In the last slalom before next month’s world championships, Mikaela Shiffrin ended a year-long victory drought in her strongest discipline and earned her 100th World Cup podium in a night race in Lachau, Austria. “I felt, like, inspired, I just felt alive. I was pushing. It’s hard to explain. I wish I could explain,” said the American, who was away from the circuit for much of 2020 because of the death of her father and a back injury. Shiffrin is the 2014 Olympic gold medalist and four-time world champion but last triumphed in slalom in December 2019. On Tuesday, she held on to her opening-run lead and beat Katharina Liensberger by 0.19 seconds following a near-flawless final run, denying the Austrian her first win, and the Austrian team a first slalom win since November 2014. The result made Shiffrin the eighth skier in the 54-year-long history of the World Cup to reach 100 podium finishes.
Stars account for most of positive tests
The NHL said 17 of the 27 players that have tested positive for the coronavirus are on the Dallas Stars. The league announced COVID-19 testing numbers from Dec. 30-Jan 11, which included 12,000 tests administered to more than 1,200 players. The NHL says most of the 17 Stars players are asymptomatic and all are recovering without complication. Dallas shut down its training camp Friday and resumed practices Tuesday with more than a dozen players still unavailable. The regular season starts Wednesday. The Stars were scheduled to play their first game Thursday but will not begin now until at least Jan. 19 . . . San Jose Sharks left winger Evander Kane has filed for federal Chapter 7 bankruptcy in California even though he is scheduled to make $3 million this season and has earned nearly $53 million over the course of his NHL career. In bankruptcy documents dated Saturday and filed in US Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California, the 29-year-old native of Canada lists slightly more than $10 million in assets and nearly $27 million in liabilities, Nearly all of Kane’s assets are in the form of property, namely a $3 million home in San Jose and two houses in Vancouver, B.C., valued at a combined $5.26 million. But the documents also show that Kane owes nearly $16 million in unpaid loans, plus more than $250,000 in unpaid federal and state taxes, and nearly $80,000 in credit card charges . . . The Minnesota Wild signed forward Marcus Foligno to a three-year, $9.3 million contract extension . . . Northeastern will add a men’s hockey home-and-home series this week against No. 3 Boston College, Friday at 7 p.m. from Conte Forum and Saturday at 7 p.m. inside Matthews Arena. However, the No. 4 Northeastern women’s hockey games scheduled for Friday and Saturday against BU will no longer be played . . . Bentley is postponing its next three men’s hockey games.
Nets, NBA look into Kyrie Irving’s actions
The Brooklyn Nets and the NBA are looking into Kyrie Irving’s actions after a video showed the point guard at an indoor family gathering while not wearing a mask. General manager Sean Marks said Tuesday that the team is reviewing the circumstances with both Irving and the league to determine his compliance with health and safety protocols. Marks added in a statement that a date for Irving’s return to the team has yet to be finalized. Irving missed his fourth straight game for what the Nets are calling personal reasons Tuesday night against Denver. He will likely face a quarantine period upon his return and could be fined if the NBA determines he violated the rules in place during the coronavirus pandemic . . . Wednesday’s game between Utah and Washington was postponed because the host Wizards will not have the league-required eight available players
UConn women postpone pair
Hours after announcing the postponement of Saturday’s game against Villanova, the No. 4-ranked UConn women’s basketball team also must reschedule Wednesday’s game against Seton Hall. The Huskies say they are making the move as a precaution because of a coronavirus outbreak at Providence, whom the Huskies beat last weekend. The Huskies next scheduled game is against Butler on Jan. 19 . . .The WNBA’s Connecticut Sun agreed to a four-year contract extension with Curt Miller that is designed to keep the team’s coach and general manager in the fold through the 2024 season. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
MLS, players still at odds over contract
Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber said the MLS Players Association hasn’t responded yet to the league’s proposed changes to the collective bargaining agreement. Garber said that while he understands players need an opportunity to adequately review the league’s proposal, time is also becoming a major factor as the sides have less than three weeks to come to an agreement on a revised CBA. The league invoked its force majeure clause in late December that obligates MLS and the MLSPA to negotiate modifications to the existing CBA in good faith for 30 days, with a deadline in late January. The league presented revisions to the CBA last week that propose players receive their full salaries after they agreed to a 5 percent pay reduction as part of a renegotiated CBA last June. As part of the new proposal, MLS wants the current CBA extended through 2027 . . . Orlando midfielder Andrés Perea has been given approval by FIFA to switch his affiliation to the United States from Colombia. The 20-year-old trained with the US national team in December and is with the US under-23 team this week in Bradenton, Fla. . . . Megan Rapinoe returned to the US women’s national team for its January training camp in Florida after sitting out most of last year. The last time Rapinoe, 35, played for the national team was on March 11, when she scored in a 3-1 SheBelieves Cup victory over Japan.
Augusta to welcome some fans for Masters
Augusta National chairman Fred Ridley said the club intends to allow a limited number of spectators for the Masters on April 8-11, provided it can be done safely amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Ridley said the tourney will be conducted with mandatory testing for the coronavirus and masks being worn to prevent its spread. The Masters was played Nov. 12-15 — the first time in the autumn since it began in 1934 — because of the pandemic that forced golf to reconfigure its major championship season and led to the cancellation of the British Open. Ridley did not indicate how many spectators will be allowed. The Masters does not publicize how many tickets it sells or how many people typically are on the grounds. It has been estimated at roughly 40,000. The club is so confident that Ridley also said the Augusta National Women’s Amateur, which was canceled last year after its debut in 2019, and the Drive, Chip and Putt national finals will be held with a small number of spectators . . . Building on momentum from the French Open, American Sebastian Korda has reached his first ATP Tour final. Korda, the son of 1998 Australian Open champion Petr Korda, beat Cameron Norrie of Britain, 6-3, 7-5, in the Delray Beach (Fla.) Open semifinals. Korda’s opponent Wednesday will be No. 4-seeded Hubert Hurkacz, who defeated American qualifier Christian Harrison, 7-6 (7-4), 6-4. Korda, 20, is a former World No. 1 junior who earned his first three tour-level wins in September at the French Open to reach the round of 16. Korda trained in December with Andre Agassi, and they talked by phone after his latest victory. “He’s super pumped,” said Korda, who arrived at Delray Beach ranked 119th. In his first career quarterfinal he beat No. 2-seeded John Isner on Monday. Hurkacz’s only other career final came in 2019, when he won at Winston-Salem to become the second Polish tour-level champion in the Open era . . . Righthander Michael Fulmer and the Detroit Tigers agreed to a $3.1 million, one-year contract that avoided arbitration.