Update on the latest sports


DeGrom dominates after shoulder scare, Mets beat Braves 4-2

UNDATED (AP) — Jacob deGrom shouldered the load for New York in his return from another injury scare, pitching one-hit ball over five scoreless innings as the Mets beat the Atlanta Braves 4-2 to open a doubleheader.

DeGrom didn’t allow a hit in the seven-inning game until Mets outfielders misplayed a fly ball with two outs in the fifth, letting it fall for a ground-rule double. DeGrom threw 70 pitches, 15 of them over 100 mph, with two walks and six strikeouts. It was a comfort for fans concerned about New York’s ace after he left his previous outing with shoulder soreness.


MLB begins checking pitchers for sticky stuff

UNDATED (AP) — Major League Baseball is starting its crackdown against pitchers using sticky substances, with umpires making regular, random mound checks starting today.

Pitchers will be ejected and suspended for 10 games if caught using foreign substances to doctor baseballs. Such grip aids — ranging from a tacky mix of rosin and sunscreen to heavy duty concoctions designed for use in strongman competitions — have long been illegal, but the ban has rarely been enforced.

Umps will check all starters multiple times and all relievers either at the end of his first inning or when removed, whichever occurs first. Caps, gloves and fingertips will be checked.

In other MLB news:

— Mets ace Jacob deGrom has been cleared to start the opener of New York’s doubleheader Monday against the Atlanta Braves after dealing with right shoulder soreness, and infielder Jeff McNeil has also been activated from the injured list. DeGrom was pulled after three innings Wednesday against the Chicago Cubs with the discomfort in his pitching shoulder. I

— The New York Mets have fired two high-ranking employees and will overhaul their legal and human resources departments on the recommendation of independent investigators hired to review the organization following allegations of sexual misconduct against former manager Mickey Callaway. was fired in October of 2019 for on-field performance. He was banned by Major League Baseball through at least 2022 in May following allegations of inappropriate behavior toward several women who work in sports media, including from his time with the Mets.

—The Baseball Hall of Fame’s induction ceremony is returning to its standard seating format, opening the door for a big crowd to see former Yankees star Derek Jeter be enshrined. Hall of Fame officials say tickets will not be required for the event’s free lawn seating area. The ceremony is scheduled for Sept. 8 on the grounds of Clark Sports Center and will honor class of 2020 members Jeter, Marvin Miller, Ted Simmons and Larry Walker. No one was selected this year.


Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

UNDATED (AP) — Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib on Monday became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he wasn’t doing it for the attention but because he felt representation and visibility were important.

Nassib also said in his short video message that he was donating $100,000 to the Trevor Project, a nonprofit that seeks to prevent suicide among LGBTQ youth.

Nassib is a sixth-year pro who was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in 2016 in the third round out of Penn State. He played two seasons for the Browns and two for Tampa Bay before joining the Raiders in 2020.

In other NFL news:

— The Buffalo Bills have received the green light from New York state health officials to return to full capacity for home games this season. Vaccinated and unvaccinated fans will be allowed to attend, though unvaccinated folks will be required to wear masks under federal guidelines. The coronavirus pandemic led to Buffalo playing home games in an empty stadium during the regular season last year. The rules were loosened to allow about 6,700 fans attend the Bills’ two home playoff games in January.

— Eli Manning has a new job with the New York Giants. The two-time Super Bowl MVP is rejoining the organization to work in business opportunities and fan initiatives. The Giants announced the hiring on Monday, roughly 18 months after Manning retired following the 2019 season.

—Zaven Collins, a first-round draft pick by the Arizona Cardinals, was arrested over the weekend for reckless driving and excessive speeding. Scottsdale police say Collins was pulled over Sunday for allegedly driving 76 mph in a 35-mph zone. Police say Collins was booked and released later in the day. Collins was taken by the Cardinals with the 16th overall pick in this year’s draft out of Tulsa.


High court sides with former athletes in dispute with NCAA

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a ruling that could help push changes in college athletics, the Supreme Court has unanimously sided with a group of former college athletes in a dispute with the NCAA over rules limiting certain compensation.

The high court ruled today that NCAA limits on the education-related benefits that colleges can offer athletes who play Division I basketball and football can’t be enforced.

Under current NCAA rules, students cannot be paid, and the scholarship money colleges can offer is capped at the cost of attending the school. The NCAA had defended its rules as necessary to preserve the amateur nature of college sports. The case doesn’t decide whether students can be paid salaries.


Conferences urge stopgap for NCAA on NIL until federal law

UNDATED (AP) — Six Division I conferences are urging the NCAA to implement a stopgap measure that would allow college athletes to earn money off their fame before a federal law is passed. The conferences include the SEC, ACC and Pac-12.

In a letter obtained by AP and sent to the head of the Division I Council, the conference commissioners recommended the council refrain from adopting proposed reforms to the NCAA”s name, image and likeness compensation rules. The six conferences said the NCAA’s proposal would be vulnerable to legal challenges.

Six state laws allowing college athletes to earn endorsement money will take effect on July 1.


Former NHL player/manager Tom Kurvers dies

UNDATED (AP) – Former NHL player and Minnesota Wild assistant general manager Tom Kurvers has died after a battle with lung cancer. He was 58. Kurvers won the Hobey Baker Award as the top college player. He then played 11 NHL seasons from 1984-1995 before moving into management.

In other NHL news:

— The New York Islanders have sold out of season tickets for the first season in their new home at UBS Arena. The team says that’s an allotment of about 15,000 season tickets. The Islanders are in the midst of their second straight trip to the semifinal round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, and the new arena won’t open for almost another four months.


Nets playoff exit prompting review

UNDATED (AP) — Two days after a team with NBA title hopes went out in the second round, the Brooklyn Nets said they will take some time evaluating their players.

They’ll also take a look at the training staff that’s responsible for keeping players healthy. General manager Sean Marks says he won’t make any rash decisions. The Nets were eliminated with a 115-111 overtime loss to the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. James Harden and Kyrie Irving were hurt for much of the series.


Harden commits to playing for US in Olympics

UNDATED (AP) — James Harden has committed to playing for U.S. men’s national basketball team that will play in the Olympics that begin next month. That’s according to a person familiar with the situation.

The men’s roster is getting closer to filled, with Miami’s Bam Adebayo also informing USA Basketball of his intention to play in the Tokyo Games. The eight commitments, for now: Adebayo, Harden, Brooklyn’s Kevin Durant, Golden State’s Draymond Green, Washington’s Bradley Beal, Boston’s Jayson Tatum, Phoenix’s Devin Booker and Portland’s Damian Lillard.

In other Tokyo Games news:

— The Tokyo Olympics is set to open in just over a month. And Japanese organizers say there’s a limit of 10,000 local fans at each Olympic venue. That’s about 50% capacity. This goes against Japan’s top medical adviser who has recommended the safest way during the COVID-19 pandemic is without any fans. Fans from outside Japan were banned several months ago. Officials say there are strict rules to attend the games. Fans must wear masks, will not be allowed to cheer and must go straight home after the event.

—Weightlifter Laurel Hubbard will be the first transgender athlete to compete at the Olympics. Hubbard is among five athletes confirmed on New Zealand’s weightlifting team for the Tokyo Games. She will also be the oldest weightlifter at the games and will be ranked fourth in the women’s heavyweight division. Hubbard won a silver medal at the 2017 world championships and gold in the 2019 Pacific Games in Samoa. Hubbard transitioned eight years ago at the age of 35. She has since met all requirements of the International Olympic Committee’s regulations for trans athletes and fair competition.