BC-AP Sports Preview Digest

Some of the sports stories The Associated Press is covering Monday. A full Sports Digest will be sent by about 3 p.m. All times EST:

– In a divided nation, everything is political. A half-dozen players from the Super Bowl champion Patriots preemptively turn down an expected White House invitation from President Trump.

– NEW ORLEANS – DeMarcus Cousins is leaving the Sacramento Kings and joining Anthony Davis in New Orleans in a pairing of 6-foot-11 All-Stars, the AP is told.

– NEW ORLEANS – When a few fans at the All-Star Game started chanting for defense, DeAndre Jordan shouted back: ”No, no, no!” After all, the score of this glorified layup drill was 192-182.

– CHICAGO – The NBA, including team and player accounts, has more than a billion fans and followers on various social media platforms. That gives teams a way to reach a new and younger audience.

– LOS ANGELES – Not since 2007 have so many top players won on the West Coast, leading to a refrain that has become a tradition unlike any other: The Masters can’t get here soon enough.

– The AP releases its latest Top 25 polls in men’s and women’s college basketball. Men at noon, women at 1 p.m.

– PHOENIX – The college basketball season has been filled with great games. As the regular season winds down to its final two weeks, there’s still plenty of must-watch games on the docket.

– Two women’s college basketball games involving ranked opponents: Maryland at Ohio State (7 p.m.) and Baylor at Texas (9 p.m.).

– LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Charismatic, the 1999 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner whose Triple Crown bid ended with a leg injury during the Belmont Stakes, is found dead in his stall at 21.

– BOSTON – Once seen as a luxury of the corporate world, private planes are becoming increasingly common at U.S. colleges, as schools try to attract athletes, raise money and reward coaches.

– SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – The Illinois Legislature debates whether injured pro athletes should get worker compensation benefits until they are 67, like other workers.

– From now on, Trevor Story will slide only cleats first. The Colorado Rockies’ shortstop tore a thumb ligament trying to reach second base last August while in the middle of a great rookie season.

– WEST PALM BEACH, Florida – Alex Bregman had a strong finish to his first season in the majors. The Houston Astros are counting on the 22-year-old to be their starting third baseman.

– CAIRO – Egypt’s highest appeals court upholds the death sentences of 10 people convicted in a soccer riot that killed more than 70 fans in 2012, one of soccer’s deadliest disasters.

– MADRID – Neymar loses his final appeal and will stand trial on corruption charges related to his transfer to Barcelona four years ago.