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NHL expects to finish season on time despite schedule upheaval caused by COVID-19

The Vancouver Canucks' retired number banners have hung over an ice surface that hasn't hosted a game since Dec. 14.DARRYL DYCK/Associated Press

Despite postponing more than 100 games for coronavirus-related reasons, the NHL is still on track to complete the regular season on time by the end of April. The NHL on Wednesday revealed new dates for 98 postponed games, keeping the initial target date of April 29 for the end of the regular season. That would allow the traditional 16-team playoffs to begin in early May as originally planned. While it came at the expense of players competing in the Beijing Olympics, the new schedule keeps the top hockey league in the world on pace to award the Stanley Cup before July 1. “We are profoundly grateful to our fans for their support and understanding during a challenging time and to our clubs, the NHL Players’ Association and the players for their cooperation in a rescheduling of unprecedented logistical complexity,” Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said. The changes include moving 23 other games around and 95 games filling the Feb. 7-22 gap that previously was scheduled for the Olympic break. After the league and players union agreed to participate in the Olympics, the decision was made in late December to skip the Games in order to get through the 1,312-game season — the most in NHL history. A total of 104 games have been postponed this season, including dozens linked to attendance restrictions in Canada … Capitals defenseman Dmitry Orlov was suspended two games for kneeing Jets forward Nikolaj Ehlers. Orlov was not penalized for the knee-on-knee hit late in regulation of the Capitals’ overtime win Tuesday night. Ehlers was injured and is out indefinitely. Orlov will miss games at Boston on Thursday and against Ottawa on Saturday.

COLLEGES

Louisville just too much for BC men’s basketball

Louisville's El Ellis drives around Boston College forward Quinten Post during the second half of Wednesday's game.Timothy D. Easley/Associated Press

Sidney Curry scored 13 points, Noah Locke and Jae’Lyn Withers each added 10, and host Louisville (11-7, 5-3 ACC) grabbed a 67-54 win over Boston College men’s basketball (7-9, 2-4) to end a three-game losing streak. The game started 75 minutes late because of a leak at the KFC Yum! Center arena. Both teams then started cold from the field, combining to make just 7 of their first 23 field goals and 4 of 12 free throws. Makai Ashton-Langford scored 22 points for the Eagles, who couldn’t get closer than 8 after the break … Sukhmail Mathon scored 12 points and grabbed 12 rebounds and Walter Whyte scored 15 to lift Boston University (12-8, 3-4 Patriot League).to a 67-50 win over Loyola (Md.) (11-7, 5-2) in Baltimore. Caelan Jones added 15 points and Javante McCoy had 10 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists for the Terriers. Cam Spencer had 19 points for the Greyhounds, whose five-game win streak came ended … In women’s basketball, Maggie Pina scored 17 points while Sydney Johnson and Liz Shean added 16 apiece to lead BU (10-7, 6-0 Patriot League) to a 65-47 win over Loyola (Md.) (3-13, 0-6) at Case Gym. The Terriers prevailed despite scoring just 2 points in the second quarter. The Greyhounds, who scored 8 points in the second quarter, were led by Taleah Dixon’s 16 points … Erin Whalen scored 21 points and Dayton (13-3, 4-0 Atlantic 10) hung on for a 69-60 win at UMass (14-4, 2-2), which got 19 points apiece from Destiney Philoxy and Sam Breen, who also grabbed 12 rebounds.

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Notre Dame routs BC men’s hockey

No. 13 Notre Dame (17-7-0) skated to an 8-2 men’s hockey win over visiting Boston College (10-9-3) behind a hat trick from Ryder Rolston and 40 saves from Matthew Galajda … Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett is returning for another season after leading the Bulldogs to their first national championship in 41 years. JT Daniels, who transferred from Southern Cal only to lose the starting job to Bennett, has again entered the transfer portal as he seeks a new school for his final year of eligibility.

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SOCCER

US men to play Panama in Florida

The United States men’s soccer team will play its final home World Cup qualifier at Orlando, Fla., on March 27 against Panama. The US Soccer Federation said the match will be at Exploria Stadium, where the Americans beat Panama, 4-0, on Oct. 6, 2017, also their next-to-last qualifier. Needing only a draw in their finale to qualify, the US lost, 2-1, four days later at Trinidad and Tobago, and the Americans’ streak of seven straight World Cup appearances was stopped. The US is 4-0 at Exploria, which opened in 2014. This game against Panama is between qualifiers on March 24 at Mexico and March 30 at Costa Rica, where the Americans have nine losses and one draw in qualifying. The US is second in qualifying with 15 points after eight games, 1 point behind Canada. Mexico and Panama have 14 each, followed by Costa Rica (9), Jamaica (7), El Salvador (6), and Honduras (3). The Americans play El Salvador on Jan. 27 at Columbus, Ohio, Canada three days later at Hamilton, Ontario, and Honduras on Feb. 2 at St. Paul, Minnesota. The top three nations qualify for this year’s World Cup in Qatar, and the fourth-place team advances to a one-game playoff in June against the Oceania champion, likely New Zealand … Forward Tim Weah ended a seven-week layoff and put himself in better position to make the US roster for upcoming World Cup qualifiers, entering in the 68th minute of Lille’s 3-1 win over visiting Lorient in the French league. Weah had not played since Dec. 1 at Rennes, two days before suffering a thigh injury. The 21-year-old has two goals in 18 international appearances … Former American forward Joshua Pérez was not on the roster of the El Salvador team coached by his uncle Hugo Pérez ahead of next week’s World Cup qualifier against the United States. Pérez was a teammate of Christian Pulisic and Tyler Adams on the US team at the 2015 Under-17 World Cup before switching affiliations.

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Tottenham completes late comeback

Steven Bergwijn scored twice to lead Tottenham.GEOFF CADDICK/AFP via Getty Images

Tottenham staged the latest-ever comeback to win an English Premier League game, after trailing at Leicester after 94 minutes and 52 seconds. Steven Bergwijn then scored two goals within two minutes to seal a 3-2 win. The previous latest comeback came when Manchester City scored in the 92nd and 94th minutes to beat Queens Park Rangers, 3-2, and clinch the title in May 2012 … Hans-Jürgen “Dixie” Dörner, one of East Germany and Dynamo Dresden’s greatest players, died Tuesday night at 70. Dörner’s family said the former defensive all-rounder had long suffered from an illness. Dörner helped Dynamo to five East German league titles and five East German cups. He also played 100 games for East Germany and helped the country to gold at the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal … Former Brazil forward Robinho had a nine-year sentence for the rape of a young woman upheld by Italy’s top court. Brazil does not extradite its own citizens when they are sentenced in other countries, although Robinho risks being arrested if he travels to a country that has an agreement with Italy — nearly 70 nations, including the United States, Argentina, and anywhere in the European Union — and Italy issues an international arrest warrant. Robinho was handed the jail sentence in 2017 for his part in the group sexual assault that took place four years earlier, when he was playing for AC Milan. Robinho denied the charges.

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