National Sports

World Cup won’t get to 48

The Associated Press MOSCOW — The prospect of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar growing to 48 teams faded Sunday after a discussion of the thorny issue was pulled from the agenda for FIFA’s annual congress. Plans for a feasibility study were put on hold after Qatar World Cup head Hassan ...

Justify captures Triple Crown

NEW YORK — Justify defied all the odds on his way to achieving Triple Crown immortality. The late bloomer won the Belmont Stakes by 1§ lengths on Saturday, giving the sport its 13th Triple Crown champion. American Pharoah ended a 37-year drought in 2015 and now just four years later, ...

Halep captures first major title

PARIS — Maybe all of those losses in Grand Slam finals helped Simona Halep actually win one. She’d gone 0-3 in matches with a major trophy on the line before facing Sloane Stephens for the French Open title Saturday, so there was plenty to remember: what it felt like to give a lead away, ...

Thiem again stands in Nadal’s path

PARIS — The only man to beat Rafael Nadal on clay this year was Dominic Thiem. And the only man to beat Nadal on clay last year was Thiem. So if anyone could head into the French Open final with even the slightest reason to think there’s a chance of preventing Nadal from winning a ...

Warriors ruling NBA

CLEVELAND — The NBA might have to get used to this. Stephen Curry is under contract for basically the rest of his prime. Kevin Durant says he isn’t going anywhere. Steve Kerr has more than proven himself as one of the game’s best coaches. Free agents will line up for the chance to move ...

LeBron speculation running wild

CLEVELAND — Maybe it was poetic LeBron James had a supporting cast on his injured right hand. He was missing one in the NBA Finals. For the second time in a career still ascending after 15 years, James was on the wrong side of a sweep as the Golden State Warriors, a team with no apparent ...

KD repeats as MVP

CLEVELAND — Kevin Durant went back-to-back, twice. It’s now two straight NBA championships for the Golden State Warriors, and two consecutive NBA Finals MVP awards for the forward who played a huge role in getting them to those titles. Durant scored 20 points in the Game 4 clincher ...

Accuracy important at US Open

SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. — Such is the stature of century-old Shinnecock Hills that it seems everyone can’t wait for the U.S. Open. “Shinnecock looks epic,” Russell Knox said after he qualified. Phil Mickelson has been critical at times for how the USGA prepares a golf course for what it ...

Putnam, Johnson leading in Memphis

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Andrew Putnam will be playing in the last group today for the first time looking for his first PGA Tour victory. His playing partner will be Dustin Johnson, who’s already won once this year and needs his 18th career victory to reclaim his spot as the world’s top-ranked ...

Keselowski craving victory

BROOKLYN, Mich. — Brad Keselowski has never won a NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan. For some drivers, that might be no big deal, but Keselowski is from Rochester Hills, about 90 miles from Michigan International Speedway. “A win here would be like winning the Daytona 500 for me,” ...

Warriors finish off Cavs in 4 for title

The Associated Press CLEVELAND — Golden State. Golden still. Stephen Curry scored 37 points, Kevin Durant added 20 and a triple-double and the Warriors stamped themselves a dynasty after winning their second straight NBA title and third in four years Friday night, 108-85 over the Cleveland ...

Angels lose Ohtani for up to three weeks

The Associated Press MINNEAPOLIS — Shohei Ohtani was put on the disabled list by the Los Angeles Angels with a sprained ligament in his pitching elbow Friday, an ominous injury that will be re-evaluated in three weeks and brought the two-way Japanese sensation’s remarkable rookie season ...

Cup worth the wait for Trotz

The Associated Press DULLES, Va. — Barry Trotz thought of mentors and friends Jack Button, Tommy Ebright, David Poile and Wayne Fleming when he lifted the Stanley Cup over his head. The Washington coach didn’t think about his future, the same approach he has taken all season and ...

Justify ready for run at Triple Crown history

The Associated Press NEW YORK — Bob Baffert has done everything he can with Justify. Now, it’s up to the undefeated colt and some racing luck to add his name to a revered list of Triple Crown winners. The chestnut colt with the blaze running down his face appears to have rebounded well ...

Busch wins 2nd pole of season

By Noah Trister The Associated Press BROOKLYN, Mich. — Kurt Busch’s impressive qualifying run highlighted a strong day for Ford in Michigan. Busch won his second NASCAR Cup Series pole of the season Friday at Michigan International Speedway, posting a lap of 203.361 mph in his No. 41 ...

Long wait is over for Washington

The Associated Press LAS VEGAS — After 43 seasons, the Washington Capitals are finally sitting on top of hockey. Lars Eller broke a tie with 7:37 to play, and the Capitals raised the Stanley Cup for the first time in franchise history after a 4-3 victory over the Vegas Golden Knights in ...

Smith at home on Belmont Track

The Associated Press NEW YORK — Walking into Belmont Park is like old home week for Mike Smith. The jockey knows the vast track with its sweeping turns like the back of his hand. Fans who remember him from his successful years riding the New York circuit will hoot and holler. Smith ...

Stephens in a lot better place in Paris this year

The Associated Press PARIS — When the French Open final was played a year ago, Sloane Stephens was nowhere near Roland Garros. She was in Chicago with coach Kamau Murray, working her way back from a foot injury that required surgery and sidelined her for 11 months. “Indoors on a hard ...

Nadal finds himself in the finals once again

The Associated Press PARIS — Under pressure at the outset, Rafael Nadal already had cast aside three break points in his French Open semifinal’s third game when, at 4-all, Juan Martin del Potro held another three. If Nadal’s march toward an 11th championship at Roland Garros was going ...

Woods lined up with top 2 golfers

The Associated Press Tiger Woods will play the opening two rounds of the U.S. Open with Justin Thomas and Dustin Johnson, which feels like a grouping of Nos. 1-2-3 in the world ranking. Except that Woods is No. 80. The USGA released its tee times Thursday for the U.S. Open next week at ...