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Report: "Growing frustration" among NFL owners with Dan Snyder....Weather, young leaders in focus at PGA Championship final round....Fans endure heat at Pimlico for Preakness Stakes

Report: NFL owners frustrated with Snyder

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Commanders Owner Dan Snyder "isn't officially on the agenda for the NFL meetings this week," but he is "unofficially ... very much on the minds of some fellow NFL owners who would go as far as trying to force Snyder from their ranks." An NFL team owner said, "There's growing frustration about the Washington situation and not over one issue, but over how much smoke there is. ... I think everybody's getting tired of it." An allegation surfaced last month maintaining that Snyder's team "used two sets of accounting systems, conceivably to shield money from other NFL owners with whom Snyder is connected as part of league-wide revenue-sharing." Some owners "would support an ouster forcing Snyder to sell his franchise." Snyder "won't be at the owners meetings that begin on Monday in Atlanta" (USA TODAY, 5/22).

Weather, young leaders focus at PGA Championship

The PGA Championship's final round is underway today, with the afternoon high "expected to be 70." Leader Mito Pereira, Matt Fitzpatrick, Will Zalatoris and Cameron Young are "in position not only for what would be a first major championship," but a "first victory in any event included on the PGA Tour schedule.” Hopefully, PGA of America decision-makers "remember this Tulsa weather and these ticket-sales numbers when they get around to deciding the site" of the ’30 PGA Championship. An eight-year gap between Tulsa majors “feels about right” (TULSA WORLD, 5/21). Yesterday’s third round "brought temperatures in the 50’s, blustery winds and a field unnerved by the taxing conditions.” The 27-year-old Pereira is "playing in just his second major golf championship" (N.Y. TIMES, 5/21). SI.com's Gary Van Sickle wrote this PGA Championship is "absolutely wild, crazy and unpredictable" (5/21). The top of the leaderboard is "loaded with neophytes, at least when it comes to winning major championships" (CBSSPORTS.com, 5/22).

Fans endure heat for Preakness Stakes

Crowds of racegoers turned out for the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course yesterday on a "scorching, 95-degree day to witness Early Voting win the first widely attended Preakness since the COVID-19 pandemic began more than two years ago." Fans "sweated through the hottest day of the year -- and the hottest Preakness Stakes in recent memory." The facility was "spruced up for its biggest day in years," but there were "many glaring reminders of the aging track's dire need for renovations -- including tarps covering the 6,670 seats in the abandoned Old Grandstand." Two years ago, the state allotted $375M in "bonds for renovations to Pimlico and nearby Laurel Park," but the initial plans "have been delayed by pandemic-related and logistical complications" (BALTIMORE SUN, 5/22).

Preakness Stakes betting down 5% from '21

Betting on yesterday's Preakness Stakes was "down 5 percent" compared to last year, and the decline was "most likely due to the absence" of this year's Kentucky Derby winner, Rich Strike. Total betting on the Preakness this year was $65.3M, compared to the "record total last year" of $68.7M. Pimlico set the wagering record last year "despite limiting the on-track crowd to 10,000 due to coronavirus protocols." For the entire 14-race card at Pimlico yesterday, total wagering was $105.5M, "down 7 percent from the record total" of $113.4M last year (DRF.com, 5/21).

Key Vegas exec hints A's could get help to relocate

Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority President & CEO Steve Hill said that to "help lure" the A's to Las Vegas, some form of public assistance "could be made available." A's President Dave Kaval was in Las Vegas last Thursday for "meetings with area landowners and officials, including Hill." A source said that the team's search for a Las Vegas ballpark site has "entered the final stretch," with the team "down to two possible locations." Most state and local politicians "have been adamant that they oppose using public money to help fund a potential A's ballpark." That "no longer appears to be the case, though a room tax still seems to be off the table." Hill said, "There's a broad set of options that could be helpful in making this move forward." Hill "wouldn't specify what those options could be" (LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL, 5/21).

ATP, WTA strip Wimbledon of points over bans

The ATP and WTA on Friday responded to Wimbledon's ban on Russian and Belarusian players by “stripping the event of ranking points this year," the "most significant rebuke to date." It is a move “without precedent” in tennis, and without the points, Wimbledon will "technically be an exhibition event, bringing no ranking boost to those who excel on its pristine lawns this year." The tours' move was made after "extensive internal debate" and despite "considerable pushback from players." Removing the points is expected to have "little effect on the tournament’s bottom line" (N.Y. TIMES, 5/10).

Angels give Anaheim 25 days to pass stadium deal

The Angels on Friday gave the Anaheim City Council “25 days to grant final approval" to the the Angel Stadium sale. The club is facing “community pressure to delay or cancel" the deal amid a "corruption investigation into Anaheim Mayor Harry Sidhu." It was not said how the Angels and club Owner Arte Moreno's development company SRB Management “might respond if the council declines to finalize the deal on that timetable.” The deal “has not closed,” so Moreno “can walk away from it” (L.A. TIMES, 5/21).

FIFA announcing '26 World Cup sites June 16

FIFA intends to announce the '26 World Cup sites "during a news conference in New York on June 16." Seventeen U.S. stadiums in 16 areas "remain in the bidding for the first 48-team World Cup," with the L.A. area "submitting both SoFi Stadium in Inglewood and the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, site of of the 1994 World Cup final." Three stadiums each in Canada and Mexico are "expected to be used." The bid plan "envisioned 16 total sites for the tournament." Sixty games "are to be played in the U.S., including all from the quarterfinals on" (AP, 5/20).

Speed Reads....

The French Open began play today with "none of the COVID-19 restrictions that limited attendance the past two years" (AP, 5/22).

Former Astros RF Hunter Pence made his return to Minute Maid Park "in the broadcast booth for Friday’s game against the Rangers." Pence, who played for the Astros from ’07-11, "provided color commentary of the game for Apple TV+" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 5/21).

Baseball HOFer Fergie Jenkins was honored by the Cubs on Friday with a sculpture at Gallagher Way. Jenkins said, “It looks like me. I think that was (from) an afternoon ballgame, a (TV) ‘Game of the Week.’ They used it on a Sports Illustrated cover. That was the pose because they wanted to show the Cubs logo on the chest and the cap" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 5/21).

Nuggets President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly is "traveling to meet with" T'Wolves Owner Glen Taylor this weekend in the "next step in the team's pursuit to hire Connelly and make him one of the NBA's highest-compensated executives" (ESPN.com, 5/21).

A game-worn Kobe Bryant jersey is "on the auction block and could fetch as much as" $5M. SCP Auctions, which is handling the sale, said that it is the "only jersey to be photo-matched from Bryant’s rookie season" (N.Y. POST, 5/22).

Former NFLer Michael Vick will "come out of retirement to join startup league Fan Controlled Football," according to a source (REUTERS, 5/20).

Quick Hits....

“I don’t know what it’s going to be like, but I’m not optimistic. I believe they’ll air the accusations of the women without attempting to look behind it to see what kind of merit do they have" -- Rusty Hardin, lawyer for Browns QB Deshaun Watson, on bracing himself for Tuesday night’s episode of HBO’s "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel," during which Soledad O’Brien interviewed several of Watson’s accusers (Cleveland PLAIN DEALER, 5/21).

“It has been as fun as I hoped and expected it would be when I got this assignment. Fulfilling is the right word" -- ESPN's Sean McDonough, on calling hockey games again after the net regained broadcast rights this season (BOSTON GLOBE, 5/22).

“Obviously he was in a lot of pain and discomfort today. The quick turnaround, dramatic weather conditions. Afterward he made the decision, and that’s where we are. The future has always been a day-to-day, week-to-week, month-to-month thing" -- Mark Steinberg, Tiger Wood’s agent, on Wood's withdrawing from the PGA Championship yesterday (GOLFWEEK.com, 5/21).

Weekend Hot Reads:

Under the header, "Live Nation subsidiaries got millions in aid meant for independent venues," the WASHINGTON POST's Torbati & Romm note Congress wrote a pandemic relief law that "excluded Live Nation and companies like it." But the Small Business Administration "gave nearly $19 million to Live Nation subsidiaries or companies in which it has a significant investment." The revelation demonstrates how a large company with stakes in hundreds of smaller businesses "could, while following the rules, reap a benefit that some legislators didn’t want."

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Today's Back Pages....

The Weekend Rap offers today's back page sports covers from some of North America's major metropolitan tabloids:

N.Y. Post  N.Y. Daily News Newsday Boston Herald Chicago Sun-Times Philadelphia Daily News
 
 
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