AP Sports SummaryBrief at 9:03 p.m. EDT

Bill Russell, NBA star and civil rights pioneer, dies at 88

BOSTON (AP) — The NBA great Bill Russell has died at age 88. His family said on social media that Russell died on Sunday. The statement did not give the cause of death, but Russell was not well enough to present the NBA Finals MVP trophy in June due to a long illness. Russell anchored a Boston Celtics dynasty that won 11 titles in...

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Bill Russell, NBA star and civil rights pioneer, dies at 88

BOSTON (AP) — The NBA great Bill Russell has died at age 88. His family said on social media that Russell died on Sunday. The statement did not give the cause of death, but Russell was not well enough to present the NBA Finals MVP trophy in June due to a long illness. Russell anchored a Boston Celtics dynasty that won 11 titles in 13 years. His last two were as the first Black head coach in any major U.S. sport. Russell was a Hall of Famer, five-time MVP and 12-time All-Star. He won with defense and rebounding and waged battles with Wilt Chamberlain. Russell also marched for civil rights with Martin Luther King Jr. and stood with boxer Muhammad Ali when he refused military induction.

Appreciation: Bill Russell lived a life like very few others

Bill Russell lived a life that was full even when his many basketball accomplishments aren’t factored into his story. The greatest winner in the history of team sports was a civil rights champion. He loved telling stories. Had an appreciation for music and fast cars. He climbed mountains. Loved the outdoors. He could opine intelligently on just about any topic. Russell died Sunday at 88. His basketball exploits were legendary. Yet he always made sure to say playing the game was just what he did, and that being a basketball star wasn’t who he was.

AP sources: Decision in Watson discipline case coming Monday

A decision on discipline for Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson following accusations of sexual misconduct is coming Monday. Two people with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press that retired judge Sue L. Robinson has informed the NFL and the NFL Players’ Association she’s ready to issue a ruling on Watson’s disciplinary hearing that concluded a month ago. They spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the discussions are private. Watson was accused of sexual harassment and assault by 24 massage therapists in Texas and has settled 20 of the civil lawsuits filed against him. Four lawsuits remain pending and the attorney representing the women has said he hopes to take them to trial sometime next spring.

Trade deadline preview: Juan Soto sweepstakes down to wire

When Juan Soto turned down a $440 million, 15-year deal to stay with the Washington Nationals, it ensured Tuesday’s trade deadline would have a little juice. It’s shaping up to be a memorable one, with MLB’s expanded postseason helping nearly 20 teams remain in contention. The Soto sweepstakes could include even more bidders than that. The 23-year-old is a two-time All-Star, a Home Run Derby champion, a World Series winner and famously one of the most difficult at-bats in baseball. Pry him away from the Nationals, and a club could enjoy 2 ½ seasons of Soto and his signature batter’s box shuffle before he can test free agency.

Finau wins Rocket Mortgage for 2nd straight PGA Tour victory

DETROIT (AP) — Tony Finau ran away with the Rocket Mortgage Classic on Sunday at Detroit Golf Club to become the first PGA Tour player in three years to win consecutive regular-season events. Finau closed with a 5-under 67 for a five-shot victory and a tournament-record 26-under 262 total. Taylor Pendrith, Patrick Cantlay and rookie of the year front-runner Cameron Young tied for second. Finau coasted to his fourth career victory, a third title in 11-plus months. He was the 3M Open winner last week in Minnesota, where he rallied from five strokes back to win by three. Brendon Todd  was the last to win two straight in the regular season, doing it in 2019.

Stenson wins LIV Golf event and gets $4 million in debut

BEDMINSTER, N.J. (AP) — Two weeks after Henrik Stenson was stripped of his Ryder Cup captaincy for Europe, he’s a winner in his debut on the Saudi-backed LIV Golf series. The Swede got large and immediate returns. He shot 69 at Trump National. He won by two shots over Dustin Johnson and Matthew Wolf. And the payoff for Stenson was $4 million for the individual win, and $375,000 for his team finishing second. Dustin Johnson now has three top 10s in three event and already has made just over $5.2 million. The LIV Golf series doesn’t return until the first weekend in September.

Reddick wins at Indy to close best month of NASCAR career

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Tyler Reddick closed the best month of his NASCAR career with a victory in overtime on the road course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. He broke through for his first career victory on July 3 with a win at Road America in Wisconsin and announced nine days later he was leaving Richard Childress Racing in 2024 to drive for Michael Jordan’s team. His second win in five races made Reddick the first Childress driver since Kevin Harvick in 2013 to win multiple races in a season.  Austin Cindric finished second in a Ford for track owner Roger Penske and was followed by fellow rookies Harrison Burton and Todd Gilliland, who both had career-best finishes.

Angels’ Reid Detmers adds immaculate inning to no-hitter

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Angels starter Reid Detmers became the first rookie pitcher with a no-hitter and an immaculate inning in the same season, achieving the latter against the Texas Rangers on Sunday. The Rangers matched the 1979 San Francisco Giants as the only lineups to have three immaculate innings thrown against them in a season. Houston got Texas for two immaculate innings in the same game June 15. Detmers, who pitched a no-hitter against Tampa Bay on May 10, struck out three Texas hitters on nine pitches in the second inning for the 109th immaculate inning in baseball history.

COVID-19 vaccinations add new twist to MLB trade deadline

PHOENIX (AP) — The Major League Baseball trade deadline is always a stressful time of year for the league’s 30 general managers. They already have to worry about evaluating talent and juggling financial implications for potential trades. Add COVID-19 vaccination status to the list of concerns. The Toronto Blue Jays have the toughest constraints as the only team in Canada. Foreign nationals who aren’t vaccinated against COVID-19 are not allowed to enter Canada, save for limited exceptions that require a 14-day quarantine. But it’s also an issue for teams that visit the Blue Jays. Several teams have had to travel to Canada for games without unvaccinated players.

Big 12’s new boss Yormark learning NCAA issues in real time

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — New Big 12 Commissioner Brett Yormark has been learning the NCAA’s issues in real time during a period of sweeping change and uncertainty. This is his first job in college athletics, and Monday is his first day working full-time out of the Big 12 office. Yormark was a CEO at Jay-Z’s Roc Nation CEO and with NBA’s Brooklyn Nets. Now, he’ll have to deal with things like conference realignment and athlete compensation. He says he will visit all 14 campuses, including the four schools that join the Big 12 next summer.

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