Sanchez transfer to Man United ‘likely to happen,’ Wenger says

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says a deal sending Alexis Sanchez to Manchester United is “likely to happen” and that Henrikh Mkhitaryan would join Arsenal in exchange.
alexis sanchez AP

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says a deal sending Alexis Sanchez to Manchester United is “likely to happen” and that midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan would join Arsenal in exchange.

Rival English Premier League club Manchester City ended its interest in Sanchez this week, leaving United most likely to sign the Chilean forward.

Asked if Sanchez’s move to Old Trafford was close, Wenger replied: “I’ve worked on transfers for 30 years, so it is likely to happen. But at any moment, at any minute, things can break down.”

On Mkhitaryan moving in the opposite direction, Wenger said “if it’s a possibility, it’s because I like the player.”

Wenger said it would be “an exchange of players, and I think one would replace the other.”

GoDaddy to sponsor Patrick in ‘Danica Double’

Danica Patrick is going back to green.
In this April 1, 2015, file photo, face car driver Danica Patrick poses with her car in front of the New York Stock Exchange before the GoDaddy IPO.

In this April 1, 2015, file photo, face car driver Danica Patrick poses with her car in front of the New York Stock Exchange before the GoDaddy IPO. (AP)

Danica Patrick is going back to green.

GoDaddy Green, to be exact — a fitting color for her farewell tour.

The company will sponsor Patrick in the upcoming “Danica Double” that will close out her racing career, The Associated Press has learned. Patrick has no ride yet for next month’s Daytona 500 or the Indianapolis 500 in May, but she now has the financial backing to pull it off.

This time around, the original GoDaddy Girl will symbolize the new core mission of the company that helped make her one of the world’s most recognizable athletes.

“There’s this great story: I left IndyCar with GoDaddy on my car, I started NASCAR with GoDaddy on my car, I’m most recognized as the GoDaddy green car and driver, and so to finish up my career that way feels appropriate,” Patrick told the AP from Scottsdale, Arizona.

Her final race will be the Indy 500, an appropriate choice because it was “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” that rocketed Patrick and GoDaddy into pop culture notoriety.

GoDaddy and Patrick grew up together. The company switched series with her and marketed her as a strong, sexy woman in 13 Super Bowl commercials — a record appearance for celebrities. Now, the company is most interested in Patrick the budding businesswoman who is firmly closing the door on her racing career and rebranding herself as an entrepreneur . She has a book out, an apparel line, a wine label and confirmed to AP this week that she’s dating Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

“Our goals are so well-aligned,” Barb Rechterman, the chief marketing officer of GoDaddy, told AP. “She’s passionate, tenacious and creative just like so many of our customers who are also looking to leverage the power of the internet and turn their ‘side hustle’ into a full-time business. Danica absolutely epitomizes the heart of our GoDaddy customers.”

Prepare to hear a lot about the “side hustle” as GoDaddy climbs aboard the so-far fledgling “Danica Double.”

Patrick announced in November she would end her driving career with the Daytona 500 and Indy 500, but didn’t have a deal completed for either race. Still doesn’t. Yet somehow, Patrick always figures a way to get what she wants. Talks ended with Chip Ganassi Racing about a possible ride, and late last month, Patrick said, she called former GoDaddy founder Bob Parsons and asked about a reunion.

GoDaddy has rebranded since it last teamed with Patrick. The company now touts itself as “the world’s largest cloud platform dedicated to small, independent ventures,” and there’s no better spokeswoman than Patrick, who is in the next chapter of her life and her brand.

GoDaddy pulled out of racing after the 2015 season, and Patrick hasn’t had the same level of funding and marketing support since. Patrick has slowly reshaped her image, first into a Instagram model and is now a full-blown lifestyle guru. She realized — at the age of 35 — she was on her own.

She and GoDaddy aligned for a splashy move into NASCAR, where she was glamorous off the track but only mediocre on it. Through all of this, she was married, divorced, spent five years dating fellow driver and competitor Ricky Stenhouse Jr., and then seemed to find herself through a tailored diet, exercise and a healthy lifestyle.

She is cutting the cord on racing after Indy, and her focus is on a sense of well-being far away from the track.

“Their business is so perfectly paired to what is going on with mine, so when we sat down and met, it was like, ‘Let’s talk about our business. Let’s talk about the messaging. How does this work?'” Patrick said. “And this is undeniably perfect for both of us. Not only is it a huge two races and the biggest two races of the year, but on top of that, you have so much ‘side hustle’ going on, and all the messaging and our brands, and where we are going is so perfectly paired.”w

GoDaddy can help Patrick move on to whatever it is for racing’s former “It Girl.” The company will help her streamline her online presence. Patrick, for the company, is back as a neon green-and-yellow symbol to all the wannabe entrepreneurs chasing dreams.

She’ll get those rides, too. Patrick said she knows she will because she believes she will.

“That’s just the way the universe works,” she said. “You have to ask for what you want. Things have taken a long time with this, but you just have to go with the flow on these things. The universe is not on your time schedule.”

RECAP: Griffin, Clippers top Nuggets for sixth win in a row

Blake Griffin had 20 points and 12 rebounds, and Los Angeles held off Denver Nuggets 109-104 on Wednesday night.

LOS ANGELES (AP) Blake Griffin had 20 points and 12 rebounds, and the Los Angeles Clippers held off the Denver Nuggets 109-104 on Wednesday night for their season-high sixth straight win.

Montrezl Harrell added 18 points and Lou Williams had 17 for the Clippers. Los Angeles is 12-3 in its last 15 games, tied with Golden State for the NBA’s best record over that span.

The Clippers were just 7 of 14 from the free-throw line over the final 3:09, but they hung on after last-second turnovers by Will Barton and Wilson Chandler.

Gary Harris scored 19 points in the Nuggets’ fifth straight road loss. Nikola Jokic added 18 points, Barton had 17 points and Mason Plumlee had 16 points and 14 rebounds.

The Nuggets led by five early in the fourth. The Clippers scored eight straight points, including five by Wesley Johnson, to go up 90-87.

Neither team led by more than seven points the rest of the game.

Clinging to a 99-98 lead, Harrell missed a pair of free throws, shaking his head as he backed away from the line. He got fouled twice more in succession and made 3 of 4, extending the lead to 102-98.

Harrell came up with a block on Plumlee at the other end, and Johnson hit a 3-pointer, making it 105-98.

Denver got to 106-104 on four straight points by Harris and two free throws from Barton.

The Nuggets ran off 11 straight points for a 79-69 lead in the third only to blow all of it. The Clippers answered with their own 11-0 spurt, including consecutive 3-pointers by Tyrone Wallace and Harrell, to lead 80-79. Emmanuel Mudiay’s basket sent Denver into the fourth leading 81-80.

TIP-INS

Nuggets: They are 8-14 against the Clippers at Staples Center over the last 11 seasons. … Denver fell to 7-17 on the road overall and 3-13 against the West away from home.

Clippers: C DeAndre Jordan (sprained left ankle) missed his third straight game and the swelling hasn’t gone down. Jordan had initially been expected back Saturday in Utah, but coach Doc Rivers says he’s not ready and won’t be rushed. … G Austin Rivers (right ankle) has missed eight straight games. He is wearing a boot and will be re-evaluated in the next week.

UP NEXT

Nuggets: Host Phoenix on Friday, having beaten the Suns by 23 on Jan. 3.

Clippers: At Utah on Saturday. The teams split their first two meetings, both in Los Angeles.

GRAPHIC VIDEO: Chicago Bulls’ Kris Dunn shatters teeth in face-first fall

In a fast paced play, Chicago Bulls point guard Kris Dunn chipped and dislocated his two front teeth and was evaluated for a concussion after taking an ugly fall during the final minutes of Wednesday night’s 119-112 loss to the Golden State Warriors.
Jan. 17: Chicago Bulls' Kris Dunn lays on the floor after hitting his face on the floor during a game against the Golden State Warriors.

Jan. 17: Chicago Bulls’ Kris Dunn lays on the floor after hitting his face on the floor during a game against the Golden State Warriors. (AP)

A Chicago Bulls point guard on Wednesday night dislocated two teeth after he face-planted after a dunk during a home game against the Golden State Warriors.

Kris Dunn took the fall during the final minutes of the game. He was evaluated for a concussion and the team said he did not display any concussion symptoms.

Team officials will re-evaluate Dunn and offer another update later Thursday.

Brutal scene in Chicago. It looks like Kris Dunn broke a bunch of teeth falling face first to the floor pic.twitter.com/1IgeEdBH2B

— Dime on UPROXX (@DimeUPROXX) January 18, 2018

With 2 minutes and 52 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, Dunn stole the ball and broke toward the net. He dunked the ball but the momentum carried him and he was unable to correct himself during the fall.

“He didn’t lose teeth,” Fred Hoiberg, the Bulls head coach, told ESPN. “There was a good little chunk that he took out of the floor. He’s being evaluated. Tough kid.”

Dunn was able to stand up and walk to the Bull’s locker room after the fall.

The Bulls lost the game 119-112.

RECAP: Ducks beat Penguins, now 7-3-1 in last 11 games

Getzlaf became the first player in Ducks history to have 600 career assists.

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Rickard Rakell and Adam Henrique scored 1:35 apart to Anaheim the lead during its four-goal second period, and the Ducks went on to beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-3 Wednesday night.

Chris Wagner and Ondrej Kase also scored for Anaheim in the middle period, and Hampus Lindholm added an empty-netter in the final second of the game. John Gibson stopped 30 shots to help the Ducks improve to 7-3-1 in their last 11 games.

Anaheim scored four goals in a period for first time since doing it in the third period at Buffalo last Feb. 9.

Jake Guentzel, Phil Kessel and Evgeni Malkin scored for the Penguins, who snapped a four-game win streak. Tristan Jarry made 28 saves.

With the Ducks trailing 1-0, Rakell tied it on a redirect of a shot by Francois Beauchemin at 4:17 of the second. Henrique then put them ahead at 5:42, beating Jarry with a wraparound while the rookie was caught flatfooted at the opposite post trying to get his stick back.

Getzlaf is the FIRST player in #NHLDucks history to reach that milestone and the 41st player in @NHL history to record 600 assists with one team.

He has 22 assists in 22 games, tied for second in the league in assists-per-game (1.00). pic.twitter.com/xOl20upbDo

— Anaheim Ducks (@AnaheimDucks) January 18, 2018

Wagner scored on a short-handed breakaway to make it 3-1 at 9:24, notching the third special-teams goal of his career, all of which have come this season.

Kase’s smooth breakaway backhand with 1:32 left in the period capped off the scoring deluge. Kase, who also had an assist, has five points in his last three games.

Kessel had a power-play goal to make it 4-2 with 10:25 remaining in the third, and Guentzel added a power-play goal with 5:54 remaining to pull the Penguins within one. Sidney Crosby had assists on both goals, giving him 13 points and 10 assists during a five-game point streak.

Lindholm capped the scoring with 0.1 seconds left.

Malkin’s 20th goal of the season gave the Penguins a 1-0 lead late in the first period. A sustained forecheck eventually resulted in a takeaway by Carl Hagelin, leading to Malkin scoring from tahe right circle. It was Malkin’s sixth goal in the last five games and gave him 20 for the fifth straight season and 10th time in his career. He joined Mario Lemieux, Jaromir Jagr and Crosby as the only Penguins with at least 10 seasons of 20 goals.

Penguins goalie Matt Murray left the team for its three-game California road trip following the death of his father on Tuesday.

NOTES: Ducks LW Andrew Cogliano served the final game of his two-game suspension for an illegal check to Kings F Adrian Kempe. . Hagelin extended his point streak to four games, with one goal and four assists in that span. … Ducks D Cam Fowler had two assists.

UP NEXT

Penguins: Visit the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday.

Ducks: Host the Kings on Friday seeking their second win in the Freeway Faceoff rivalry in six days

Roach, Bamba lead Longhorns upset of #8 Texas Tech

Roach, Bamba lead Longhorns upset of #8 Texas Tech

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Kerwin Roach II scored 20 points in a surprise return to the lineup and Texas got another home win over a Top 25 opponent in a week, beating No. 8 Texas Tech 67-58 Wednesday night.

Roach, who had missed the previous two games with a fracture in his left, non-shooting hand, was expected to miss a few more. But he suited up for pregame warmups and was cleared to play right before tipoff.

Roach gave the Longhorns a new threat both inside and out with his 3-point shooting and aggressive drives to the basket. The Longhorns — who beat then-No. 16 TCU 99-98 in double-overtime last Wednesday — also played their best defense in weeks, anchored by freshman center Mo Bamba under the basket. Bamba had 15 points, 11 rebounds and five blocks.

Texas (12-6, 3-3 Big 12) led by 13 early in the second half before the Red Raiders rallied to get within four. But the Longhorns got two big 3-pointers by Eric Davis, Jr., including one with 3:28 left that pushed the lead back to 10.

Jarrett Culver scored 16 points to lead Texas Tech (15-3, 4-2).

BIG PICTURE

Texas Tech: The Red Raiders are having their best season in years and second-year coach Chris Beard has the program contending for the Big 12 title. But they missed a chance to pick up an important road win and dropped their 22nd consecutive game in Austin. The Red Raiders haven’t beaten Texas in Austin since 1996, when both programs were in the old Southwest Conference.

Texas: The Longhorns will get a shot of confidence in an inconsistent season with another big win. Most of all the Longhorns showed they can protect a big lead, even if just barely. Texas let a double-digit second half lead get away in a crushing road loss at Oklahoma State last week.

UP NEXT

Texas Tech plays at Iowa State

Texas plays at No. 6 West Virginia

Anthony, Adams lead Thunder past Lakers 114-90

Anthony, Adams lead Thunder past Lakers 114-90

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Carmelo Anthony scored 27 points to help the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Los Angeles Lakers 114-90 on Wednesday night.

Steven Adams had 21 points and 10 rebounds and Russell Westbrook added 19 points and seven assists for the Thunder, who won their third straight. The Thunder shot 48 percent overall and outrebounded the Lakers 54-30.

Julius Randle scored all 16 of his points in the first half for the Lakers. Rookie point guard Lonzo Ball sat out his second straight game with a sore left knee, and the injury news got worse for the Lakers. Rookie forward Kyle Kuzma left with a finger joint sprain and did not return and forward Kentavious Caldwell-Pope left with a right Achilles tendon strain and did not return.

The Thunder led 60-54 at halftime behind 16 points from Anthony and 14 from Adams. Westbrook had just two points until scoring eight in the final three minutes of the second quarter.

Oklahoma City started strong in the second half. A 3-pointer by Paul George bumped the lead to 11, and a 3-point play by Westbrook midway through the quarter pushed the margin to 14.

Westbrook got Corey Brewer off balance with multiple crossover dribbles before blowing by him for a layup that gave the Thunder an 86-70 lead. A 3-pointer by Anthony made it 91-70 and forced the Lakers to call timeout late in the third quarter. The Thunder controlled the game the rest of the way.

TIP-INS

Lakers: F Brandon Ingram returned after missing a game with a mild left ankle sprain. He had eight points in 26 minutes. … Shot 55 percent from the field in the first half, but just 47 percent in the game. … Pope scored 10 points in 15 minutes. He was one of two Lakers to score in double figures.

Thunder: Boxer Floyd “Money” Mayweather attended the game. … G Andre Roberson returned after missing eight games with left patellar tendinitis. He finished with four points and three steals in 17 minutes.

UP NEXT

The Lakers host the Pacers on Friday.

The Thunder play at Cleveland on Saturday.

Aldridge, Mills lead Spurs over Nets after Leonard shut down

Aldridge, Mills lead Spurs over Nets after Leonard shut down

NEW YORK (AP) — The news about Kawhi Leonard was bad, though at least there’s some consolation for the San Antonio Spurs.

The way LaMarcus Aldridge is playing, they might be able to hang on until their other star forward gets back.

Aldridge scored 34 points and the Spurs responded to the latest absence of Leonard by beating the Brooklyn Nets 100-95 on Wednesday night.

“L.A. is the reason we’ve kept a pretty good record and stayed in the hunt with so many injuries, in-and-outs, Kawhi and Tony (Parker) being gone so long,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “It’s L.A. every night. Maybe somebody else will step up with him, but he’s been a warrior for sure. We’d be in deep kimchi if he isn’t playing the way he is.”

The Spurs announced earlier Wednesday that Leonard would be out indefinitely so he can continue rehabilitating from the right thigh injury that forced him to miss the start of the season.

“We didn’t feel he was ready. His confidence level wasn’t there, so we decided to give it some more time,” Popovich said.

They were fine without him Wednesday, thanks also to Patty Mills’ seven 3-pointers and 25 points, and Pau Gasol’s 13 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists.

“It was one of those things that we got told this morning and it was like, we can’t do anything about it, we can’t control it, so this is the group,” Mills said. “We don’t know how long he’s going to be out for, but this is our group and we’ve got go and get the job done.”

Mills combined with Aldridge on the most important moment of the game, a three-point play for Aldridge with 53 seconds remaining on a pass from the reserve guard after the Nets had cut a 17-point deficit to three.

Allen Crabbe scored 20 points and Joe Harris had 18 for the Nets, who lost their third straight.

“Obviously they get the ball to Aldridge and Gasol and then they obviously make plays to their shooters off the post-up actions, and Patty Mills had a great day today as well,” Nets coach Kenny Atkinson said.

Mills went 5 for 5 off the bench in the first half, all 3-pointers, and finished with the most 3-pointers by a Spurs player this season.

TIP-INS

Spurs: San Antonio was also without Manu Ginobili because of a bruised right thigh. … Ginobili and Davis Bertans had shared the Spurs’ high of six 3-pointers in a game this season.

Nets: Brooklyn has lost five straight at home. … The Nets have dropped the last six meetings.

KAWHI’S CONCERNS

Leonard has played in just nine games after missing the beginning of the season because of right quadriceps tendinopathy. He also was sidelined briefly because of a shoulder injury. Popovich said Leonard hadn’t sustained another injury, but also didn’t seem confident in his ability to play at the level that had him finishing third in the voting for NBA MVP last season.

“He didn’t reinjure it or anything but he was having pain, but not right after games, but maybe the next day at noon or that kind of thing and so the pain wasn’t dissipating,” Popovich said. “It wasn’t going in the right direction, it was going the other way and you’ve got to be confident in your body to go out there and play at the level that he’s expected to play.”

POPOVICH ON …

PLAYER ALTERCATIONS: “NBA fights are the silliest, namby-pambiest things I’ve ever seen in my life. Except there was that one in the stands a few years ago. That one got ugly.”

RESPONDING TO REFEREES: “It evens out, it’s just that we’re all so prejudice it’s ridiculous. We think we’re the ones getting screwed all the time. So referees cannot win. I don’t care what happens, they will never win. Everybody’s always going to (complain) about them, so it’s best to just play the game, don’t cry about it and move on.”

STRUGGLING SPENCER

Nets point guard Spencer Dinwiddie shot 3 for 13 from the field and is 9 for 43 in the last three games.

UP NEXT

Spurs: Visit Toronto on Friday night.

Nets: Host Miami on Friday night.

Whiteside records monster double-double in win over Bucks

Miami Heat center Hassan Whiteside had a season-high 27 points against the Milwaukee Bucks.

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Hassan Whiteside had a season-high 27 points, 13 rebounds and six blocks to lead the Miami Heat to a 106-101 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday night.

Goran Dragic and Kelly Olynyk added 15 points apiece to help Miami rebound from a loss at Chicago on Monday that snapped the Heat’s season-high seven-game winning streak.

Whiteside, averaging 13.8 points coming in, shot 10 for 12 from the floor. He got his 600th career block in the third quarter.

More Miami Heat news

Olynyk scored 10 points in the final quarter to help his team avoid back-to-back losses for the first time since Dec. 3 (Golden State) and Dec. 6 (San Antonio).

Khris Middleton had 25 points to lead Milwaukee, which lost to Miami for the second time in four days.

Giannis Antetokounmpo had 22 points, 10 rebounds and six assists as the Bucks shot 43.4 percent In a 97-79 loss at the Heat on Sunday, the Bucks were 32 percent from the floor — their lowest percentage in a regular-season game since March 22, 2013.

Miami used a 7-0 run late in the game to take control.

Whiteside, whose previous season best was 26 points, slammed home an alley-oop dunk to begin the run and it was capped by two free throws from James Johnson for a 100-93 lead with 2:34 remaining.

Two free throws by Middleton got Milwaukee to 102-98 with 43 seconds to go.

But then after a missed shot by Miami’s Justise Winslow on the next possession, the loose ball was grabbed by both Antetokounmpo and Whiteside, which led to the jump ball.

Antetokounmpo jumped from the free-throw line and swatted the ball out of bounds under the Heat basket. That led to two free throws by Dragic for a 104-98 lead with 12 seconds left.

Middleton answered with a 3-pointer to trim the deficit to 104-101 with 10.6 seconds remaining before Wayne Ellington clinched the win with two free throws with 9.5 seconds left.

TIP-INS

Heat: Starter Tyler Johnson did not play after he sprained his left ankle in the third quarter Monday. … Miami has three more road games left on a five-game trip.

Bucks: The team already has lost three home games this month after suffering a total of three of them in November and December.

UP NEXT

Heat: At Brooklyn on Friday night.

Bucks: At Philadelphia on Saturday for the teams’ first meeting of the season.