Update on the latest in sports:

first_imgUpdate on the latest in sports: In other developments related to the virus:— In Los Angeles, the Lakers, Clippers, Kings and Staples Center, have joined together to set up a fund to provide financial help to all hourly arena workers impacted by the stoppage of games. The fund will help compensate for lost wages through the end of the NBA and NHL regular seasons. Payments will go to over 2,800 workers.— The United Center ownership and the Chicago Bulls and Blackhawks say they will pay day-of-game employees through the end of their scheduled seasons. The NBA and NHL seasons have been suspended because of the coronavirus pandemic. In a statement attributed to Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz and Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf, the teams say their employees “are family, and we will navigate this unprecedented situation together.”— Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (shin-zoh AH’-bay) says his country still intends to host the Olympic Games in Tokyo as planned. He says the virus outbreak hasn’t reached a point in Japan that requires him to declare a national emergency like the United States and parts of Europe. Abe says Japan is continuing to “coordinate well” with the International Olympic Committee. President Donald Trump suggested this week that Japan should consider postponing the Olympics, which are scheduled to open July 24.— The Pac-12 Conference has canceled all spring sports and championships following a meeting of conference executives and athletic directors. The conference also announced that all organized team activities are not allowed until at least March 29, when that decision will be revisited. The smaller Southland Conference also announced a similar move. IDITARODIditarod mushes on; fans being urged to skip finish in NomeANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — As Iditarod mushers drove their dog teams across Alaska on Saturday, race officials scrambled to make last minute changes prompted by concerns over the new coronavirus, including asking fans not to fly to Nome for the finish.Officials late Friday night urged race fans, especially those from out of state, to skip the finish this week. City officials in Nome followed most other Alaska cities in closing or limiting access to most public buildings in wake of the state’s first positive test, that of a man from outside the United States. The man was tested Thursday at an Anchorage hospital after earlier arriving in the city on a private cargo plane.The Iditarod had previously postponed post-race events in Nome, including the musher’s banquet and an annual meet-and-greet with mushers.,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6 MLB-NEWSNats release StricklandWASHINGTON (AP) — The Washington Nationals have released relief pitcher Hunter Strickland in a series of moves by the reigning World Series champs.Strickland was expected to stabilize Washington’s bullpen after being acquired from Seattle at the July 31 trade deadline last season, but he recorded a 5.14 ERA in 21 innings over 24 appearances for the Nationals. He didn’t pitch for the Nats during the postseason.The Nationals also dropped David Hernandez, who surrendered five earned runs over 2 1/3 innings over four appearances this spring. A person with direct knowledge of the situation says Pistons forward Christian Wood has contracted the virus and is feeling fine. The team confirmed it had a player who tested positive without revealing his name.Wood’s diagnosis was revealed one week after he played against the Utah Jazz, spending much of that night matched up with Rudy Gobert (goh-BEHR’). The NBA opted to suspend its season Wednesday, immediately after Gobert became the first league player to test positive.Jazz teammate Donovan Mitchell also has tested positive.Wood was enjoying a breakout season, averaging career highs of 13.1 points and 6.3 rebounds while starting 12 of 62 games. He’s been exception over his last 10 games, providing 24.2 points and 9.8 rebounds per contest.Meanwhile, Gobert has donated $500,000 to support health services in the U.S. and France and employees of the team impacted by the coronavirus. His donation was announced by the Jazz, who said some of the money will go to COVID 19-related social services relief in Utah, Oklahoma City and within the French health care system. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditVIRUS OUTBREAK-SPORTSPistons’ Wood tests positive for coronavirusUNDATED (AP) — Another NBA player has tested positive for the coronavirus. — The International Triathlon Union has suspended all competitions and activities from Monday to the end of April. Major events postponed include the second world series event in Bermuda on April 18-19, and four World Cups in the United States, New Zealand, Brazil and Mexico.— The Edinburgh Marathon that was to take place on May 24 has been postponed. Race director Neil Kilgour said a new date for the marathon in the Scottish capital is expected to be announced on Monday.— The men’s curling world championships in Scotland have been canceled, along with the mixed and senior events in Canada.— German cyclist Maximilian Schachmann has won the Paris-Nice race in a rare case of a sporting event still going ahead amid the coronavirus pandemic. COLLEGE BASKETBALL-NEWS Pitino returning to college hoopsUNDATED (AP) — Rick Pitino is a college basketball coach once again.Pitino has accepted the head coaching position at Iona, three years after being forced to leave Louisville.Pitino was the first coach to take three different schools to the NCAA Final Four, doing it with Louisville, Kentucky and Providence. He won national championships with the 2013 Cardinals and 1996 Wildcats, although his Louisville title was vacated over NCAA violations involving the team’s director of basketball operations.The 67-year-old Pitino has a 770-271 overall record in college. He replaces Tim Cluess, who resigned Friday for health reasons after 10 seasons and six NCAA Tournament appearances. — The ECHL board of governors approved the cancellation of the remainder of the season. The professional hockey league has 26 teams in the United States and Canada.— The XFL says a player with the Seattle Dragons has tested positive for coronavirus. The fledgling football league says the unidentified player reported his symptoms to team medical staff on Tuesday and has been in quarantine ever since. He was tested for COVID-19 and received the result Friday.— The Italian soccer players’ association says it is “saddened and outraged” that clubs are still calling on their players to attend training sessions. In a statement, the players’ association notes that “some clubs” are bringing in players to train in small groups, “or, even worse, for daily checks of their temperature.” Italy is the European country hit worst by the virus, where the number of virus cases climbed to over nearly 20,000, with more than 1,000 deaths.— A leading executive at a relegation-threatened Premier League team has called for the English soccer season to be abandoned, saying officials were in “dreamland” if they thought play could resume early next month after games were suspended amid the coronavirus outbreak. In a column in The Sun newspaper, West Ham vice-chair Karren Brady wrote that “The only fair and reasonable thing to do is declare the whole season null and void.” West Ham is in 16th place in the 20-team division. The Premier League said it hopes to be back up and running, if possible, by the weekend of April 3-4 – meaning two rounds will have been missed – but Brady sees that prospect as unlikely.— The Chinese soccer team that was originally stuck in Spain because of the outbreak is going back home to try to avoid its rapid spread in Europe. Wuhan Zall was expected to return to China on Saturday, nearly 1 1/2 months after it arrived in Spain for preseason training. The team had not been able to leave because of the restrictions in China but expedited its departure because of the worsening situation in Spain. Confirmed coronavirus infections have reached nearly 6,000 people in Spain and the government has declared a two-week state of emergency. In other college basketball news:— Freshman Brycen Goodine is transferring from Syracuse after averaging just nine minutes and 1.9 points this past season. He appeared in 23 of the Orange’s 32 games and hit just three of his 23 3-point attempts.NFL-NEWSRedskins give franchise tag to ScherffUNDATED (AP) — The Washington Redskins have placed the franchise tag on three-time Pro Bowl guard Brandon Scherff as they attempt to keep him in the fold next season. Associated Press The team didn’t designate the exclusive, franchise tag on Scherff, meaning he can still talk to other teams. Washington would have the right to match another offer or receive two first-round picks as compensation.The 28-year-old Scherff was the fifth overall pick in the 2015 draft and has been a force for Washington when healthy.In other NFL news:— Falcons fullback Keith Smith has agreed to a three-year contract extension rather than test the free agent market that opens Wednesday. Smith started five games and led the team with eight special teams tackles last season after playing all 16 games for the 2018 Raiders.— The Lions have re-signed long snapper Don Muhlbach, giving him a chance to play in his 17th NFL season. He is second on Detroit’s career list with 244 games played. March 14, 2020last_img read more