Wednesday Sports in Brief
The NFL is seeking an indefinite suspension of at least one year plus a fine in appealing a disciplinary officer’s decision to suspend Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson for six games for violating the league’s personal conduct policy, a person familiar with the filing told The Associated Press.
The person, speaking on condition of anonymity because the matter isn’t public knowledge, also said Watson would be required to undergo treatment before he could be reinstated. The league initially recommended an $8 million fine and asked during settlement negotiations for at least a $5 million fine plus a 12-game suspension that never materialized, another person involved in the talks told the AP.
The NFL’s appeal gives Commissioner Roger Goodell or someone he designates authority to impose a stiffer penalty. League spokesman Brian McCarthy said it’s still to be determined whether Goodell or someone else will hear the appeal.
— By AP Pro Football Writer Rob Maaddi.
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Juan Soto got multiple ovations in his first game with the Padres and Brandon Drury did even better, hitting a grand slam on the first pitch he saw with his new team to lead San Diego to a 9-1 victory against the Colorado Rockies on an electric Wednesday night at Petco Park.
The Padres unveiled their new-look lineup with Soto batting second and Josh Bell hitting cleanup a day after they were obtained from Washington in one of the biggest deadline deals ever. Drury was also obtained on Tuesday, from Cincinnati, and put a charge into the already festive atmosphere with a grand slam off Chad Kuhl with one out in the first.
Manny Machado, who has carried the Padres most of the season, homered leading off the fifth and finished a triple short of the cycle in San Diego’s fifth straight win. Jake Cronenworth had a two-run shot. The big beneficiary was left-hander Blake Snell (4-5), who struck out nine in six innings and won his third straight start.
Phil Mickelson, Bryson DeChambeau and nine other players who defected to the Saudi-funded LIV Golf filed an antitrust lawsuit Wednesday against the PGA Tour, the first step in a legal fight that could define the boundaries of where players can compete.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in San Francisco, claims the PGA Tour has used monopoly power to try to squash competition and has unfairly suspended players.
A separate motion was filed asking for a temporary restraining order to allow Talor Gooch, Matt Jones and Hudson Swafford to play in the FedEx Cup playoffs, the PGA Tour’s postseason, which begins next week.
The lawsuit also revealed that PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan suspended Mickelson for two months in March for his role in recruiting players to LIV Golf. It said Mickelson’s request in June to be reinstated was denied because he played in a LIV Golf event and that he was suspended until March 2024 for playing in another one.
A recommendation to change transfer rules for Division I college athletes that included unlimited opportunities to switch schools with immediate eligibility was bounced back to a committee for more research by the NCAA’s D-I Board of Directors on Wednesday.
The transfer rule proposals were among several that came out of the NCAA’s Transformation Committee and were moved along by the Division I Council two weeks ago.
University of Georgia President and board chairman Jere Morehead said in a statement that there were some questions about the proposed transfer package, and they will revisit the topic at their next meeting on Aug. 31.
The board did adopt Transformation Committee recommendations that would allow schools to provide more financial benefits to athletes.
The proposed changes to transfer rules also included implementing sport-specific windows during an academic year when athletes would be required to enter their names in the transfer portal to be immediately eligible the following year.
WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL
STORRS, Conn. (AP) — UConn women’s basketball star Paige Bueckers tore the ACL in her left knee during a pickup game and will miss the entire 2022-23 season, the school announced Wednesday.
UConn said in a statement that Bueckers suffered the injury Monday and underwent an MRI that evening. It did not say where the junior guard from Hopkins, Minnesota, was playing when the injury occurred. It was the same knee she injured last year, causing her to miss significant time.
In a statement posted on her Instagram account, Bueckers said she is leaning on her faith to move forward.
Bueckers was named the 2020-21 AP national player of the year, becoming the first freshman to earn that honor. She averaged 20.1 points, 5.9 assists and 2.3 steals per game that season.
IndyCar on Wednesday fined Andretti Autosport $25,000 because the team used a water bottle to make weight in the car Alexander Rossi drove to end his 49-race losing streak.
Rossi’s car failed inspection following Saturday’s win on the road course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. IndyCar said the water bottle was used instead of ballast to ensure the car met the minimum weight requirement.
“From a sporting perspective, the car met minimum requirements,” said IndyCar President Jay Frye. “From a technical perspective, the way they achieved the weight is not allowed.”
Rossi was also docked 20 points in the standings, but he ranked eighth in the standings before the penalty and is long out of IndyCar’s title race. Rossi is leaving Andretti at the end of the season to drive for Arrow McLaren SP.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kurt Busch will miss his third consecutive race with concussion-like symptoms when he sits out Sunday at Michigan International Speedway.
Busch was injured after crashing in qualifying on July 23 at Pocono Raceway. Ty Gibbs will replace him in the Toyota for 23XI Racing for his third drive in the No. 45.
“I am continuing to make improvements every day,” Busch posted on social media. “I know Ty will continue to do a great job representing 23XI and the No. 45 Monster Energy team this weekend in Michigan. I am working hard to get back to 100% and it’s my hope to be back in the car at Richmond Raceway. Thanks to everyone for the continued support and I look forward to being back on track soon.”
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Arizona Cardinals receiver Marquise Brown was arrested and charged with criminal speeding on Wednesday morning.
Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesman Bart Graves confirmed that Brown was arrested at 7:05 a.m. in Phoenix and booked in the Maricopa County Jail.
No other details were immediately available.
“We are aware of the situation regarding Hollywood Brown and have reported it to the NFL office as required,” the Cardinals said in a statement. “We will comment further as appropriate.”
Brown was acquired in a draft-day deal with the Baltimore Ravens and is expected to play a big role in Arizona’s offense, especially during the first six weeks when three-time All-Pro DeAndre Hopkins is out because of a suspension for violating the league’s policy on performance-enhancers.
RIGA, Latvia (AP) — Latvian soccer player Andrejs Rubins, who played 117 times for the national team, has died at the age of 43, the country’s soccer federation said Wednesday.
Rubins wore the No. 10 shirt when Latvia qualified for its only major tournament, the 2004 European Championship in Portugal, and started all three games, including a 0-0 draw with Germany.
The soccer federation did not give details about his death.
Rubins played for clubs in England, Sweden, Russia and Azerbaijan, including three years at Crystal Palace between 2000-03. He retired in 2012.
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Former boxing world champion Johnny Famechon has died in Melbourne after a lengthy illness. He was 77.
The Sport Australia Hall of Fame announced Famechon’s death in a statement on Thursday. Famechon was struck by a car while jogging in 1991 in Sydney which caused him to suffer a stroke and resulted in an acquired brain injury.
The Australian boxer’s most memorable world title victory was his WBC points decision win against Cuban Jose Legra at London’s Albert Hall in 1969. Famechon boxed professionally for more than 20 years and had a record of 56 wins — 20 by knockout — six draws and five losses.
Famechon defended his featherweight world title against Japan’s Masahiko Harada, six months after beating Legra and won in a controversial points decision. In the rematch for the world title, Famechon knocked out Harada in the 14th round in Tokyo.
Famechon attempted to defend his WBC title in May 1970 in Rome against Mexican Vicente Saldivar but lost the fight. He retired from boxing soon after at the age of 24.
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