CHICAGO (AP) — Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett — 48 All-Star nods between them — headlined the class of eight finalists announced Friday by the Basketball Hall of Fame. Each will still need to collect 18 votes from a 24-person panel before officially becoming Hall of Famers, which is certainly no more than a formality at this point.
Bryant, Duncan, Garnett and 10-time WNBA All-Star and four-time Olympic gold medalist Tamika Catchings are all first-time finalists. The other finalists have all been to this point previously: Baylor women’s coach Kim Mulkey, former Houston Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich, five-time Division II women’s coach of the year Barbara Stevens of Bentley, and four-time national men’s college coach of the year Eddie Sutton.
This year’s enshrinement class will be announced on April 4 at college basketball’s Final Four in Atlanta. The induction ceremony in Springfield, Massachusetts, is Aug. 29.
n CHICAGO — Miles Bridges scored 20 points and took MVP honors, Eric Paschall added 23 more and the U.S. beat the World 151-131 in the Rising Stars Challenge to open NBA All-Star weekend.
Cleveland’s Collin Sexton had 21 points, Atlanta All-Star Trae Young added 18 and Chicago product Kendrick Young of Miami chipped in with 16. Zion Williamson scored 14 points.
RJ Barrett of New York led the World with 27 points, and Memphis’ Brandon Clarke, a Gonzaga product, added 22.
n Major League Baseball will raise minimum salaries between 38% and 72%, depending on the minor league level, according to a memo sent to the 30 major league teams obtained by the Associated Press. Rookie and short-season, currently the lowest paid professionals in any organization in baseball, will see their weekly income boost from $290 to $400, while Triple-A minimums will creep up to $700.
However, the raise only impacts the five months out of the year minor leaguers are paid. They aren’t paid during spring training, either. Most minor leaguers paid at their respective league’s minimum annual salary won’t extend beyond $15,400, assuming a 22-week full season.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ 2020 poverty guidelines set the poverty line for single-person households at $12,760. Even with the raise, most minor leaguers will fall short.
n MEXICO CITY — Right-hander Bartolo Colón, who will turn 47 in May, has signed with the Monclova Acereros of the Mexican Baseball League.
Colón hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2018 with Texas. He is 247-188 in 565 games — 552 as a starter — since his big league debut with Cleveland in 1997. He also was the 2005 AL Cy Young Award winner while with the Angels.
n Country House, the horse who won the Kentucky Derby in 2019 after the first horse over the finish line was disqualified, has been retired because of a foot ailment.
Blackwood Stables said Country House won’t race again after being treated for laminitis in his right front foot. He finished second in the Derby as a 65-1 shot and was placed first when Maximum Security was disqualified.
n LOS ANGELES — Matt Kuchar shot a 69 that put him at 9-under 133 and gave him the second-round lead at the Genesis Invitational.
Harold Varner III put together five birdies in his round of 3-under 68 that put him in a second-place tie at 7-under with Rory McIlroy and Wyndham Clark.
Tiger Woods lost three shots on two swings with a wedge in his hand and stumbled to a 73 that left him certain of making the cut, but little else.