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BC-Sports Showcase Digest

January 24, 2019

A look ahead to top enterprise and feature stories planned globally by AP Sports. New digests will go out each Thursday and Monday and will be repeated on other weekdays. Please note that story plans may change depending on news and other issues.

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As with all our operations, we welcome and want your feedback. If you have thoughts or questions about the Sports Showcase Digest or the material listed, please reach out to Oskar Garcia, deputy sports editor for presentation and storytelling, at 215-446-6632 or at ogarcia@ap.org.

All times are Eastern.




SailGP, the new sailing league founded by tech billionaire Larry Ellison of Oracle Corp. and five-time America’s Cup winner Russell Coutts, goes from concept to reality next month with the inaugural regatta on Sydney Harbor. It will feature the world’s fastest sailboats, 50-foot catamarans that will fly across the tops of waves at more than 50 mph, and some of the world’s most accomplished sailors. It’s not the prestigious America’s Cup, and that’s OK with these sailors, who are eager to get racing in the supercharged F50 cats. “Nothing like this has been done in sailing,” said Tom Slingsby, an America’s Cup champion and Olympic gold medalist who will skipper the Australian team. Six teams will compete at five tour stops, with the finale being a winner-take-all, $1 million match race between the top two teams to crown the 2019 champion. By Bernie Wilson. SENT: 900 words, photos.

FRIDAY, Jan. 25


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Alex Zanardi never once felt sorry for himself after he lost both legs in a 2001 crash the weekend Champ Car was the only U.S.-based sports league to compete following the Sept. 11 attacks. Zanardi nearly died and has valued every day since as a gift. He became a Para cyclist and won four gold medals in two different Olympics. He’s won the New York City Marathon’s handcycle class and finished in the top 20 for his age group in an Iron Man competition. Zanardi also found a way to race again, with prosthetic legs he designed himself, and won in that, too. He’s now using innovation and his long partnership with BMW to compete at Daytona International Speedway in the Rolex 24 endurance race without his prosthetics. It’s Zanardi’s first event in North America since he lost his legs. By AP Auto Racing Writer Jenna Fryer. UPCOMING: 1,000 words, photos by 3 a.m. Friday.

SUNDAY, Jan. 27


In a first-of-its-kind analysis, The Associated Press looks at how the 2011 collective-bargaining agreement affected NFL rosters. By National Writer Eddie Pells and Larry Fenn. UPCOMING: 1400 words, photos, graphics, video by 3 a.m. Sunday.


While the NFL celebrates the longevity Tom Brady and others like him, stories resembling linebacker James-Michael Johnson’s are far more commonplace. Johnson played four years in the league on six teams and was cut seven times. He says he doesn’t really miss the league. By National Writer Eddie Pells. UPCOMING: 1000 words, photos, graphics, video by 3 a.m. Sunday.

With column:


ATLANTA _ Hard to argue with Le’Veon Bell. Sitting out was his best bet. Need proof: Take a look at Earl Thomas, another veteran who tried to take a stand, but ended up coming back, then breaking his leg and flipping off his sideline on the way off the field. By Paul Newberry. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos by 3 a.m. Sunday.

MONDAY, Jan. 28


Though the fight is more than two years off, the issues are already clear. Avoiding a work stoppage in 2021 could depend in part on whether players can secure more guaranteed money in the next collective-bargaining negotiations with the NFL. By National Writer Eddie Pells. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 3 a.m. Monday.


ORLANDO _ Some might argue they are the most indispensable players on the roster _ the players who man the only position guaranteed to have their hands on the ball on every single play. No, not the quarterback. The center. An Associated Press analysis shows centers are becoming endangered more quickly than other NFL players. By Mark Long. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos, video by 3 a.m. Monday.

TUESDAY, Jan. 29


ATLANTA _ Message to all you soon-to-be Super Bowl champions: Don’t get too comfortable. Turnover is coming. By National Writer Eddie Pells. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 3 a.m. Tuesday.


Again, if you have questions about the Sports Showcase Digest or the material listed, please reach out to Oskar Garcia at 215-446-6632 or ogarcia@ap.org.


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