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MLB eyes virus contingency plan…Franchise tag deadline extended…Ivy League cancels tourneys

NEW YORK (AP) — A person familiar with the deliberations told The Associated Press that if MLB can’t play in front of fans at a team’s home ballpark because of the outbreak, the sport’s first preference likely would be to switch games to the visiting team’s stadium if possible. The Mariners are scheduled to host the Rangers when MLB opens the season on March 26, but the Seattle area has been hit hard by the virus. MLB anticipates government officials will decide whether it is safe to play in front of fans in each city.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — The Ivy League is canceling its men’s and women’s basketball tournaments because of concerns about the spread of coronavirus. The four-team tournaments were scheduled to be played Friday through Sunday in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Ivy League says it will award its automatic NCAA Tournament bids to regular-season champions Princeton women and Yale men.

UNDATED (AP) — The Sharks and the NHL are still determining how to proceed with three scheduled home games in San Jose this month. Santa Clara County health officials have banned gatherings of more than 1,000 people in response to the spread of the coronavirus. The games could be moved to a neutral site, be postponed or played without fans in the arena.

— Ohio’s governor is calling for all indoor sports to be played without fans. Mike DeWine’s decision would affect the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets and NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers.

UNDATED (AP) — The deadline for applying franchise and transition tags to NFL free agents has been moved from tomorrow to Monday by the league and the players’ union. The decision comes because the NFL Players Association’s members are still voting on a proposed labor agreement the owners already have approved. That deadline was extended by two days to just before midnight on Saturday.

CLEVELAND (AP) — The Cleveland Cavaliers and coach J.B. Bickerstaff have agreed to terms on a multi-year contract. Bickerstaff had been serving as an associate head coach under the 67-year-old John Beilein, who cited personal health issues as one of his reasons for stepping down after 54 games in his first NBA season. The Cavs are 5-6 under Bickerstaff.

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