The Sports Report: Some Rams are hoping for a reunion with Odell Beckham Jr.

Rams receiver Odell Beckham against the 49ers in the NFC Championship game.
Rams receiver Odell Beckham against the 49ers in the NFC Championship game.
(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

Howdy, I’m your host, Houston Mitchell. Let’s get right to the news.

From Gary Klein: Save for a couple of backpacks stored on the cushioned blue bench seat, the locker sits respectfully unused.

The nameplate below the space for a helmet: ODELL BECKHAM JR.

The Rams, in a bit of wishful thinking, have not reassigned the locker — not while Beckham, superstar receiver and current free agent, remains on the market while working his way back from knee surgery.

“It makes you smile every day you come in and see it,” offensive lineman Rob Havenstein said of the locker directly across from his. “It makes me think of my guy. Miss him. Love him.

“Hope he’s back.”

Last November, a few days before they played the San Francisco 49ers at Levi’s Stadium on “Monday Night Football,” the Rams signed Beckham to a one-year, incentive-laden contract.


Beckham went on to catch five touchdown passes in eight games. During the 23-20 Super Bowl LVI victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, Beckham caught a touchdown pass and had a 35-yard reception before he suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament.

The Rams (2-1) return to Levi’s Stadium on Monday night to play the 49ers (1-2).

Beckham, who turns 30 in November, is not expected to be ready to play for any team until late October or November at the earliest. And the Rams almost certainly will be challenged for his services by other suitors, especially playoff contenders.

Enjoying this newsletter? Consider subscribing to the Los Angeles Times

Your support helps us deliver the news that matters most. Become a subscriber.


From Jeff Miller: A Chargers season already ailing suffered more pain Wednesday with the news that Joey Bosa’s groin injury will require surgery.

Coach Brandon Staley said doctors have indicated the four-time Pro Bowl edge rusher should be able to return this season.

“It’s going to be a ways, but we expect him to come back,” Staley said. “I think that he’s optimistic and ready to attack it. … It’s never easy when you have an injury like that when you’re playing so well.”

Bosa was hurt Sunday in the first quarter of the Chargers’ 38-10 loss to Jacksonville. Staley said Bosa suffered a torn groin while he was trying to get to quarterback Trevor Lawrence.


Yankees star Aaron Judge hits 61st home run, ties Roger Maris’ AL record


From Jack Harris: It’s probably still more of a hope than a guarantee at this point, but the Dodgers’ playoff rotation plans appear to be finally coming into focus.


Before their 4-3 walk-off loss against the San Diego Padres on Tuesday, manager Dave Roberts said the team would like to have a four-man rotation when its postseason begins in the National League Division Series on Oct. 11.

Julio Urías and Clayton Kershaw seem like locks for Game 1 and 2. Tyler Anderson will start a game, as well, Roberts reiterated Tuesday, before the left-hander pitched six strong innings at Petco Park.

The fourth spot is somewhat up in the air. However, if all goes well in the next couple of weeks, Roberts said it’s possible that Tony Gonsolin will be back from a forearm strain and ready to handle a start.


From Dan Woike: But as he enters a season with the Lakers wholeheartedly emphasizing defense under coach Darvin Ham, Davis said his goal wasn’t to be recognized as the NBA’s greatest player. Instead, he’s focused on just being its healthiest.

“For me, I just want to be on the floor. I want to be able to play all 82,” Davis said Wednesday. “And if I’m not, I don’t want it to be injury-based where I can’t play. That’s my goal.”

Considering his history, it’s certainly a lofty one.

Davis has played more than 70 games only twice in his career and hasn’t done it in any of his three seasons as a Laker. After playing only 36 games following the Lakers’ 2020 bubble title, he played only 40 games last season after freak injuries to his knee and foot.


“The last two seasons when you’re injured, it’s just hard to get into rhythm. You come in for a couple of weeks, three weeks, and then you’re out for six. It’s hard to establish a rhythm for me personally,” Davis said. “But I think that was the only thing. I always felt like myself, always confident, always ready to go and play. But I think when you’re in and out of the lineup consistently, it’s tough to catch that rhythm.”


From Andrew Greif: Perhaps it was force of habit that when Paul George discussed how the Clippers could manage their deep roster’s looming crunch for playing time Monday, the star forward called on using “the Team USA approach.”

A decade ago when Paul visited UNLV’s Mendenhall Center, it was to practice against a loaded USA Basketball roster working out the kinks of team-building before the London Olympics. In 2013 and 2014, George and the national team deep in talent and decorated with All-Stars used the university’s practice facility to jell ahead of the world championships — and ditto in 2016, when the building was the backdrop for Team USA’s Rio de Janeiro Olympics preparation.

George is back this week, and against a familiar backdrop comes a familiar mission: How to keep a roster that could have more qualified rotation players than available minutes most nights pointed in the same direction and win big.


1923 — Gene Sarazen beats Walter Hagen 1 up to capture the PGA championship.

1941 — Joe Louis knocks out Lou Nova in the sixth round at the Polo Grounds in New York to retain the world heavyweight title.

1954 — Willie Mays makes his over-the-shoulder catch of Vic Wertz’ long drive to center field and pinch-hitter Dusty Rhodes homers off Bob Lemon in the 10th inning to lead the New York Giants to a 5-2 victory over the Cleveland Indians in Game 1 of the World Series.


1974 — Dr. Norbert Sander Jr. wins the New York City Marathon in 2:26:30 and Kathy Switzer capture the women’s division in 3:07:29.

1976 — Tommy Lasorda replaces Walter Alston as Dodgers manager.

1977 — Muhammad Ali wins a unanimous 15-round decision over Earnie Shavers at Madison Square Garden in New York to retain his world heavyweight title.

1984 — Mike Prindle of Western Michigan sets an NCAA record by kicking seven field goals in a 42-7 rout over Marshall.

1985 — Houston Oilers quarterback Warren Moon is sacked 12 times in a 17-10 loss to the Dallas Cowboys to tie an NFL record.

1991 — Pat Bradley wins the MBS LPGA Classic by one shot over Michelle Estill for her 30th career victory, qualifying her for the LPGA Hall of Fame.

1995 — The NHL and NHL Players Association strike a deal to allow league players to participate in the 1998 Winter Olympics.


2000 — At the Sydney Olympics, the U.S. men’s basketball team escapes the humiliation of playing for a bronze medal with an 85-83 victory over Lithuania in the semifinals. It’s the closest victory and biggest scare for a U.S. Olympic team since NBA players started competing in 1992.

2002 — After losing to Iowa State, Nebraska drops out of the Associated Press Top 25 football poll after being ranked for 348 consecutive weeks. The last time Nebraska was missing from the poll was Oct. 5, 1981.

2002 — Seattle’s Shaun Alexander scores an NFL-record five touchdowns in the first half of a 48-23 rout of Minnesota. He finishes with 139 yards rushing and 92 receiving and one TD short of the league mark of six in a game.

2004 — Major League Baseball announces the Montreal Expos will move to Washington to begin play at RFK Stadium in the 2005 season.

2012 — Geno Smith throws for 656 yards and ties a Big 12 record with eight touchdown passes to lead No. 9 West Virginia to a 70-63 win over No. 25 Baylor. Smith outduels Baylor’s Nick Florence, who has a standout game of his own with 581 yards and five TDs. Baylor’s Terrance Williams sets a Big 12 record with 314 yards receiving. The old mark was set minutes earlier by West Virginia’s Stedman Bailey, who had 303 yards and five TDs.

2015 — NCAA bans the SMU men’s basketball team from the postseason and suspends coach Larry Brown for nine games, saying he lied to investigators and ignored a case of academic fraud by a player.


2018 — Seventeen-year-old Hailie Deegan uses a bump-and-run on her teammate to become the first female winner of a NASCAR K&N West Series race. Her last-lap shove of Cole Rouse at Meridian Speedway in Idaho gives her the victory.

Compiled by the Associated Press

And finally

Willie Mays makes one of the most famous catches in history. 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, and follow me on Twitter at @latimeshouston. To get this newsletter in your inbox, click here.