(LOS ANGELES) -- After 18 years, Kobe Bryant's long-held partnership with Nike has come to an end.

Vanessa Bryant, the late basketball star's widow, and the Kobe Bryant estate confirmed on Monday that the contract would not be renewed after his five-year, post-retirement contract ended April 13.

"Kobe and Nike have made some of the most beautiful basketball shoes of all time, worn and adored by fans and athletes in all sports across the globe," Vanessa Bryant told ESPN. "It seems fitting that more NBA players wear my husband's product than any other signature shoe."

The Los Angeles Lakers legend first signed with the global athletic brand in 2003 after previously being partnered with Adidas under a six-year contract.

Together, Bryant and Nike released 11 signature shoes, such as Zoom Huarache 2K4, Hyperdunk and Kobe 4s.

"Kobe Bryant was an important part of Nike's deep connection to consumers," Nike shared with "GMA" in a statement. "He pushed us and made everyone around him better. Though our contractual relationship has ended, he remains a deeply loved member of the Nike family."

Vanessa Bryant expressed her hope is to allow Kobe's fans to always have access to his products.

"I will continue to fight for that. Kobe's products sell out in seconds. That says everything," she said.

"I was hoping to forge a lifelong partnership with Nike that reflects my husband's legacy," she continued. "We will always do everything we can to honor Kobe and Gigi's legacies. That will never change."

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Yang Huafeng/China News Service/VCG via Getty Images

(NEW YORK) -- NBA legend Scottie Pippen announced on Monday the sudden death of his son, Antron. He was 33.

Pippen, who played for the Chicago Bulls, shared a series of photos of his eldest child on Instagram and penned an emotional tribute to his memory. The basketball great did not identify a cause of death.

"I'm heartbroken to share that yesterday, I said goodbye to my firstborn son Antron," said Pippen, 55. "The two of us shared a love for basketball and we had countless conversations about the game."

"Antron suffered from chronic asthma and if he hadn't had it, I truly believe he would've made it to the NBA. He never let that get him down, though -- Antron stayed positive and worked hard, and I am so proud of the man that he became," the six-time NBA champ said.

While calling for prayers for Karen McCollum, his ex-wife and Antron's mother, as well as his friends and family members who loved him, Pippen continued, "A kind heart and beautiful soul gone way too soon. I love you, son, rest easy until we meet again."

Pippen and McCollum wed in 1988 and divorced in 1990. Antron was their only child.

The basketball legend remarried in 1997 and welcomed four more children with current wife Larsa Pippen.

The "Real Housewives of Miami" alum honored her stepson on social media, writing in an Instagram Story, "Some truths in life are hard to accept. Your memories will never be forgotten! They will always remain with us forever. You are forever in our hearts, we love u and will miss u always Rip Antron."

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(LONDON) -- The backlash to the announcement on Sunday that 12 of soccer’s biggest teams would be forming their own breakaway "European Super League" has been nothing short of seismic. Pundits, fans, former players and even governments have been near united in their opposition to a proposal that has the potential to revolutionize the world’s most played and watched sport.

The clubs involved in the new project -- three from Italy, three from Spain and six from England -- have been heavily criticized. Each of the teams involved are household names in the U.S. -- with Real Madrid, Barcelona and Manchester United leading the charge. The other clubs to have signed up to the competition are Arsenal, Tottenham, Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, Inter, Milan and Juventus.

In major U.S. sports, franchises and legacy teams have a guaranteed place in elite competitions -- as in the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL and even the MLS. In soccer, participation at the very top of the sport has been dependent on results on the field.

Over the decades, the biggest and richest clubs in the world have generally enjoyed the most success, but each team competes on the basis that if they perform poorly, they will be excluded from the elite competitions, and could face relegation to lower divisions below the top domestic leagues, such as the Premier League in the U.K.

The same principle applies for smaller teams, too, who can dream of future successes as they advance up the soccer pyramid based on sporting merit alone. Similarly, supporting local teams has a massive cultural importance in Europe, with many often suspicious of outside investment, as teams -- especially lower down the professional leagues -- are expected to represent the values of their local communities.

“I think it’s just ingrained in you,” Shaun Pearson, the club captain of lower-league Wrexham, which has been taken over by Hollywood stars Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney, said in December when ABC News profiled the town and team. “Generally, when you come to the U.K., something that generally happens is where you are born, you support the team where you’re from. And especially when you go to working class towns.”

With the European Super League, however, that could be set to change, with what commentators have dubbed the “Americanization” of soccer.

Under the new proposal, 15 "Founding Clubs" from Spain, the U.K. and Italy will compete every year in a “franchise-style” competition with only five places to be allowed for teams to enter on merit each year. German and French teams have not signed with the original 12, but there are three spaces left for “Founding Clubs,” and in the proposed competition, five places will be awarded to other clubs dependent on their performances.

That, according to critics, represents a “closed shop,” undermining the integrity of the sport itself and the idea that playing in elite competitions is dependent on merit, not reputation. The historic importance of major European competitions would be diminished, critics have warned.

One lawmaker in the U.K. described the proposal as “the sporting equivalent of a billionaire’s gated community.”

For those involved, the financial incentive at a time when the coronavirus pandemic has significantly impacted the sport’s finances is obvious. Each of the 12 teams -- the self-described "Founding Clubs" -- are expected to net a $240 to $360 million fee for signing up alone, according to reports. Initially, the funds to pay for the new competition will come from the American investment bank JP Morgan Chase, the Financial Times reported.

Florentino Perez, the president of Spanish giants Real Madrid, defended the proposal on Tuesday, saying: "Whenever there is a change, there are always people who oppose it. We are doing this to save football at this critical moment."

The moneyed interests of mega-rich owners taking precedence over the interests of fans, however, is nothing new.

Awkward kick-off times agreed with broadcasters that make it difficult for fans to watch their teams around the country, ever-rising ticket prices and eye-watering amounts of money spent on players and their wages fueled by billion-dollar TV deals have eroded the trust between supporters and the clubs they support.

FIFA, the global soccer governing body, has come out in opposition to the "European Super League," but has had its own corruption scandals, and was heavily criticized for naming Qatar as the hosts of the next World Cup in 2024, upending the soccer calendar and prompting a wave of criticism from human rights organizations.

Furthermore, the richest clubs in recent years have dominated the top leagues and it has become increasingly difficult for smaller, less cash-rich teams to compete.

But the "European Super League" proposal is seen as an existential threat to the sport itself, with governing bodies already threatening to move to exclude the teams involved from their domestic leagues and current European competitions.

French clubs have not yet signed up to the project, but French President Emmanuel Macron and U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson have already indicated they will fight the project, with the British government indicating they could legislate to stop the move.

“Plans for a European Super League would be very damaging for football and we support football authorities in taking action,” Johnson said in a statement. “They would strike at the heart of the domestic game, and will concern fans across the country.”

Aleksander Ceferin, the president of UEFA, European soccer’s governing body, slammed the proposal in a fiery press conference after the announcement, describing the new league as a “spit in the face” for soccer lovers and suggested that players in participating teams could be banned from the World Cup.

“We are all united against this nonsense of a project,” he said. “Our game has become the greatest sport in the world based on open competition, integrity and sporting merit. And we cannot allow and we will not allow that to change.”

UEFA would “do everything in our power to ensure this never ends up in fruition,” he added.

For the time being, however, there are no indications the teams involved will go back on the proposed plans. As the controversy around the project continues to unfold daily, what the sport will look like in the coming years is now more uncertain than ever.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from Tuesday's sports events:


Seattle 4, LA Dodgers 3

Boston 11, Chi White Sox 4
Tampa Bay 4, Kansas City 1
Texas 6, LA Angels 4
Minnesota at Oakland (Postponed)

San Francisco 2, Philadelphia 0
St. Louis 12, Washington 5
Milwaukee 3, San Diego 1

Detroit 109, Cleveland 105
Chicago 102, Boston 96
Golden State 107, Philadelphia 96
Miami 113, Houston 91
Washington 119, Oklahoma City 107
San Antonio 109, Indiana 94
Phoenix 128, Milwaukee 127 (OT)
Denver 139, Memphis 137 (2OT)
Utah 111, LA Lakers 97

Florida 4, Columbus 2
Tampa Bay 3, Carolina 2 (OT)
Dallas 3, Detroit 2 (SO)
Nashville 5, Chicago 2
Edmonton 4, Montreal 1
Minnesota 5, Arizona 2
Ottawa 4, Calgary 2
Vegas 3, San Jose 2

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from Sunday's sports events:


Cleveland 6, Cincinnati 3

Chi White Sox 3, Boston 2
Tampa Bay 4, NY Yankees 2
Kansas City 2, Toronto 0
Texas 1, Baltimore 0
Oakland 3, Detroit 2
Seattle 7, Houston 2
Chi White Sox 5, Boston 1
Minnesota at LA Angels (Postponed)

Philadelphia 2, St. Louis 0
San Francisco 1, Miami 0
Arizona 5, Washington 2
NY Mets 2, Colorado 1
Pittsburgh 6, Milwaukee 5
San Diego 5, LA Dodgers 2
Atlanta 13, Chi Cubs 4

Atlanta 129, Indiana 117
New York 122, New Orleans 112 (OT)
Miami 109, Brooklyn 107
Charlotte 109, Portland 101
Houston 114, Orlando 110
Toronto 112, Oklahoma City 106
Sacramento 121, Dallas 107
LA Clippers 124, Minnesota 105

Boston 6, Washington 3
Buffalo 4, Pittsburgh 2
NY Rangers 5, New Jersey 3
Vegas 5, Anaheim 2
NY Islanders 1, Philadelphia 0 (OT)
Vancouver 3, Toronto 2 (OT)
Los Angeles at Colorado (Postponed)

LA Galaxy 3, Miami 2
Philadelphia 0, Columbus 0 (TIE)
Vancouver 1, Portland 0

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

(NEW YORK) — The NBA has told the team’s to be ready for the verdict of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd this week, including the possibilities of game postponements, sources told ESPN NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski. 

Closing arguments in the trial are expected to begin on Monday. 

Chauvin faces second-degree unintentional murder, third-degree murder, and second-degree manslaughter charges in the death of Floyd after he held his knee on Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes last May. He has pleaded not guilty.

Last Monday, the NBA postponed the Minnesota Timberwolves and Brooklyn Nets game following the police shooting of Daunte Wright in nearby Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.

Minnesota is on a four-game, six-day road trip in California and Utah, before returning home on April 26 against the Jazz.

Last August, the Milwaukee Bucks boycotted its game against the Orlando Magic after the shooting of Jacob Blake by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The NBA postponed playoff games for three days following the shooting.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(NEW YORK) — Here are the scores from yesterday's games:



Final  Cincinnati   3  Cleveland   2



Final  Toronto       5  Kansas City         1

Final  Tampa Bay     6  N.Y. Yankees        3

Final  Oakland       7  Detroit             0

Final  Boston        7  Chicago White Sox   4

Final  Kansas City   3  Toronto             2

Final  Baltimore     6  Texas               1

Final  Houston       1  Seattle             0

Minnesota  at  L-A Angels  9:07 p.m.  (Postponed)



Final  Washington     6  Arizona         2

Final  Chicago Cubs  13  Atlanta         4

Final  N.Y. Mets      4  Colorado        3

Final  St. Louis      9  Philadelphia    4

Final  Milwaukee      7  Pittsburgh      1

Final  Miami          7  San Francisco   6

Final  Colorado       7  N.Y. Mets       2

Final  L.A. Dodgers   2  San Diego       0



Final OT  L.A. Lakers  127  Utah          115

Final  Chicago      106  Cleveland     96

Final  Washington   121  Detroit       100

Final  Boston       119  Golden State  114

Final  Memphis      128  Milwaukee     115

Final  San Antonio  111  Phoenix       85



Final  N-Y Rangers   6  New Jersey     3

Final  Washington    6  Philadelphia   3

Final  Pittsburgh    3  Buffalo        2

Final  Ottawa        4  Montreal       0

Final  Arizona       3  St. Louis      2

Final  Chicago       4  Detroit        0

Final  Edmonton      3  Winnipeg       0

Final  Florida       5  Tampa Bay      3

Final  Carolina      3  Nashville      1

Final  Minnesota     5  San Jose       2

Final  Dallas        5  Columbus       1



Final  Montreal               4  Toronto FC         2

Final tie  Atlanta                0  Orlando City       0

Final  Los Angeles FC         2  Austin FC          0

Final  Sporting Kansas City   2  New York           1

Final  D.C. United            2  New York City FC   1

Final tie  Colorado               0  FC Dallas          0

Final tie  Cincinnati             2  Nashville          2

Final tie  New England            2  Chicago            2

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from yesterday's sports events:

Cincinnati  10  Cleveland   3

Tampa Bay     8  N.Y. Yankees   2
Baltimore     5  Texas          2
Oakland       3  Detroit        0
L.A. Angels  10  Minnesota      3
Seattle       6  Houston        5
Toronto        at  Kansas City  6:10 p.m.  (Postponed)
Chi White Sox  at  Boston       5:10 p.m.  (Postponed)

Atlanta        5  Chicago Cubs    2
Philadelphia   9  St. Louis       2
Miami          4  San Francisco   1
Washington     1  Arizona         0
Pittsburgh     6  Milwaukee       1
L.A. Dodgers  11  San Diego       6
N-Y Mets  at  Colorado  8:10 p.m.  (Postponed)

Utah          119  Indiana        111
Detroit       110  Oklahoma City  104
Philadelphia  106  L.A. Clippers  103
OT  Washington    117  New Orleans    115
Brooklyn      130  Charlotte      115
Toronto       113  Orlando        102
Denver        128  Houston        99
Memphis       126  Chicago        115
Minnesota     119  Miami          111
Portland      107  San Antonio    106
New York      117  Dallas         109

Montreal    2  Calgary         1
Boston      3  N-Y Islanders   0
Minnesota   3  San Jose        2
Vegas       4  Anaheim         0
Edmonton     at  Vancouver  9 p.m.  (Postponed)
Los Angeles  at  Colorado   9 p.m.  (Postponed)

Houston   2  San Jose    1
Seattle   4  Minnesota   0


Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


YUKI IWAMURA/AFP via Getty Images

(TOKYO) -- With only a few months left to go before the Tokyo Olympics are set to begin, one of Japan’s top officials suggested that the games could be canceled or carried out without fans.

“If it seems impossible to go on with the games, they must be definitely canceled,” Toshihiro Nikai, secretary general of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, said on Thursday.

The country has reportedly lagged behind in vaccination rollouts compared to other major wealthy countries.

As of Thursday, the country, which has a population of 126 million, had only vaccinated 1.8 million people.

Earlier this month, rumors were met with outrage when it was reported that Japanese Olympic athletes were going to be prioritized for a vaccine shot over civilians, Japan Today reported. Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato denied the allegations in a press conference April 8.

Seiko Hashimoto, the president of the Tokyo Olympics, echoed Kato’s sentiment when asked about vaccinating athletes.

“As the government has said, we have not had such a discussion so far [about prioritizing athletes for inoculation],” Hashimoto said during a press conference April 9.

Taro Kono, the minister in charge of vaccine distribution, has since made it clear that the Tokyo Olympics have not been a factor in the government’s vaccination efforts.

“The Olympics are not on our radar,” he said April 9.

The ceremonial Olympic Torch relay to Tokyo began March 25. The route had been planned to avoid areas of high COVID-19 infection rates.

A final decision on the capacity of the games is expected in April, according to Hashimoto.

“A safe and secure Tokyo Games is the highest priority for us,” he said. “We are making [the] utmost efforts, and we would like to continue with our efforts.”

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(LOS ANGELES) -- A home run turned into an extra special snack for one fan during the Los Angeles Dodgers' win Wednesday night.

Third baseman Justin Turner hit his third home run of the season straight into Brando Lopez's plate of nachos, covering the fan in cheese sauce.

Turner said that after he rounded the bases, he quickly rounded out his debt and ordered Lopez a fresh new plate of nachos from the dugout.

"I felt bad," Turner said. "I'm sure it was not a $2 plate of nachos, so I wanted to replace them for the guy."

Lopez joined ABC News' World News Tonight Thursday with a message to Turner.

"I wanna take the time to thank J.T. because as soon as it happened, he had somebody come over and replace my nachos," he said.

Lopez said the cheesy moment led to some sweet messages from friends he's missed during the pandemic.

"I've been getting tons of support and messages from friends, family, people that I haven't talked to in a really long time," he said. "So it's nice to hear from those people."

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from Thursday's sports events:


Seattle 4, Baltimore 2
Minnesota 4, Boston 3
Cleveland 4, Chi White Sox 2
Seattle 2, Baltimore 1
Texas 6, Tampa Bay 4
Kansas City 7, Toronto 5
Oakland 8, Detroit 4

Atlanta 7, Miami 6
San Diego 8, Pittsburgh 3
Arizona 11, Washington 6
LA Dodgers 7, Colorado 5
Philadelphia at NY Mets (Postponed)

Milwaukee 120, Atlanta 109
Golden State 119, Cleveland 101
Boston 121, LA Lakers 113
Phoenix 122, Sacramento 114

NY Rangers 4, New Jersey 0
Winnipeg 5, Toronto 2
Tampa Bay 3, Florida 2 (OT)
Carolina 4, Nashville 1
Buffalo 5, Washington 2
Boston 4, NY Islanders 1
Philadelphia 2, Pittsburgh 1 (SO)
Detroit 4, Chicago 1
Dallas 4 Columbus 1

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(NEW YORK) -- For a little over a decade, Ralph Lauren has dressed some of America's top athletes.

This year, the brand has given fans an early look at what Team USA will be sporting for the Tokyo Olympics closing ceremony.

The company has also unveiled an associated apparel collection for the 2020 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic teams.

As seen in campaign photos, athletes are wearing crisp white, blue and red looks that include a drawstring jacket with an American flag on the sleeve, a Polo shirt, a striped belt and denim pants.

To create the latest uniforms, Ralph Lauren took an eco-friendly approach by using sustainable materials such as leather alternatives, Repreve recycled polyester derived from plastic water bottles and other renewable plant-based materials that are all manufactured in the U.S.

In addition to the uniforms, the label has also created a protective face mask made from U.S.-grown cotton.

"Following a year marked by isolation and strife, this summer's Games are a true testament to the resiliency of the human spirit and the universal power of sport to energize and unite the world," David Lauren, Ralph Lauren chief innovation and branding officer and vice chairman of the board, said in a statement.

He continued, "As we come together to celebrate and compete, we must also embrace our responsibility to protect the planet we all call home."

Lauren added that as a part of the brand's commitment, it will continue to invest in and scale sustainability innovations -- "dressing our nation's best and brightest athletes in timeless clothing that has been consciously created."

After being postponed amid the COVID-19 pandemic, opening ceremonies are scheduled to begin on July 23 and end on Aug. 8.

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(TUCSON, Ariz.) -- The University of Arizona has hired a new men's basketball coach.

Tommy Lloyd, a former assistant coach at Gonzaga University, was chosen to lead the Wildcats, replacing Sean Miller who was fired last week after 12 seasons with Arizona, the university announced on Wednesday.

"We are thrilled that Tommy and his family are joining the Wildcat Family and reestablishing our men's basketball program among the elite in the nation," Arizona Vice President and Director of Athletics Dave Heeke said in a statement. "After speaking with a tremendous pool of candidates, and with so many in and out of the college basketball world, it became clear that Tommy has the passion, the experience, the knowledge, the coaching and recruiting acumen and the drive to lead us to championships.”

Citing sources, ESPN reports Lloyd was interviewed by Arizona over the weekend. The university has offered him a five-year contract.

"I am extremely grateful to President Robbins and Dave Heeke for the incredible opportunity to lead one of the country's most storied men's basketball programs," Lloyd, 46, said in a statement. "While there are certainly potential obstacles ahead for our program, I embrace the challenge as we will build on the foundation in place to compete for PAC-12 and national championships.”

“I know how much Arizona Basketball means to the institution, its fans, its community and the state, and I cannot wait to get started,” Lloyd continued. “That works begin now. My family and I are excited to settle in Tucson and begin a new chapter."

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from Wednesday's sports events:


Toronto 5, NY Yankees 4
Boston 3, Minnesota 2
Kansas City 6, LA Angels 1
Boston 7, Minnesota 1
Texas 5, Tampa Bay 1
Chi White Sox 8, Cleveland 0
Detroit 6, Houston 4
Seattle at Baltimore (Postponed)

Washington 6, St. Louis 0
Milwaukee 7, Chi Cubs 0
San Francisco 3, Cincinnati 0
NY Mets 5, Philadelphia 1
Pittsburgh 5, San Diego 1
Miami 6, Atlanta 5
LA. Dodgers 4, Colorado 2

Milwaukee 130, Minnesota 105
Cleveland 103, Charlotte 90
Philadelphia 123, Brooklyn 117
Toronto 117, San Antonio 112
New York 116, New Orleans 106
Orlando 115, Chicago 106
LA Clippers 100, Detroit 98
Golden State 147, Oklahoma City 109
Indiana 132, Houston 124
Dallas 114, Memphis 113
Denver 123, Miami 106
Washington 123, Sacramento 111

Minnesota 5, Arizona 2
Winnipeg 3, Ottawa 2
Calgary 4, Montreal 1
Colorado 4, St. Louis 3
Vegas 6, Los Angeles 2
Anaheim 4, San Jose 1

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from Tuesday's sports events:


Oakland 7, Arizona 5

Boston 4, Minnesota 2
Seattle 4, Baltimore 3
Baltimore 7, Seattle 6
Texas 8, Tampa Bay 3
Toronto 7, N.Y. Yankees 3
Kansas City 3, LA Angels 2
Cleveland 2, Chi White Sox 0
Detroit 8, Houston 2

NY Mets 4, Philadelphia 3
NY Mets 4, Philadelphia 0
Pittsburgh 8, San Diego 4
Chi Cubs 3, Milwaukee 2
St. Louis 14, Washington 3
Miami 14, Atlanta 8
San Francisco 7, Cincinnati 6
LA Dodgers 7, Colorado 0

Brooklyn 127, Minnesota 97
Atlanta 108, Toronto 103
LA Clippers 126, Indiana 115
LA Lakers 101, Charlotte 93
Utah 106, Oklahoma City 96
Phoenix 106, Miami 86
Boston 116, Portland 115

NY Rangers 3, New Jersey 0
Washington 6, Philadelphia 1
Boston 3, Buffalo 2 (SO)
Calgary 3, Toronto 2 (OT)
Nashville 7, Tampa Bay 2
Florida 3, Dallas 2 (OT)
Philadelphia at Pittsburgh (Postponed)

Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


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