Tyronn Lue has agreed to become the next coach of the Los Angeles Clippers. A person with knowledge of the situation told the Associated PRess the final terms were still being worked on. Lue will replace Doc Rivers, who had coached the Clippers for the last seven seasons and is now coaching the Philadelphia 76ers. Lue, 43, was on the 59-year-old Rivers' staff this season when the Clippers wasted a 3-1 lead over Denver and lost in the Western Conference semifinals. ESPN first reported the agreement between Lue and the Clippers, saying it was a five-year deal. It’s not the first time Lue has been promoted to head coach in the NBA in the wake of a firing. He was on the Cleveland Cavaliers' staff when he replaced the fired David Blatt during the 2015-16 season. Under Lue’s guidance, the Cavs and LeBron James went on to win their first-ever NBA championship that season, making Lue one of the few rookie coaches in the league to ever lead his team to a title. Lue, who won two NBA championships as a player with the Los Angeles Lakers, went 128-83 in parts of four seasons as Cavs coach. He coached the team to the NBA Finals in 2017 and 2018, but both times they lost to Golden State. He was fired after an 0-6 start to the 2018-19 season. Lue’s hiring means there are now six Black head coaches currently in the NBA as he joins Rivers in Philadelphia, Lloyd Pierce in Atlanta, J.B. Bickerstaff in Cleveland, Monty Williams in Phoenix, and Dwane Casey in Detroit.
Daryl Morey steps down as Rockets' GM
Daryl Morey, general manager of the Houston Rockets, is stepping down from his post, according to a person briefed on the decision. The move came after the Rockets were knocked out of the NBA playoffs in the second round and more than a year after Morey shared an image on Twitter in support of pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong. The tweet, which got an immediate rebuke from Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta, upended relations between the NBA and the Chinese government. China’s state-run television network did not broadcast any NBA games since then until Game 5 of the NBA Finals.
Senators sign F Dadonov for 3 years, $15m
The Ottawa Senators signed forward Evgenii Dadonov to a three-year, $15 million contract. Dadonov had 25 goals and 22 assists in 69 games with Florida last season. The Russian led the Panthers with a career-best 11 power-play goals. Dadonov has scored at least 25 goals in each of the last three seasons since returning to the NHL from the Kontinental Hockey League. In 281 NHL games, he has 91 goals and 111 assists . . . The New York Rangers agreed to terms with goaltender Alexandar Georgiev, a restricted free agent, on a new contract. The 24-year-old, the only Bulgaria-born player in NHL history, is expected to back up Igor Shesterkin next season after the Rangers bought out longtime face of the franchise Henrik Lundqvist. Georgiev went 17-14-2 with a 3.04 goals-against average and .910 save percentage in 34 games last season. He has a 3.00 goals-against average, .913 save percentage and four shutouts in 77 career NHL games, all with the Rangers. The Rangers added veteran Keith Kinkaid in free agency early this month to give them depth in goal beyond Shesterkin and Georgiev.
Holy Cross, Atlantic Hockey set to drop puck
Atlantic Hockey announced the return of league play, with the season officially getting underway the weekend of Nov. 13. Holy Cross will start play on Nov. 20 against Army and will play a 24-game slate, with all games at the Hart Center to be held without fans. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the league separated member teams into eastern and western pods to mitigate risk factors related to travel. Holy Cross will play in the eastern pod, along with AIC, Army, Bentley, and Sacred Heart, while the western pod will consist of Canisius, Mercyhurst, Niagara, RIT, and Robert Morris. Air Force will stand alone as the geographic outlier and will visit Worcester to play a two-game set against the Crusaders.
Texas football players to stand for school song
University of Texas football players, many of whom have raised concerns over using “The Eyes of Texas” as the school song, were told by athletic director Chris Del Conte they were expected to be “standing together as a unified group” during the postgame playing of the song, which has roots in blackface minstrel shows. Del Conte did not indicate what would happen if players refused. Coach Tom Herman on Monday encouraged players to join in singing the song but would respect the choice of those who didn’t. “This is an issue we will continue to have meaningful conversations about and will work through,” Herman said. Players did not join in the traditional singing of the song after the Longhorns' first two home games. The topic arose again this week after quarterback Sam Ehlinger remained on the field at the Cotton Bowl for the playing of the song while most of the team headed for the locker room after a 53-45 loss in four overtimes to Oklahoma . . . University of Iowa students who want to establish intercollegiate women’s wrestling and rugby programs were added as plaintiffs to a lawsuit seeking more sports opportunities for female Hawkeyes. The case, filed last month by members of the women’s swimming and diving team, seeks to stop Iowa from eliminating their program after this season.
Defending champ Medvedev out at St. Petersburg
Hard-serving American Reilly Opelka saved four break points in the final set before beating defending champion Daniil Medvedev, 2-6, 5-7, 4-6, Thursday to reach the quarterfinals of the St. Petersburg Open in Russia. Opelka converted his third set point to break the top-seeded Medvedev in the final game in the second set, and then broke for a second time at 5-4 in the third to clinch the match. The sixth-ranked Medvedev has lost four of his last five matches, including the US Open semifinal against Dominic Thiem. Opelka faces a quarterfinal against seventh-seeded Borna Coric, who defeated Russian wild-card entry Roman Safiullin, 6-3, 7-5.