Dwight Howard, Pau Gasol, and Jordan Hill will miss the Lakers’ upcoming road trip with injuries, the team said Monday. Howard has a torn labrum in his right shoulder, Gasol has a concussion after taking an elbow in the face late in Sunday night’s loss to Denver, and Hill has a right hip injury. The Lakers said Gasol and Howard are both out indefinitely, but Howard will be evaluated in a week. The length of Hill’s absence was to be determined after he was examined by team doctors later Monday . . . Timberwolves forward Kevin Love met with doctors to evaluate his right hand, which is broken for the second time this season. There is no timetable for his return, but Love is expected to be out for an extended period . . . According to multiple news outlets, the Bucks and coach Scott Skiles have agreed to part ways. Assistant Jim Boylan will serve as interim coach. Yahoo Sports reported Skiles chose to leave because he “hated his team,” which is 16-16 and has lost four straight games . . . The Pacers signed coach Frank Vogel to a contract extension. The team did not provide details of the new deal . . . Hawks general manager Danny Ferry was fined $15,000 by the NBA for inappropriate interaction with game officials following Saturday night’s loss to the Celtics. A person familiar with the incident told the Associated Press that Ferry handed the officials a DVD recording of the game. Team officials are supposed to send such materials to the league for review.
Messi, Wambach are players of year
Lionel Messi won the FIFA Ballon d'Or award after recording a 91-goal year for Barcelona and Argentina in 2012. The 25-year-old has now been voted the world’s best player four straight years. Messi beat out Cristiano Ronaldo and Andres Iniesta. Abby Wambach was named the best women’s player, becoming the first American winner since Mia Hamm in 2002. She beat out Brazil’s Marta and teammate Alex Morgan. Spain coach Vicente del Bosque won the men’s coaching award, and former US coach Pia Sundhage won the women’s.
Cotton Bowl could host FBS title game
Sources familiar with the situation told ESPN that the Cotton Bowl is a “prohibitive favorite” to host the first national title game under the new FBS playoff format on Jan. 12, 2015. The sources also indicated that the Rose and Sugar bowls will host the national semifinals . . . Stanford All-America tight end Zach Ertz officially announced his plans to forgo his final year of eligibility and enter the NFL draft. Teammate and fellow tight end Levine Toilolo will also enter the draft. Oklahoma safety Tony Jefferson and wide receiver Kenny Stills, and Florida linebacker Jelani Jenkins also announced their decisions to turn pro . . . Florida State running back James Wilder Jr. is out of jail on $500 bond after being arrested for the third time in less than a year. Wilder turned himself into authorities Sunday at the Leon County Jail in Tallahassee, Fla., after a warrant for his arrest was issued for failing to make a court appearance on a charge of driving with a suspended license.
Watford leads Indiana past Penn State
Christian Watford scored 16 points, and No. 5 Indiana (14-1, 2-0 Big Ten) raced past Penn State, 74-51, in State College, Pa., in basketball action. Jermaine Marshall had 11 points for the Nittany Lions (8-6, 0-2) . . . Jerian Grant scored 19 points to help 17th-ranked Notre Dame (14-1, 2-0 Big East) top No. 21 Cincinnati. The Bearcats (13-3, 1-2) have lost three of their last four, with all the losses coming at home . . . The University of Connecticut announced Bruce Marshall has resigned as coach of the men’s hockey team. Marshall, who has the most wins in program history (337), had been on medical leave of absence since November. Assistant Dave Berard will continue to serve as head coach for the remainder of the season.
Berkman officially signs with Rangers
The Texas Rangers completed a $10 million, one-year deal with Lance Berkman after the 36-year-old passed a physical. The deal includes a $12 million club option for 2014 that becomes a guaranteed $13 million deal if he has 550 plate appearances in 2013 . . . Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen Trutanich’s office announced the dismissal of Giovanni Ramirez’s lawsuit against Los Angeles and Police Chief Charlie Beck. Ramirez was arrested in the beating of San Francisco Giants fan Bryan Stow outside Dodger Stadium in 2011 and later cleared. Ramirez alleged his rights to due process were violated . . . Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite refused to grant citizenship to American figure skater Isabella Tobias, who had hoped to compete for the country at the 2014 Sochi Olympics. The decision was based on a previous Constitution Court ruling that bars giving out citizenship on the basis of ‘‘future merit’’ . . . Super middleweight champion Andre Ward had surgery on his right shoulder Friday that will postpone his title bout against Kelly Pavlik for a second time. The fight had been scheduled for Jan. 26 in Los Angeles, but was postponed until March . . . USA Swimming will give out prize money for the Grand Prix series. In each Olympic-distance event winners will receive $500, second place will get $300, and third place nets $100.