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Cavs' Irving has broken bone in jaw

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Cavs' Irving has broken bone in jaw

NEW YORK (AP) Kyrie Irving has another injury and the Cavaliers have another masked player.

Cleveland's star point guard, who only recently returned after missing 11 games with a broken finger, fractured a bone in his jaw when he took a hard fall in Friday night's loss at Milwaukee.

Irving traveled separately from the Cavs to New York so he could be fitted with a protective mask that he will wear in Saturday's game against the Knicks at Madison Square Garden. He said he arrived less than three hours before the start of the game, having only slept about four hours.

He said he wasn't in pain, and the only difficulty would be getting used to the mask, which earned him the nickname the ``Dark Knight'' in the locker room.

``It's just precautionary, as usual,'' Irving said.

Irving was injured when he was knocked down in the first quarter by Bucks forward forward Luc Mbah a Moute, who was called for a foul. Irving's face slammed into the floor, and he writhed in pain for several minutes before getting up and making two free throws. He stayed in the game.

At the end of the quarter, last season's NBA rookie of the year sat on the bench with a towel on his face, but he played 36 minutes and finished with a team-high 26 points.

Following the game, the Cavs indicated Irving would be on the flight to New York, but a CT scan at the Cleveland Clinic revealed what the team described as ``a small left maxillary fracture.''

Cavs forwards Tristan Thompson and Tyler Zeller are already wearing plastic protective masks for facial injuries sustained earlier this season.

This is the latest injury for Irving, who broke his hand this summer when he slapped a padded wall in frustration during a practice in Las Vegas. The 20-year-old's college career at Duke was limited to 11 games because of a severe foot injury.

Irving missed 15 games last season with a concussion and shoulder injury, but coach Byron Scott said he wasn't concerned with Irving's injury history.

``The one last night, you're going to the basket, sometimes you get hit and you're off balance. That's something that you can't help,'' Scott said. ``The only one that I see that was really a problem was the one that he did in Vegas, because that was self-inflicting, but didn't cause him to really miss any time. This one is not going to miss any time as well, so other than that I don't see him as being, as most people say, injury prone or anything like that.''

Friday's game was Irving's third since returning from the broken left index finger. He was expected to miss four weeks, but returned in three for the Cavs, who went just 2-9 without him. Irving said he won't change his playing style to prevent further injuries.

``No,'' he said. ``Playing that way has got me this far.''

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AP Sports Writer Tom Withers in Cleveland contributed to this report.

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Astros and Athletics clear benches, have a very non-socially distant brawl

Astros and Athletics clear benches, have a very non-socially distant brawl

Even amid the coronavirus pandemic, the normalities of a baseball season will continue on. That means players and managers getting heated, arguments with umpires and benches clearing. But because of the risk the virus poses, MLB has asked for those moments to remain socially distant.

The Houston Astros and Oakland Athletics did not follow that rule on Sunday.

After Athletics outfielder Ramon Laureano was hit by a pitch, he appeared to be exchanging words with a Houston bench coach. With no fans, the words can be heard loud and clear by everybody. That led to both benches clearing and not even six inches of separation between players. 

It's understandable for players to get angry and caught up in the moment, but this move by both teams is rather unacceptable given the current climate of the country and the sport. Though players are being tested constantly, this close contact between teams is unnecessary and only creates a larger risk for all involved.

The non-socially distant brawl comes at a bad time for baseball, as the league is dealing with numerous coronavirus-related issues. The St. Louis Cardinals have had at least 15 games postponed due to an outbreak within the organization, and that comes just after the Miami Marlins dealt with the same problem as well. Cleveland Indians pitcher Zach Plesac was reportedly sent home on Sunday after breaking protocol and going out with friends in Chicago on Saturday night.

Despite tightening up regulations for players, MLB still faces daily challenges while trying to operate a season during a global pandemic. Moments like the brawl between the Athletics and Astros don't help.

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Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence says there should be a college football season

Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence says there should be a college football season

Amidst growing momentum in postponing the college football season to the spring, this year's biggest star has isn't mincing words on why there should be a season ithis fall. 

Hours after ESPN reported the Big Ten is looking to postpone fall sports while waiting to see if other Power 5 conferences were going to do the same, star Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence tweeted his reasoning for having a fall season.

Lawrence has been vocal about the need for a 2020 season despite the complications of playing a contact sport during a pandemic.

"Players being safe and taking all of the right precautions to try to avoid contracting covid because the season/ teammates safety is on the line. Without the season, as we’ve seen already, people will not social distance or wear masks and take the proper precautions," Lawrence wrote on his Twitter thread. 

Back in June, Clemson announced 28 members of the athletic department tested positive for coronavirus, producing the highest return of positive tests around the country at the time. 

While those in positions of power continue to lean towards opting out of the fall season due to all the headaches that come with it, Lawerence's outward cry of public support to play next month could have some Power 5 presidents more hestitant than before. 

If anything, Lawrence's passion gives college football fans a glimour of hope in increasingly desperate times. 

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