KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Patrick Mahomes finished a full week of training Friday with his injured right ankle and Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said his All-Pro quarterback is ready for the AFC championship game against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Mahomes suffered a high ankle sprain in the first quarter last week in a divisional round win over Jacksonville, returning after halftime to perfect the win. That sent the Chiefs into their fifth straight AFC Championship game, where they will face the champions AFC North on Sunday night in a rematch of last year’s loss to the Bengals.
Mahomes had perhaps his best season, throwing for a career-high 5,250 yards with a league-leading 41 touchdown passes and garnered 49 of 50 first-place votes in All-Pro voting. He is among the five finalists for the league MVP.
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa remains in NFL concussion protocol and will not make the Pro Bowl, a person with knowledge of the matter told the Associated Press.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the decision has not been officially announced.
Tagovailoa was diagnosed with his second concussion of the 2022 season more than a month ago, following a Dec. 25 loss to Green Bay. Lui has lost Miami’s last three games, including a playoff loss to Buffalo.
Tagovailoa had been selected as the first Pro Bowl alternate and would replace either Joe Burrow or Patrick Mahomes, either of whom will play in Super Bowl LVII following Sunday’s AFC Championship game.
The Pro Bowl will take place on Sunday, February 5, one week before the Super Bowl.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles Rams have hired former New York Jets offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur to join the search for Sean McVay to mend one of the least productive offenses in the league.
LaFleur spent the past two years with the Jets in his first stint as NFL offensive coordinator, but New York struggled statistically both years as they missed the playoffs twice. He parted ways with the Jets three days after the end of the regular season.
LaFleur would follow in the footsteps of his older brother, Matt, by becoming the Los Angeles offensive coordinator under head coach Sean McVay, who called Rams plays and was in near complete control of the offense during his six years as a coach. mandate.
Offensive coordinator Liam Coen left the Rams after one season to return to Kentucky, where he spent a successful 2021 season as the Wildcats’ offensive coordinator.
ANN ARBOR, Michigan (AP) — At least four other Michigan State football players facing misdemeanor charges over a skirmish inside the Michigan Stadium tunnel will likely have their cases dropped in exchange for community service and other terms, the lawyers said.
Scuffles erupted in the tunnel after Michigan beat Michigan State 29-7 on October 29. The video showed Michigan State players pushing, punching and kicking Michigan’s Ja’Den McBurrows.
Seven players have been charged, although only one, Khary Crump, has faced a felony. That charge was dropped in early January in exchange for a guilty plea to a misdemeanor misdemeanor. His criminal record will be cleared if he stays out of trouble while on probation. Grose, Itayvion Brown, Brandon Wright and Justin White returned to court on Friday and agreed to enroll in a special program, MLive.com reported.
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Novak Djokovic put aside shaky early play and won his Australian Open semifinal against unseeded American Tommy Paul, winning 7-5, 6-1, 6 -2 to close out 10th championship at Melbourne Park and 22nd Grand Slam title overall.
Djokovic’s parents and brother are in town for the tournament for the first time since he won the No. 1 trophy. 1 in 2008, but his father stayed away from this match after being involved in a flap linked to spectators bringing banned Russian flags to the venue earlier in the week.
Forget that potential distraction. Forget the heavily logged left hamstring that was a problem last week. Forget how Djokovic produced twice as many unforced errors, 24, as winners, 12, in the opening set. Forget that he’s lost four games in a row in one stretch. As usual, Djokovic mustered everything he needed to extend his Australian Open winning streak to 27 matches, the longest in the Open Era, which dates back to 1968.
There was a break in that streak a year ago, of course, when Djokovic was expelled from Australia before the start of the competition for not being vaccinated against COVID-19. He hasn’t gotten the shots yet, but the country’s strict border controls established during the pandemic have been relaxed.
On Sunday, No. 4 seed Djokovic will face No. 3 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas, who knocked out Karen Khachanov 7-6 (2), 6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-3 to reach his first final in Melbourne Park and second in a Grand Slam.
SAN DIEGO (AP) — Jon Rahm made an impressive run up the standings at Torrey Pines with a 6-under 66 to shoot within two strokes of leader Sam Ryder following the third round of the Farmers Insurance Open.
Rahm, ranked no. only possession of second place after an eagle on the par 5 9th hole that capped off his second stretch of play of four holes at 5 under in two days.
As Rahm warmed up on a beautiful, calm day on the Municipal Course overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Ryder parried his last 12 holes for a 72, missing a 10-foot birdie putt on the par-5 18th. Ryder was 12 under on 204 across 54 holes while Rahm was 10 under.
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Rory McIlroy and Patrick Reed had big first-round results at the Dubai Desert Classic in what could lead to an intriguing showdown as the competition draws to a close on Monday.
LIV Golf Series players Richard Bland and Ian Poulter shared the lead at 8 under when second round play was suspended due to the fading light. It was the second day in succession of disrupted play at Emirates Golf Club.
McIlroy and Reed, another LIV golfer, were in the news after some pre-tournament friction between two of the highest profile golfers, and both completed their rounds at 6-under 66 in brief appearances at opposite ends of the field.
The competition will conclude on Monday, organizers said. Play had been suspended on Thursday due to fading of the light following earlier overnight rain delays which had rendered the pitch unplayable.
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Young star Isabeau Levito needed a near-flawless free skate to win the U.S. Figure Skating Championships after Bradie Tennell’s stunning performance minutes earlier.
And 15-year-old Levito succeeded in just that, obtaining an amazing score of 149.55 for a total of 223.33 and her first national women’s championship. The New Jersey skater received a rousing standing ovation from an audience thrilled by her bearing under pressure on the big national stage.
Two-time U.S. champion Tennell hit a 139.36 in the free skate and finished second at 213.12.
Previously, rising star Ilia Malinin ran a personal best of 110.36 in the men’s short program. The 18-year-old finished second to Olympic champion Nathan Chen on his senior international debut last year but was passed over for the Olympic team in favor of the more experienced Jason Brown.
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic will skip Utah Saturday after spraining his left ankle in Phoenix Thursday night.
Doncic’s absence leaves the Mavericks without their top two scorers. Christian Wood is recovering from a broken left thumb.
Doncic was trying to make a move near the basket against Phoenix’s Cam Johnson but stepped on the foot of Mikal Bridges.
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt told reporters he was baffled that $12.7 million of his money went missing from a local private investment firm that authorities are investigating as part of of a massive fraud that began more than a decade ago.
Bolt also said he fired his company manager. Bolt’s attorneys said the athlete’s account with Kingston-based Stocks and Securities Limited decreased from nearly $12.8 million to about $12,000. They had given the company until Friday to pay back the money or face civil and criminal action.
It wasn’t immediately clear whether any action had been taken until late Friday. Attorney Linton P. Gordon did not return a message seeking comment.
ATLANTA (AP) — Atlanta Braves head coach Brian Snitker, fresh off the team’s fifth straight NL East title, has signed a contract extension that will last through the 2025 season.
The 67-year-old Snitker led the Braves to a 2021 World Series championship before the team won 101 games last season.
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Reliever Pete Fairbanks and the Tampa Bay Rays have agreed to a three-year, $12 million contract that could be worth up to $24.6 million over four seasons.
The announced deal includes a club option for 2026 which, coupled with performance escalators and potential bonuses, could significantly increase the amount the right earns.
TORONTO (AP) — Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews will miss at least three weeks with a sprained knee.
The team announced the incumbent MVP’s early absence on Friday, two days after Matthews was injured in a win against the New York Rangers.
After being voted an All-Star by fans, Matthews is now out of the event scheduled for February 3-4 in Sunrise, Florida. The league announced that Aleskander Barkov of the Florida Panthers will replace Matthews on the Atlantic Division All-Star roster.
BUENOS AIRES (AP) — The Copa América will be played next year in the United States and will include six CONCACAF teams.
South American football body CONMEBOL said its 10 national teams will play the tournament outside their region following an agreement with the confederation for North and Central America and the Caribbean.
The six visitors to the 2024 Copa America will secure a place based on their performance in the upcoming CONCACAF Nations League.