TRACK AND FIELD
Olympic champion hurdler Brianna Rollins of the United States received a one-year suspension Thursday for repeated failures to disclose her whereabouts to anti-doping officials - a ban she says was caused by a mix-up in a computer program.
Rollins’ suspension is retroactive to Sept. 27, 2016, the date of her last missed whereabouts report.
Her gold medal, part of a medals sweep by U.S. 100-meter hurdlers at the Rio Games last year, will not be stripped.
The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency and other governing bodies in sports consider out-of-competition testing critical to clean competition, and all Olympic athletes in the United States are required to submit their locations so they can be tested anywhere without advance notice.
Rollins underwent eight out-of-competition tests last year and “at least” 16 tests overall, according to her attorneys, and never tested positive.
Still, she will miss the 2017 outdoor season, including a chance to compete at world championships later this year.
The U.S. men’s basketball team will begin the lengthy road to the 2020 Olympics when it opens FIBA AmeriCup 2017 preliminary-round play in Montevideo, Uruguay.
The Americans were drawn into Group C on Thursday along with group host Uruguay, Panama and the Dominican Republic. The semifinals and finals of the 12-team tournament for teams in the Americas will be held Sept. 2-3 in Córdoba, Argentina.
The U.S. will likely send a team of NBA Development League players as it competes in the former FIBA Americas tournament for the first time since 2007. The tournament used to serve as a qualifier for the Olympics and world championships, and the Americans hadn’t needed to go through qualifying since then.
But FIBA, basketball’s governing body, has revamped its qualification system beginning this year. The 2019 Basketball World Cup in China will qualify teams for the 2020 Tokyo Games, and the Americans are required to play in the regional tournament in order to be eligible for those.
MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif. (AP) - Police are investigating an allegation of domestic violence against Utah Jazz center Jeff Withey.
Manhattan Beach police spokesman Sgt. Tim Zins said Thursday that a police report had been filed accusing Withey of domestic violence and detectives are looking into it.
Withey’s attorney Alan Jackson vehemently denied any abuse.
“These salacious and patently false allegations appear to be nothing more than a vicious and calculated attempt by an angry former girlfriend to damage Mr. Withey’s good reputation,” Jackson said in a statement. “There is no truth to the accusations, and when the facts come to light we are confident that the falsity of the claims, and the true motivations of the person behind them, will be exposed.”
Police say the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office will have to determine whether Withey will be charged with a crime.
A district attorney’s spokesman didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday afternoon.
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - Kevin Durant says he felt ready to play in Golden State’s Game 2 playoff win yet the Warriors opted to be cautious with their superstar as he nurses a strained left calf.
Durant posted an update about his injury during a livestream on his personal YouTube channel Thursday evening. He is hopeful of playing in Saturday’s Game 3 at Portland as the Warriors try to take a 3-0 lead in the series.
After missing 19 games with a left knee injury then returning for the final three regular-season contests, the Warriors certainly aren’t going to take any risks with KD. He had 32 points and 10 rebounds in a Game 1 victory Sunday.
He said: “It’s a bummer, man, I hate being out. I hate being hurt. It’s something that’s kind of out of my control right now, just try to get better.”
Two days after Tiger Woods said his back was progressing, he announces on his website he has had a fourth back surgery to alleviate pain.
The surgery was performed at the Texas Back Institute.
Typical recovery is six months, meaning Woods is likely to go another full year without playing a major.
Woods first had surgery a week before the 2014 Masters. He had two more back operations after the 2015 PGA Tour season and did not play again for 15 months. His last competition was Feb. 3 in the Dubai Desert Classic, where he shot 77 and withdrew because of back spasms.
Woods says he looks forward to getting back to a normal life that includes playing with his two kids and competing in golf tournaments.
One of the spoils of being champion: The New England Patriots will kick off the NFL season on Sept. 7 by hosting the Kansas City Chiefs.
New England earned that honor with its record comeback to beat Atlanta in the Super Bowl. Its opening opponent in a Thursday night game won the AFC West last season.
The Falcons visit Chicago in their first game.
The rest of the opening weekend will feature what seems like a yearly occurrence, with Dallas hosting the New York Giants on Sunday night. They finished 1-2 in the NFC East in 2016.
On Monday night, New Orleans is at Minnesota, followed by the Chargers, in their first game representing Los Angeles since 1960, at Denver.
Five games will be held abroad, beginning with Baltimore vs. Jacksonville in London on Sept. 24. The next week, Miami hosts New Orleans. In Week 7, the Rams host the Cardinals, followed the next week by Minnesota vs. Cleveland.
New England is the visitor against Oakland at Mexico City on Nov. 19.
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