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Defending champ Choi leads LPGA Malaysia

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Defending champ Choi leads LPGA Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) Defending champion Na Yeon Choi took a two-stroke lead Friday in the LPGA Malaysia, shooting a 4-under 67 to reach 10 under.

The U.S. Women's Open winner in July for her first major title and only victory of the year, Choi was 11 under after birdies on Nos. 12 and 13. The South Korean player bogeyed the par-3 17th and closed with a par at Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club.

``I think I had a pretty good round,'' Choi said. ``I got two bogeys, but I think I'm still in pretty good position. I really like to play this golf course. I have a lot of confidence. I hit a lot of good shots with my irons. I really looked forward to this week, to get good results like last year.''

American Sydnee Michaels was second after a 65. The tour rookie had five birdies on the back nine in hot and humid conditions.

``I definitely got on a roll,'' Michaels said. ``I gave myself good birdie chances every time. I made the putts. So I was rolling the ball really well. ... It is really, really hot. But, I mean, I have my little sun umbrella, my compression sleeve, so I'm trying to manage.''

Norway's Suzann Pettersen shot a tournament-record 64 to match American Lizette Salas and Japan's Momoko Ueda and Mika Miyazato at 7 under.

``Yesterday felt like I just had to flush through a round of golf after a long week in Africa last week,'' Pettersen said. ``I've been feeling really good with my putter, starting in Alabama a couple, three weeks ago. It's just continuing. I feel like I can be aggressive, trust my instinct.''

The eight-time LPGA Tour champion is winless this year.

``This year has been kind of a little bit of an odd year,'' Pettersen said.

Salas had a hole-in-one on the par-3 15th in her 67. She used a 9-iron on the 130-yard hole.

``I'll take it,'' Salas said. ``It's only my third hole-in-one, first on tour. You don't get to hear that all too often, a hole-in-one in Malaysia. So that's pretty cool. I'm just having fun.''

Ueda also shot 67, and Miyazato had a 69.

Australia's Karrie Webb, tied with Choi for the first-round lead after a 65, had a 71 to drop into a tie for seventh at 6 under. American Paula Creamer also was in the group at 6 under after a 67.

Min Lee, the 17-year-old Taiwanese amateur who opened with a 66, was disqualified for signing an incorrect scorecard after shooting a 73. She signed for a 4 on the par-4 13th, but made a 5. Lee also was disqualified last month for signing an incorrect scorecard after the Taiwan Amateur Championship, costing her a victory.

Michelle Wie was 5 over after a 72.

Top-ranked Yani Tseng followed her opening 78 with a 72, leaving her tied for 61st at 8 over among the 69 remaining players. The Taiwanese star has struggled after winning three times in the first five events of the season.

American Morgan Pressel was 68th at 20 over with rounds of 79 and 83.

The tournament opens the tour's four-event Asian swing. The HanaBank Championship is next week in South Korea, followed by stops in Taiwan and Japan.

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2019 NBA Draft prospect profile: Nassir Little

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2019 NBA Draft prospect profile: Nassir Little

The Washington Wizards will have the ninth overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. Here is the latest in our series on draft prospects who could fall around where the Wizards will select...

2019 NBA Draft Wizards Prospect Preview: Nassir Little

School: North Carolina
Position: Forward
Age: 19
Height: 6-6
Weight: 220
Wingspan: 7-1
Max vertical: 38.5 in.

2018/19 stats: 9.8 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 0.7 apg, 0.5 spg, 0.5 bpg, 47.8 FG% (3.6/7.6), 26.9 3PT% (0.4/1.4), 77.0 FT%

Player comparison: Jae Crowder, Justise Winslow

Projections: NBC Sports Washington 11th, NBADraft.net 11th, Bleacher Report 16th, Sports Illustrated 11th, Ringer 14th

5 things to know:

*Little came to UNC as their top-ranked recruit and the sixth-ranked player in his class, but didn't live up to those expectations in his one year in Chapel Hill. There is a debate about whether he will be better suited for the NBA, given his athleticism and playing style. The team who drafts him could come away with a steal if the latter proves true.

*He is more known for his defense at this point. Little is an aggressive and physical perimeter defender who could develop into a Marcus Smart-like pest. Though he didn't force a ton of turnovers in college, Little clearly gave opposing teams problems with his energy and length. 

*There are questions about whether Little will ever be more than a dunker on the offensive end. He is excellent in transition and cutting to the rim, but he didn't do much creating off the dribble in college and needs to work on his outside shooting. He shot just 26.9 percent from three at UNC.

*Little had a strong combine with a 7-foot-1 wingspan and a 38.5-inch vertical leap. Those numbers helped his reputation as one of the most athletic wings in this year's class.

*Both of Little's parents were in the U.S. military. He had a 4.2 GPA in high school and was named Academic All-ACC.

Fit with Wizards: Little fits with the Wizards given he is a small forward and they currently have an opening there. He would also give them something they need in terms of style as a physical wing defender. Little is the type of player who could help them improve their horrid three-point defense.

But Little's raw skillset suggests he may take some time to develop offensively and it brings into question how high his ceiling will ultimately prove to be. The Wizards may be able to find someone with the ninth pick who can both contribute sooner than Little and offer a clearer road to potential stardom.

That said, if Little's game is indeed more designed for the NBA than in college, he could impress in pre-draft workouts and end up rising up the board.

Best highlight video:
https://youtu.be/oGIQDUttG8I

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Reuben Foster believed to be lost for 2019 with major knee, leg injury, per source

Reuben Foster believed to be lost for 2019 with major knee, leg injury, per source

Redskins officials fear that linebacker Reuben Foster has torn the ACL in his left knee, sources tell NBC Sports Washington.

Additionally, there is concern about a more significant injury that could include the artery in his left leg, sources said. 

Foster went down on his first snap in a non-contact drill during OTAs on Monday after stepping on the leg of guard Tyler Catalina. Immediately, Foster fell to the ground, and it was obvious he was in intense pain. He was audibly screaming and crying while writhing in pain on the field. 

Moments later, the Redskins medical staff rushed out to Foster, and within a matter of minutes, his leg was placed into a stabilizing device. He was then helped onto a cart and wheeled off the practice field. 

After practice, Jay Gruden said the team was unsure of Foster's prognosis but did say, "I’m just very disappointed in what happened in his first rep as a Redskin. He runs through the gap and gets injured."

The Redskins took a major public relations hit by signing Foster last fall, and the team's belief was that his play on the field would be worth the controversy that enveloped his signing. Foster won't be playing in 2019, but remains under contract for 2020, and Washington will have the option to keep him in 2021. 

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