Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
NASCAR notebook: Elliott must overcome blown engine -- again
MARTINSVILLE, Va. -- For a driver below the cut line at the start of the Round of 8 in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs, taking the green flag at the back of the field doesn't portend well for the prospects of advancing to the Championship 4. That's the problem Chase Elliott will have to overcome, starting with Sunday's First Data 500 at Martinsville Speedway (3 p.m. ET on NBCSN, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). The silver lining is that Elliott has already been in that position in the Playoffs this year.
Jets cut G Osemele after month-long dispute
The New York Jets cut veteran guard Kelechi Osemele on Saturday amidst a month-long injury dispute. The news followed a report by ESPN's Adam Schefter earlier Saturday that Osemele and the NFL Players Association were considering specific action against a team doctor after it was revealed that damage to his torn labrum was more extensive than first thought. Osemele had surgery Friday.
Courage plot to stop Chicago's Kerr in NWSL championship game
Asked how North Carolina Courage plan to dismantle the upstart Chicago Red Stars in Sunday's U.S. National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) championship game, winger Crystal Dunn summed up a key part of their tactics in three words: "Stop Sam Kerr." Newly-crowned MVP Kerr looms large over the clash as the Australian three-times league Golden Boot winner aims to lead her Chicago team to their first title.
Federer ousts Tsitsipas in Basel semis for 50th win of the season
Top seed Roger Federer dispatched Greek third seed Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4 6-4 in the semi-finals of the Swiss Indoors championships in Basel on Saturday for his 50th win of the season. It was a record 16th time that Federer had won 50 ATP tour games in a season and he has yet to drop a set at this year's Basel tournament, where he has now won 23 consecutive matches over the years.
Hader, Chapman win Reliever of the Year awards
Josh Hader of the Milwaukee Brewers and Aroldis Chapman of the New York Yankees were announced as the winners of the 2019 Reliever of the Year awards on Saturday. Hader won the Trevor Hoffman National League award while Chapman won the Mariano Rivera American League award.
Svechnikov scores twice as Canes blank Blackhawks
Andrei Svechnikov scored twice and Petr Mrazek stopped 32 shots Saturday as the Carolina Hurricanes halted a three-game losing streak with a 4-0 defeat of the Chicago Blackhawks in Raleigh, N.C. Nino Niederreiter and Jordan Staal also scored for the Hurricanes, who tallied twice on the power play.
Tennis: Top seed Thiem outlasts Berrettini to reach first Vienna final
Top seed Dominic Thiem came back from a set down to earn a 3-6 7-5 6-3 victory over Italy's Matteo Berrettini on Saturday to advance to his first Vienna Open final. With the home crowd behind Thiem at the Wiener Stadthalle, the 26-year-old broke Berrettini five times in the contest and became the first Austrian to reach the tournament's final since Juergen Melzer beat compatriot Andreas Haider-Maurer in 2010.
Ryan's start streak to end as Falcons host Seahawks
Things just aren't getting any better for the Atlanta Falcons. Quarterback Matt Ryan was ruled out with an ankle injury, and his decade-long streak of 154 consecutive starts will end when the Falcons (1-6) host the Seattle Seahawks (5-2) on Sunday.
MLB umpire Meriwether dies at 63
Longtime major league umpire Julius "Chuck" Meriwether passed away at 63, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred announced Saturday. His cause of death was not released.
Alpine skiing: New Zealand teenager Robinson stuns Shiffrin in World Cup opener
New Zealand teenager Alice Robinson stunned overall defending champion Mikaela Shiffrin to win the World Cup opening giant slalom race by a narrow margin in Soelden, Austria, on Saturday. On a day when New Zealand's All Blacks were knocked out of the Rugby World Cup by England in the semi-finals, 17-year-old Robinson gave her country something to cheer about after dominating the field on a course she had never skied on before.