CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said returning the All-Star Game to Charlotte in 2019 is ''a high priority,'' provided there's a resolution to a North Carolina law that restricts the rights of LGBT people.
The NBA recently decided to move the 2017 All-Star Game to New Orleans because it didn't believe it could successfully host the All-Star Game and related events in Charlotte under the climate created by the law known as House Bill 2. Los Angeles hosts the game in 2018.
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Silver spoke following a ceremony in Charlotte in which Hornets owner Michael Jordan unveiled the first of three refurbished neighborhood basketball courts.
Several concerts and sporting events have been relocated from North Carolina because of HB2.
NEW YORK (AP) – NBC's flagship Sunday Night Football game had its smallest audience in five years this week, evidence of the NFL's new deflation issue.
The game between Indianapolis and Houston reached 13.6 million viewers, removing the weekly broadcast from its usual spot at or very close to the top of the Nielsen company ratings. CBS' Thursday night game scored slightly higher.
To be fair, Indianapolis and Houston represents few fans' idea of a marquee matchup. NFL ratings have been down in general this year, leading to much speculation about the cause. Intense interest in the presidential race is thought to be one factor in the slump.
This season, NBC's prime-time games have been down 17 percent from last year, when ratings were at their peak for the telecast.
UNDATED (AP) – Independent medical observers stopped five NFL games in 2015 and two so far in 2016 – the first two seasons in which the ''Medical Timeout'' has been employed as a method to identify players with major injuries or possible concussions.
In its 2016 Health and Safety Report , the NFL said an average of 29 health care providers, including two unaffiliated neurotrauma consultants, attend games. Many of them, along with on-field officials, can rule a player out due to a concussion or other severe injury.
In a new move last season, the NFL stationed athletic trainers in spots high above the field and allowed them to watch replays – and to call time out if they saw injuries that otherwise went unnoticed.
BOSTON (AP) – Bill Belichick is throwing in the towel in his ongoing fight with the use of tablets on the sideline.
Responding to a question in a conference call about headset issues the Patriots had during last week's win over the Bengals, Belichick said he ''can't take it anymore'' with the tablets, adding there isn't enough consistency in the performance of the devices.
He also railed for several minutes about on-going issues with NFL technology, including the communication system between coaches in the press box and those on the field, as well as the coach-to-quarterback play calling system, which Belichick said ''fail on a regular basis.''
Earlier this season Belichick was caught on camera slamming down a sideline tablet following a Bills touchdown.
Belichick said going forward he's going to stick with low tech – printed images taken of plays during the game to help strategize on the sideline.
DERRICK ROSE LAWSUIT
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Lawyers for Derrick Rose and two friends say the woman accusing them of rape is a liar trying to trick jurors with her tears.
The attorneys said in closing arguments in the civil trial that Rose's ex-girlfriend faked the allegations to extort money from the NBA star.
The defense says the woman was angry Rose dumped her after she willingly engaged in sex with him and his childhood friends in August 2013.
Attorney Michael Monico says the woman had no evidence of rape, so she lied that she was too drunk to remember anything and tried to sway jurors with tears instead of evidence.
The woman's lawyer says the defense was ''slut shaming'' her by lying about her behavior that night. Her attorney says she was unconscious and couldn't consent to sex.
MONTREAL (AP) – A man who took put a full-page ad in a Montreal newspaper to express his anger over P.K. Subban's trade from the Canadiens to Nashville is making a big donation to the popular defenseman's charity.
The Montreal Children's Hospital said that Dr. Charles Kowalski and his wife are donating $250,000 to P.K.'s Helping Hand Fund. The couple had originally pledged $50,000 to the foundation.
Kowalski, an emergency room physician living in Ottawa, Ontario, and until recently a die-hard Canadiens fan, will make the check presentation Wednesday at the hospital's P.K. Subban Atrium.
The Canadiens dealt the flashy Subban to Nashville this offseason for star defenseman Shea Weber.
In a full-page ad in Thursday's Montreal Gazette, Kowalski thanked Subban for his time in Montreal and said the trade has shaken his belief in the Canadiens.
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – NASCAR will resurrect its series in Mexico behind new title sponsor PEAK, an automotive products company seeking to boost its profile.
The rebranded NASCAR PEAK Mexico Series will mark its return with an exhibition race in Mexico City in December. The series plans to run a full championship schedule next year.
The announcement in Mexico City was attended by Daniel Suarez, who used the series as a starting point that led to his current ride with Joe Gibbs Racing.
Suarez is currently tied for the lead in the Xfinity Series championship. He spent four years racing in NASCAR Mexico and won 10 races before graduating to the national series level. He's the first Mexican driver to win a national series race and lead a national series in points.