Monday’s Sports in Brief
CHICAGO (AP) — Rory Dames resigned as coach of the Chicago Red Stars, and the team said it has launched an independent review of player health and safety and the team’s culture after The Washington Post quoted several players saying Dames was emotionally abusive.
Dames led the Red Stars to the National Women’s Soccer League title game, which Chicago lost on Sunday to the Washington Spirit. Washington won the title under an interim coach after coach Richie Burke was fired in September for violating the league’s anti-harassment policy. Spirit players had said Burke was verbally abusive.
Dames is the latest of several NWSL coaches to face allegations of misconduct. Lisa Baird resigned as the league’s commissioner on Oct. 1 after two former players came forward with allegations of harassment, including sexual coercion, against North Carolina Courage coach Raul Riley, who was immediately fired by the Courage.
The league has launched an independent investigation into its handling of abuse claims, and U.S. Soccer, the sport’s governing body, has retained former U.S. Attorney and Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates to lead its investigation into abusive behavior and sexual misconduct in women’s professional soccer.
A video call between the head of the International Olympic Committee and Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai, whose nearly three-week disappearance from public view sparked an outcry, was meant to reassure the world that she was safe — but instead has raised more questions.
Concern grew in the last week for the former No. 1-ranked doubles player — who hadn’t been seen since accusing a senior Chinese official of sexual assault on Nov. 2. Tennis stars and fans alike demanded to know #WhereIsPengShuai, and the head of the Women’s Tennis Association threatened to pull lucrative events from China.
On Sunday, the IOC said Peng spoke to its president, Thomas Bach, and other officials in a 30-minute video call from Beijing. According to the organization’s statement, she reassured them that she was well and thanked them for their concern — while asking for privacy.
The IOC posted a photo that shows Bach facing a screen on which Peng appears but did not release video of the call. On the same day, China Open posted videos and photos of her appearance at a youth tennis tournament in Beijing that morning.
The IOC’s short statement, which offered few details and no follow-up on her allegations, seems unlikely to close the door on Peng’s case — and it’s leading to increasing criticism of the sports body, which was already facing calls for a boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics, which open on Feb. 4.
LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers has been suspended for one game and Detroit’s Isaiah Stewart was suspended two games for their roles in an ugly incident during Sunday’s Lakers-Pistons game.
The NBA announced the suspensions, and both will affect games on Tuesday. James will not play when the Lakers visit Madison Square Garden to play the New York Knicks. Stewart will miss the Pistons’ home game against Miami on Tuesday and their game Wednesday at Milwaukee.
James will forfeit about $284,000 in salary, while Stewart will lose about $45,000. It is the first suspension in the 19-year career of James, who has won four NBA titles with three teams.
The Lakers and Pistons meet again Sunday in Los Angeles, and James and Stewart will both be eligible to play.
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — The Citadel coach Duggar Baucom collapsed on the court barely a minute into the game and was taken to a hospital during a 107-81 loss to No. 5 Duke.
Baucom fell along the sideline and was taken to Duke University Hospital. The 61-year-old Baucom was conscious as he was helped out of the gym by medical personnel.
“All things considered, he’s as good as he can be,” associate head coach Jake Castleberry said. “He was coherent the entire time. ... He just said he was in pain.”
Team spokesman John Brush said later that Baucom was in good spirits and would remain in the hospital overnight. He’ll return with the team Tuesday morning to Charleston, South Carolina.
The Citadel’s Hayden Brown scored off an offensive rebound just before play was stopped for Baucom, who is in his seventh season at the school. Castleberry took over on The Citadel’s bench.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Right-hander Anthony DeSclafani reached agreement on a $36 million, three-year contract to remain with the San Francisco Giants.
DeSclafani emerged as a key member of manager Gabe Kapler’s rotation during the NL West champion Giants’ record-setting 107-win season, going a career-best 13-7 with 152 strikeouts and a 3.17 ERA over 31 starts.
He is set to make $12 million in each season of the deal from 2022-24, and the contract also includes a $60,000 donation the 31-year-old pitcher will make annually to the Giants Community Fund.
Last Wednesday, first baseman Brandon Belt accepted the club’s $18.4 million qualifying offer for the 2022 season following a career-best year.
NEW YORK (AP) — David Ortiz, Ryan Howard, Tim Lincecum and Alex Rodriguez are among 13 first-time candidates on the Hall of Fame ballot of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America, joining 17 holdovers.
Steroids-tainted stars Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens make their 10th and final appearance on the BBWAA ballot along with Curt Schilling, who fell 16 votes shy of the necessary 75% in last year’s balloting. Schilling appeared on 71.1% of ballots, Bonds 61.8% and Clemens 61.6%.
Justin Morneau, Jimmy Rollins and Jake Peavy also are new to the ballot along with Carl Crawford, Prince Fielder, Joe Nathan, Jonathan Papelbon, A.J. Pierzynski and Mark Teixeira, the Hall and BBWAA said Monday.
Holdovers include Bobby Abreu, Mark Buehrle, Todd Helton, Tim Hudson, Torii Hunter, Andruw Jones, Jeff Kent, Andy Pettitte, Manny Ramirez, Gary Sheffield, Sammy Sosa, Omar Vizquel and Billy Wagner.