Update on the latest sports
Booker’s 35 help Suns top Thunder, remain perfect in restart
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — Devin Booker scored 35 points, and the Phoenix Suns rolled past the short-handed Oklahoma City Thunder 128-101 on Monday to improve to 6-0 in the restart and improve their playoff chances. The Suns have surged in the Western Conference standings. They entered the day just 1 1/2 games behind eighth-place Memphis and a game behind ninth-place Portland in the race to qualify for a spot in the play-in series.
In other Tuesday NBA action:
—The short-handed Dallas Mavericks rallied from a 22-point deficit in the second half to stun the Utah Jazz 122-114 on Monday. Tim Hardaway Jr. led the Mavericks with 27 points and Seth Curry added 22. Boban Majanovic had 20 points and nine rebounds. It was the biggest comeback for the Mavericks since 2016. The win means Dallas still has a slim shot at earning the No. 5 seed in the Western Conference playoffs.
In NBA news:
— Reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo (YAH’-nihs an-teh-toh-KOON’-poh) will miss the Milwaukee Bucks’ game Monday with the Toronto Raptors after undergoing oral surgery. Bucks coach Mike Budehnolzer said Monday it was uncertain whether Antetokounmpo would play in the team’s final two seeding games Tuesday against the Washington Wizards and Thursday against the Memphis Grizzlies.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-COLLEGE SPORTS
Mountain West delays football season
UNDATED (AP) — The Mountain West has become the second FBS conference to postpone its football season, punting on the fall with an eye toward playing in the spring.
A person involved in the decision told The Associated Press the Mountain West would not play any sports in the fall. The Mountain West’s decision comes less than a week after it announced plans to play an eight-game conference football season and allow its members to pursue two nonconference games.
Now the 12-team Mountain West, which includes Boise State, Air Force and San Diego State, joins the Mid-American Conference as leagues from the highest tier of NCAA Division I football to bail on the fall season and hope to make a go of it in the spring.
In other college sports developments:
— President Donald Trump has joined a U.S. senator and a number of coaches in the push to save the college football season from a pandemic-forced shutdown. A growing number of athletes have spoken out in support of saving the season. Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh says the Wolverines have shown players can be safe after they return to school. And in a letter to the presidents and chancellors of Big Ten schools, Nebraska Republican Sen. Ben Sasse wrote that players will likely be safer with football than without, because of the “structure and discipline of football programs.”
— Old Dominion is canceling its fall sports season because of the coronavirus pandemic. President John Broderick made the announcement Monday, saying he knows student-athletes and fans will be disappointed, but playing “posed too great a risk.”
— SEC commissioner Greg Sankey has weighed in on the powerhouse league’s situation regarding a decision on the football season. Posting on Twitter, he said he doesn’t know if college football can be played during the COVID-19 pandemic. He said the best advice he has received since the pandemic started was to be patient making decisions.
More cancellations for the Cardinals
PITTSBURGH (AP) — The Cardinals haven’t played since July 30 because of virus concerns and now will have to wait even longer before getting back on the field. The entire three-game series between Pittsburgh and St. Louis at Busch Stadium has been postponed. There have been 27 games postponed by Major League Baseball because of the coronavirus, 13 of them involving the Cardinals. Eight St. Louis players in total have tested positive, including star catcher Yadier Molina.
Francona returns to Indians bench Tuesday
CLEVELAND (AP) — Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona will return to the team Tuesday after missing more than a week so he could rest while dealing with a gastrointestinal condition. The team says Francona will be in the dugout when the Indians open a two-game home series against the Chicago Cubs.
Francona has missed Cleveland’s past eight games with the gastrointestinal issue, which has bothered him since spring training. The 61-year-old skipped the Indians’ weekend trip to Chicago to get extra rest. Francona is in his eighth season with Cleveland.
In other MLB news:
— The Tampa Bay Rays have placed right-hander Charlie Morton on the 10-day injured list due to inflammation in his pitching shoulder. The move comes one day after Morton was removed from a start against the New York Yankees in the third inning. Morton is 1-1 with a 5.40 ERA in four starts this season. He was an All-Star in 2018 and 2019.
Dale Tallon, after 10 seasons, out as Florida Panthers’ GM
UNDATED (AP) — The Florida Panthers will have a new general manager next season, making the announcement that Dale Tallon is leaving the franchise after 10 years.
Tallon’s contract as president of hockey operations and general manager expired July 1, and was extended by Panthers owner Vincent Viola to get through the remainder of a season that was stretched out by the coronavirus pandemic. The Panthers were eliminated from the playoffs on Friday, falling to the New York Islanders in four games.
In other NHL news:
The New York Rangers won the second phase of the NHL draft lottery, giving them a shot at selecting Alexis Lafreniere. The Rangers were among eight teams that lost in the qualifying round of the playoffs with a chance to claim quite a consolation prize Monday night. The league was forced to make a lot of changes after the COVID-19 pandemic paused the season. The league’s bottom seven teams ended up not winning the first phase of the lottery in June.
— The Hockey Hall of Fame has postponed its 2020 induction because of the pandemic. The ceremony was to have taken place Nov. 16 in Toronto.The 2020 class was announced in June and featured forward Jarome Iginla, winger Marian Hossa, defensemen Kevin Lowe and Doug Wilson, Canadian women’s goaltender Kim St. Pierre and longtime general manager Ken Holland.
— The New Jersey Devils have signed defenseman Reilly Walsh to a three-year, entry-level contract. The 21-year-old Walsh, a 2017 third-round draft pick, played the past three seasons at Harvard. The puck-moving defender had 27 goals and 51 assists in 96 games.
TENNIS-US OPEN WITHDRAWALS
Former champ pulls out of US Open
NEW YORK (AP) — 2004 U.S. Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova is adding her name to the growing group of players withdrawing from the Grand Slam tennis tournament because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Kuznetsova wrote on Instagram that she is pulling out of the U.S. Open and the tournament preceding it at the same site in New York. The Western & Southern Open starts Aug. 22. The U.S. Open begins Aug. 31.
The 35-year-old Russian also won the 2009 French Open and has been ranked as high as No. 2 in singles. She is currently No. 32, which would have put her in line to be seeded at Flushing Meadows.
Three of the top seven women in the rankings, including No. 1 Ash Barty, have pulled out of the U.S. Open. So has defending men’s champion Rafael Nadal.
Royal Montreal Golf Club to host 2024 Presidents Cup.
MONTREAL (AP) — Royal Montreal Golf Club, the oldest golf club in North America, will host the 2024 Presidents Cup.
The club was founded in 1873 and held the Presidents Cup in 2007. The U.S. won that edition in which Canada’s Mike Weir beat Tiger Woods in a Sunday singles match.
Royal Montreal will become the second international venue to host the Presidents Cup more than once, joining The Royal Melbourne Golf Club in Australia.
The Presidents Cup is held every other year and features a team of U.S. players against players from the rest of the world minus Europe.