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    Rick Hendrick fully supports Chase Elliott as he returns from a one-race suspension for deliberately wrecking Denny Hamlin, but the team owner believes on-track aggression has gotten out of control this season and NASCAR sent a message by parking the superstar. Elliott missed last week's race outside St. Louis as the five-time fan-voted most popular driver served a one-race suspension for retaliating against Hamlin in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. 

      No. 1 Iga Swiatek has moved closer to a second consecutive French Open championship by defeating Beatriz Haddad Maia 6-2, 7-6 (7) in the semifinals. The victory Thursday also assured Swiatek of keeping the No. 1 ranking after the tournament. The 22-year-old from Poland is trying to win her third title at Roland Garros and fourth major trophy overall. On Saturday, Swiatek will face unseeded Karolina Muchova, a 26-year-old from the Czech Republic, who advanced to her first Slam final with a 7-6 (5), 6-7 (5), 7-5 victory over No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka, the reigning Australian Open champion.

        MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota Vikings are parting ways with star running back Dalvin Cook for salary cap savings after his fourth consecutive season surpassing the 1,000-yard rushing mark.

          MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — I liked the Dolphins defense last season. I might love the Dolphins defense this season. Granted, that’s a strong statement in June, a time when players haven’t even put on pads, and admittedly it’s possibly even an overreaction to optimistic comments from players and coaches. On top of that, this big-play offense gets all the headlines among quarterback Tua Tagovailoa ...

            Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray became the first teammates in NBA Finals history to both record triple-doubles, and Denver’s two stars made sure the Nuggets reclaimed the lead in the series by beating the Miami Heat 109-94 in Game 3 on Wednesday night. Murray had 34 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, getting the rebound he needed with 9 seconds remaining. Jokic finished with 32 points, 21 rebounds and 10 assists.

              Major League Baseball was once so concerned about gambling it banned Hall of Famers Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays just for working as casino greeters. Now MLB itself and almost all its teams have official casino sponsors. The NCAA railed for decades that paying players would destroy college sports, all while raking in billions off of their unpaid labor. Now schools boast of booster collectives that help recruit top talent to their teams. So when the PGA Tour overcame its indignation and agreed to merge with LIV Golf the flip-flop followed a long-established tradition in sports of flexible attitudes.

              Every player at the Women's World Cup will be paid at least $30,000 by FIFA and all 23 in the title-winning team will each get $270,000. The details confirmed Wednesday fulfils FIFA's promise to directly reward all 732 players taking part in the tournament that starts in July in Australia and New Zealand. More than half of FIFA's total prize fund of $110 million will be paid out to players. Players from the 16 teams exiting at the group stage will get $30,000 each.

              The Iron Sheik, a former pro wrestler who played a burly, bombastic villain in 1980s battles with some of the sport's biggest stars, has died at age 81. The WWE posted an article confirming the death of the ex-wrestler and Twitter personality Wednesday. 

              The Jacksonville Jaguars unveiled conceptual designs for their “stadium of the future” on Wednesday, providing an initial glimpse into a billion-dollar-plus project that could determine the fate of the small-market franchise. The renderings showed covered seating throughout a 62,000-seat, open-air stadium that includes a 360-degree concourse, which is four times wider than the current space. Capacity could be expanded to 71,500 for the annual Florida-Georgia rivalry, the Gator Bowl or a College Football Playoff game. 

              Rory McIlroy says the PGA Tour's collaboration with Saudi Arabia's wealth fund makes him feel like a sacrificial lamb. McIlroy has been the strongest anti-Saudi voice during the disruption brought on by LIV Golf. He was among those left in the dark on the agreement that merges the business end of the PGA Tour, European tour and the Public Investment Fund. McIlroy says Saudi Arabia was going to keep spending money in golf. He says the tour is better off having it as a minority investor instead of trying to keep up and going to court over lawsuits.

              Horse racing has come a long way since it was known as the sport of kings. It no longer captures national attention in the U.S. or worldwide the way it did when horses like Seabiscuit, Man o' War and Secretariat were racing. Fan interest in the 21st century has waned to the point the sport is at the forefront just a handful of times a year or because of scandals. The sport is arguably is as popular it has ever been with annual revenue of over $400 billion.

              One of the top sports car racers in the world will make his NASCAR debut when Kamui Kobayashi drives for Toyota on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course in August. Kobayashi will drive for 23XI Racing. The team is owned by Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan. The announcement at the 24 Hours of Le Mans makes Kobayashi only the second Japanese driver to race in NASCAR's top Cup Series and only the fifth to race in the top three national series. 

              Manchester City's run to the Champions League final has hardly come as a surprise. But the same cannot be said for Inter Milan. Inter is one of European soccer's most storied teams but it enters Saturday's game in Istanbul as an outsider after finishing the season as third best team in Italy. Italian soccer has long-since lost its shine after being considered the ultimate destination for the world's best players in the 1990s. Inter finished the season 18 points behind league champion Napoli. Inter coach Simone Inzaghi says City "will be facing an opponent who deserve to be in Istanbul as much as they do."

              Carlos Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic will face each other in the French Open semifinals. It is their first head-to-head meeting in more than a year. Alcaraz won their only previous encounter. Alcaraz is a 20-year-old from Spain who is seeded No. 1 and will be appearing in his second Grand Slam semifinal. Djokovic is a 36-year-old from Serbia who is seeded No. 3 and entering the 45th major semifinal of his career. He has 22 Grand Slam titles and can break a tie with rival Rafael Nadal for the most in the history of men's tennis by getting past Alcaraz and then winning Sunday's final.


              Coco Gauff has lost in the French Open quarterfinals to two-time champion Iga Swiatek in a rematch of last year's final at Roland Garros. The No. 1-ranked Swiatek won 6-4, 6-2 on Wednesday and has not dropped a set in the tournament. Swiatek will face 14th-seeded Beatriz Haddad Maia in Thursday's semifinals. Gauff is a 19-year-old American who has lost all seven matches she has played against Swiatek. Haddad Maia is the first Brazilian woman to reach a Grand Slam semifinal since 1968. She eliminated No. 7 Ons Jabeur in three sets earlier Wednesday.

              Lionel Messi says he is coming to Inter Miami and joining Major League Soccer. After months of speculation, Messi announced his decision Wednesday to join a Miami franchise that has been led by another global soccer icon in David Beckham since its inception but has yet to make any real splashes on the field. That will likely soon change. One of Inter Miami's owners, Jorge Mas, tweeted out a photo of a darkly silhouetted Messi jersey shortly before the Argentinian great revealed his decision in interviews with Spanish news outlets Mundo Deportivo and Sport.

              After upgrading the roster on both sides of the ball, the Chicago Bears hope to be in more close games in 2023, the kind in which a key play here or there on special teams can make the difference. The Bears lost by nine or more points seven times during last year’s 3-14 season. In four of the losses by eight or fewer points, a key special teams breakdown was part of the problem. The Bears had ...

              SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Not satisfied with what the 49ers got from Deebo Samuel last season? You’re not alone. “It was awful,” Samuel said Tuesday. ‘I was awful . . . in every way.” Samuel offered that harsh self-assessment on the first day of the 49ers’ mandatory minicamp, which continues Wednesday and ends Thursday with a family gathering and marks the end of the offseason until training camp ...

              PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan spent more than an hour explaining to players Tuesday afternoon why he changed his mind about taking Saudi funds in a surprise collaboration, saying it ultimately was for their benefit. And to think it was nearly a year ago to the day that Saudi-funded LIV Golf teed off in its inaugural event as a rival and a threat, flush with defectors from golf's top circuit.

              Online racist abuse of soccer players is prolific on social media platforms. It's the latest form of racism blighting the world's most popular sport. It's technology-fueled, visual, permanently intrusive, 24/7 and a haunting reminder of the 1980s-style monkey chants and banana throwing. Players and teams targeted by abuse are coming up with ways to raise awareness and reduce their exposure to offensive users. 

              Forte is finally getting a crack at running in a Triple Crown race. The colt who was scratched the day of the Kentucky Derby is the early favorite for the Belmont Stakes. Forte was last year's 2-year-old champion. He is the slight 5-2 favorite for the grueling 1 1/2-mile race. Trained by Todd Pletcher, Forte will break from the No. 6 post in the nine-horse field on Saturday at Belmont Park. Pletcher's other horse, Tapit Trice, is the 3-1 second choice and drew the No. 2 post. Preakness winner National Treasure is 5-1.

              Chicago has had massive roster changes since winning its first championship two years ago. Kahleah Copper is the lone starter remaining from that team as Candace Parker, Courtney Vandersloot, Azura Stevens and Allie Quigley are all gone. Copper has embraced the challenge of her new leadership role and has gotten off to a strong start this year in helping the Sky win four of their first seven games. She is averaging a career-best 17.1 points and 5.9 rebounds.

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