Friday Sports in Brief

June 19, 2021 GMT


ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Japanese two-way sensation Shohei Ohtani will compete in the All-Star Home Run Derby at Denver’s Coors Field on July 12.

The Los Angeles Angels star will be the first Japanese-born player in the derby, held the night before the All-Star Game.

The 26-year-old outfielder, designated hitter and pitcher has 21 home runs,


Bradley Beal and Devin Booker have committed to playing for the U.S. at the Tokyo Olympics.

That’s according to people with knowledge of their decisions. They spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team has not been revealed publicly.

Beal won a gold medal with USA Basketball 11 years ago at the Under-17 world championship, but this will be his first Olympic appearance.

The Washington Wizards guard averaged a career-best 31.3 points this season. Booker is headed to the Western Conference finals for the first time, and averaged 25.6 points this season.


Booker, who is headed to the Western Conference finals for the first time, averaged 25.6 points this season.

—By AP Basketball Writer Tim Reynolds.

BOSTON (AP) — The Celtics traded point guard Kemba Walker to Oklahoma City for forward Al Horford. It is Brad Stevens’ first major move since he moved from the Boston bench to the front office.

The Celtics will also send the No. 16 overall draft pick to the Thunder and receive center Moses Brown in return. The deal includes a swap of future second-round picks.

DALLAS (AP) — Dirk Nowitzki is joining the Dallas Mavericks as an adviser in the wake of the abrupt departures of general manager Donnie Nelson and coach Rick Carlisle.

The franchise leader in nearly every category said Friday he considered Nelson and Carlisle mentors and wanted to do what he could to help the Mavericks find their replacements and build for the future.

Nowitzki, who turns 43 on Saturday, retired two years ago after playing one season with young superstar Luka Doncic. The 7-foot German set an NBA record by spending all 21 seasons with the Mavericks, leading them to the 2011 championship.


NEW YORK (AP) — Florida Panthers center Aleksander Barkov has won the Selke Trophy as the NHL’s best defensive forward for the first time in his eight-year career.

Barkov was announced as the winner of the award Friday night. He was a finalist for the first time. Boston center Patrice Bergeron and Vegas winger Mark Stone were the other finalists

The 25-year-old Finn became just the fifth player in league history to win both the Selke and the Lady Byng for gentlemanly conduct. He won the Lady Byng in 2019.

Barkov ranked ninth among forwards averaging just under 21 minutes a game and was 10th in the league with a winning percentage of 54.9 on faceoffs.


MONTREAL (AP) — Montreal Canadiens interim coach Dominique Ducharme tested positive for the coronavirus and missed at least Game 3 of his team’s semifinal series against the Vegas Golden Knights on Friday night.

The NHL said Ducharme received a confirmed positive COVID-19 test nine days since receiving his second vaccine dose. No other Canadiens players or members of the Vegas Golden Knights have tested positive.

Ducharme isolated immediately. General manager Marc Bergevin said he doesn’t know how long Ducharme will be out.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Alex Bowman received a two-year contract extension from Hendrick Motorsports on Friday that celebrates NASCAR’s return to Nashville and sponsor Ally’s support of the first Cup Series race in the area in 37 years.

Bowman was extended through the 2023 season to align with Ally’s commitment to the No. 48 Chevrolet. The digital financial services company entered NASCAR in 2019 as sponsor for seven-time NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson and Ally wanted Bowman to move into the car this season following Johnson’s move to IndyCar.

Bowman is in his sixth full season of Cup racing and his fourth with Hendrick.


TOKYO (AP) — The safest way to hold the Tokyo Olympics is without any fans, the top medical adviser to the Japanese government said in a report on Friday.

Dr. Shigeru Omi’s recommendation seems to put him at odds with organizers and the International Olympic Committee with the Olympics opening in just five weeks on July 23.

Fans from abroad were banned several months ago, and organizers are to announce early next week if some local fans should be allowed.

Widely circulated reports say the government wants to allow up to 10,000 people at some sports and cultural events.


ROSEMONT, Ill. (AP) — NCAA President Mark Emmert told the association’s more than 1,100 member schools Friday that he will seek temporary rules as early as July to ensure all athletes can be compensated for their celebrity with a host of state laws looming and congressional efforts seemingly stalled.

In a memo obtained by The Associated Press, Emmert urged members to pass legislation by the end of June that would for the first time make it permissible for college athletes to earn money off their names, images and likenesses.

—By College Sports Writer Ralph D. Russo.


OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Arkansas’ Kevin Kopps won the Dick Howser Trophy as the top player in college baseball Friday, making him the first relief pitcher to receive the award.

Kopps, who had Tommy John surgery in 2018, was the star pitcher for a Razorbacks team ranked No. 1 much of the season and the No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

The SEC pitcher of the year had a hand in 23 of the Hogs’ 50 wins with a 12-1 record and 11 saves. Kopps appeared in 33 games, allowed nine runs in 89 2/3 innings and struck out 131. The senior from Sugar Land, Texas, led the nation with his 0.90 ERA, and opponents batted .162 against him.


COPENHAGEN (AP) — Christian Eriksen was discharged from the hospital on Friday and immediately went to visit his Denmark teammates nearly a week after suffering cardiac arrest during a European Championship match.

The Danish soccer federation wrote on Twitter that Eriksen was released from the Rigshospitalet in central Copenhagen after a successful operation. The federation previously said Eriksen would be fitted with an ICD, an implantable device that can function as both a pacemaker and defibrillator.


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