Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Kenya's Kipyegon ready for Olympic title defense after long absence
Kenya's Olympic 1,500 meters champion Faith Kipyegon said on Thursday that winning a silver medal at this year's World Championships in Doha after having a baby had motivated her to try to retain the Olympic title at Tokyo 2020. Kipyegon returned to competition this season after taking nearly two years off for the birth of her daughter last year and has recovered from an adductor injury picked up in June.
NBA roundup: Bucks' win streak hits 13
Giannis Antetokounmpo poured in 35 points and grabbed nine rebounds in 28 minutes, and the visiting Milwaukee Bucks extended their winning streak to 13 games by rolling past the Detroit Pistons 127-103 on Wednesday. Khris Middleton had 17 points, eight rebounds and five assists while Eric Bledsoe contributed 13 points, six rebounds and six assists. Robin Lopez and Ersan Ilyasova each had 10 points off the bench for the Bucks.
NHL roundup: Jarry, Pens stop Blues with shutout
Tristan Jarry stopped all 28 shots he faced Wednesday as the Pittsburgh Penguins halted the visiting St. Louis Blues' four-game winning streak, 3-0. It was the first shutout of the season for Jarry, the third of his career. No. 1 goalie Matt Murray has won two Stanley Cups with Pittsburgh, but lately the Penguins have been leaning on Jarry, who has four starts and five appearances over the team's past six games.
MLB: League, players near deal on opioid treatment - reports
Major League Baseball (MLB) and the union representing its players are nearing an agreement to refer athletes who test positive for opioids for treatment, rather than suspending them, NBC Sports reported on Thursday. The negotiations to amend the league's drug policy come months after the death of Los Angeles Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs at the age of 27, with his autopsy showing oxycodone, fentanyl and alcohol in his system.
Olympics: FIFA's Infantino proposed as IOC member, but not Coe - Bach
FIFA president Gianni Infantino has been proposed for International Olympic Committee membership, but World Athletics head Sebastian Coe will have to wait due to a conflict of interest, IOC President Thomas Bach said on Thursday. FIFA and World Athletics, the governing bodies of two of the biggest sports in the Olympics, have been without membership ever since the departure from the IOC of their respective former presidents Sepp Blatter and Lamine Diack in 2015.
Reed grabs outright lead in the Bahamas, Woods six back
Patrick Reed held the outright lead after the second round of the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas on Thursday while tournament host Tiger Woods used a back-nine surge to match the day's low score and remain six shots back. Former Masters champion Reed fired his second consecutive six-under-par 66 at the Albany Golf Club on the island of New Providence to sit three shots clear of fellow overnight leader Gary Woodland (69) in the 18-man exhibition event.
Seahawks can clinch playoff spot against desperate Rams
The Seattle Seahawks know exactly what is at stake when they hit the road to face the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday night: Win and they are in the playoffs. That is the most obvious carrot dangling. There is more, of course, like keeping their spot atop the NFC West along with the San Francisco 49ers.
Boxing: I will die trying to defend my title against Joshua, says Ruiz Jr
World heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr has said he fulfilled a lifelong dream when he triumphed over Britain's Anthony Joshua in June and he would "die trying" to defend his belts in the title rematch in Saudi Arabia on Saturday. Mexican-American Ruiz produced one of boxing's biggest upsets when he dethroned the previously undefeated world champion Joshua with a seventh-round stoppage at New York's Madison Square Garden.
MLS announces season and home openers
MLS runner-up Toronto FC will visit the San Jose Earthquakes in one of eight matches to be played on Feb. 29, the opening day of the 2020 season. The 2018 champion Atlanta United will visit expansion Nashville SC in the latter's first-ever match, while the Houston Dynamo will host the Los Angeles Galaxy, who will play their first match without departed star Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
LeBron responds to criticism from Jazz announcers
The Los Angeles Lakers' LeBron James took to Instagram on Thursday, one day after he was criticized by Utah Jazz announcers for celebrating teammate Kyle Kuzma from the side of the court while not wearing his shoes. Late in the Lakers' dominating victory over the Jazz on Wednesday night, James jumped toward the edge of the court after Kuzma blocked a shot by Jazz center Tony Bradley. When Kuzma blocked Bradley a second time in the sequence, James danced even further away from the baseline while waving a towel.