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A look ahead to top enterprise and feature stories planned globally by AP Sports. New digests will go out each Thursday and Monday and will be repeated on other weekdays. Please note that story plans may change depending on news and other issues.

For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues Cordarrelle Patterson Jersey , contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport(at)ap.org or 877-836-9477. For reruns, call the Service Desk 800-838-4616 or your local AP bureau.

As with all our operations, we welcome and want your feedback. If you have thoughts or questions about the Sports Showcase Digest or the material listed, please reach out to Oskar Garcia, deputy sports editor for presentation and storytelling, at 215-446-6632 or at ogarcia(at)ap.org.

All times are Eastern.



THURSDAY, May 3

BKN–PLAYOFFS-SHOOTING SLUMPS

They call it ”The Menu.” Warriors star Stephen Curry and his right-hand shooting man, Bruce Fraser, detail together what the two-time MVP might need to work on any given day. Maybe it’s catch and shoots. Or off-the-dribble work. Sometimes, ballhandling into shot. It’s one of several approaches taken by players who might be looking to bust out of a shooting slump. By Janie McCauley. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos by 3 a.m. Thursday.

CYC–COLLEGIATE CHAMPIONSHIPS-RATO’S RIDE

Every so often, a particularly steep descent will intimidate the 23-year-old Spanish cyclist. Understandable, considering that nearly four years ago Mauro Rato blew a tire during a race in Spain Jerick McKinnon Jersey , crashed into a wall and broke six vertebrae. It’s been a long climb back – one that landed him in Grand Junction, Colorado, and riding for Colorado Mesa University. He will be among the favorites as the USA Cycling collegiate road national championships roll into Rato’s backyard this weekend. By Pat Graham. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos by 12 p.m. Thursday.

FRIDAY, May 4

FBO–RECYCLING THE PAIN

CINCINNATI – Defensive lineman Devon Still retired from football and started his second career, trying to help families cope with childhood cancer. He’s using lessons learned through his experience with 7-year-old daughter Leah, who became a national story during her recovery from the disease. Still calls it a way of recycling the pain and helping others heal. By Joe Kay. UPCOMING: 800 words, photos by 3 a.m. Friday.

MONDAY, May 7

BUFFALO RISING?

BUFFALO, N.Y. -It has never been easy being a sports fan in Buffalo, where losing – and the way the NFL’s Bills and NHL’s Sabres have lost – has been as customary as the winters are long and wings spicy. The teams’ most notorious moments even have names for them, be it the Bills’ ”Wide Right,” or Sabres’ ”No Goal.” And yet Tedy Bruschi Jersey , a renewed sense of hope has arisen in this rust-belt city after the Bills selected quarterback Josh Allen in the first round of the draft, and the Sabres won the NHL draft lottery over the span of three days. By John Wawrow. UPCOMING: 950 words, photos by 3 a.m. Monday.



Again, if you have questions about the Sports Showcase Digest or the material listed, please reach out to Oskar Garcia at 215-446-6632 or ogarcia(at)ap.org.

Thanks,

AP Sports
The Chicago Blackhawks are taking a closer look at their house after missing the playoffs for the first time in a decade.

They aren’t sure just yet if a complete teardown is necessary.

The Blackhawks are heading into one of their most intriguing summers in years after finishing with 33 wins and 76 points, their lowest totals since they went 31-42-9 during the 2006-07 season. While they might not make any big changes, improvement next year is mandatory, general manager Stan Bowman said Monday.

”This year was extremely disappointing,” Bowman said. ”Last year was more abrupt, but this was equally disappointing. I’m not happy with where we are. We’re going to examine everything, look long and hard at ways to improve through personnel.”

The Blackhawks have been on a downward trend since winning the 2015 Stanley Cup. They were eliminated by St. Louis in seven games in the first round of the 2016 playoffs, and then were swept by Nashville in the opening round last year.

They stumbled all the way to last in the Central Division this season Lawrence Taylor Jersey , falling short of the playoffs for the first time since star forwards Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane were rookies during the 2007-08 season.

Bowman said the team’s top priority is keeping the young players who impressed this season. Rookie Alex DeBrincat had a team-high 28 goals, one more than Kane, and Vinnie Hinostroza showed flashes of promise after beginning the year in the minors.

”That’s the direction we’re headed,” Bowman said. ”They’ve showed they’re part of the future.”

His second priority is free agency, and Bowman said he’s more interested in short-term deals than longer pacts that would tie his hands in the future.

He could look for goaltender help after Corey Crawford missed the final 47 games with an upper-body injury. He also could focus on his blue line after top defensemen Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook showed signs of age this season.

”This was an off year in about every category,” coach Joel Quenneville said. ”From every individual except two or three, we expect more next year.”

Both Bowman and Quenneville expressed confidence in a healthy return for Crawford, who went 16-9-2 with a sparkling 2.27 goals-against average in 28 games. Anton Forsberg, Jean-Francois Berube and Jeff Glass all struggled in goal after Crawford got hurt.

”He’s on the right track, close to being ready to go,” Quenneville said.

Toews, who missed the last eight games with an upper-body injury, said previous successes ”happened naturally Brandon Carr Jersey , organically. Now there’s a lot of issues you need to find solutions. We need to take a creative approach to finding solutions. It’s humbling to a certain degree. You feel like you’re starting over.”

LOTTERY FEVER

The NHL draft lottery is April 28, and Chicago has a 6.5 percent chance of winning the top pick. The Blackhawks drafted Toews with the third overall pick in 2006 and got Kane with the No. 1 selection in 2007, fueling their run to three Stanley Cup titles.

TIPPING POINT

Crawford’s injury just before Christmas turned the season around. They were in a playoff position on Dec. 23, his last appearance, and fell out of contention soon after he was placed on injured reserve.

WRONG NUMBERS

The Blackhawks allowed 256 goals, 67 more than they gave up during the 2014-15 season. Keith, a two-time Norris Trophy winner as the league’s top defenseman, finished with a career-worst minus-29 rating, the worst such number on the team.

GOODBYE

One of the most memorable moments of the season was Patrick Sharp’s final game at the United Center. The 36-year-old Sharp is planning to retire after finishing with 10 goals and 11 assists in his 15th NHL season. The team honored Sharp with a highlight video in the third period of its home finale, and he waved his stick and tapped his heart to acknowledge the sustained roar of the crowd.

NEXT UP

Defenseman Henri Jokiharju could get a long look during training camp in the fall. He was selected by the Blackhawks in the first round of last year’s draft, but he doesn’t turn 19 until June.

CAPTAIN AMERICA

Kane has decided to keep playing. USA Hockey announced Monday that Kane will captain the U.S. team for the world championship in May in Denmark.
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