The Rundown for April 7, 2020

Today is Tuesday, April 7…
the 99th day of the year… 267 days remaining

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… The number of coronavirus case nationwide rose to 366,614 yesterday while the death toll reached 10,783, according to figures provided last night by Johns Hopkins University. President Trump spoke with political rival and former Vice President Joe Biden by phone yesterday, with discussion centered on the federal response to the coronavirus crisis. Meanwhile, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster ordered all residents to remain at home except for visits with family members or essential outings to get groceries, medicine or exercise. Eight states have yet to impose formal “stay at home” orders during the outbreak.

WISCONSIN PUSHES ON WITH PRIMARY… Wisconsin is pushing ahead with its primary today despite a massive shortage of poll workers and voters’ fears of congregating. The Wisconsin Supreme Court voted 4-2 to side with Republicans in keeping turnout limited. Wisconsin Republicans picked up another win last night when the U.S. Supreme Court overturned a federal district judge’s ruling that required Wisconsin to count mail-in ballots if they arrived by April 13 even if they were mailed after election day.

JUDGE REINSTATES OKLAHOMA ABORTIONS… A federal judge yesterday reinstituted abortions in Oklahoma after the state’s governor implemented a ban on all elective surgical procedures amid the COVD-19 outbreak The judge issued a temporary restraining order for Oklahoma abortion providers after ruling that Governor Kevin Stitt’s ban would cause “irreparable harm” to women who are unable to get abortions. An executive order Stitt issued last month suspended all “elective surgeries and minor medical procedures” until today.

PELOSI TO BE HONORED… House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will be honored as the recipient of this year’s Profile in Courage Award by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. The award is given for an act, or a lifetime, of political courage. Pelosi, who has served in the House of Representatives since 1987, is the first female to be elected Speaker and the first person elected Speaker in non-consecutive terms in more than 60 years,. The Democrat from California worked with a Republican president to pass an economic bailout package in 200, and with a Democratic president to pass landmark healthcare reform in 2010.

STOCKS GAIN… Wall Street’s week got off to a good start yesterday with stocks posting substantial gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 1,628.15 points, or 7.73 percent, while the S&P 500 fell 6.97 percent and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 7.33 percent. Boeing stock rose 19.76 percent to lead the Dow’s rise.

LATE-NIGHT HOSTS JOIN VIRTUAL EVENT… Late night talk-show hosts Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel and Stephen Colbert have agreed to help host Global Citizen and World Health Organization virtual event next Monday to support health-care workers treating coronavirus patients. “One World: Together At Home” will feature musical guests including Billie Eilish, Billie Joe Armstrong of Green Day, Elton John, John Legend and Keith Urban. Funds will be directed to the World Health Organization for the purchase of additional personal protective gear for health-care workers who are treating COVID-19 patients and to provide basic assistance for those impacted by the pandemic.

ACTRESS HONOR BLACKMAN DIES… Actress Honor Blackman, who was best known for playing Pussy Galore in the 1964 James Bond film “Goldfinger,” has died of natural causes unrelated to the coronavirus pandemic, her family announced yesterday. She was 94. Blackman also had a memorable role as Cathy Gale in 1960s TV series “The Avengers.”

MLB HALL-OF-FAMER AL KALINE DIES… Al Kaline, who played all 22 years of his career for the Detroit Tigers and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1980,  died yesterday. He was 85 and reportedly had suffered a stroke recently. Kaline was a 15-time All-Star and a 10-time Gold Glove winner in right field, retired shortly after recording his 3,000 hit in 1974, his final season.

WORD OF THE DAY… PECKSNIFFIAN… (pek–SNIFF–ee–an)… adjective…1) Self-servingly hypocritical.
Many consider Newt Gingrich PECKSNIFFIAN for criticizing other peoples’ family values when he once had an affair.

BOND, COMMON BOND… What do these 3 things have in common: FLOWER–TWIN–BUNK?… (They are all types of Beds)


USELESS TRIVIA… What treaty was signed by the Soviet Union and its Eastern European allies in the 1950s?… (The Warsaw Pact)

PHOBIA DU JOUR… Didaskaleinophobia… Fear of going to school.

The Rundown for April 3, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… More than 244,000 coronavirus cases have resulted in more than 5,900 deaths nationwide, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University. Earlier in the day, the Labor Department reported that the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits has soared by a record 6.6 million people to cap the largest single-week filing increase in history. The figure is more than twice more last week’s report of 3 million new filings. According to the report, Pennsylvania had the largest claims increase, with more than 362,000. Ohio was second, followed by Massachusetts, Texas and California.

STIMULUS CHECKS COMING… The Treasury Department doesn’t expect to start issuing direct deposits of Stimulus Bill funds to Americans before April 13 and it could take five months to mail out all the checks. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said yesterday at a White House coronavirus briefing that payments would go out within two weeks to people whose direct deposit details are on file with the government. Mnuchin had claimed previously that the money would go out as soon as Monday.

U.S. SOLD CHINA PROTECTIVE GEAR AS CORONAVIRUS SPREAD… USA Today reported yesterday that U.S. businesses sold $17.5 million worth of face masks, $13.6 million in surgical garments, and $27.2 million worth of ventilators to China at as the first confirmed coronavirus cases were recorded on American soil. Exports of personal protective gear skyrocketed in January and February when the virus was devastating China and U.S. intelligence agencies were warning of its spread. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the first confirmed coronavirus case in the U.S. was on January 20, The report comes as American doctors and health-care workers are facing a dire shortage of protective equipment.

HOUSE COMMITTEE TO OVERSEE WHITE HOUSE PANDEMIC RESPONSE… House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced yesterday that a new select committee will oversee how the Trump administration spends more than $2 trillion allocated to fight the coronavirus pandemic. House Majority Whip James Clyburn of South Carolina will chair the bipartisan Select Committee on the Coronavirus Crisis. The Trump administration is facing an onslaught of criticism from governors over delays in its response.

CARRIER COMMANDER RELIEVED OF COMMAND OVER CORONAVIRUS LETTER… The USS Theodore Roosevelt captain who expressed to Navy leadership concerns about a coronavirus aboard the aircraft carrier has been relieved of his command. Captain Brett Crozier will keep his rank, however, the Navy said. Crozier detailed his concerns in a letter that leaked to the press.

TAKASHI 6IX9INE RELEASED FROM PRISON… Rapper 6ix9ine was released from prison into house arrest yesterday due to concerns over his health amid the coronavirus pandemic. The 23-year-old rapper, whose real name is Daniel Hernandez, suffers from asthma that puts him at risk, a district court judge ruled. 6ix9ine was sentenced to two years in prison in December after previously pleading guilty to racketeering, firearms and drug trafficking charges.

‘TOP GUN’ RELEASE PUSHED BACK… “Top Gun Maverick” yesterday became the latest big-budget film to be rescheduled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Paramount Pictures announced that the release of the sequel to the 1986 original has been pushed back from June 24 to December 23. Tom Cruise reprises his “Maverick” character in the new film.

The Las Vegas Raiders have come to terms with free-agent safety Damarious Randall on a one-year contract.

The Rundown for March 24, 2020

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE… The number of coronavirus cases in the U.S. has topped 41,000 and the number of deaths has risen to 573, according to figures released by John Hopkins University. The U.S. now has the third-most number of cases among nations throughout the world, trailing only China (81,400) and Italy (59,100). New York City has reported 98 deaths. King County in Washington state has 75. Thirty-four others have been recorded elsewhere in New York state.

SENATE BLOCKS SECOND STIMULUS PACKAGE… The Senate yesterday blocked a second procedural vote to advance a $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package. Democratic senators are demanding that legislation prioritize workers over companies. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer met with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and White House legislative affairs director Eric Ueland yesterday and afterward, both sides expressed confidence that legislation will be passed soon. Democrats say the legislation doesn’t protect workers from layoffs and object to a provision that allows Mnuchin to conceal which companies receive federal funds for up to six months. Democrats also complain that Republicans are adding unrelated measures to the legislation, including an extension of an abstinence education program set to expire in May. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell accused Democrats of obstructing the bill. Meanwhile, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Democrats will unveil their own economic stimulus legislation.

COLORADO BANS DEATH PENALTY… Colorado Governor Jared Polis yesterday signed legislation to abolish the death penalty. In addition to signing the bill, he commuted the death sentences of three death row inmates who will now serve life in prison without the possibility of parole. Polis’ signature comes after Colorado’s House of Representatives voted 19-13 on January 31 to repeal the state’s death penalty law. The legislation bans the death penalty as a punishment for any crime committed after July 1, 2020.

FLORIDA GOVERNOR SETS TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS… Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has issued an executive order requiring anyone flying into the state from New York, New Jersey, Washington, or California to undergo a “mandatory 14-day self-isolation” period in response to the coronavirus. During a press conference yesterday, DeSantis said there were currently over “190 direct flights from the New York City area” to Florida, and he believed there was at least one positive case per flight. The governor vowed, however, that he will not issue a stay-at-home order and called such a plan “unsustainable.”

CALIFORNIA UTILITY TO PLEAD GUILTY… California’s utility company has agreed to plead guilty to dozens of counts of involuntary manslaughter for its role in the deadliest wildfire in state history. A Pacific Gas & Electric transmission line sparked the Camp Fire in November 2018, which ultimately led to the deaths of 84 people. The utility plans to plead guilty to all 84 counts of manslaughter as part of a plea agreement with the Butte County district attorney. The company also agreed to pay a maximum $3.5 million fine, in addition to $500,000 to the Butte County District Attorney Environmental and Consumer Protection Trust Fund to cover costs related to the fire investigation. PG&E filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last year and set up a trust fund to compensate victims of fires started by company equipment.

WOODY ALLEN TO RELEASE MEMOIR… Woody Allen’s memoir has a new release date after it was dropped by its original publisher amid widespread criticism. “Apropos of Nothing” will be released April 7 by Arcade Publishing, according to Grand Central Publishing. Outrage at the book’s release centered on Allen’s alleged abuse of step-daughter Dylan Farrow.

METALLICA POSTPONES SHOWS… The rock band Metallica is postponing its upcoming shows in South America and says three of the five festivals it was set to play this year have been canceled as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. South American dates of the band’s six-city tour were to begin on April 15 but have been rescheduled for December. The rescheduled tour will retain Greta Van Fleet as the opening act.

The Baltimore Ravens re-signed cornerback Jimmy Smith to a one-year deal.

The Carolina Panthers have traded quarterback Kyle Allen to the Washington Redskins for a late-round draft pick. The Panthers also made quarterback P.J. Walker the first XFL player to join an NFL team.

The Chicago Bears agreed to terms with free-agent linebacker Barkevious Mingo on a one-year deal.

Dallas Cowboys Pro Bowl center Travis Frederick announced his retirement at age 29.

The Kansas City Chiefs have agreed to terms with quarterback Jordan Ta’amu from the XFL.

The New England Patriots have released kicker Stephen Gostkowski, who was with the team for 14 seasons.

The New Orleans Saints signed defensive back Deatrick Nichols.

The New York Giants have signed running back Dion Lewis to a one-year deal. The Giants agreed to terms with wide receiver Corey Coleman on a one-year deal.

The New York Jets have brought back outside linebacker Jordan Jenkins by signing him to a one-year contract.

The Seattle Seahawks have acquired cornerback Quinton Dunbar from the Washington Redskins in exchange for a fifth-round pick.

The Washington Redskins have released starting free safety Montae Nicholson.

The Rundown for March 19, 2020

TRUMP SIGNS CORONAVIRUS RELIEF PACKAGE… President Trump last night signed an emergency coronavirus relief package into law. The Senate overwhelmingly approved the measure earlier in the day after the House passed it last week. The Families First Coronavirus Response Act provides free coronavirus testing to Americans along with two weeks of paid sick leave and expanded family leave. In addition, the legislation also increases federal funds for Medicaid and food security programs. The package is expected to cost taxpayers $104 billion, according to the Joint Committee on Taxation. The U.S. has more than 9,300 coronavirus cases and the death toll has risen to 150, according to estimates released last night.

MARKETS BACK IN DECLINE… The deep sell-off on Wall Street over fears about the coronavirus continued yesterday, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average effectively wiped out the gains it made under since President Trump’s inauguration. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell nearly 11 percent before partly recovering to end down 6.3 percent. The S&P 500 dropped 5.2 percent. Also yesterday, the New York Stock Exchange said it would temporarily close its trading floor and move online.

FOOD SUPPLY INTACT… U.S. Food and Drug Administration officials yesterday offered assurance that America’s food supply will remain safe and uninterrupted during the coronavirus pandemic. The Federal Emergency Management Agency will work to ensure food still can be adequately moved across the country, officials announced. The FDA emphasized that there is no evidence that the coronavirus can be transmitted through food or food packaging and there is no need to recall foods should there be an incidence of an employee along the supply chain becoming sick.

SALT LAKE CITY SHOOK BY QUAKE… A strong, magnitude-5.7 earthquake that struck the Salt Lake City area yesterday morning shook buildings, prompted the closure of the airport and cut power to about 50,000 customers. The quake struck at 7:14 a.m and was centered about 15 miles east of Salt Lake City. It was the strongest to hit the city since 1992.

BILL WELDS ENDS PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN… Former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld announced yesterday that he is dropping out of the 2020 Republican presidential primary. The announcement follows President Trump coming out of Tuesday’s primary elections in Florida, Arizona and Illinois with enough delegates to become the presumptive nominee. Weld had positioned himself as a moderate in launching his presidential run last April.

MOVIE THEATERS SEEK FEDERAL AID… The trade group that represents most of the industry’s cinemas announced yesterday that it will request financial relief from the federal government amid the coronavirus. The National Association of Theater Owners says it will seek loan guarantees for exhibitors, tax benefits for employees and funds to compensate for lost ticket sales and concessions. The organization called the movie theater industry “uniquely vulnerable” to the crisis and needs help to survive a near-total shutdown that could last months.

WEINSTEIN MOVED TO PRISON… Movie producer and Miramax co-founder Harvey Weinstein was transferred to a maximum-security prison on his 68th yesterday as he begins his 23-year sentence on rape and sexual assault convictions. Weinstein arrived at Wende Correctional Facility outside of Buffalo, New York, following medical treatment and recovery at Rikers Island. He was convicted last month of first-degree criminal sex act and third-degree rape. He faces additional charges in Los Angeles.

SILVER PONDERS NBA’S FUTURE… NBA commissioner Adam Silver said during an interview on ESPN’s SportsCenter last night that he isn’t ready to think the league will have to cancel its season. He acknowledged that the situation could lead to a complete reshaping of the NBA calendar. For now, Silver said, the league’s 30 teams are considering several options in planning an eventual return to play. The return could include charity competition aside from regular play that would give millions of fans stuck at home something to watch.

The Arizona Cardinals have agreed to terms with former Detroit Lions linebacker Devon Kennard on a three-year deal.

The Atlanta Falcons have agreed to terms with pass rusher Dante Fowler Jr. on a three-year deal.

The Baltimore Ravens have re-signed punter Sam Koch punter to a two-year contract but officially declined the option on defensive back Brandon Carr, who had started every game since entering the league as Kansas City’s fifth-round pick in 2008.

The Carolina Panthers have released strong safety Eric Reid.

The Cleveland Browns have agreed to terms with safety Karl Joseph and linebacker B.J. Goodson.

The Cincinnati Bengals have released cornerback B.W. Webb.

The Dallas Cowboys are bringing back cornerback Anthony Brown on a three-year deal.

The Denver Broncos have acquired defensive tackle Jurrell Casey from the Tennessee Titans in exchange for a seventh-round draft pick. Casey, who has missed only four regular-season games in his nine seasons with Tennessee, finished tied for second on the Titans in sacks last season, with five.

The Detroit Lions have agreed to two-year contracts with cornerback Desmond Trufant and defensive tackle Danny Shelton. The Lions also traded for Patriots safety Duron Harmon but terms were not announced.

The Houston Texans have re-signed cornerback Vernon Hargreaves to a one-year contract just a month after releasing him.

The Jacksonville Jaguars have traded quarterback Nick Foles to the Chicago Bears for the Bears’ compensatory fourth-round pick. The Bears will inherit the final three years of Foles’ current contract. The Jaguars will take on a dead cap charge of $18.75 million for 2020. The Jaguars have also reached agreement on a three-year deal with former Arizona Cardinals defensive lineman Rodney Gunter.

The Las Vegas Raiders have agreed to terms with cornerback Eli Apple.

The Los Angeles Chargers have signed former Denver Broncos cornerback Chris Harris Jr. and agreed to a two-year contract with defensive tackle Linval Joseph.

Los Angeles Rams have re-signed offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth to a three-year contract and signed defensive end Leonard Floyd to a one-year contract.

The Miami Dolphins have signed interior offensive lineman Ted Karras to a one-year deal.

The New England Patriots have agreed to a two-year contract with free-agent defensive tackle Beau Allen.

The New York Giants are not exercising the 2020 option in safety Antoine Bethea’s contract.

The New York Jets have signed offensive tackle George Fant to a three-year deal and re-signed slot cornerback Brian Poole to a one-year contract.

The Seattle Seahawks have agreed to undisclosed terms to bring back defensive end Bruce Irvin and re-signed defensive end Bruce Irvin. The Seahawks also signed offensive tackles Brandon Shell and Cedric Ogbuehi to two- and one-year contracts, respectively.

The Washington Redskins and defensive end Nate Orchard have reached agreement on a one-year deal. The Redskins have signed safety Sean Davis to a one-year deal.


RUIZ TIRES & WINDOW TINTING 124 – O’Brien Gifts & Such 123… Julio Cedeño’s block of an Erin Gordon shot in the final seconds preserved the Toros’ win over the Fragrance. Mando Figueroa scored a game-high 28 points and Hector Garcia Uria tossed in 25. Raffy Gutierrez powered his way to 17 points and 15 rebounds.

CURTIS TRANSPORT 93 – Hansen Fuel 75… The Movers outscored the Hornets 32-15 in the fourth quarter to run away with the victory. Mike Tarwater came off the bench to score 19 points and lead a balanced scoring attack.

Schmidt’s Turf & Insulation 130 – ROANOKE TRUST 125… Robbie Wagstaff scored 40 points and gathered 15 boards in leading the Ruggers past the Moneymen. Brock Lyon’s 52 points and 16 boards weren’t enough for the losers.

FLEMINGTON DOWNS 110 – London Bookbinders 107… The Racers rallied past the Dickens in the fourth quarter to complete a season sweep. DeWayne Everson was out there scoring 25 points while his wife stayed home with a mare that was foaling. Duane Tudor had 15 points and 17 rebounds.

ELSIE’S BAR & GRILL 101 – Crystal Cave Mattresses 91… The Rowdies built a 10-point halftime lead and maintained it in the second half to down the Sleepers. Visco Brown had 27 points and 20 boards. Genovese Smith added 22 points.

CIRCLE 6 INNS 129 – Atcheson & Partners Architects 102… The Secretkeepers bombed the Pencilmen 32-17 in the second quarter to take the lead for good in the blowout. Steven Daniels III delivered 21 points off the bench.

MITCHELL COUNTY PARKS & RECREATION 117 – Vincent’s Pharmacy 102… Lester Orr dropped in 25 points and dished off 10 assists in the Outsiders’ win over the Feelgooders. Tom Molly finished with 20 points and 13 rebounds. Lonny Mincher also scored 20 points.

PRESCOTT THEATER 119 – Graham’s Fitness Centers 116… Arch Rahuney knocked down a 3-pointer at the buzzer to lift the Flickers past the Abs. Rahuney finished with a team-high 25 points. Trent Atkinson had 20 points and 11 boards. Floyd Jenkins added 20 points and 10 rebounds.

Twyla’s Chicken is at Blue Sky Appliances…
Round Richard’s Play Center hosts Nelson’s Automotive…
Brown Sugar Coffee & Tea is at Dittleman Electric…
Carroll David CPA hosts Crossing Guards Local 412…
Hoo’s Chinese Garden is at Pettibone Kennels

BRISTOL ALUMNI 3 – Nappy’s Fricasse 0… Goalie Kris Klepton stopped all 22 shots to record his third shutout in his last five starts and the Keggers cruised past the Bakers. Enos Thompson scored a pair of second-period goals for Bristol.

DuBARR IRRIGATION 4 – Mills’ Plumbing 3 (SO)… Wilson Chester netted the winning goal in the shootout as the Sprinklers outlasted the Faucets. Louis Carscone made 30 saves at goal.

Wendy’s Not-the-Drivethrough 3 – SMITHTOWN CAGES 2 (OT)… Billy Nelson found the net 1:04 into overtime to lift the Order Takers over the Batsmen and move his team into a first-place tie with Hellington Property Management. Jelly Jones set up two goals.

Hellington Property Management is at Arlyne’s Drapes…
Silver Stu’s Social Club hosts Dizzy’s Painting…
Sons of Harley O’Keen is at Two Lips Tavern…
Arnold, Arnold & Partners Lawyers hosts Millington Community Church

GOLDY’S GUNS & LOAN 3, Liberty Creative 2…
Bell River Casino 5, Paul’s Halloween Costumes 3…
MARKOV BUILDERS 10, Ace Literary 5…
MITCHELL CROPDUSTING 4, Northside Glass 2…
Watkins Printing 7, Brett’s Burgers 3…
Wolfton Daily News 7, NEXT DAY PARCEL 3…
AIR CHANCE 3, Fourth Avenue Mini-Storage 2…
MAXWELL’S SATELLITE 7, Brigadier Engineering 2…
Office Heaven 9, PESTS-BE-GONE 9 (tie)…
SAL’S FISH MARKET 7, Paul’s Passport Photos 2

The Rundown for March 13, 2020

ONGOING SHUTDOWNS OVER CARONAVIRUS… Efforts to contain the coronavirus continue as officials are calling off public gatherings, postponing sporting events and canceling classes at schools. As of yesterday morning, there had been more than 1,300 confirmed cases in the U.S. with at least 39 deaths of them fatal. The virus has infected more than 126,000 people worldwide and is blamed for more than 4,600 deaths. Doctors say the vast majority of cases are mild, and almost half of those infected have recovered. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, conceded during testimony before the House oversight committee yesterday that government efforts have failed to provide Americans easy and accessible testing. President Trump drew condemnation from leaders of the European Union for not consulting them before announcing that he as barring travelers from 26 nations from entering the U.S.for 30 days. It was also revealed yesterday that the communications secretary for Brazil President Jair Bolsonaro tested positive for coronavirus just five days after he was among a group of officials who met with Trump.

U.S. LAUNCHES AIR STRIKES IN IRAQ… The Pentagon confirmed yesterday that U.S. forces launched airstrikes in Iraq against Iranian-backed Shia militia members blamed for a rocket attack that killed and wounded American and British troops Wednesday night at Iraq’s Camp Taji. Officials said multiple strikes by U.S. manned aircraft hit five locations and mainly targeted Kataib Hezbollah weapons facilities inside Iraq. Earlier yesterday, Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced that President Donald Trump had given him the authority to take whatever action he deemed necessary.

DOW FALLS AFTER FED INJECTION… The Federal Reserve Bank of New York yesterday took drastic steps in injecting more than $1.5 trillion into the markets amid investors’ fears of the coronavirus’ economic impact. The move brought immediate calm but it quickly gave way. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell nearly 10 percent in its worst drop since the 1987 stock market crash. The Dow was down 2,353 points at closing bell, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq fell by over 9 percent.

SANDERS WINS CALIFORNIA DEM PRIMARY… News outlets yesterday declared Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders the winner of California’s Democratic primary. Official numbers from the Super Tuesday contest have been delayed pending the final count of mail-in votes and provisional ballots. As of yesterday, Sanders was holding a 34.3-to-27.6-percent lead. He had claimed 184 delegates to former Vice President Joe Biden’s 144, with 81 delegates left to be allocated.

CHELSEA MANNING RELEASED FROM PRISON… Former intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning was released from prison yesterday. She had been in detention in Virginia since last May after refusing to testify in an inquiry into Wikileaks. Manning was found guilty in 2013 of charges including espionage for leaking secret military files to Wikileaks.

PROMOTERS SUSPEND CONCERT TOURS… Two dominant live entertainment promotion companies have announced that they are suspended all touring activities because of the coronavirus pandemic. Live Nation Entertainment and AEG Presents both said they would halt events beginning this weekend at least through the end of March. On Tuesday, AEG announced the postponement until October of both the Coachella and Stagecoach music festivals.

IN THEATERS… “Bloodshot” stars Vin Diesel and Eiza Gonzalez in the story about a slain soldier who is re-animated with superpowers. The film is rated PG-13… In “The Hunt,” 12 strangers wake up not knowing where they are or how they got there and soon discover that they’ve been chosen for a very specific purpose. Betty Gilpin and Hilary Swank star in the R-rated film.

NCAA CALLS OFF TOURNAMENTS; NHL SUSPENDS SEASON… The sporting world has undergone a complete shutdown due to the health threat posed by the coronavirus pandemic. Yesterday, the NHL announced that it was suspending its season but expressed hopes to resume. The league had 189 games and three and a half weeks remaining in its regular-season schedule. Later, the NCAA called off its men’s and women’s basketball tournaments as part of a complete cancellation of all remaining spring and winter championships. Major League Baseball, meanwhile, announced that it is suspending spring-training games and will delay the start of the 2020 regular season by at least two weeks. On Wednesday night, the NBA announced suspended its season “until further notice” after Utah Jazz player Rudy Gobert tested positive for the coronavirus. His teammate Donovan Mitchell reportedly also has been diagnosed with the virus.

The Rundown for February 21, 2020

NYT: REPORT OF RUSSIAN ELECTION MEDDLING ANGERED TRUMP… President Trump’s removal of national intelligence director Joseph Maguire continues to draw scrutiny. White House officials yesterday told the New York Times that the decision came in response to a classified briefing senior DNI official Shelby Pierson delivered to the House Intelligence Committee last week. Trump was reportedly angered by the briefing’s claim that Russia continues to interfere on behalf of his presidential re-election bid and complained that Democrats would “weaponize” it against him. The president on Wednesday named loyalist Richard Grenell as acting head of intelligence despite Grenell having no intelligence experience. In his position as U.S. Ambassador to Germany, Grenell has angered Germans by siding with European white nationalists.

ROGER STONE SENTENCED… President Trump’s long-time adviser Roger Stone was sentenced to three years and four months in prison yesterday following his November conviction on seven felony counts of lying to Congress, obstruction of justice and witness tampering. In handing out the sentence, U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson said Stone posed a threat to American democracy with his lies to lawmakers investigating Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. “He was not prosecuted – as some have complained – for standing up for the president. He was prosecuted for covering up for the president,” Judge Jackson said afterward.

MAN CHARGED FOR THREATS AGAINST WHISTLEBLOWER ATTORNEY… Federal prosecutors have filed charges against a Michigan man who allegedly emailed death threats to a lawyer representing the whistleblower whose disclosures led to President Trump’s impeachment inquiry. Brittan J. Atkinson is accused of calling attorney Mark Zaid a “traitor” who “must die a miserable death.” A November 7 email to Zaid warned that, “We will hunt you down and bleed you out like the pigs you are.” The warning came on the same day that Trump read the attorney’s tweets out at a campaign rally.

MOTHER OF MISSING CHILDREN ARRESTED… The mother of two missing children sought in a warrant out of Madison County, Idaho, has been arrested in Hawaii. 47-year-old Lori Vallow is being held on $5 million bail after being charged with two felony counts of desertion and nonsupport of dependent children, as well as a variety of other offenses. Her 7-year-old son and her 17-year-old daughter haven’t been heard from since September and their mother has defied court orders to produce them. Investigators say Vallow and her husband, Chad Daybell, have lied about the kids’ whereabouts and even their existence. The children’s disappearance occurred amid a trio of suspicious deaths. On July 11, Vallow’s brother fatally shot her estranged husband during a fight in Arizona; the brother then died of undisclosed causes in December without being charged. Daybell’s previous wife was found dead at her home on October 19. Vallow and Daybell have been actively involved in a Church of Latter-Day Saints sect whose mission it is “to help the saints begin to prepare” for the second coming of Jesus Christ.”

EXECUTION IN TENNESSEE… A death row inmate convicted in the fatal stabbing a fellow prisoner 34 years ago was executed last night in Tennessee. 58-year-old Nicholas Todd Sutton was put to death at the Riverbend Maximum Security Institution in Nashville. He became the fourth inmate in the U.S., and the first in Tennessee, to be executed in 2020.

AT LEAST 4 SUSPECTS IN POP SMOKE’S MURDER… At least four suspects are connected to Wednesday’s murder of New York rapper Pop Smoke at a Hollywood Hills home, Los Angeles police reported yesterday. The update came after detectives reviewed home security camera video that captured the suspects fleeing in a car. Officials will now consult license plate readers near the site of the murder for further clues. Investigators still don’t know whether the fatal shooting of the 20-year-old rapper was gang-related or the result of a home-invasion robbery.

IN THEATERS… “The Call of the Wild” is the big-screen adaptation of the classic Jack London novel. The PG-rated drama stars Harrison Ford and Karen Gillan in the story about a sled dog that struggles for survival in the wilds of the Yukon.

Milwaukee 126 – DETROIT 106… The Bucks built a 29-point halftime lead and never looked back in their rout of the Pistons. Giannis Antetokounmpo had game-highs with 33 points and 16 rebounds. Kris Middleton added 28 points.

ATLANTA 129 – Miami 124… The Hawks closed with a 10-0 run to upend the Heat. Trae Young poured in a career-high 50 points.

Charlotte 103 – CHICAGO 93… Malik Monk delivered 25 points off the bench and Miles Bridges tossed in 22 points as the Hornets held off the Bulls.

PHILADELPHIA 112 – Brooklyn 104 (OT)… The 76ers limited the Nets to a single point in the overtime period in pulling away with the win. They got 25 points from Chris LeVert and 22 from Spencer Dinwiddie.

SACRAMENTO 129 – Memphis 125… Harrison Barnes knocked down seven 3-pointers on his way to 32 points and the Kings held off the Grizzlies. De’Aaron Fox added 26 points.

Houston 135 – GOLDEN STATE 105… The Rockets jumped out to a 21-point lead after the first quarter and never looked back in their rout of the Warriors. James Harden scored 29 points and dished off 10 assists. Russell Westbrook added 21 points and Robert Covington had 20.

Cleveland is at Washington…
Orlando hosts Dallas…
Phoenix is at Toronto…
New York hosts Indiana…
Denver is at Oklahoma City…
Minnesota hosts Boston…
San Antonio is at Utah…
Portland hosts New Orleans…
Memphis is at the L.A. Lakers

TORONTO 4 – Pittsburgh 0… Goalie Frederik Anderson stopped all 24 shots as the Maple Leafs blanked the Penguins. Jake Muzzin scored a goal and assisted on two others. John Tavares also had two assists.

NEW JERSEY 2 – San Jose 1… The Devils eased past the Sharks after spotting them an early goal. P.K. Subban netted a tie-breaking goal on a third-period power play. Goalie Mackenzie Blackwood made 36 saves.

Montreal 4 – WASHINGTON 3 (OT)… Ben Chiarot scored his second goal of the game 58 seconds into overtime and the Canadiens dealt the Capitals their third straight loss. Shea Weber and Brendan Gallagher also found the net.

Philadelphia 4 – COLUMBUS 3 (OT)… The Flyers rallied from two goals down in the third period to outlast the Blue Jackets. Kevin Hayes netted the winning goal 3:51 into overtime. Travis Konecny had a goal and two assists.

Winnipeg 5 – OTTAWA 1… Mark Scheifele scored three goals and assisted on another in leading the Jets past the Senators. Kyle Connor added a goal and an assist. Patrik Laine set up two goals.

ST. LOUIS 1 – Arizona 0… Ryan O’Reilly scored the game’s only goal with 12 minutes remaining as the Blues stopped the Coyotes. Goalie Jordan Binnington faced only 14 shots in the shutout.

VEGAS 5 – Tampa Bay 3… Five different players found the net as the Golden Knights ended the Lightning’s 11-game winning streak. Alec Martinez scored a goal and had an assist in his first game since being acquired from Los Angeles. Max Pacioretty and Mark Stone also had a goal and an assist.

LOS ANGELES 5 – Florida 4… Ben Hutton scored a tie-breaking goal a 12:45 of the third period and the Kings made it stand in topping the Panthers. Gabriel Vilardi and Drew Doughty each scored a goal and had an assist.

the N.Y. Rangers are at Carolina…
the N.Y. Islanders host Detroit…
Nashville is at Chicago…
Dallas hosts St. Louis…
Boston is at Calgary…
Edmonton hosts Minnesota…
Anaheim hosts Colorado

#2 GONZAGA 71, San Francisco 54…
ARIZONA STATE 77, #14 Oregon 72…
#18 COLORADO 70, USC 66…
#20 IOWA 85, #25 Ohio State 76…
#23 BYU 85, Santa Clara 75…
#24 ARIZONA 89, Oregon State 63

The Rundown for January 22, 2020

IMPEACHMENT TRIAL UNDERWAY… The first full day of President Trump’s impeachment trial lasted 13 hours until nearly 2 a.m. Eastern before the Senate approved rules for the proceeding. The approval came in a party-line vote of 53-47 that delays the question of whether the Senate should subpoena witnesses and documents until next week. Prior to Senate Majority Mitch McConnell’s introduction of the rules resolution, Republicans defeated 11 amendments from Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer that were seeking to subpoena documents and witnesses. The trial resumes at 1 p.m. Eastern today.

TRUMP AT DAVOS… President Trump boasted about his administration’s economic achievements during his presentation yesterday to open the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Trump claimed that the U.S. “is winning” like never before in his keynote address. In touting his administration’s policies, Trump made no mention of his impeachment trial. Trump did reveal that the U.S. will join the One Trillion Trees Initiative in planting more trees to help offset carbon dioxide emissions.

TRUMP ADMINISTRATION TO EXPAND TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS… The Trump administration is planning to expand travel restrictions to seven additional countries. Belarus, Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Nigeria, Sudan and Tanzania are the countries being added but White House officials note the list isn’t final, according to reports. The countries are expected to have restrictions placed on specific types of visas, such as business or visitor visas. The expanded restrictions are expected to be introduced on Monday.

SUPREME COURT DOESN’T FAST-TRACK OBAMACARE CHALLENGE… The Supreme Court yesterday rejected a motion that sought to fast-track the repeal of the Affordable Care Act in its entirety. The rejection means the case probably won’t be decided until after the 2020 election. It also spares Republicans seeking to dismantle Obamacare possible negative coverage in an election year.

CORONAVIRUS REACHES U.S... The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed the first case of coronavirus in the U.S. The diagnosis was made on a traveler who returned to Seattle from China. The patient was reported to be in good condition. Chinese health officials say the disease has killed at least six people and sickened more than 300.

ALICIA KEYS TO TOUR… Alicia Keys announced yesterday that she will embark on a 2020 world tour in support of her upcoming eponymous album, which is scheduled for release next month. The world tour kicks off on June 5 in Dublin, Ireland. In the meantime, Keys is set to host Sundays 62nd annual Grammy Awards on Sunday.

OZZY OSBOURNE BATTLING PARKINSON’S… Rocker Ozzy Osbourne has confirmed that he is battling Parkinson’s disease. The 71-year-old Black Sabbath frontman made the announcement during an appearance yesterday morning on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” Osbourne said he has a “mild form” and found out about it after suffering a fall last February.

L.A. Clippers 110 – DALLAS 107… The Clippers went on an 8-0 run spanning the two-minute mark to take the lead for good in their win over the Mavericks. Kawhi Leonard scored 36 points and brought down 11 rebounds.

Philadelphia is at Toronto…
Detroit hosts Sacramento…
Oklahoma City is at Orlando…
New York hosts the L.A. Lakers…
Memphis is at Boston…
Miami hosts Washington…
the L.A. Clippers are at Atlanta…
Chicago hosts Minnesota…
Denver is at Houston…
Phoenix hosts Indiana…
San Antonio is at New Orleans…
Golden State hosts Utah

BOSTON 3 – Vegas 2… Jake DeBrusk and David Krejci scored third-period goals to rally the Bruins past the Golden Knights. Krejci also assisted on Jeremy Lauzon’s goal in the first period.

N.Y. Islanders 4 – N.Y. RANGERS 2… Josh Bailey scored a goal and had two assists as the Islanders doubled up on the Rangers. Thomas Greiss made 40 saves at goal.

CAROLINA 4 – Winnipeg 1… Justin Williams found the net twice in leading the Hurricanes past the Jets. Teuvo Teravainen had a goal and two assists.

PHILADELPHIA 3 – Pittsburgh 0… Goalie Brian Elliott needed to stop only 19 shots in the Flyers’ blanking of the Penguins. Jakub Voracek and James van Riemsdyk scored first-period goals.

Florida 4 – CHICAGO 3… The Panthers withstood a third-period rally in holding off the Blackhawks. Frank Vatrano lit the lamp twice as Florida scored all four goals in the second period.

Winnipeg is at Columbus…
Minnesota hosts Detroit

#3 KANSAS 81, Kansas State 60…
#4 SAN DIEGO STATE 72, Wyoming 55…
#8 DUKE 89, Miami (Fla.) 59…
#9 VILLANOVA 76, #13 Butler 61…
#15 KENTUCKY 89, Georgia 79…
#17 Maryland 77, NORTHWESTERN 66…
TCU 65, #18 Texas Tech 54…
#21 Illinois 79, PURDUE 62

MLB NEWS: JETER, WALKER TO BE ENSHRINED… Shortstop Derek Jeter and outfielder Larry Walker were elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame yesterday. Jeter received all but one of the 397 votes cast by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America in his first year of eligibility. The 14-time All-Star with the New York Yankees was named American League Rookie of the Year in 1996 and finished in the top 10 of AL MVP balloting eight times. Walker spent his 17-year career with the Montreal Expos, Colorado Rockies and St. Louis Cardinals. He was the 1997 National League MVP after batting .366 with 9 homers and 130 RBIs for Colorado. He also won NL batting crowns in 1998 (.363) and 1999 (.372). Defensively Walker won seven Gold Gloves during his career.

WORD OF THE DAY… CANARD… (keh–NARD)… noun… 1) A false or unfounded report or story; a fabrication… …After being taken in by the old CANARD about alligators in the sewers, the tourists studiously avoided manhole covers in New York.

BOND, COMMON BOND… What do these 3 things have in common: RUSTY BURRELL–DOUG LLEWELYN–JOSEPH WAPNER? (They were the original stars of The People’s Court)


USELESS TRIVIA… What New York political heavyweight was Miss America in 1945?… (Bess Myerson)

PHOBIA DU JOUR… Uranophobia… Fear of heaven.

The Rundown for January 6, 2020

IRAN ABANDONS TERMS OF NUCLEAR AGREEMENT… Iran’s government announced yesterday that it will no longer abide by terms of the 2015 nuclear agreement following the U.S.’ assassination of Major-General Qassem Soleimani. The announcement followed a meeting of Iran’s National Security Council to discuss the country’s nuclear policy. Iran has vowed to no longer limit its enrichment of uranium along with research and development in its nuclear activities.

TRUMP VOWS ‘DISPROPORTIONATE’ RETALIATION… President Trump declared on Twitter yesterday that Iran can expect “disproportionate” retaliation to any attacks on U.S. citizens or American facilities. Trump also said his Twitter posts “will serve as notification to the United States Congress.” Trump drew widespread condemnation yesterday for a tweet that claimed cultural sites were among potential targets that the U.S. has identified in Iran. Some critics have claimed that actions taken against cultural sites would be a violation of international law.

TO IRAQI PARLIAMENT VOTES TO EXPEL U.S… Iraqi lawmakers voted yesterday to expel U.S. troops from their country. Prior to the vote, they changed “Death to America!” in the parliamentary chambers. The expulsion order will now go before Iraq Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi, who has suggested he will sign it.

3 AMERICANS KILLED IN KENYA… The Pentagon has confirmed that three Americans were killed in an attack by extremist group al-Shabab early yesterday on Camp Simba in Kenya near the Somalia border. The dead included one U.S. service member and two Department of Defense contractors, according to a statement. Two wounded Americans were evacuated with injuries and reported to be in stable condition. Four of the attackers were reportedly killed when they tried to breach security at the base at Manda Bay Airfield, which is used by the U.S. military.

AT LEAST 5 DEAD IN PENNSYLVANIA TURNPIKE CRASH… An early-morning crash yesterday on the Pennsylvania Turnpike left at least five people dead and 39 others hospitalized. A tour bus, three tractor-trailers loaded with parcels and a passenger vehicle were involved in the six-vehicle crash, according to the Pennsylvania State Police. Authorities say the tour bus was traveling on a downhill curve in Westmoreland County when it struck an embankment and was hit by vehicles behind it.

GOLDEN GLOBES… The World War I film “1917” was honored as Best Motion Picture Drama at last night’s 77th Golden Globe Awards.“Once Upon A Time … In Hollywood” picked up awards for Best Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor for Brad Pitt and Best Musical or Comedy film. Best Actor in a Drama went to Joaquin Phoenix for “Joker,” and best actress to Renee Zellweger in “Judy.” Taron Egerton, who played Elton John in “Rocketman,” won for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy, while Best Actress in a Comedy was Awkwafina in “The Farewell.” Laura Dern won Best Supporting Actress in a film for “Marriage Story.” “Parasite” was honored as Best Foreign Language film. In television, “Succession” was best drama series, and “Fleabag” was best comedy series. Brian Cox of “Succession,” Olivia Colman of “The Crown,” Phoebe Waller-Bridge of “Fleabag” and Ramy Youssef of “Ramy” were actors who were honored. Stellan Skarsgard of “Chernobyl” and Patricia Arquette of “The Act” won supporting actors awards. “Chernobyl” was named Best Limited Series or Movie.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE… “Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker” took in $33.7 to remain atop the weekend box office. “Jumanji: The Next Level” finished second with $26.5 million. “Little Women” jumped one spot into third place after bringing in $13.5. “The Grudge” finished fourth with $11.3 million. “Frozen 2” made $11.2 million to finish fifth. The weekend haul made “Frozen s” the biggest-grossing animated movie of all-time with $1.325 billion globally.

Minnesota 26 – NEW ORLEANS 20 (OT)… The Vikings recovered to outlast the Saints in their NFC wild-round matchup after letting a 10-point fourth-quarter lead slip away. Kirk Cousins connected with Kyle Rudolph on a 4-yard touchdown pass at 10:40 of overtime. Adam Thielen’s 43-yard reception set up the winning score. Delvin Cook rushed for a pair of scores. Minnesota travels to San Francisco for next Saturday’s divisional-round clash.

Seattle 17 – PHILADELPHIA 9… The Seahawks fought off the Eagles in the other NFC wild-round contest. Marshawn Lynch ran 5 yards in the second quarter for the game’s first touchdown. Russell Wilson threw 53 yards to DK Metcalfe for a third-quarter score and finished with 325 passing yards. Seattle heads to Green Bay for next Sunday’s divisional-round showdown.

L.A. CLIPPERS 135 – N.Y. Knicks 132… The Clippers rallied past the Knicks after trailing by 16 heading into the second quarter. Montrezl Harrell scored a game-high 34 points. Paul George and Lou Williams added 32 points apiece. Kawhi Leonard sat out the game with a knee injury.

MIAMI 122 – Portland 111… The Heat built a 19-point lead and coasted past the Trail Blazers. Goran Dragic came off the bench to score 29 points and dish off 13 assists. Miami had six other players score in double figures.

Minnesota 118 – CLEVELAND 103… The Timberwolves regrouped to put away the Cavaliers after letting a 25-point lead slip away. Gorgui Dieng led the way with 22 points. Shabazz Napier added 21 points.

Memphis 121 – PHOENIX 114… The Grizzlies took control with a big third quarter and held off the Suns. Jonas Valanciunas scored 30 points to lead six players in double figures. Devin Booker’s 40 points weren’t enough for Phoenix.

L.A. LAKERS 106 – Detroit 99… The Lakers were too much in the fourth quarter as they pulled past the Pistons. Anthony Davis scored 24 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. LeBron James piled up 21 points, 14 boards and 11 assists.

Oklahoma City is at Philadelphia…
Charlotte hosts Indiana…
Boston is at Washington…
Orlando hosts Brooklyn…
Denver is at Atlanta…
New Orleans hosts Utah…
Milwaukee is at San Antonio…
Dallas hosts Chicago…
Golden State is at Sacramento

WASHINGTON 5 – San Jose 4 (OT)… The Capitals came from two goals down in the final minute of regulation to outlast the Sharks. After San Jose’s Logan Couture scored what appeared to be a victory-sealing empty-net goal with a minute to go, Jakub Brana found the net with 47 seconds left and T.J. Oshie added the tying goal 32 seconds later. Lars Eller scored the winning goal with 2:59 remaining in overtime.

Florida 4 – PITTSBURGH 1… The Panthers skated past the Penguins to snap their eight-game winning streak. Mike Hoffman had a goal and an assist. Rookie goalie Chris Driedger made 31 saves.

Tampa Bay 3 – CAROLINA 1… The Lightning downed the Hurricanes for their seventh straight win. Steven Stamkos scored a goal and assisted on another. Nikita Kucherov assisted on two goals.

Calgary 5 – MINNESOTA 4 (SO)… Dillon Dube scored the winning goal in the shootout after the Flames trailed the Wild four times in regulation. Mikael Backlund and Johnny Gaudreau each had two assists.

CHICAGO 4 – Detroit 2… The Blackhawks erased a two-goal deficit late in the second period to double up on the Red Wings. Adam Boqvist netted the go-ahead goal in the third period.

ANAHEIM 5 – Nashville 4 (SO)… Ryan Getzlaf scored the winning goal in the shootout as the Ducks outlasted the Predators. Getzlaf had three assists in regulation. Adam Henrique had two goals and an assist.

Edmonton is at Toronto…
Montreal hosts Winnipeg…
Colorado is at the N.Y. Islanders…
Los Angeles hosts Columbus

#14 MICHIGAN STATE 87, #12 Michigan 69…
#20 Dayton 80, SAINT JOSEPH’S 67

Louisiana plays Miami (OH) in the LendingTree Bowl

The Rundown for January 1, 2020

Today is Wednesday, January 1… HAPPY NEW YEAR!
the 1st day of the year… 365 days remaining

U.S. SENDING TROOPS TO BAGHDAD… The Defense Department has announced that it is sending additional forces to Baghdad to protect the American embassy from attacks by Iraqi Shiite militia supporters. Yesterday, protesters breached the embassy’s main gate, lit fires and threw bricks while chanting “death to America.” The demonstrations were prompted by airstrikes in Iraq and Syria that targeted the Iran-backed militia group Kataib Hezbollah, according to Pentagon officials.

TRUMP WINERY FIRES EMPLOYEES OVER IMMIGRATION STATUS… The Trump Winery in Virginia reportedly has fired at least seven employees were over their immigration status. The firings came almost a year after the Trump Organization promised to end its reliance on undocumented workers at its properties. The Washington Post noted that the firings came after the annual harvest at the vineyard and during the winter downtime. The terminated employees were reportedly part of a small group that worked the vineyard year-round and were separate from the legal immigrants that have worked at Trump Winery on seasonal work visas.

FEDERAL ATTORNEY TO EXAMINE BEVIN PARDONS… A federal attorney is looking into former Kentucky governor Matt Bevin’s pardons of more than 600 convicts on his way out of office. Convicted rapists, murderers and child molesters were among those who received pardons and sentence reductions from Bevin. U.S. Attorney Russell Coleman wants to know whether any of the convicts pardoned committed federal crimes. The Louisville Courier Journal has reported that the FBI is looking into the pardons as well.

CHIEF JUSTICE ROBERTS WARNS OF DISINFORMATION… U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts used the final day of 2019 to express concern about disinformation amplified by the internet and social media. Roberts warned that Americans “have come to take democracy for granted, and civic education has fallen by the wayside.” His comments come as U.S. legislators and officials have raised concerns about the persistence of foreign propaganda and false news aimed at sowing discord in the U.S. political system in the lead-up to the 2020 election. U.S. intelligence agencies and an inquiry by former Special Counsel Robert Mueller found that Russia engaged in a campaign of hacking and propaganda to push the 2016 presidential race toward Republican President Donald Trump.

CONSUMER CONFIDENCE DROPS… The Conference Board reported yesterday that U.S. consumer confidence took a slight dip in December due to decreasing expectations of job prospects and other economic factors. The business organization’s consumer confidence index fell from 126.8 in November to 126.5 in December, coming in below expectations and representing a marginal loss. The index uses a baseline of 100 as where confidence stood in 1985. While consumers expressed greater confidence about their present situation, they felt less confident about the near future, researchers found.

SPACEY AGREES TO SETTLE LAWSUIT… Kevin Spacey has agreed to settle a lawsuit brought by an anonymous massage therapist who died after he alleged he was sexually assaulted by the actor. Lawyers representing the plaintiff filed a notice of death in court after he died, which gave the accuser’s estate 90 days to be substituted in the case. On Monday, Spacey’s attorneys and the plaintiff’s son filed a stipulation to dismiss the case with prejudice, which prevents the claims from being refiled. Another Spacey accuser, Norwegian actor Ari Behn, died by suicide on Christmas day.

MARIAH CAREY’S TWITTER ACCOUNT HACKED… Hackers appeared to take over Mariah Carey’s Twitter account yesterday. Tweets from the account made reference to a group that previously hacked Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s account sent from Carey’s handle. Among the more than 50 tweets posted were inappropriate references to other celebrities and calls to follow certain accounts. The tweets started being deleted around 20 minutes after they began appearing.

INDIANA 115 – Philadelphia 97… Domantas Sabonis scored 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in leading the Pacers past the 76ers.

Boston 109 – CHARLOTTE 92… Jayson Tatum scored 24 points to lead a balanced scoring attack as the Celtics cruised past the Hornets. Kemba Walker added 22 points and Gordon Hayward tossed in 21.

L.A. Clippers 105 – SACRAMENTO 87… Paul George had 21 points and 11 boards to lead the short-handed Clippers in their win over the Kings.

TORONTO 117 – Cleveland 97… The Raptors took control with a big second quarter and rolled past the Cavaliers. Kyle Lowrie pumped in 24 points.

HOUSTON 130 – Denver 104… The Rockets built a double-digit lead early and never looked back in their blowout of the Nuggets. James Harden scored a game-high 35 points.

SAN ANTONIO 117 – Golden State 113 (OT)… DeMar DeRozan scored 24 points to lead five players in double figures and the Spurs outlasted the Warriors. LaMarcus Aldridge had 17 points and 12 rebounds.

OKLAHOMA CITY 106 – Dallas 101… Chris Paul knocked down a go-ahead basket with 40.9 seconds remaining and the Thunder held on to top the Mavericks. Danilo Gallinai and Dennis Schroder scored 20 points apiece.

Orlando is at Washington…
New York hosts Portland…
Minnesota is at Milwaukee…
the L.A. Lakers host Phoenix

NEW JERSEY 3 – Boston 2 (SO)… Damon Severson scored in the sixth round of the shootout to win it for the Devils.

N.Y. Islanders 4 – WASHINGTON 3… Casey Cizikas netted two goals and Tom Kuhnhackl scored the tie-breaker for the Islanders.

VEGAS 5 – Anaheim 2… The Golden Knights got a pair of goals from Jonathan Marchessault in skating past the Ducks.

Toronto 4 – MINNESOTA 1… Auston Matthews and William Nylander each had a goal and an assist for the Maple Leafs.

Tampa Bay 6 – BUFFALO 4… The Lightning scored three unanswered goals in the third period to upend the Sabres. Alex Killorn scored two goals and assisted on another.

COLUMBUS 4 – Florida 1… Zach Werenski recorded his first career hat trick as the Blue Jackets skated past the Panthers. Elvis Merzlikins stopped shots at goal.

CAROLINA 3 – Montreal 1… Erik Haula had a goal and an assist for the Hurricanes. Goalie Petr Mrazek made 30 saves.

DETROIT 2 – San Jose 0… Goalie Jonathan Bernier stopped all 34 shots as the Red Wings blanked the Sharks. Tyler Bertuzzi netted tho only goal Detroit needed early in the second period.

Winnipeg 7 – COLORADO 4… Kyle Connor scored three goals as the Jets outshot the Avalanche.

Chicago 5 – CALGARY 3… The Blackhawks opened with four straight goals and coasted past the Flames. Patrick Kane scored two goals and had two assists.

EDMONTON 7 – N.Y. Rangers 5… James Neal scored three goals and assisted on another as the Oilers held off the Rangers. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had a goal and three assists.

ARIZONA 3 – St. Louis 1… Phil Kessel scored a tie-breaking goal in the third period as the Coyotes fought off the Blues. Antti Raanta made 38 saves at goal.

LOS ANGELES 5 – Philadelphia 3… The Kings scored four unanswered goals in the first period and cruised past the Flyers. Adrian Kempe had a goal and an assist.

Nashville is at Dallas in the Winter Classic at the Cotton Bowl

Kentucky 37, Virginia Tech 30 in the Belk Bowl…
Arizona State 20, Florida State 14 in the Sun Bowl…
#23 Navy 20, Kansas State 17 in the Liberty Bowl…
Wyoming 38, Georgia State 17 in the Arizona Bowl…
Texas 38, #11 Utah 10 in the Alamo Bowl

#12 Auburn plays #18 Minnesota in the Outback Bowl…
#13 Alabama plays #14 Michigan in the Citrus Bowl…
#6 Oregon plays #8 Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl…
#5 Georgia plays #7 Baylor in the Sugar Bowl

#2 DUKE 88, Boston College 49…
#11 Butler 60, St. John’s 58…
#18 FLORIDA STATE 70, Georgia Tech 58