Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Hall of Famer Lapointe diagnosed with oral cancer
Former Montreal Canadiens defenseman and Hockey Hall of Famer Guy Lapointe has been diagnosed with oral cancer, the team announced Wednesday. "Dr. Keith Richardson, the treating physician from the McGill University Health Centre, indicated that the cancer is located at the base of the tongue," the Canadiens said in a statement. "Lapointe will begin his treatments in the coming weeks. This form of cancer has a high cure rate.
Clippers' Leonard says leaving champion Raptors was a 'hard decision'
Kawhi Leonard said on Wednesday his one year in Canada was a fun ride and that his decision to leave the Toronto Raptors three weeks after leading them to their first NBA championship was anything but easy. Leonard, back in Toronto for the first time as a member of the Los Angeles Clippers, said signing with his hometown team was not the foregone conclusion some had felt in the weeks leading up to his decision.
Australian Barty named WTA Player of the Year
Australia's Ash Barty has been named WTA Player of the Year after capturing her maiden Grand Slam singles title and reaching the top of the world rankings. The 23-year-old, who quit tennis to play cricket in 2014 before returning to the game in 2016, became the first Australian to win the French Open since Margaret Court in 1973 when she beat Czech teenager Marketa Vondrousova in June.
U.S. soccer World Cup champion Lloyd keeps her eye on NFL dream
World Cup winner Carli Lloyd said on Tuesday she had been practising for a hoped-for future in the NFL and was not fazed about the idea of playing alongside the men. "Obviously there’s 300-pound men on the line but it’s sort of like taking a penalty shot: you’re not worried about the keeper, you’re worried about just putting the ball in the back of the net," Lloyd, co-captain of the United States team that won the soccer World Cup in July, told Reuters.
Rangers extend reign as NHL's most valuable team: Forbes
The New York Rangers are the National Hockey League's most valuable franchise for a fifth consecutive year at more than double the league average, according to the annual list https://www.forbes.com/sites/mikeozanian/2019/12/11/the-nhls-most-valuable-teams-2019-new-york-rangers-on-top-at-165-billion/#6a66ac927163 published by business magazine Forbes on Wednesday. The Rangers, who missed the playoffs in each of the last two seasons, are worth $1.65 billion, up six percent from last year, a jump that Forbes attributed to playing in a lucrative market with a slew of major companies.
Harrelson named 2020 Ford C. Frick Award winner
Former Chicago White Sox television play-by-play announcer Ken Harrelson was named the winner of the 2020 Ford C. Frick Award by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum on Wednesday. Harrelson, 78, will receive the award on July 25, 2020 in Cooperstown, N.Y.
Belichick shuts down queries into videotape controversy
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick on Wednesday shed very little light into the NFL's investigation of the organization for videotaping the Cincinnati Bengals' sideline this past weekend. Belichick was rather curt with reporters, marking the third straight day in which he was asked about a team videographer who was caught filming the Bengals' sideline during Sunday's game against the Cleveland Browns.
Report: Yankees land Cole for nine years, $324 million
The Yankees just landed the biggest catch on the free agent market, right-hander Gerrit Cole is headed to New York on a nine-year, $324 million deal, multiple media outlets reported late Tuesday night. The contract surpasses the seven-year, $245 million deal that right-hander Stephen Strasburg got while re-signing with the Washington Nationals on Monday.
Leon Spinks' wife asks for prayers for husband
The wife of former world heavyweight boxing champion Leon Spinks has asked for prayers for her husband amid a media report that he is in a Las Vegas hospital in a serious condition. "It's been a tough year for us," Brenda Spinks wrote in a Facebook post.
Woods, Thomas to tee off first for U.S. at Presidents Cup
Tiger Woods and his partner Justin Thomas will kick off competition for the United States in the Presidents Cup, which begins Thursday morning local time in Melbourne, Australia. Woods, the team captain, and Ernie Els, captain of the opposing International team, made their pairings selections in the draw held Wednesday.