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Minnesota Timberwolves sale to Alex Rodriguez group up for NBA approval

Alex Rodriguez (above) and Marc Lore tried to buy the New York Mets last year but were beaten out.
Alex Rodriguez (above) and Marc Lore tried to buy the New York Mets last year but were beaten out.Lynne Sladky/Associated Press

Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor has reached agreement on his $1.5 billion sale of the club to e-commerce mogul Marc Lore and former baseball star Alex Rodriguez, a person with knowledge of the negotiation told the Associated Press on Thursday. Taylor previously had said the deal was contingent on Lore and Rodriguez keeping the team in Minnesota. The two sides entered an exclusive negotiating window on April 10. Lore and Rodriguez are 50-50 partners. They tried to buy the New York Mets last year but were beaten out for the Major League Baseball club by hedge fund manager Steve Cohen Seimone Augustus retired from playing in the WNBA and will be an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Sparks. Augustus is a 15-year veteran who played most of her career with the Minnesota Lynx, winning four titles there. She re-signed with the Sparks in February before deciding to retire.



Chiefs trade for Vikings CB Hughes

The Vikings traded cornerback Mike Hughes, their 2018 first-round draft pick, to the Chiefs in a swap of late-round selections. The Vikings sent their 2022 seventh-round pick to the Chiefs for their 2022 sixth-round choice, a minimal gain for an injury-hampered player in danger of being released . . . Bears coach Matt Nagy will participate virtually in the team’s rookie minicamp this weekend rather than in person because a close contact tested positive for COVID-19.


Protesters face riot police in Manchester United loss to Liverpool

The beefed-up defense outside Old Trafford was more robust than Manchester United’s on the pitch inside. While United supporters again protested against the owning Glazer family — facing riot police and new steel barriers to guard the entrances — the game against Liverpool went ahead as planned after being called off 11 days earlier when some fans were able to storm the pitch. United might have wished it hadn’t, losing, 4-2, for its first home defeat against its fiercest rival since Jürgen Klopp took charge of Liverpool six years ago. Not only was this United’s third game since Sunday — with this rearranged fixture squeezed into the week — but the players had to get to the stadium much earlier than usual after being unable to leave their hotel on May 2 due to the protests at Old Trafford. “The players handled the situation well,” United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said. “None of them have been complaining. They have got on with it. The preparations have been different. We’re not going to make an excuse of that.”


US men to play group stage matches in Kansas

The United States will play its three group stage matches of the CONCACAF Gold Cup at Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kan. The Americans open Group B play July 11 against the qualifying winner from among Haiti, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Guatemala and Guyana, the Confederation of North and Central American and Caribbean Football said Thursday. The US plays Martinique July 15 and closes the first round against Canada July 18.


Simone Biles to return to competition next week

Reigning Olympic gymnastics champion Simone Biles will return to competition for the first time in more than 18 months at the US Classic next week in Indianapolis. The 24-year-old Biles — a heavy favorite to defend her Olympic title in Tokyo this summer — hasn’t taken the floor since winning her fifth world all-around championship in October 2019.

Auto racing

NASCAR eases mask mandate restrictions

NASCAR lifted its mask mandate for competitors when outdoors in the garage and pit areas starting this weekend at Dover International Speedway. Masks will still be required when competitors are inside any buildings or team haulers, NASCAR said. NASCAR said its focus is on encouraging everyone to get vaccinated and preventing indoor spread of COVID-19.



Rafael Nadal roars back from 3-0 deficit

When it comes to long, grueling clay-court battles, nobody is better than Rafael Nadal. Nearing his 35th birthday, the Spanish great showed he’s still got the stamina to withstand much younger challengers in a 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (3) comeback win over 22-year-old Denis Shapovalov that secured him a spot in the Italian Open quarterfinals in Rome. Nadal roared back from 3-0 down in the second set and then saved two match points on his serve at 6-5 in the third.

Serena Williams accepts wild-card invitation

Serena Williams has accepted a wild-card invitation to play at the Emilia-Romagna Open in Parma, Italy starting this weekend. The move came immediately after Williams lost in straight sets to Nadia Podoroska at the Italian Open on Wednesday in her first match in nearly three months. Williams is preparing for the French Open, which starts at the end of the month. Serena’s sister, Venus, also accepted a wild-card invitation, organizers said.


College football coming to Worcester’s Polar Park

Holy Cross and the Worcester Red Sox will announce a plan Monday to bring college football to Polar Park, which hosted its first professional baseball game Tuesday … A Swiss climber and an American died on Mount Everest in the season’s first casualties on the world’s highest mountain. The Swiss climber, Abdul Waraich, 41, scaled the peak before having difficulties. US national Puwei Liu, 55, also died at the highest camp on the mountain at South Col. He had reached the climbing feature named the Hillary Step, located between South Col and the summit, but had to return because of snow blindness and exhaustion … Troy Ryan was named head coach of Canada’s women’s hockey team for the 2022 Beijing Olympics.