Thursday Sports in brief | State

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FOOTBALL

MADRID (AP) – Lionel Messi’s time at Barcelona appears to be over.

Barcelona have announced that Messi will not be staying with the club, claiming that the Spanish league’s financial regulations make it impossible to sign a new contract with the Argentina star.

He is leaving after 17 successful seasons in which he propelled the Catalan club to glory, helping them win numerous national and international titles since his debut as a teenager.

Barcelona said in a statement that an agreement for a new contract had been reached but financial “hurdles” prevented the player from staying with the club.

He criticized “Spanish league regulations” for not allowing the club to sign a new contract with the player. Its precedent ended on June 30.

FOOTBALL PRO

TOWNSHIP, Ohio (AP) – The Pittsburgh Steelers followed a rocky first half with a solid 30-minute final to beat the Dallas Cowboys 16-3 in the first NFL preseason game in two years.

Matthew Sexton’s 36-yard punt return early in the third quarter gave the Steelers a boost, and the Cowboys never contested afterward.

Last season’s exhibition games were called off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

EAGAN, Minn. (AP) – Kirk Cousins ​​has returned to train with the Minnesota Vikings and has vowed to go even further for social distancing in order to ward off the coronavirus and stay on the ground.

Putting a plexiglass barrier around his seat was an idea he considered. Even “meeting outside under a goal post in January” was an extreme step he said he would be prepared to take to avoid another absence linked to the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols.

Getting the shot would make it all easier, of course, and Cousins ​​acknowledged the league’s strong encouragement – always below an outright mandate – for players to do so. He gave no indication that he would reconsider his decision not to get the vaccine, which he called a “very private health issue.”

BASEBALL

NEW YORK (AP) – Trevor Bauer’s administrative leave has been extended for seven days until August 13 by Major League Baseball and the players’ association as sports investigators investigate allegations of sexual misconduct against the Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher.

Bauer was put on seven-day paid leave on July 2 as part of the joint policy on domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse adopted by the MLB and the players’ union in 2015. The MLB and the union agreed to four extensions.

TENNIS

WASHINGTON (AP) – While Rafael Nadal was hoping to put his painful left foot back into action after nearly two months of absence, this is hardly what happened on his Citi Open debut, which ended only after two matches.

One night after needing three sets and over three hours to pull through, Nadal was knocked out 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 by 50th world-ranked Lloyd Harris of South Africa under the tournament lights on hard court.

Harris hit 16 aces and took advantage of Nadal’s admittedly problematic serve.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion was seeded No.1.

WASHINGTON (AP) – Teenage tennis sensation Coco Gauff said she was supposed to receive her first vaccine the same week she received COVID-19, which forced her to withdraw from the Tokyo Olympics and the left without his sense of smell.

Gauff, 17, announced via social media on July 18 that she had tested positive for the coronavirus and that she should be absent from the Summer Games which began shortly after. It was less than two weeks after reaching the fourth round at Wimbledon for the second time in his young career.

GOLF

MEMPHIS, Tennessee (AP) – Harris English scored under 862 to tie his lowest score on the PGA Tour to take the lead in the first round of the FedEx St. Jude Invitational.

Winner of 2013 at TPC Southwind, the Englishman had a two-stroke lead over Jim Herman, Carlos Ortiz, Ian Poulter and Matthew Wolff, with Bryson DeChambeau, Scottie Scheffler and Marc Leishman a further setback at 65.

DeChambeau returned to competition after missing the Tokyo Olympics due to testing positive for COVID-19.

TRUCKEE, Calif. (AP) – Joel Dahmen scored 16 points with eight birdies in a bogey-less lap to take the lead in the first round of the Barracuda Championship, the only PGA Tour event that uses the modified Stableford scoring system.

Players receive 8 points for an albatross, 5 for an eagle, 2 for a birdie and 0 for a par. One point is subtracted for a bogey, and 3 points are subtracted for a double bogey or worse.

HARRISON, NY (AP) – NCAA Champion Rachel Heck of Stanford has rallied to beat Brooke Matthews of Arkansas in 19 holes to advance to the United States Women’s Amateur Quarter-Finals. Heck, of Memphis, Tennessee, overcame a two-hole deficit with two left to play at Westchester Country Club.

BASKETBALL PRO

ATLANTA (AP) – The Atlanta Hawks signed first-round pick Jalen Johnson before the forward entered the team’s Summer League in Las Vegas.

The former Duke was the No.20 pick in the NBA Draft last week. The Hawks also signed their second-round pick, Auburn point guard Sharife Cooper, to a two-pronged contract.

The Hawks also announced they have re-signed forward Solomon Hill, who averaged 4.5 points in 71 games, including 16 starts, last season. Hill, an eight-season veteran, also made three starts in the team’s playoffs to the Eastern Conference Finals.

TELEVISION

Robert Griffin III hasn’t completely closed the door on his NFL career, but is taking another step towards his future beyond the playing field.

The Heisman Trophy winner and former Pro Bowl quarterback has signed a multi-year deal with ESPN to be a college football and NFL analyst. Griffin will be on the booth for a college football game on ESPN or ABC and will also help with ESPN’s studio coverage, including during the college football playoffs and the Super Bowl.

The deal allows Griffin to seek out an opportunity to play for a team if it arises.

HOCKEY

NEWARK, NJ (AP) – The New Jersey Devils signed free forward Tomas Tatar to a two-year, $ 9 million contract and re-signed restricted free-player forward Yegor Sharangovich to a $ 4 million contract dollars over two years.

Tatar will earn $ 3.75 million the coming season and $ 5.25 million the following year, the team said. Sharangovich will receive $ 1.8 million this coming season and $ 2.2 million in 2022-2023.

Tatar, 30, has spent the last three seasons with the Montreal Canadiens. He has 10 goals and 20 assists in 50 games. The Slovakian scored 22 goals and 39 assists the previous season and 25 goals and 33 assists in 2018-19.

Sharangovich had 16 goals and 14 assists in 54 games as a rookie last season.

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More AP sports: https://apnews.com/hub/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports



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