BC-AP Sports Preview Digest - NBC Sports

BC-AP Sports Preview Digest
June 4, 2014, 12:06 pm

Some of the sports stories The Associated Press is covering Wednesday. A full Sports Digest will be sent at about 3 p.m. All times EDT.

- NEW YORK - California Chrome was made the 3-5 early favorite on Wednesday to win the Belmont Stakes and become horse racing's 12th Triple Crown champion.

- LOS ANGELES - The Los Angeles Kings host the New York Rangers in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals. Drew Doughty and the playoff-tested Kings are seeking their second NHL title in three years, while Henrik Lundqvist is hoping to earn the underdog Rangers' first championship since 1994.

- PARIS - Wimbledon champ Andy Murray takes on France's Gael Monfils in the French Open quarterfinals, and Rafael Nadal meets David Ferrer in a rematch of last year's final.

- NEW YORK - The Rev. Al Sharpton and other civil rights leaders meet with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver as the league battles with Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling over control of the team because of his highly publicized racist remarks.

- SAN ANTONIO - The San Antonio Spurs wanted it. So did basketball fans. Last year's NBA Finals deserved a rematch, and it arrives Thursday when the Miami Heat visit the Spurs, the team they edged in a thrilling finish, to open their fourth straight appearance in the championship round

- VERONA, Ky. - Steve Cauthen didn't expect nearly 36 years to pass since he became the last jockey to win racing's Triple Crown, but the long drought and 11 failed attempts remind him of how difficult and special his achievement was. And as California Chrome and jockey Victor Espinoza chase history in Saturday's Belmont Stakes, Cauthen recalls guiding Affirmed to glory in an epic duel with rival Alydar in all three races.

- JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The U.S. soccer team is looking for a much cleaner defensive performance against Nigeria on Saturday night than it had against Turkey last week. It's the next-to-last tuneup before the Americans open World Cup play against Ghana. By Mark Long. UPCOMING: 600 words by 4 p.m.

- CLEVELAND - With a day off from practice, Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel will visit an elementary school with Cleveland's other rookies before throwing out the ceremonial first pitch before the Indians play the Red Sox. Just another day for Johnny Football.

- MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Harris English is back to defend his title at the St. Jude Classic joined by a strong field including Phil Mickelson and others looking to hone their game for the U.S. Open.

- MILWAUKEE - Ryan Braun remains a face of the Brewers, but Milwaukee has held on to first in the NL Central most of this season thanks to its emerging core up the middle. Center fielder Carlos Gomez and catcher Jonathan Lucroy are top players in the league at their positions.

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