amount of engagement we get from our fans around All-Star,” Silver said. And we looked at the All-Star Game the same way. “It was not under active consideration before the pandemic,” Silver said. All our attention is on getting the business back to being fully operable as quickly as possible.”Ad___More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/hub/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Millsap expresses concerns about probe into Jazz allegation
FILE - In this Nov. 23, 2015, file photo, Utah Jazz guard Elijah Millsap brings the ball downcourt against the Oklahoma Thunder in the second half during an NBA basketball game in Salt Lake City. Former Jazz player Millsap alleged this week that Utah executive Dennis Lindsey made a bigoted comment to him in 2015. “And in this case, the investigation is being conducted in partnership and in coordination with the Utah Jazz." The incident in question came from an April 2015 exit meeting, which Millsap — the brother of longtime Utah standout Paul Millsap — said was also attended by Jazz coach Quin Snyder. “I’ve never heard anything remotely close to that from Dennis,” Snyder said.
Virus sidelines Raptors coaches, Siakam for Rockets game
Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse talks to players during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, Friday, Feb. 19, 2021, in Minneapolis. Assistant coach Sergio Scariolo was promoted to coach the team's game in Tampa, Florida, against the Rockets. Scariolo had been away from the Raptors while coaching Spain in FIBA's EuroBasket 2022 qualifiers and just cleared quarantine Friday. Ad“I don't know how many hundreds or thousands of games he's been a head coach," Raptors general manager Bobby Webster said about Scariolo. Webster said the team isn't certain if Siakam's issue is related to the issue with the coaching staff.
Suns' Booker replaces Lakers' Davis in NBA All-Star Game
Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) drives past Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier (3) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)NEW YORK – Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker was selected Wednesday to replace injured Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis in the NBA All-Star Game. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver choose Booker to take Davis' spot a day after Booker was snubbed by the league's head coaches for a reserve spot in the March 7 game in Atlanta. “Devin Booker is the most disrespected player in our league!!! Booker and fellow All-Star Chris Paul have helped Phoenix to a 20-10 record, fourth-best in the NBA.
NBA chooses All-Star reserves, with Zion among first-timers
New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson (1) goes to the basket in the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Boston Celtics in New Orleans, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)New Orleans forward Zion Williamson now can be called an NBA All-Star, and only three others in the game’s 70-year history have gotten there at a younger age. Phoenix’s Chris Paul is an All-Star for the 11th time, and Brooklyn’s James Harden is one for the ninth consecutive year. The rest of the reserves include Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons, Boston’s Jayson Tatum and Orlando’s Nikola Vucevic from the Eastern Conference, along with the Los Angeles Lakers’ Anthony Davis, the Los Angeles Clippers’ Paul George, Utah teammates Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, and Portland’s Damian Lillard from the Western Conference. But this will be his first time in the All-Star Game itself.
NBA All-Star captains: It’s LeBron James vs. Kevin Durant
(AP Photo/Jim Mone)The voters have spoken: They wanted LeBron James of the reigning champion Los Angeles Lakers to be an All-Star captain, again. James and Durant were revealed Thursday as the leading fan votegetters in the Western and Eastern Conferences for the All-Star Game, meaning they’ll be captains for the matchup in Atlanta on March 7. James will start for the 17th time, extending his record, and Durant is an All-Star for the 11th time. James — the leading overall votegetter this year, with more than 5.9 million votes from fans — and Durant will then pick their teams, with the rosters for Team LeBron and Team Durant to be revealed March 4. The game has been criticized by some of the league’s top players, James included, who voiced concerns about having it during a pandemic.
AP sources: USA Basketball eyeing 60 players in Olympic pool
New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson (1) shoots as Utah Jazz center Derrick Favors (15) defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)MIAMI – USA Basketball is casting a wider-than-usual net in its roster selection for this summer's rescheduled Tokyo Olympics, two people with knowledge of the situation said Saturday. The additions mean at least 60 players could be on the player-pool list that will be released by USA Basketball in the coming weeks. ESPN first reported that USA Basketball has sent approximately 60 invitations to be part of the player pool. USA Basketball is planning a training camp and exhibition games.
The Latest: 76ers-Thunder game postponed
4 Texas' scheduled basketball game at Iowa State on Wednesday night has been postponed. N.C. State announced a cluster of cases associated with Wolfpack athletics on Wednesday, though it didn’t specify which programs were involved. A day later, the ACC announced that the Wolfpack's home men’s basketball game Saturday against Georgia Tech would be postponed. That marked the first home game this season that the Packers played in front of any paying spectators. The Cornhuskers’ home game against Minnesota on Wednesday and game at Iowa next Sunday have been postponed.
NBA, union stiffen virus protocols; more games postponed
Utah's game in Washington on Wednesday was postponed because contact-tracing issues among the Wizards meant they wouldn't have eight available players for that matchup. “I'm for whatever the NBA wants us to do," Washington coach Scott Brooks said. When teams started testing in late November prior to the start of training camps, 48 players had positive COVID-19 tests. There were at least 36 players in the league dealing with virus-related issues or protocols when Tuesday began, based on information released by teams. Counting the two new postponements and another on Dec. 23 between Oklahoma City and Houston, the league has seen six games moved because of virus issues.
2020 sports quiz: Brady to Bundesliga, Big Ten to Brooklyn
FILE - In this Dec. 1, 2020, file photo, the Olympic Symbol is reinstalled after it was taken down for maintenance ahead of the postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympics, in the Odaiba section in Tokyo. Your 2020 year-end sports quiz awaits. Like much else these days, quizzes will be graded on the curve:JanuaryThe IOC sets conduct guidelines for athletes at the Tokyo Olympics. JulyThe renamed Washington Football Team might get another rebrand. ___Answers: January (b); February (a); March (b); April (a); May (c); June (b); July (c); August (a); September (a); October (b); November (b); December (c).
We The South: The Raptors settling into their Tampa home
The Toronto Raptors and the Miami Heat tip off to start during the first half of an NBA preseason basketball game Friday, Dec. 18, 2020, in Tampa, Fla. The Raptors are playing their home games in Tampa as a result of Canada's strict travel regulations stemming from the coronavirus pandemic. Familiarity is where we thrive,” said Teresa Resch, the Raptors’ vice president of basketball operations and one of the guiding forces behind the team’s move to Tampa. “The Toronto Raptors and their fans will not be disappointed here in Tampa Bay,” Tampa Mayor Jane Castor saidThe last time Tampa was on the NBA’s schedule prior to this season was in 2010, when Miami and Orlando were supposed to meet there in a preseason game. At least 17 times in the next 2 ½ months, the Raptors will be calling a court in Tampa home.