BC-AP Sports Digest
The supervisor is Fred Lief, followed by John Nicholson at 5 p.m. and Bob Lentz at 1 a.m. The New York sports desk can be reached at 800-845-8450, ext. 1630. Sports photos, ext. 1918; graphics, ext. 7636; agate, ext. 1635. For up-to-the-minute information on AP’s coverage, visit Coverage Plan at https://newsroom.ap.org For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at firstname.lastname@example.org or 877-836-9477. All times EST.
The NFL has an officiating problem. PodcastOne Sports Now guest host Rob Maaddi and AP Pro Football Writer Barry Wilner discuss the blown call that cost the Saints a Super Bowl trip. AP Deputy Sports Editor Oskar Garcia weighs in on the NFL’s attempt to ban certain bets, and AP Baseball Writer Ben Walker considers free agents Bryce Harper and Manny Machado.
Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray is considering a football career instead of baseball, but what kind of NFL prospect is the undersized quarterback? On the latest AP Top 25 College Football Podcast, ESPN’s Tom Luginbill joins AP’s Ralph Russo to discuss Murray’s choice.
MELBOURNE, Australia _ Novak Djokovic was about as perfect as can be in his semifinal against Lucas Pouille. Djokovic is now one victory from a record seventh Australian Open title, and it seems the only one capable of stopping him is his opponent in Sunday’s final _ Rafael Nadal. By Tennis Writer Howard Fendrich. SENT: 700 words, photos.
GLF--FARMERS INSURANCE OPEN
SAN DIEGO _ Jon Rahm has a one-shot lead over Justin Rose entering the second round of the Farmers Insurance open. Tiger Woods is eight behind after playing the easier of the two courses at Torrey Pines. By Golf Writer Doug Ferguson. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 8 p.m.
ATLANTA _ With the Super Bowl at the birthplace of the civil rights movement, some marquee entertainers are spurning NFL events in response to the protests ignited by Colin Kaepernick. But other performances, not tied to the league, will highlight social injustice during Super Bowl week. By George Henry and Jonathan Landrum Jr. SENT: 1,000 words, photos.
TOKYO _ Before he pursues a career in Major League Baseball, Japanese slugger Yoshitomo Tsutsugo is on a mission to fix the sport in his country, including the abolishment of what he says is corporal punishment and grueling practices. By Jim Armstrong. SENT: 550 words, photos.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. _ Alex Zanardi never once felt sorry for himself after he lost both legs and almost died in a 2001 crash. He became a star hand cyclist and Iron Man competitor. Zanardi also drove again with prosthetic legs. Now he’s at the Rolex 24, and racing without prosthetics. By Auto Racing Writer Jenna Fryer. SENT: 1,300 words, photos.
_ CAR--ZANARDI CRASH-MEMORIES _ By Jenna Fryer. SENT: 1,450 words, photos.
TEN--AUSTRALIAN OPEN-WOMEN’S FINAL PREVIEW
MELBOURNE, Australia _ Petra Kvitova divides her career in two parts. There’s the first in which she won two Wimbledons. There’s the second, which followed a home invasion that left her with serious knife wounds to her left hand. This last run now takes her to the Australian Open final. By John Pye. SENT: 700 words, photos.
TEN--AUSTRALIAN OPEN-MEN’S FINAL PREVIEW
MELBOURNE, Australia _ Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal will play in the Australian Open final _ a record 53rd time they have met. Djokovic is eyeing a record seventh Melbourne title and 15th Grand Slam trophy. Nadal is going for his second title in Australia and 18th major trophy. By Tennis Writer Howard Fendrich. SENT: 700 words, photos.
_ TEN--AUSTRALIAN OPEN-THE LATEST _ Real-time updates throughout day.
_ TEN--AUSTRALIAN OPEN GLANCE _ SENT: 400 words, photos.
FBN--PATRIOTS-BRADY STANDS ALONE
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. _ Tom Brady has a chance to stand alone. A victory over the Rams, would give the Patriots quarterback a sixth Super Bowl ring, breaking a tie with Hall of Fame defensive end Charles Haley. But to his teammates and coaches, Brady is already in a class by himself. By Kyle Hightower. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 6 p.m.
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. _ John Fassel’s fingerprints were all over the Rams’ NFC championship game victory, from the fake punt to the 57-yard winning field goal. Los Angeles’ peerless special teams coordinator isn’t saying whether he’s cooking up something for the Super Bowl. By Greg Beacham. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos by 9 p.m.
FBN--SUPER BOWL-ROMO’S BIG STAGE
He was unable to lead Dallas to the big game, but Tony Romo will call the Super Bowl for CBS in his second season in the booth. Just like Jared Goff and Tom Brady, Romo is coming in with plenty of momentum after his calls in the AFC title game drew raves. By Joe Reedy. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos by 7 p.m.
_ FBN--SUPER BOWL-BOYCOTT _ Steaming Saints fans bring out voodoo dolls, mull Super Bowl boycott. By Stacey Plaisance. SENT: 450 words, photos.
AP Sports Extra: Super Bowl _ A paginated preview of the Super Bowl is available in AP Newsroom by searching for “Sports Extra” under the Graphics tab. Three page sizes are available _ full broadsheet, half broadsheet, tabloid _ with space for local advertising or content. The pages look at the Rams-Patriots matchup, keys to the game and other facts and figures. For questions, contact Barry Bedlan at email@example.com
NHL ALL-STAR GAME
SAN JOSE, Calif. _ NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman discusses the state of the game at All-Star weekend. By Josh Dubow. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos. News conference 3:30 p.m.
_ HKN--ALL-STAR SKILLS _ Players tested in six individual events. By Josh Dubow. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos. Competition starts 9 p.m.
_ HKN--ALL-STAR-SUBBAN _ Nashville’s P.K. Subban hosting TV special after skills competition. By Teresa M. Walker. SENT: 650 words, photos.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. _ Hornets point guard Kemba Walker suspects it will be an “unbelievable moment” when he’s introduced at the NBA All-Star Game next month on his home court. This is his third All-Star selection but first as a starter. By Steve Reed. SENT: 500 words, photos.
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. _ The no-call in the NFC title game has been the talk of Pro Bowl week, with several players calling for better officiating and more accountability for those in black and white. Others suggest expanding video replay. By Mark Long. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 5 p.m.
_ FBC--SENIOR BOWL _ NFL quarterback learning simplified NFL offense. By John Zenor. SENT: 650 words, photos.
_ FBN--RAVENS-HARBAUGH _ Lots of offseason adjustments for Ravens coach John Harbaugh. By David Ginsburg. UPCOMING: 600 words, photo by 4 p.m.
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. _ Indiana tries to break a five-game losing streak when it faces No. 5 Michigan. The Wolverines responded to their first loss of the season with a victory over Minnesota on Tuesday. Michigan already has beaten the Hoosiers this season. By Michael Marot. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos. Game starts 6:30 p.m.
_ Lookaheads to weekend play in ACC, SEC.
BBA--WHITE SOX-WHERE’S MANNY?
CHICAGO _ The White Sox begin their annual fan convention, with one big question looming: What’s up with Manny Machado? Chicago has pursued the slugger all winter, but he remains a free agent. By Jay Cohen. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 7 p.m.
NEW YORK _ Reliever Adam Ottavino discusses his decision to join the New York Yankees and become the first No. 0 in the team’s history. By Baseball Writer Ronald Blum. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 8 p.m.
_ BBO--MLB-UNIFORMS _ Nike, with swoosh likely up front, to replace Under Armour as MLB uniform supplier in 2020. SENT: 140 words.
_ BBO--MLB VENEZUELA _ MLB urges players, staff not to travel to Venezuela. SENT: 150 words.
_ BBA--ROYALS FANFEST _ Lots of new faces greet Royals fans. By Dave Skretta. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.
NEW YORK _ Keith Thurman is finally set to get back in the ring after a nearly two-year absence while recovering from injuries. The unbeaten welterweight champion returns Saturday to face Josesito Lopez. By Brian Mahoney. SENT: 600 words, photos.
DETROIT _ Defending champion Bradie Tennell is the leader heading into the women’s free skate at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships. By Noah Trister. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos. Ice dancing starts 3:52 p.m., women’s free skate at 7:35 p.m.
_ FIG--EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS _ Russia’s Sofia Samodurova wins European figure skating title in Belarus. SENT: 250 words, photos.
SBD--KELLY CLARK RETIRES
DENVER _ After 20 years in the halfpipe, Kelly Clark is retiring. The five-time Olympian who won gold in 2002 will now be riding for fun and promoting the sport she helped bring into the mainstream. By National Writer Eddie Pells. SENT: 750 words, photos.
KITZBUEHEL, Austria _ Italy’s Dominik Paris wins the classic Hahnenkamm downhill for the third time. He beats downhill leader Beat Feuz and becomes the first man this season to win two downhills. By Eric Willemsen. SENT: 700 words, photos.
_ SKI--WCUP-SWEDISH LIFESAVERS _ Three Swedish World Cup skiers save life of course volunteer in Germany. By Ciaran Fahey. SENT: 350 words, photos.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. _ The party is roaring at the Rolex 24 at Daytona with one of the deepest lineups and the glamorous cars ready to open the racing season. The top automobile makers in the world have pulled all the stops. By Auto Racing Writer Jenna Fryer. SENT: 750 words, photos.
SOC--MLS-ATLANTA UNITED-PITY PARTY
MARIETTA, Ga. _ After leading River Plate to the Copa Libertadores title, Argentine star Gonzalo “Pity” Martinez didn’t feel enough love from European clubs. So the South American player of the year is headed to Atlanta United, the MLS Cup champion. By Paul Newberry. SENT: 650 words, photos.
_ SOC--ENGLISH ROUNDUP _ Manchester United plays at Arsenal in fourth round of FA Cup. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 4 p.m.
_ SOC--NANTES COACH-SALA _ Nantes coach calls decision to abandon search of missing plane carrying Emiliano Sala a “total disgrace.” By Jerome Pugmire. SENT: 600 words, photos.
_ SOC--WCUP--LATE DEPARTURES _ Some World Cup visitors to Russia just won’t leave. SENT: 250 words.
RAC--PEGASUS WORLD CUP
HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. _ Accelerate is in perfect shape for his racing finale. The Breeders’ Cup Classic champion is the one to watch Saturday at the Pegasus World Cup _ the richest race in North America. By Tim Reynolds. SENT: 600 words, photos.
_ ATH--RUSSIAN DOPING _ Russia drops appeal against track and field doping ban. SENT: 250 words.
_ BKC--UCONN-OLLIE _ Ex-UConn coach Kevin Ollie takes dispute over firing to state, federal court. By Pat Eaton-Robb. SENT: 500 words, photos.
_ GLF--DUBAI DESERT CLASSIC _ Ernie Els one stroke off lead after second round in United Arab Emirates. SENT: 400 words, photos.
_ SOC--OBIT-MCILVANNEY _ Acclaimed British sports writer Hugh McIlvanney dies at 84. SENT: 300 words.
_ BKN--NBA CAPSULES
_ BKC--TOP 25 CAPSULES
_ BKW--TOP 25 CAPSULES
Friday Time Schedule (EST)
Washington at Orlando, 7 p.m.
Miami at Cleveland, 7:30 p.m.
New York at Brooklyn, 7:30 p.m.
L.A. Clippers at Chicago, 8 p.m.
Sacramento at Memphis, 8 p.m.
Toronto at Houston, 8 p.m.
Charlotte at Milwaukee, 8:30 p.m.
Detroit at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.
Minnesota at Utah, 9 p.m.
Phoenix at Denver, 9 p.m.
College Basketball (Top 25)
No. 5 Michigan at Indiana, 6:30 p.m.
No. 14 Buffalo at Kent State, 6:30 p.m.
No. 5 Oregon at Washington State, 10 p.m.
No. 6 Stanford at Colorado, 9 p.m.
No. 9 Oregon State at Washington, 11 p.m.
No. 10 Marquette at Xavier, 7 p.m.
No. 16 Arizona State vs. UCLA, 1 p.m.
No. 21 Utah vs. California, 9 p.m.