NEW ORLEANS — The NBA has chosen to hold the 2017 All-Star Game in New Orleans after taking the midseason event away from North Carolina because of a state law that limits anti-discrimination protections for lesbian, gay and transgender people.
The league announced Friday that New Orleans would replace Charlotte, which had been set to host the game until the NBA decided last month to move it elsewhere.
Unlike several other Southern states, Louisiana has not been swept up in legislative efforts to pass laws similar to that in North Carolina — a fact Gov. John Bel Edwards has touted while lobbying the NBA to bring its All-Star weekend to New Orleans for a third time.
The All-Star Game is scheduled for Feb. 19, which falls during the first weekend of Mardi Gras parades.
Kershaw rejoins Dodgers, continues rehab
CINCINNATI — Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw missed his teammates so much that he flew from Los Angeles to Cincinnati just to work out with them. The injured left-hander threw on flat ground Friday before their game against the Reds, the last step before he throws off a mound in the bullpen for the first time in more than a month. Kershaw has been sidelined since June 26 with a herniated disk. The three-time NL Cy Young Award winner and 2014 Most Valuable Player is expected to pitch off a mound Saturday for the first time since throwing in a simulated game on July 16.
Rangers sign coveted Jimmy Vesey
NEW YORK — The New York Rangers have won the Jimmy Vesey sweepstakes. New York announced Friday it agreed to terms on an entry-level deal with the coveted college free agent. Vesey was the Hobey Baker Award winner as the NCAA’s player of the year last season for Harvard. The 23-year-old forward had 24 goals and 22 assists in 33 games.
Originally drafted by the Nashville Predators in the third round of the 2012 draft, Vesey said he wouldn’t sign by the Aug. 15 deadline. The Predators traded his rights to the Buffalo Sabres for a third-round pick in the 2016 draft.
Vesey met with several teams this week and ultimately chose to join the Rangers.
Brown’s wife turned down NFL investigation
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — The NFL says the former wife of suspended New York Giants placekicker Josh Brown turned down multiple requests to speak to the league about her allegations of being the victim of repeated domestic violence. In a statement issued Friday, the league said that it conducted a 10-month investigation into the circumstances surrounding the arrest of Brown in May 2015 in Woodinville, Wash., on a fourth-degree domestic violence charge.
Video shows Baylor receiver beating dog
WACO, Texas — Baylor is promising disciplinary action against sophomore receiver Ish Zamora after a video surfaced of him beating his dog with a belt this summer. Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said Zamora was cited for molesting an animal July 5 after the beating during house-training. The misdemeanor is punishable by a fine of up to $500.
Acting coach Jim Grobe told the Waco Tribune-Herald that Zamora is “going to be disciplined by a bunch of people.” He promised sanctions from the university and said “we’ll do some things” in the athletic department.
Lloyd Carr leaving playoff committee
Former Michigan coach Lloyd Carr is leaving the College Football Playoff selection committee for health reasons.
Playoff executive director Bill Hancock announced Friday that Carr would be stepping down and not replaced. The committee will operate with 12 members this season as it did each of the last two when members resigned because of health problems and the difficulty of weekly travel for six weeks during the fall. The 71-year-old said in a statement he regrets not being able to participate. He didn’t give details about his health.
Randle pleads not guilty to Kansas charges
WICHITA, Kan. — Former Dallas Cowboys running back Joseph Randle has pleaded not guilty to several charges in Kansas. Randle on Friday pleaded not guilty to a criminal threat charge stemming from accusations that he threatened to kill a Sedgwick County jail deputy.
The Wichita Eagle reports Randle also entered not-guilty pleas to charges accusing him of backing into three people with his car and kicking in the door of a Wichita home earlier this year. And, he pleaded not guilty to a charge of interfering with law enforcement in March.
Aaron Hernandez to have phone examined
BOSTON — Massachusetts’ highest court has ruled that prosecutors can examine a cellphone owned by former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez for possible evidence in his upcoming double murder trial. Hernandez gave the phone to his former attorney when he was being investigated in the 2013 killing of Odin Lloyd. Hernandez was convicted and is serving life in prison. He is awaiting trial in the 2012 killings of two men he encountered at a Boston nightclub.
The Associated Press