Monday’s Sports In Brief
NEW YOK (AP) — Locked-out Major League Baseball players removed the first of three major obstacles to a labor contract, withdrawing their proposal for more liberalized free agency when the sides met face-to-face Monday for the first time since the management lockout began Dec. 1.
During a bargaining session that lasted a little more than two hours at the Midtown Manhattan office of the Major League Baseball Players’ Association, the union also modified its revenue-sharing proposal, asking the amount shifted from big markets to smaller ones be cut by what it said was $30 million, a figure management disputed. Players earlier asked for a $100 million reduction.
Management is adamant not to decrease revenue sharing. Clubs also maintain they will not budge on salary arbitration eligibility, which players want to restore to its pre-1987 level when it was two years of major league service.
Another meeting in the contentious talks is scheduled for Tuesday, the first consecutive sessions since the bargaining collapse last fall that led to baseball’s ninth work stoppage, its first since 1995.
War Eagle is flying high over men’s college basketball for the first time in history.
A barely ranked afterthought to begin the season, Auburn climbed past Gonzaga to No. 1 in the AP Top 25 poll released Monday. The Tigers beat Kentucky over the weekend for their 15th consecutive win, then scooped up 45 of 61 first-place votes to become the nation’s top-ranked team for the first time since the poll began with the 1948-49 season.
The Bulldogs dropped to No. 2 with 15 first-place votes. Arizona remained third and earned the other No. 1 vote.
Including the teeming crowd inside Auburn Arena, and the boisterous student section known simply as The Jungle, who are no doubt celebrating the return to prominence of a school known more for its football than its basketball.
The Tigers (18-1, 15-0 SEC) spent most of the 1999-2000 season ranked in the top 10, including one week at No. 2. They also spent a week at No. 2 late in the 1988-99 season and another week at No. 2 back in February 1959.
PHOENIX (AP) — Vanessa Nygaard is headed home to coach the Phoenix Mercury.
A Scottsdale native, Nygaard was announced as the 10th coach in Mercury history on Monday after a nine-year stint as a head high school coach.
She replaces Sandy Brondello, who didn’t have her contract renewed last month after eight seasons and taking the Mercury to the 2021 WNBA Finals.
Nygaard went to the Final Four three times from 1995 to 1997 as a player with Stanford and played six WNBA seasons with multiple teams. She started her coaching career as an assistant at Long Beach State and Pepperdine, and also led Windward High School to three California state titles.
Nygaard was an assistant coach with the Las Vegas Aces in 2021. She’s also been an assistant coach for USA Basketball and the WNBA’s San Antonio Stars and Washington Mystics.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Keith Yandle’s streak earned him a standing ovation, stick taps from his Flyers’ teammates and a slice of NHL history.
As for the Flyers’ streak? Their ignominious run got them booed of the ice — fed-up fans showing no love for anything except for the NHL’s Iron Man.
Yandle tied the NHL record for consecutive games played with 964 and Philadelphia tied a franchise record with its 12th straight winless game, losing 3-1 to the Dallas Stars on Monday night.
The Flyers have lost all 12 games over that span, matching a mark for futility set during the 1998-99 season when they lost eight games and tied four over a 12-game stretch. There are no ties to save them from this indignity.
The Flyers can hit their all-time worst streak — and Yandle can take his spot in history — on the road Tuesday against the New York Islanders.
For the Flyers, losing is the new normal.
Yandle waved to the crowd from the bench after his shift helped the defenseman tie retired center Doug Jarvis atop the NHL’s list.