The highly anticipated showdown at next week’s British Open between Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth, who between them possess all four major trophies, is in doubt after McIlroy sustained an ankle injury playing soccer.
McIlroy said he suffered a “total rupture” of his left anterior talofibular ligament in a “soccer kickabout” with friends in Northern Ireland on Saturday. McIlroy posted a photograph to his Instagram account that showed him on crutches with his left foot in a boot.
McIlroy, the defending British Open champion, was scheduled to play four of the next six weeks, including the Scottish Open starting Thursday, the final World Golf Championships event of the season and the fourth major, the PGA Championship, in which McIlroy is the defending champion.
McIlroy’s manager, Sean O’Flaherty, told Golf Channel that McIlroy would not play in the Scottish Open. He is not expected to be able to tee it up at St. Andrews, the site of this year’s British Open and the site where McIlroy finished tied for third in 2010. But McIlroy did not rule himself out of the tournament.
“Rehab already started,” McIlroy wrote on Instagram, adding, “Working hard to get back as soon as I can.”
New York pulls Pierre-Paul offer
The Giants pulled their $60 million long-term contract offer to defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul after a July 4 fireworks accident in South Florida injured the pass rusher’s hands, according to an NFL Media report.
Pierre-Paul does not have a contract offer for next season and has yet to sign his $14.8 million franchise tender offer. The tender is a guaranteed deal for the 2015-16 season, if Pierre-Paul signs it. He has until the July 15 deadline to negotiate a long-term deal with the Giants, which now appears unlikely.
ESPN.com reported that Pierre-Paul was still in the hospital with injuries to both hands. The report said that Pierre-Paul has severe burns on the palm of one hand and the tips of three fingers. The report also said that one finger is being checked for nerve damage.
Gasol stays with Grizzlies
Marc Gasol agreed to terms with the Grizzlies on a five-year maximum contract worth more than $100 million. The 7-1 Spaniard averaged 17.4 points, 7.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.62 blocks this past season.
… Manu Ginobili is returning to the Spurs for a 14th season. The Argentine will turn 38 later this month. Ginobili averaged 10.5 points in 70 games, his lowest average since his rookie season.
… Former Timberwolf J.J. Barea is returning to the Mavericks after agreeing to a two-year, $5.6 million deal and former Wolf Mo Williams agreed to a two-year deal worth $4.3 million with the Cavs. … David West took a one-year, minimum salary contract worth $1.4 million to join the Spurs. … Guard Cory Joseph agreed to a four-year contract with the Raptors.
Tour de France
Spanish racer wins third stage
Spanish veteran Joaquim Rodriguez won the crash-marred third stage of the Tour de France, with British rider Chris Froome finishing second to take the race leader’s yellow jersey. The crash happened with a little under 60 kilometers (37 miles) remaining, forcing the stage to be neutralized and then stopped altogether shortly after — for nearly 20 minutes — while organizers allowed those who fell to catch up.
AROUND THE HORN
College basketball: Syracuse is the attendance leader in men’s basketball, edging Kentucky for the second straight year. The NCAA said that Syracuse averaged 23,854 fans per game last season, just ahead of Kentucky’s 23,572.
• NHL: The Oilers acquired goaltender Anders Nilsson in a trade with the Blackhawks. The 25-year-old Nilsson has a 9-9 record and a 3.05 goals-against average in 23 career games.