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BC-FL--Florida Sports Digest, FL

February 12, 2019

The supervisor is David Fischer. All times are in Eastern Time unless otherwise noted. If there are questions about stories, photos or photo contributions please call the Miami bureau at 1-800-824-5498 or 305-594-5825. Ian Mader is the News Editor and can be reached directly at imader@ap.org. If you have other statewide stories or breaking news of interest to AP members in Florida, send them via email to miami@ap.org or fax to 305-594-9265. The AP’s general website is www.ap.org. Reruns are also available from the Service Desk (800-838-4616) or from the Miami bureau.

Spot Feature:

US--SCHOOL SHOOTING-FLORIDA-SPORTS REMEMBERS

PARKLAND _ A year after the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High, the hearts of sports stars like Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade and Florida Panthers goalie Roberto Luongo remain heavy. Both played roles in the immediate aftermath of the massacre where 17 people died, and both have what happened on Feb. 14, 2018 still in mind now. By Basketball Writer Tim Reynolds. SENT: 1,000 words, photos

NBA:

HEAT-NUGGETS

DENVER _ The Denver Nuggets try to snap a season-long three-game skid when they return to the Pepsi Center Monday night to play the Miami Heat. By Arnie Stapleton. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos.

HEAT-WARRIORS ENDING

MIAMI _ Golden State’s Kevin Durant should have been called for a discontinued dribble on the Warriors’ final possession of what became their 120-118 win over the Miami Heat, the NBA said Monday in a report detailing all calls made in the last 2 minutes of the game. Golden State made a pair of free throws on that possession, the final points of the game. By Tim Reynolds.

RAPTORS-LIN

MIAMI _ Jeremy Lin is on the move again, with the veteran guard getting waived by the Atlanta Hawks and intending to sign later this week playoff-contending Toronto Raptors. The Hawks waived Lin on Monday and Jim Tanner, one of his agents, confirmed Lin’s plan to join Toronto, which was first reported by ESPN. By Tim Reynolds.

MLB:

MARLINS-JETER

MIAMI _ Derek Jeter stood and chatted a few rows from home plate in Marlins Park on Monday morning. His words were sometimes drowned out by noises coming from construction crews; steel clanging against steel in an area getting built behind the center field wall, or the whirring of engines moving heavy machinery about. There couldn’t have been a more fitting backdrop. By Tim Reynolds.

MARLINS-JETER-RIVERA

MIAMI _ Mariano Rivera’s first victory for the New York Yankees came on May 28, 1995. A day later, Derek Jeter made his debut with the club. They’ve been linked ever since. By Tim Reynolds.

PIRATES-GARTH BROOKS

BRADENTON _ Garth Brooks has come out of baseball retirement. The country music legend will spend just over a week participating in spring training with the Pittsburgh Pirates, reporting Monday with the pitchers and catchers.

PAUL NEWBERRY-A BASEBALL LIFE

Spring training opens in a few days. It won’t seem quite the same without T-bone. By Paul Newberry.

YANKEES-BRITTON

TAMPA _ Even Zack Britton gets confused about the proper spelling of his first name. Known throughout his baseball career as Zach, the 31-year-old New York Yankees reliever said last week that going forward his name should be spelled Zack. By Mark Didtler.

ARBITRATION-COLE

ST. PETERSBURG _ Pitcher Gerrit Cole has gone to arbitration with the Houston Astros, asking to be given $13.5 million rather than the team’s offer of $11,425,000. Cole made $6.75 million last year, when he earned his second All-Star selection and went 15-5 with a 2.88 ERA. He earned $6.75 million.

NFL:

SAINTS-RIZZI

METAIRIE, La. _ New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton says he’s hired Darren Rizzi as special teams coordinator. Rizzi, whose hiring was announced Monday, fills a vacancy that opened when former coordinator Bradford Banta was fired after this season, his second on the job.

ON FOOTBALL-ALLIANCE’S DEBUT

There clearly is an appetite in America for more football. Why else would the NFL combine, draft and minicamps get almost as much attention as regular-season or even playoff games in other sports? There also is quite the gridiron void once the Super Bowl is over and the next NFL contests to pay attention to — if you really care about exhibition matches — kick off in August. By Barry Wilner.

NHL:

FBN--PANTEHRS-REID

The Panthers have re-signed safety Eric Reid to a three-year contract that runs through the 2021 season. Financial terms of the deal were not announced. Reid joined the Panthers in Week 4 of last season after spending five seasons with the 49ers. He started all 13 games played and had 73 tackles, five pass breakups, one interception and a sack. By Steve Reed. SENT: 135 words. UPCOMING: 500 words, photo by 4 p.m.

NASCAR:

NASCAR-DAYTONA 500-WATT

DAYTONA BEACH _ Houston Texans star J.J. Watt will serve as the grand marshal for the Daytona 500, making him the first NFL player to give the command for drivers to starts their engines before NASCAR’s most famous race. Daytona International Speedway made the announcement Monday, six days before the 61st running of “The Great American Race.”

NASCAR-IN THE PITS

DAYTONA BEACH _ Rick Hendrick was telling the truth when he insisted this year was going to be much improved from last season, the worst in team history. He moved personnel and split up seven-time NASCAR Cup champions Jimmie Johnson and Chad Knaus. He had a Navy SEAL deliver an inspirational speech to all of Hendrick Motorsports, met with all four of his teams and held luncheons and team-building events. By Jenna Fryer.

NASCAR-DAYTONA 500-TRUEX

DAYTONA BEACH _ Martin Truex Jr. was just one of many Philadelphia Eagles fans bummed when Nick Foles’ pass deflected off a receiver and was intercepted to end a playoff push toward a second straight Super Bowl. “They had a shot,” Truex said. “Without that interception, I think they could have pulled it off.” By Dan Gelston.

Tennis:

OSAKA-COACHING CHANGE

Naomi Osaka surprisingly split from coach Sascha Bajin, a little more than two weeks after she won the Australian Open for a second consecutive Grand Slam title and moved to No. 1 in the WTA rankings. “Hey everyone, I will no longer be working together with Sascha,” Osaka posted on Twitter on Monday. “I thank him for his work and wish him all the best in the future.” By Howard Fendrich.

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The AP, Miami

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