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BC-AP Sports Digest

July 4, 2018

The supervisor is Jake Seiner, followed by Rebecca Miller at 9 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 apcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477. All times EDT.

For many, the World Cup is as much about the chance to explore a new country as packing in as many games as possible. The “PodcastOne Sports Now” guest host Rob Harris takes listeners on a tour of Russia as he travels from city to city covering the tournament for The Associated Press.


A separate World Cup Digest will be sent.



OXON HILL, Md. — The NCAA knows it can’t force or shame Power Five schools to hire minority head coaches, so it’s trying to make sure the best candidates are best positioned to get jobs. Through its Champion Forum, the NCAA isolates potential rising stars in the minority ranks and puts them through the ringer of mock interviews as part of the process to make them better prepared when they get the call. By Stephen Whyno. UPCOMING: 850 words, photos by 3 a.m.



It seems Kylian Mbappe and Thierry Henry are linked by destiny. Henry is France’s leading scorer with 51 goals and among the great forwards of the modern era, while the 19-year-old Mbappe is the new French sensation primed to become perhaps even the world’s best. If he scores against Uruguay in the World Cup quarterfinals Friday, Mbappe will surpass Henry and become the first France player since 1958 to score four goals in a single tournament. By Jerome Pugmire. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos. Timing uncertain.


LOS ANGELES — Can LeBron James be a player in Hollywood like he is on the hardwood? James has long had a strong hand in film and television production, and his move from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Los Angeles Lakers announced this week could mean a much bigger role in the entertainment business for the NBA superstar. Bill Hader, who co-starred with James in the 2015 film “Trainwreck,” tells The Associated Press he thinks James can succeed as an actor and has already mastered improvisation. By Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton. SENT: 800 words, photos.



It’s France with 19-year-old star Kylian Mbappe up against Uruguay and its tough defense anchored by Diego Godin on the Volga in Nizhny Novgorod in the first quarterfinal of the World Cup. France is into its fourth quarterfinal in the last six World Cup. For Uruguay — Argentina’s tiny neighbor — it’s a second quarterfinal in the last three. The survivor on Friday faces either Brazil or Belgium. By Stephen Wade. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos. Timing uncertain.


World Cup favorite Brazil faces Belgium, perhaps the most impressive team in the tournament so far, with four wins, including a comeback from 2-0 down against Japan. On Friday, the two teams play in Kazan for a spot in the semifinals. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos. Timing uncertain.


Four years after becoming the symbol of Brazil’s catastrophic failure at its home World Cup, Thiago Silva is back to his best in Russia, a country where he almost died a few years ago. Length, timing uncertain.



NEW YORK — The NBA estimates an increase of about 40,000 miles of travel in the postseason if it scrapped its current conference format and seeded 1 to 16. Calls to change the system were renewed this week when LeBron James left Cleveland for the Los Angeles Lakers. But Commissioner Adam Silver has repeatedly said the league is concerned about the additional travel that would be created if the top 16 teams were in the postseason, instead of the current format by conference. By Basketball Writer Brian Mahoney. SENT: 450 words, photos.



New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman will miss the first four games of the 2018 season for violating NFL policy on performance-enhancing substances. Edelman missed the 2017 season after tearing his right anterior cruciate ligament in a preseason game in Detroit. He had 98 receptions in 2016. SENT: 150 words, photos.



A look at what’s happening around the majors. UPCOMING: 400 words, photos by 3 a.m.


SEATTLE — The Los Angeles Angels activated two-way sensation Shohei Ohtani from the 10-day disabled list and used him as the designated hitter in their game against the Seattle Mariners. Ohtani and his injured right elbow are only cleared to hit for now, but Los Angeles said he will be re-evaluated as a pitcher in three weeks. SENT: 390 words, photos.



NEW YORK — Chowdown champions will face off Wednesday at Nathan’s Famous July Fourth hot dog eating contest, where the men’s record stands at 72 frankfurters and buns in 10 minutes. Ten-time winner Joey “Jaws” Chestnut will confront 20 other men on New York’s Coney Island boardwalk. SENT: 140 words, photos, video.





Wednesday’s Time Schedule


Boston at Washington, 11:05 a.m.

Atlanta at N.Y. Yankees, 1:05 p.m.

Tampa Bay at Miami, 1:10 p.m.

Detroit at Chicago Cubs, 2:20 p.m.

Baltimore at Philadelphia, 4:05 p.m.

San Diego at Oakland, 4:05 p.m.

L.A. Angels at Seattle, 4:10 p.m.

Minnesota at Milwaukee, 4:10 p.m.

Houston at Texas, 7:05 p.m.

N.Y. Mets at Toronto, 7:07 p.m.

Chicago White Sox at Cincinnati, 7:10 p.m.

Pittsburgh at L.A. Dodgers, 8:10 p.m.

San Francisco at Colorado, 8:10 p.m.

Cleveland at Kansas City, 8:15 p.m.

St. Louis at Arizona, 10:10 p.m.


Toronto FC at Minnesota United, 7 p.m.

Atlanta United FC at FC Dallas, 8 p.m.

Seattle at Colorado, 9 p.m.

Sporting Kansas City at Real Salt Lake, 10 p.m.

D.C. United at LA Galaxy, 10:30 p.m.

Update hourly