Update on the latest sports
Golden Knights host a Game 7 for 1st time against Minnesota
LAS VEGAS (AP) — The payoff for sharing the NHL’s best record comes Friday night for the Vegas Golden Knights. They’ll host a Game 7 for the first time when they take on the Minnesota Wild, who avoided elimination by winning the past two games.
The Golden Knights have held 3-1 series leads in each of the past three postseasons only to wind up in a must-win situation.
It’s the only game on Friday’s NHL schedule.
The winner of the first-round series will advance to face the Colorado Avalanche, who tied the Golden Knights for the best regular-season record. Colorado secured home-ice advantage because it had more regulation wins and swept the St. Louis Blues in the first round.
Clippers look to avoid another playoff meltdown vs Mavericks
UNDATED (AP) — The Dallas Mavericks are poised to add to the Los Angeles Clippers’ playoff misery. The Clippers find themselves in a familiar position after losing the first two games at Staples Center. Now, the best-of-seven series shifts to Dallas, where the Mavericks can deliver a potentially decisive blow in Game 3 of their first-round series.
Also Friday, the Atlanta Hawks get their first home playoff game since 2017 when they take on the Knicks after splitting the first two contests in New York, while the Brooklyn Nets look to go up 3-0 on the Celtics when the Eastern Conference series shifts to Boston.
Bucks lose DiVincenzo for season with ankle injury
UNDATED (AP) — Donte DiVincenzo’s season is over. Tests showed Friday that the Milwaukee guard tore a ligament in his left ankle during Game 3 of the Bucks’ NBA playoff series against the Miami Heat.
The Bucks lead the Miami Heat 3-0 in their Eastern Conference first-round series, with Game 4 set for Saturday.
DiVincenzo had appeared in 69 games for Milwaukee this season, all of them starts including the three playoff matchups. His regular-season averages of 10.4 points, 5.8 rebounds and 3.1 assists were all the best of his three-year career.
In other NBA news:
— The New York Knicks will sell tickets only to fully vaccinated fans if they reach the second round of the playoffs. The Knicks announced Friday that Game 5 of their first-round series against Atlanta has already sold out, with more than 16,000 fans expected on Wednesday. More than 90% of those in attendance for the first two games of the series were fully vaccinated. Fans in fully vaccinated sections are not required to social distance or wear masks when seated.
Brewers-Nationals opener postponed by weather
WASHINGTON (AP) — The series opener between the Milwaukee Brewers and Washington Nationals on Friday night has been postponed because of inclement weather.
The game will be made up Saturday as part of a split doubleheader starting at 2 p.m. EDT. The second game will begin at 7 p.m. Both games will be seven innings and each team will be able to add a player to the roster for each game.
The Nationals are bumping their Friday starter, Jon Lester to Saturday. Whether he or Patrick Corbin will pitch the afternoon game wasn’t determined. Milwaukee will pitch Brett Anderson, who was to pitch Friday, and Freddy Peralta.
Rain is forecast for the entire weekend.
Party Time: Indy 500 is biggest sporting event of pandemic
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The Indianapolis 500 will open its gates to 135,000 spectators on Sunday for the largest sporting event since the start of the pandemic.
It’s about 40% of the capacity at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and leaves 100,000 empty seats in the permanent grandstands. But it’s a welcome development, coming nine months after the race ran without fans for the first time in its 105-year history.
Scott Dixon will start from the pole alongside two of IndyCar’s rising stars. Colton Herta is a 21-year-old budding American star and Rinus Veekay at 20 is IndyCar’s most recent winner. The race includes nine former Indy 500 winners but a changing of the guard toward younger drivers has made a new winner a real possibility.
Actor Milo Ventimiglia (vehn-tih-MEE’-lee-uh) will serve as the honorary starter.
Japan extends virus emergency with safe Olympics at stake
TOKYO (AP) — Japan has extended a coronavirus state of emergency in Tokyo and other areas for 20 more days, with infections still not slowing as it prepares to host the Olympics in just over 50 days. Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga says the decision was made because cases remain high and medical systems in Osaka, the hardest-hit area in western Japan, are still overburdened.
The Olympics are scheduled to start July 23 after a one-year postponement due to the pandemic, and worries about new variants and Japan’s slow vaccination rollout have triggered calls from the public, medical experts and even a sponsor to cancel the games.
The president of the Tokyo Olympic organizing committee hinted Friday that fans may be barred from venues when the games open. Seiko Hashimoto said that “after the state of emergency is lifted we will assess.” Fans from abroad were ruled out months ago.
Texas lawmakers approve college athlete compensation bill
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Texas lawmakers have approved letting college athletes earn money with endorsements and sponsorship deals. Friday’s Senate vote sends the bill to Gov. Greg Abbott to consider signing into law.
Texas has five schools — Texas, Baylor, TCU and Texas Tech in the Big 12, and Texas A&M in the Southeastern Conference — in the so-called Power Five conferences. Supporters of the measure say those schools need the bill to compete for top-level recruits.
Several states have already approved measures that allow athletes to earn money off their name, image and likeness. The Texas version would take effect July 1.
Congress is also considering federal measures, and the NCAA is considering whether to change its bylaws. The NCAA has warned that a patchwork of state laws would create confusion.
Michael Jordan donates $1M to Morehouse journalism, sports
ATLANTA (AP) — Basketball great Michael Jordan and Nike’s Jordan Brand are giving $1 million to Morehouse College in Atlanta to boost journalism and sports-related studies.
The gift announced Friday will help enrich the school’s journalism and sports program that was originally launched with a donation from director and actor Spike Lee. The school said the donation will help fund scholarships, technology and educational programming for students in those fields. The program has focused on the lack of Black leadership in sports journalism and athletics. It has produced more than 80 graduates who now work in media and sports.