BBC Sport: Homophobia large portion of online abuse aimed at footballers and basketballers – study

BBC Sport: Homophobia large portion of online abuse aimed at footballers and basketballers – study. “Homophobia is responsible for a large portion of abuse aimed at footballers and basketballers in the men’s and women’s game, according to a new report. Of more than 1,500 abusive posts included in the report, homophobic abuse was 40% of posts targeted at male footballers, 27% of that sent to female football players, 46% of the abuse aimed at male basketballers and 19% of that posted to female basketball players.”

ClutchPoints: Kobe Bryant murals are still going up — and still making an impact

New-to-me, from ClutchPoints: a crowdsourced map of Kobe Bryant murals. “After the untimely passing of Kobe and his daughter Gianna, along with John, Keri, and Alyssa Altobelli, Sarah and Payton Chester, Christina Mauser, and Ara Zobayan — two years ago today — a poignant phenomenon commenced: grieving artists and fans from every corner of the planet began memorializing the victims on all types of canvasses: skin, courts, wood, skyscrapers, and — of course — walls. One lifelong Lakers fan, Mike, launched a hub to track these works and offer useful guides for those who want to visit them.”

ESPN: More than one-third of NBA referees are in COVID-19 protocols, sources say

ESPN: More than one-third of NBA referees are in COVID-19 protocols, sources say. “As the omicron variant rips through NBA players and coaches, it has reached a season-high among game officials: 36% of the league’s referees are in COVID-19 protocols, sources told ESPN on Thursday. With 25 of the league’s 70 active referees currently in quarantine, the league has been promoting G League referees to fill out the nightly roster of games, sources said.”

Sports Illustrated: ACC Adjusts COVID Policy Forfeiture Rule

Sports Illustrated: ACC Adjusts COVID Policy Forfeiture Rule. “The league’s athletic directors unanimously voted Wednesday to adjust the forfeiture rule from the policy, effective immediately. Moving forward, if an ACC game among winter sport programs – including basketball – cannot be played due to COVID-19 issues with either team, it will be rescheduled, or declared a no contest if it cannot be rescheduled.”

College basketball hit hard by COVID-19 cancellations: Memphis, UCLA among schools on pause due to outbreaks (CBS Sports)

CBS Sports: College basketball hit hard by COVID-19 cancellations: Memphis, UCLA among schools on pause due to outbreaks. “The latest significant news came Saturday morning when, less than 80 minutes before tip time, Memphis announced its game in Nashville vs. No. 18 Tennessee was off due to COVID protocols in Memphis’ program. The news followed the high-profile cancellations of Kentucky vs. Ohio State and North Carolina vs. UCLA in Saturday’s CBS Sports Classic.”

ESPN: NBA discussing plan to require teams short-handed by COVID to sign additional replacement players, sources say

ESPN: NBA discussing plan to require teams short-handed by COVID to sign additional replacement players, sources say. “In the wake of dozens of players being sidelined in the league’s health and safety protocols, and with looming concerns leaguewide about more games being halted, the NBA and National Basketball Players Association are discussing a plan that would require teams decimated by COVID to sign additional replacement players, league sources tell ESPN.”

Chicago Bulls: Covid-19 outbreak sees NBA postpone games while NHL also affected (BBC)

BBC: Chicago Bulls: Covid-19 outbreak sees NBA postpone games while NHL also affected. “Two Chicago Bulls fixtures have been postponed over a Covid-19 outbreak, the first games called off in the NBA because of the virus this season. Games against the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday and the Toronto Raptors on Thursday are off, the NBA said. The NBA postponed 31 games because of Covid-19 last season.”

Celtics Launch New Team Site: BostonCelticsHistory.com (Boston Celtics)

Boston Celtics: Celtics Launch New Team Site: BostonCelticsHistory.com. “BostonCelticsHistory.com contains hundreds of unique items sure to entice any basketball fan, including rare glimpses of game-used gear, hundreds of images and photos, official team publications and promotional items, vintage video highlights and one-of-a-kind mementos from Celtics legends. Fans can explore galleries dedicated to all-time greats, sneakers, mascots and more.”

Revealed: The Secret Covid Outbreak That Shot Fear Through the NBA Finals (Rolling Stone)

Rolling Stone: Revealed: The Secret Covid Outbreak That Shot Fear Through the NBA Finals. “Indeed, the untold story of the 2021 NBA Finals, according to 17 sources speaking to Rolling Stone about the internal crisis for the first time, is that of a near-superspreader event chasing down the biggest superstar in the game on its biggest stage. Despite outward appearances that the Bucks were ‘all good’ and that the Suns had sealed off a Delta breakthrough case that forced its vaccinated superstar Chris Paul to miss two games during the Western Conference Finals in June, the fear in Phoenix hit both teams.”

Washington Post: After a historic layoff, Ivy League basketball is back. Did its shutdown go too far?

Washington Post: After a historic layoff, Ivy League basketball is back. Did its shutdown go too far?. “The Ivy League was the first conference to shut down its college basketball season in March 2020 as the coronavirus crept closer, a decision that was hailed after other leagues, then the entire world, soon came to a standstill. And as the pandemic worsened, the Ivies doubled down, canceling entire seasons of competition, including basketball. But that’s when the world went a different direction: On other college campuses, basketball teams returned for the 2020-21 season. The Penn Quakers, and their rivals across the Ivy League, didn’t.”

CNN: Kyrie Irving ‘will not play or practice’ with the Brooklyn Nets due to vaccination status

CNN: Kyrie Irving ‘will not play or practice’ with the Brooklyn Nets due to vaccination status. “Brooklyn Nets general manager Sean Marks has confirmed Kyrie Irving ‘will not play or practice with the team until he is eligible to be a full participant,’ as issues relating to the star guard’s vaccination status continue. On Friday, a New York City Hall official told CNN that Irving will be allowed to practice at the team’s facility but will not be eligible to play in the Nets’ home games at Barclays Center due to the city’s Covid-19 vaccine mandate.”

NBC News: NBA draws line as stars like Kyrie Irving, Andrew Wiggins balk at Covid vaccine

NBC News: NBA draws line as stars like Kyrie Irving, Andrew Wiggins balk at Covid vaccine. “Irving, 29, is part of a group of current NBA players — which includes Golden State Warriors star Andrew Wiggins, the Washington Wizards’ Bradley Beal and the Orlando Magic’s Jonathan Isaac — who have chosen not to get vaccinated as the NBA 2021-22 season is about to unfold during the ongoing pandemic.”