The Latest: There will be basketball to watch this weekend
The Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:
The NBA, the National Basketball Players Association and ESPN will stream a HORSE tournament on ESPN’s app.
The NBA HORSE Challenge will have eight participants. The quarterfinals are to be shown Sunday and the semifinals and final on April 16.
The quarterfinal matchups are Trae Young of the Atlanta Hawks against former NBA player and ESPN analyst Chauncey Billups; WNBA great and 2020 Basketball Hall of Fame inductee Tamika Catchings against Mike Conley Jr. of the Utah Jazz; Zach LaVine of the Chicago Bulls against NBA retiree and ESPN analyst Paul Pierce; and Chris Paul of the Oklahoma City Thunder against Allie Quigley of the WNBA’s Chicago Sky.
Players must call their shots before the attempt and dunking is not allowed. The players will be isolated and competing on separate home courts.
State Farm is the presenting sponsor and will offer a prize pool exceeding $200,000 to charities working on the coronavirus response. The event will be pre-taped.
The International Cycling Union says it can get through its greatest crisis since World War II with limited damage “as long as the situation does not last longer than current predictions.”
The UCI has received more than 650 requests for postponements or cancellations from organizers because of the coronavirus pandemic. That represents 30% of its international calendar.
The UCI says it is reimbursing all registration fees of canceled events to help organizers.
The UCI will take a considerable financial hit from paying those fees and it also expects its Olympic revenue payment from the delayed Tokyo Games to be postponed and likely reduced.
The UCI says its leadership has agreed to reduce salaries or allowances and furloughed all 130 employees of the UCI and the world cycling center.
Australia’s rugby league championship plans to restart on May 28.
The NRL has been suspended since March 23.
The governing ARL Commission also says it intends to play a full three-game State of Origin series.
Commissioner Wayne Pearce says they wanted to set a date and then work on finalizing a competition. It will depend on border restrictions in New South Wales and Victoria states and New Zealand opening up.
Pearce says “a date is to give certainty to players and their schedules, clubs and thousands of people who are out of work through clubs and millions of fans."
He says “the situation is changing dramatically and we need to get moving. It is in the best interests of our clubs, our players, our stakeholders and importantly our fans that the competition resumes as quickly and as safely as possible.”
Australia’s two-test cricket tour of Bangladesh in June has been postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The first test was to start on June 11 in Chattogram. The second from June 19 in Dhaka.
Both were part of the world test championship. The final of that tournament is scheduled for next June. Trying to find a new slot for the tests will be a challenge.
Cricket Australia CEO Kevin Roberts says “the global cricket calendar is very busy but we will do everything we can to honor our commitment to Bangladesh and will continue to work with the BCB on an agreed date.”
The Bangladesh-Australia series is the second in the world championship to be postponed. England returned home from Sri Lanka last month at the start of the outbreak.
Southampton has become the first Premier League club to announce its players will defer some of their salaries amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The Premier League had wanted all squads to take a 30% pay cut but the move led to a standoff with the players’ union.
The league has been indefinitely suspended.
Southampton says players will defer part of their salaries in April, May and June “to help protect the future of the club, the staff that work within it and the community we serve.”
Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhüttl, his coaching staff and directors will also defer some pay over three months.
Southampton says it has “put measures in place to ensure that all staff not deferring part of their salaries will continue to receive 100% of their pay, paid in the normal way until 30th June.”
More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports