National Sports

Hamlin gets ‘biggest win’

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Denny Hamlin came to the Daytona 500 determined to honor his late car owner with a victory. He delivered with a storybook tribute for Joe Gibbs Racing. Hamlin won NASCAR’s biggest race for the second time in four years Sunday, leading JGR in a 1-2-3 sweep of the ...

Team LeBron picks up All-Star victory

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — LeBron James was trading lob pass with Dwyane Wade again, one last time. Lobs from Kyrie Irving once again, too. And after making a stepback 3-pointer late, he stared down Joel Embiid to send a message without saying a word. Oh, this mattered. Team LeBron, down by 20 in ...

MLB working toward using pitch clock this year

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Major League Baseball is unilaterally starting the use of pitch clocks for spring training games, while brushing off complaints from players about the slow free agent market. With the sport looking for ways to speed the pace of play, pitchers generally will have 20 ...

’79 race was sport’s perfect storm

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The first break came with the massive blizzard that wreaked havoc on the East Coast, essentially locking television viewers in their homes. The Daytona 500, meanwhile, was to be broadcast live in its entirety for the first time, reaching markets that knew little, if ...

Truex, Busch miss final practice

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The biggest Toyota stars skipped the final practice for the Daytona 500, with former NASCAR champs Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch among the drivers sitting out. There was little need to risk the cars and ruin a starting position for Sunday’s race. Seven-time ...

Annett, JR Motorsports celebrate Daytona win

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Michael Annett stretched the Speedweeks streak of first-time winners to three with a victory Saturday in the Xfinity Series season opener at Daytona International Speedway. Annett won for the first time at NASCAR’s national level, a career that spans 345 races in ...

Pelicans’ star stuck in spotlight whether he likes it or not

The Associated Press CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Anthony Davis isn’t completely sure if he’s going to play in tonight’s All-Star game. He doesn’t know how much the New Orleans Pelicans will have him play the rest of this season. Or where he’ll play next season. Or where he’ll play the ...

Hoops du Jour

PSU women at Minnesota Tipoff: 2 p.m., Williams Arena Records: Penn State (10-14, 3-10 Big Ten); Minnesota (18-7, 7-7 Big Ten) Coaches: Coquese Washington is 207-165 in her 12th season at Penn State. Lindsay Whalen is off to a solid start in her first season as head coach of the Lady ...

Fresh faces give Daytona throwback feel

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Among those trying to win the Daytona 500 this year are a Florida watermelon farmer, a short-track champion from New England, a television analyst and a 22-year-old whose career nearly was derailed by a brain tumor. The front row is the youngest in Daytona 500 history ...

Stars missing, but labor strife will be avoided

Spring training has started, yet two of baseball’s biggest stars, Bryce Harper and Manny Machado, are sitting at home. For those who think this is a strong indication that the national pastime is headed toward another paralyzing labor dispute, do not fret. There’s too much money at ...

Even in the age of the bullpen, teams built on strong rotations

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Forget about this bullpen obsession for a moment. Believe it or not, plenty of big league teams are still anchored by well-armed rotations. In this age of openers and closers, with relievers starting games and starters rarely finishing them, it might seem starting ...

Big Ten trio strong; others on bubble

The Big Ten has three teams that should have NCAA Tournament spots all but locked up. No. 6 Michigan, No. 11 Michigan State and No. 12 Purdue have done enough so far and their spots in the field of 68 are pretty much assured. The rest of the teams in the conference keep beating up on each ...

Houston claims 9th straight

HARTFORD, Conn. — Houston guard DeJon Jarreau believes he’s gotten his basketball career back on track and expects to be a factor as the Cougars make a run at a conference title and perhaps something bigger. The sophomore transfer from Massachusetts had 18 points and seven assists to help ...

France staying out of spotlight

The Associated Press DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Jim France is running NASCAR the same way he lives his life — quietly, in the background, away from the spotlight he never craved. The youngest son of NASCAR’s founder carved his own path in the family business and left the leadership roles ...

AAF pleased with first ratings

The Associated Press The Alliance of American Football was a ratings winner in its inaugural weekend, but founder Charlie Ebersol realizes it is a small sample size. “We feel really good about them and that our theory that Americans want more football tends to be true,” Ebersol said in ...

Players pick up more arbitration wins

The Associated Press ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Trevor Bauer, Gerrit Cole and Alex Wood won their salary arbitration cases on Wednesday, giving players a 6-3 advantage over teams to ensure a winning record in consecutive years for the first time since 1989-90. Bauer won his hearing for the ...

QB Flacco traded to Broncos

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — Joe Flacco has gone from Denver Broncos tormentor to savior. The Baltimore Ravens have agreed to trade the veteran quarterback to the Broncos in exchange for a fourth-round pick in this year’s NFL draft, a person with knowledge of the agreement told The Associated ...

Woods-Mickelson rivlary still going strong

LOS ANGELES — The 144-man field at Riviera has 88 players who have combined to win 496 times on the PGA Tour. Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson account for 25 percent of those victories. No one should be surprised. While too one-sided to be a rivalry, they have been a powerful one-two ...

NASCAR bets its chips on sports gambling

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Brendan Gaughan is the son of a casino magnate and has long grasped the allure of throwing down a few bucks to wager on a sporting event. Heck, Gaughan once bet on himself in Las Vegas to win the 2004 Daytona 500. Gaughan got a stern talking to from NASCAR back in the ...

Simmons-Magic meeting OK’d

NEW YORK — The NBA says Los Angeles Lakers president Magic Johnson did not break any league tampering rules when he spoke about Philadelphia 76ers point guard Ben Simmons earlier this week. The NBA’s relatively quick-moving investigation was initiated after it was revealed that Simmons ...