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The Sports Report: Parade for Rams will take place Wednesday

Members of the Rams celebrate their victory.
Members of the Rams celebrate their victory.
(Los Angeles Times)
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Howdy, I’m your host, Houston Mitchell. Let’s get right to the news.

Los Angeles will honor the Super Bowl champion Rams with a parade Wednesday through the Exposition Park area.

The roughly one-mile parade will kick off at 11 a.m. at the Shrine Auditorium on West Jefferson Boulevard, team officials said.

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It will wind down Figueroa Street before turning onto Exposition Park Drive and landing at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum about 11:45 a.m. A rally will be held at the Coliseum’s Olympic Plaza and Peristyle Arch from noon to 1 p.m.

It will be the first such victory parade since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. No parades were held after the Lakers and Dodgers championship wins in 2020 because of concerns about large gatherings.

Some L.A. sports fans thought Wednesday’s parade should honor all three teams.

“Are we getting that super city of champions parade now?” the Dodgers Nation fan page wrote on Twitter.

City officials had previously said celebrations would be held to honor the 2020 wins, but those plans never came to fruition. Los Angeles entered the first winter surge of COVID-19 not long after the Lakers and Dodgers claimed their titles.

Lakers star LeBron James agreed: “We, Dodgers and Rams should all do a joint parade together!!!!” he tweeted Monday, adding: “City of Champions.”

The team is also being honored with a temporary installation at the Hollywood sign this week, which will be transformed to read “Rams House” through Wednesday.

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MORE RAMS

From Gary Klein: No team has won consecutive Super Bowls since the New England Patriots at the end of the 2003 and 2004 seasons.

Are the Rams, fresh off their Super Bowl LVI victory, capable of repeating?

“Certainly,” wide receiver Cooper Kupp, the Super Bowl most valuable player, said Monday during a news conference. “If you’re going into a season and didn’t think that you can win it all, that would be a pretty depressing place to play from. ... You go into every year believing that, understanding, though, that there’s much work that needs to be done.”

Kupp will remain a centerpiece next season, but there will be changes to the roster when the new league year and free agency begin in March and after the NFL draft in April.

The biggest question, which came to the forefront in the hours before the Super Bowl, is whether star defensive tackle Aaron Donald will return for a ninth season.

After Sunday’s 23-20 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, Donald did not dismiss a television report that he might retire.

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“I’m just in the moment right now,” Donald said. “I’m going to enjoy this with my teammates, my family, and I’m just going to be in the moment and enjoy this for today, a couple days.”

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From Dylan Hernández: The Rams were only a handful of hours removed from a Super Bowl LVI celebration that extended into Monday morning when coach Sean McVay said two words with potentially alarming implications for their future: “We’ll see.”

That was McVay’s response to The Los Angeles Times when asked whether he would return to coach the Rams next season.

Regarding speculation he could retire, or take a break, from coaching to take a job as a broadcaster, McVay said, “I’m just enjoying this moment right now. I’m really happy to be a part of this. Happy for that.”

McVay, 36, acknowledged the championship he won Sunday would make it easier for him to walk away when he determines it’s the right time to do so.

“I think you could definitely say that,” McVay said.

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With Super Bowl title, Rams can finally celebrate being an enduring part of L.A.

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WINTER OLYMPICS

Note: Our Olympics coverage is done in real time, so if you don’t want to know what happened before you watch TV today, skip down to the TV schedule.

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From Thuc Nhi Nguyen: Needing another clutch run to move into medal position, Chinese freeskiing star Eileen Gu won her second medal of these Olympics after landing her third and final run in freeski slopestyle on Tuesday at Genting Snow Park.

Gu’s 86.23 on her third run finished second to Swiss star Mathilde Gremaud, who won also won her second medal of the Beijing Games after taking bronze in big air. Estonia’s 19-year-old phenom Kelly Sildaru finished third.

Gremaud won her first Olympic gold with a score of 85.56 on her second run. The 22-year-old will also leave Beijing with two medals after winning bronze in big air on her birthday.

Gu was ranked eighth entering the final run after landing a conservative, safety run on the first attempt and falling on her second. As Gu made her way through the course a third time, cheers from Chinese fans and volunteers rose in an anticipation. When she landed her final 900, fans waved plastic hand clappers. With a gold medal from big air won in similar last-run fashion, Gu has a chance to add a third medal in freeski halfpipe on Friday. The 18-year-old star is undefeated in halfpipe competition this year.

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From Thuc Nhi Nguyen: A relatively small risk resulted in a big reward for Megan Nick as she used a perfectly executed, but less difficult trick to win a bronze medal in freestyle skiing aerials on Monday at Genting Snow Park.

The 25-year-old Olympic rookie completed the least difficult trick in the six-woman super final. Up against competitors throwing triple-flipping, triple twists, Nick’s full double-full (two flips with three twists) only has a difficulty degree of 3.525. But her clean execution won Nick her first Olympic medal as three women stumbled on more difficult skills.

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Nick jumped second and anxiously waited for four more competitors to see where she would land. When the results went final, the prevailing emotion for Nick wasn’t necessarily joy or elation at winning an Olympic medal, but instead relief.

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From Helene Elliott: What the Court of Arbitration for Sport essentially said in deciding figure skater Kamila Valieva can compete in the Olympic women’s singles event despite having tested positive for a banned stimulant in December is that it’s OK to be a drug cheat if you’re 15 and you have “protected person” status under the rules of the World Anti-Doping Agency. That’s reprehensible on more levels than Valieva has quadruple jumps in her repertoire.

Valieva, who became the first woman to land a quadruple jump in Olympic competition while boosting a gold-medal effort by athletes of the Russian Olympic Committee in the team event, was suspended last week by the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) after it received a report the prohibited substance trimetazidine had been detected in a test she took at the national championships. She appealed, and the same agency lifted her suspension the next day. Surprise!

The International Olympic Committee, International Skating Union and World Anti-Doping Agency challenged the Russian Anti-Doping Agency’s decision to lift Valieva’s suspension, all of them apparently foolish enough to think a doping violation committed, even unknowingly, by a stellar athlete would be punished according to the rules established for everyone. A panel of three arbitrators appointed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport dismissed those challenges Monday, allowing Valieva to compete starting Tuesday.

Valieva was betrayed by those who should be supporting her, the coaches and administrators who manipulate children’s bodies and lives in the name of achieving reflected athletic glory. Her coach, Eteri Turberidze, who also coached 2018 Olympic gold medalist Alina Zagitova and silver medalist Evgenia Medvedeva, is known for pushing skaters to their limits and beyond. Those who suffer injuries from the impact of landing so many quadruple jumps or are slowed by changes brought on by puberty are discarded like moldy towels. The pity is that there’s always someone willing to replace them.

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From Helene Elliott: To the surprise of no one and the delight of anyone who can appreciate an impassioned rivalry no matter the sport, the U.S. and Canada will meet again to decide supremacy in women’s Olympic hockey.

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The two superpowers have faced off in every women’s Olympic gold medal game except 2006 in Turin, where the U.S. lost to Sweden in the semifinals and went on to win a bronze medal. The U.S. won the first women’s hockey gold at Nagano in 1998 and the most recent, at Pyeongchang in 2018, in a shootout. Canada won the other four.

The rest of the world has improved a bit, but no other team has enough resources or has developed enough depth to push them for more than a period or two.

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Tuesday’s TV schedule

USA NETWORK

6 a.m. – 6:30 a.m.

Women’s figure skating – Short Program (Live)

Women’s Alpine skiing – Downhill

6:30 a.m. – 7:30 a.m.

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Men’s ice hockey – Playoff round (Live)

7:30 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Women’s curling – United States vs. Switzerland

Men’s Nordic combined – Individual large hill, 10 kilometers

Men’s biathlon – 7.5-kilometer relay

Two-man bobsled – Final runs

Men’s freestyle skiing – Aerials qualifying

2 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Men’s ice hockey – Playoff round: Teams TBD

6 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Men’s Nordic combined – Individual large hill and 10 kilometers

Men’s biathlon – 7.5-kilometer relay

8 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.

Men’s ice hockey – Quarterfinal: Teams TBD (Live)

10:30 p.m. – 12:20 a.m. Wednesday

Men’s ice hockey – Quarterfinal: Teams TBD (Live)

NBC

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11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Women’s Speedskating – Team pursuit

Men’s biathlon – 7.5-kilometer relay

Men’s Nordic combine – Individual large hill, 10 kilometers

5 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Men’s Alpine skiing – Slalom first run (Live)

Women’s figure skating – Short program

Two-man bobsled – final runs

Men’s Speedskating – Team pursuit

9:05 p.m. – 11 p.m.

Men’s Alpine skiing – Slalom, final run (Live)

Men’s freestyle skiing – Aerials qualifying

CNBC

2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Men’s curling – United States vs. Italy

8 p.m. – 11 p.m.

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Women’s curling – United States vs. Canada (Live)

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Beijing Olympics live: Latest news and results from the 24th Winter Games

CLIPPERS

From Andrew Greif: They had seen this movie before, twice in the last four days, in fact, an experience that led the Clippers to know the kind of superhero performance they were watching would end in one of just two genres: horror or survival.

Like Luka Doncic’s 51- and 45-point nights against the Clippers in Dallas last week, Golden State’s Stephen Curry looked like a video game with the difficulty set on easy while making his first six shots and scoring 16 points in Monday night’s opening 10 minutes at Crypto.com Arena.

“It was almost like a flashback to that other night with Luka,” guard Terance Mann said.

Yet the Clippers left Dallas with a victory and a reminder that they could weather such a storm, that one line in a box score wouldn’t necessarily dictate the entire plot.

By the end Monday, after Mann pushed nonstop, Robert Covington got his hands on seemingly every Warriors pass in the fourth quarter and Isaiah Hartenstein’s one-handed reception and dunk off an alley-oop from Reggie Jackson even drew applause from a courtside-seated Antonio Brown, this Clippers game had transformed into something entirely unexpected during those opening minutes — a 119-104 laugher.

ERIC KAY TRIAL

From Jorge Castillo: Former Angels pitcher Matt Harvey will be called to testify in the trial of Eric Kay on Tuesday morning, attorneys for the federal government said Monday.

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Harvey spent most of the 2019 season with the Angels. His suspected drug use surfaced at various points through the trial’s first five days as the government attempts to prove to the jury that Kay, a former Angels communications director, gave Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs the drugs that led to his death on the night of July 1, 2019 — and that Kay provided them in Texas, not in California.

The scope of possible drug activity in the Angels organization around Skaggs’ death broadened again Monday when a retired Drug Enforcement Administration special agent testified that former Angels pitcher Garrett Richards sent Kay $1,700 on Venmo across three transactions between Nov. 2016 and Nov. 2017.

Michael Ferry said he did not know why Richards sent Kay the money. He testified that Richards added the caption “delish” for a transfer for $750 on Nov. 29, 2017. Ferry said Skaggs also sent Kay hundreds of dollars on Venmo in transactions between Oct. 2016 and May 2018. Ferry said Skaggs added a heart emoji as a caption for a $150 transaction on May 18, 2018.

THIS DATE IN SPORTS

1932 — Eddie Eagen, as a member of the four-man U.S. bobsled team, wins a gold medal at the Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, New York. He previously won a gold medal in boxing light heavyweight division at the 1920 Summer Games in Antwerp, Belgium.

1936 — Sonja Henie of Norway, wins her third consecutive Olympics figure skating gold medal in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.

1953 — Tenley Albright becomes the first American woman to win a world figure skating title beating Germany’s Gundi Busch at the World Championships in Davos, Switzerland.

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1964 — Ken Hubbs, the 22-year-old Chicago Cubs second baseman, dies when his private plane crashes in Utah. The 1962 NL Rookie of the Year had his pilot’s license for two weeks and was flying in bad weather.

1974 — Boston’s Phil Esposito scores his 1,000th point with an assist in the Bruins’ 4-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks.

1978 — Leon Spinks wins a 15-round split decision over Muhammad Ali to take the world heavyweight title at Las Vegas.

1980 — Rookie Wayne Gretzky ties the NHL record with seven assists in a game and sets a scoring record for first-year players in Edmonton’s 8-2 victory over the Washington Capitals.

1986 — A crowd of 44,180, at the time the largest to attend an NBA game, turned out at the Pontiac Silverdome to watch the Pistons beat the Sixers 134-133 in overtime.

1994 — Kentucky makes one of the greatest comebacks in college basketball history with a 99-95 victory over LSU after trailing by 31 points with 15:30 to play.

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1994 — Freshman Ila Borders becomes the first woman to pitch in an NCAA or NAIA game. The left-hander pitches a complete-game for Southern California College, allowing five hits in the Vanguards’ 12-1 win over Claremont-Mudd.

1995 — Charlie Standish sets a PBA record by rolling three perfect games in the first round of the Peoria Open bowling tournament. Standish rolls the 300s in the second, fourth and sixth games of the six-game round and at one point has 23 consecutive strikes.

1998 — Dale Earnhardt takes the Daytona 500 on his 20th try and ends a 59-race winless streak on the day NASCAR begins celebrating its 50th anniversary.

2002 — The worst judging scandal in Winter Olympics history is resolved, with Canadian pairs figure skaters Jamie Sale and David Pelletier declared co-gold medalists with the Russian winners.

2004 — Dale Earnhardt Jr. barrels past Tony Stewart to win the Daytona 500 on the same track that claimed his father’s life three years ago. Junior wins this race in his fifth try, the same race that bedeviled his later father for 19 years.

2007 — Joe Sakic scores twice, including his 600th career goal, and adds three assists and Milan Hejduk has three goals to lead Colorado to a 7-5 win at Calgary.

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2010 — American Seth Wescott defends his Olympic title in Vancouver, British Columbia, overtaking Canada’s Mike Robertson to win the gold medal in the wild sport of men’s snowboardcross. Didier Defago wins the gold in the Olympic downhill and American Bode Miller breaks his personal streak of major championship mishaps by taking the bronze.

2013 — Ted Ligety becomes the first man in 45 years to win three gold medals at a skiing world championships. French great Jean-Claude Killy took home four golds in 1968. Ligety wins giant slalom by a massive margin for his third gold. Earlier in the championships held in Schladming, Austria, Ligety won the super-G and super-combined — both events he had never won on the World Cup circuit.

2014 — Renaud Lavillenie breaks Sergei Bubka’s 21-year-old indoor pole vault world record in Donetsk, Ukraine. Lavillenie clears the bar comfortably at 6.16 meters (20 feet, 2 1/2 inches) in Bubka’s home city, almost to the day the pole vault great cleared achieved 6.15 (20-2) on Feb. 21, 1993.

Supplied by the Associated Press

And finally

Seth Wescott wins gold at the 2010 Olympics. Watch and listen here.

Until next time...

That concludes today’s newsletter. If you have any feedback, ideas for improvement or things you’d like to see, email me at houston.mitchell@latimes.com, and follow me on Twitter at @latimeshouston. To get this newsletter in your inbox, click here.

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