LA teams join forces for social justice initiative
LOS ANGELES — Southern California’s professional sports teams compete for advertising dollars and attention from fans but the 11 organizations are joining forces for a new social justice initiative.
The franchises announced Tuesday that they are launching The Alliance: Los Angeles. The five-year partnership’s main emphasis will be to provide more resources for underserved Black children. It also aims to address racial injustice while developing educational programs.
Los Angeles Football Club president and co-owner Tom Penn said the first meeting was held May 31, less than a week after George Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis. The death of Floyd and other Black people at the hands of police sparked demonstrations in cities across the globe, including Los Angeles.
“Everyone co-signed that we would try to bring some good out of the situation. If not sports, then who?” Penn said. “We expect this program to be a beacon and magnet for others.”
The Alliance — which also includes the Angels, Chargers, Clippers, Dodgers, Ducks, Kings, Galaxy, Lakers, Rams and Sparks — will work closely with Los Angeles’ Play Equity Fund and Accelerate Change Together (ACT) Anaheim.
Renata Simril, the president of the Play Equity Fund, said the program’s progress will be measured by tracking high school graduation rates, college admission and retention.
Simril said the fiveyear commitment from teams was important because changes will not happen overnight. “The next step is to engage community organizations and a
cohort of young leaders,” she said. “We are really trying to change systems and engage over the long term. The teams are committed to staying with it.”Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said the work of The Alliance will be in addition to the community work already being done by each franchise. He also expects there will be plenty of participation by players on each team.
Terry gets 3-year, $4.35M extension with Ducks
ANAHEIM — Right wing Troy Terry has agreed to a three-year, $4.35 million contract extension through the 2022-23 season with the Anaheim Ducks.
Anaheim announced the deal Tuesday. Terry will get $1.35 million in the 2020-21 season, $1.45 million in 202122 and $1.55 million in 202223.
The 22-year-old Terry has eight goals and 20 assists in 81 career games with the Ducks, who drafted him in the fifth round in 2015. He scored 15 points in 47 games before the current season was halted by the Coronavirus pandemic.
Terry has established himself in the NHL as an important part of the Ducks’ young core, but the Denver native is best known for his shootout acumen at the international level.
The former University of Denver star famously scored the game-winning shootout goals in the semifinals and final of the 2017 World Junior Championship. He also played for the U.S. national team at the Pyeongchang Olympics in 2018, recording five assists in five games.
The Ducks are not participating in the NHL’s return to play after posting one of the league’s seven worst records. They have missed the playoffs in consecutive seasons for the first time since 2002, but they will have the sixth overall pick in the upcoming draft.
Portland gets spark from Blanco, beats Galaxy 2-1
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Jeremy Ebobisse and Sebastián Blanco scored seven minutes apart midway through the second half, Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez had a first-half penalty saved, and the Portland Timbers opened the MLS is Back tournament with a 2-1 win over the LA Galaxy on Monday night.
Portland surged into command of Group F in the tournament thanks to its victory and a 3-3 draw earlier on Monday between LAFC and Houston.
“This is a very important win. It’s been four months, four long months without any competition or friendly matches. Mentally was very difficult, and also physically,” Blanco said through and interpreter. “It’s very important to be able to start this way because it gives us a lot of trust, and it shows how seriously we’re taking this competition and how good we’ve been working.”
Hernandez missed on the penalty in the 12th minute as his attempt was smothered by Portland goalkeeper Steve Clark, who also saved the rebound attempt by Sasha Kljestan. Hernandez also missed an open goal early in the second half sending his shot over the crossbar.
The Mexican star finally scored his first goal for the Galaxy in the 88th minute as the Galaxy took advantage of Portland playing with just 10 men. Dario Zuparic was given a second yellow card in the 75th and the Galaxy had a pair of goals waived off for offside before Hernandez finally scored his first for LA.
The Galaxy (0-2-1) remained winless on the season after opening the year with a draw against Houston and a 1-0 home loss to Vancouver.
“The last 20 minutes, 25 minutes we were much better. We create a lot of chances,” Hernandez said. “But we weren’t ruthless like we need to be.”
The Timbers had limited chances for most of the first hour, but outworked the Galaxy defense for both goals. And both were thanks largely to Blanco’s effort.
Rookie Pineda’s goal gives Fire 2-1 win over Sounders
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Rookie Mauricio Pineda scored in the 84th minute to give the Chicago Fire a 2-1 victory over the Seattle Sounders on Tuesday in the MLS is Back tournament.
Wide open at the back post, Pineda caught Sounders goalkeeper Stefan Frei off guard after Seattle’s Handwalla Bwana scored in the 77th minute to knot the score at 1-all.
Robert Beric’s goal put the Fire up after a scoreless first half. It was his second goal for the Fire this season — his first came in a season-opening loss to the defending champion Sounders.
The match Tuesday was the tournament opener for the Fire, who were shifted to a new group after FC Dallas and Nashville SC had to withdraw because of positive COVID-19 tests.
Courage beat Sky Blue, win 4th straight in NWSL tournament
HERRIMAN, Utah — Samantha Mewis and Crystal Dunn each scored and the North Carolina Courage won their fourth straight game, beating Sky Blue 2-0 on Monday night in the National Women’s Soccer League’s Challenge Cup.
The two-time league defending champions finished the group stage atop the field heading into the quarterfinals.
Mewis scored in the seventh minute for the fastest goal of the Challenge Cup so far. Dunn added her first goal of the tournament in the 57th minute. Both players were on the U.S. national team that won the World Cup last summer in France.
The Courage lead the tournament in goals scored with seven. They’ve allowed just one.
North Carolina forward Jessica McDonald came in as a sub forin the 64th minute, her first appearance of the tournament. McDonald was nursing a right thigh injury.
Kings’ Barnes isn’t at NBA restart, says he has Coronavirus
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Harrison Barnes of the Sacramento Kings became the latest NBA player to reveal that he has Coronavirus, making the announcement Tuesday and saying he has hopes to join his team at the league’s restart later this summer.
Barnes is the only player who has started all 64 of the Kings’ games this season. To extend that streak, he’ll need to be cleared and arrive at Walt Disney World before Sacramento’s season resumes with the first of its eight seeding games on July 31 against San Antonio.
“Prior to the team leaving last week, I tested positive for Covid-19,” Barnes wrote on social media. “I’ve been primarily asymptomatic and am doing well. I’m quarantined and am abiding by the safety protocol until I’m cleared for action. I hope to join my team in Orlando when it is safe to do so! Stay safe out there.”
Barnes is averaging 14.7 points this season for the Kings.
The league said Monday that 19 players tested positive during in-market testing after July 1, those tests being done before teams began arriving at Disney on July 7. Based on the timetable Barnes used in his message, it’s likely that he was one of those 19 players in the NBA’s latest count.
Houston’s Russell Westbrook said Monday that he has tested positive and has yet to join the Rockets at Disney. Many players have chosen to not make their diagnosis public, including two players who tested positive after arriving at Disney last week — but never got out of quarantine and into the NBA’s so-called bubble.
WNBA MVP Delle Donne says league denied her medical waiver
NEW YORK — Elena Delle Donne’s request to be medically excused from the WNBA season was denied, according to the league’s reigning MVP.
The Washington Mystics star said in a statement Monday that the independent panel of doctors the league and union agreed upon to decide whether players should be medically excused deemed her not to be “high risk, and should be permitted to play in the bubble.”
Had Delle Donne been medically excused, she would have earned her entire salary for the season. Now, if she chooses not to play, the defending WNBA champion Mystics wouldn’t have to pay her.
Delle Donne has battled Lyme disease since 2008. The disease is not included on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s list of underlying conditions that could put someone at an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
About 10 MLB umpires opt out over virus concerns
About 10 Major League Baseball umpires have opted out this season, choosing not to work games in the shortened schedule because of concerns over the Coronavirus.
Two people familiar with the situation told The Associated Press about the decisions on Tuesday. The people spoke on condition of anonymity because there was no official announcement.
Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher David Price, San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey and Washington Nationals infielder Ryan Zimmerman are among a dozen or so players who won’t participate this year because of health issues.