LOS ANGELES (AP) Steve Ballmer is officially the new owner of the Los Angeles Clippers.
The team says the sale closed Tuesday after a California court confirmed the authority of Shelly Sterling, on behalf of the Sterling Family Trust, to sell the franchise. Her husband, Donald Sterling, had unsuccessfully fought the sale of the team he owned since 1981 in court.
The NBA Board of Governors had previously approved the sale.
Ballmer says he will be ”hardcore” in giving the team, coach Doc Rivers, the staff and players the support they need.
Rivers calls it ”an amazing new day in Clippers history,” and says he’s inspired by Ballmer’s passion for the game.
Ballmer, Rivers and Clippers players will attend a new fan festival announced for next Monday at Staples Center.
MASON, Ohio (AP) – Top-ranked Novak Djokovic beat Gilles Simon 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 in his opening match at the Western & Southern Open on Tuesday night. It is the only Masters series event he has never won, finishing as the runner-up four times.
If he wins this week, he will become the first with titles at all nine ATP Masters events. Djokovic has beaten Simon eight straight times. The opening game of the third set went 20 points and 15 minutes, with Simon turning aside six break points.
Djokovic finally broke through for a 4-3 lead and served out the 2-hour, 9-minute match. The last set took 59 minutes. Djokovic had 36 unforced errors in the breezy evening conditions.
The tournament lost its other defending champion on Tuesday when Victoria Azarenka withdrew because of an injured right knee. Defending champion Rafael Nadal withdrew before the tournament because of an injured wrist.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Venus Williams made quick exits after leaving their winning touch in Canada.
Two days after he beat Roger Federer for his second Masters title in Toronto, Tsonga fell to Mikhail fell to Mikhail Youzhny 6-1, 6-4.
Williams knocked off sister Serena while reaching the finals in Montreal on Sunday, finishing runner-up. She lost to Lucie Safarova 6-7 (2), 6-3, 6-4 in the first round Tuesday.
Fifth-seeded Maria Sharapova broke Madison Keys to go up 3-0 in the final set and held on for a 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 win.
LONDON (AP) – The International Tennis Federation ruled Tuesday that Davis Cup matches will be moved out of Ukraine and Israel because of security issues in both countries.
The ITF board of directors rejected an appeal by the Israel Tennis Association against last week’s decision to switch the Sept. 12-14 World Group playoff against Argentina to a neutral venue because of the conflict in Gaza. The match had been scheduled to be played in Tel Aviv.
The ITF said Israel has until Thursday to nominate a venue in another country.
The board also upheld an appeal by Belgium against the decision to play its World Group playoff against Ukraine, also on Sept. 12-14, in Kiev. Ukraine has five working days to nominate a neutral venue.
If Israel and Ukraine propose neutral venues that are accepted by the Davis Cup Committee, they will be considered the home nations and can choose the court surfaces.
If they refuse, the committee has the right to decide that the matches be held on neutral ground or in Belgium and Argentina.
JOHNS CREEK, Ga. (AP) – Taylor Moore and Lee McCoy were at 8-under 135 to earn medalist honors after stroke play Tuesday at the U.S. Amateur Championship.
Moore, a junior at the University of Arkansas, birdied four of his last five holes to shoot a 69 on the par-71 Highlands course. McCoy, a junior at Georgia, overcame a double-bogey with a stretch of five birdies in seven holes for a 68.
Cheng-Tsung Pan, Jimmy Beck, Sam Burns, Jonathan Garrick and Will Zalatoris were at 5-under 138.
The top 60 players have qualified for match play, which will lead up to the championship on Sunday. A playoff involving 17 players for the final four spots in the field will be held Wednesday on the Riverside Course.
Burns, an 18-year-old high school senior from Shreveport, Louisiana, shot a 66, the day’s low round, on the par-72 Riverside Course. He had seven birdies and one bogey.
Ollie Schniederjans of Powder Springs, Georgia, the No. 1-ranked amateur in the world, shot a 3-under 69 on the Riverside Course. He finished at 1-under 142 and advanced to match play.
Also advancing to match play was No. 2-ranked Robbie Shelton of Wilmer, Alabama, and Taylor Funk of Ponte Vedra, Florida, the son of eight-time PGA Tour winner Fred Funk.
The cut was at 2-over 146. Among those who missed was 13-year-old Will Thomson of Pittsford, New York, the youngest player to qualify for the U.S. Amateur Championship. Thomson finished at 12-over 155.
OXNARD, Calif. (AP) – Dallas cornerback Orlando Scandrick has apologized to his family, teammates and organization for failing a drug test that will force him to be suspended for the first four games of the season.
The NFL announced the suspension on Tuesday.
Scandrick said in a statement released by his agent, Ron Slavin, that he unknowingly took a substance while on vacation in Mexico that led to the positive test. He says he takes full responsibility for what goes into his body and is embarrassed by the failed test.
Scandrick will be eligible to return following Dallas’ game against New Orleans on Sept. 28.
FALL RIVER, Mass. (AP) – A cousin of ex-New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez has pleaded guilty to a criminal contempt charge.
Tanya Singleton had refused to testify against him before a grand jury. The 38-year-old changed her plea Tuesday in Fall River.
Prosecutors have said they would seek two years’ probation and home confinement for woman from Bristol, Connecticut. She has been undergoing treatment for a recurrence of breast cancer.
Singleton’s attorney, E. Peter Parker, said last week that additional incarceration would likely hasten her death from cancer, which had been in remission but has returned and spread.
Hernandez has pleaded not guilty in the 2013 killing of semi-professional football player Odin Lloyd. He also has pleaded not guilty in the 2012 killings of two men in Boston.
PHOENIX (AP) – The NBA has suspended Phoenix Suns forward P.J. Tucker for three games following his guilty plea to ”super extreme” driving while intoxicated.
The suspension will be served at the beginning of the coming season.
Tucker was sentenced to three days in jail and 11 days’ home detention following his plea last week. ”Super extreme” DUI under Arizona law is for persons whose blood alcohol level exceeds .20 percent. Police say that just after his May 10 arrest in Scottsdale, Tucker had a blood alcohol level of .222. The legal limit in Arizona is .08.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) – June Krauser, who helped establish the Masters adult swimming program and set hundreds of records, has died at age 88.
Krauser continued to swim regularly until her health faltered. She died Aug. 2 in Fort Lauderdale, according to the Sun-Sentinel.
Her biggest contribution to the sport was joining with two colleagues to establish a competitive swimming program for adults in the early 1970s. She then began her own comeback to the pool at age 45 and competed until her retirement in 2006. She was later diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.
CEO Bruce Wigo of the International Swimming Hall of Fame says Krauser holds 154 U.S. records and 73 world records in the Masters division.