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USA Hockey begins prepping for world championships

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USA Hockey and NHL Officials held a preliminary meeting Tuesday night to discuss which U.S. players could potentially fill the roster for this May’s world championships in Sweden and Finland.

Of course, they won’t be able to make any final official decisions until we’re much closer to the event, due to a late NHL season that was pushed back by the infamous player lockout.

“We’ve always had a running list in our group and we updated guys’ thoughts on where they felt players were at,” Johannson told ESPN. “There was a bit of an emphasis on some players that we need to keep track of a little bit more.”

Also on the agenda: naming a general manager for the U.S. team, a decision that’s being delay because of the ongoing talks between the NHL, IOC, and IIHF over whether the pros will be playing in next February’s Sochi Olympics. The position is likely to go to 2010 GM Brian Burke, who helped the team to the championship game in Vancouver, where they won silver after losing to Canada in overtime.

“In the end, we’re waiting to make sure the NHL is a full-go with it,” Johannson added. “I know the talks are going well, but it’s hard to do anything until that’s official.”

Craig Sager will miss Rio Olympics as he battles leukemia

CLEVELAND, OH - JUNE 16:  Legendary TNT sideline reporter Craig Sager talks with Game 6 of the 2016 NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors at Quicken Loans Arena on June 16, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. Sager is on a one game assignment for ESPN. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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Basketball reporter Craig Sager will miss the Rio Games as he returns to a cancer center to continue his battle against acute myeloid leukemia, NBC announced in a statement Thursday.

Sager was set to cover his fifth straight Olympics for NBC, but instead needs to undergo a third bone marrow transplant at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. He resumed receiving chemotherapy on Wednesday, according to the Houston Chronicle, with the goal being to force the disease into remission so the transplant can be performed next month.

“We’ve known since February we would have to have the third transplant,” Sager told the Chronicle. “We tried to delay it until after the Olympics, but (the disease) is very aggressive, and there is a sense of urgency to do it now.”

Sager was diagnosed in 2014, went into remission after a bone marrow transplant, was told the cancer came back in March 2015, underwent a second transplant last year, and then found out in February he was no longer in remission.

“My body isn’t getting stronger, so they want to do it while I’m strong enough,” Sager said. “Third transplants are kind of rare, so hopefully we will get it done and I’ll be ready in time for (NBA) opening night.”

MORE: Marv Albert to call Olympic basketball for first time since 1996

Details of NBC Olympics’ Facebook, Instagram content for Rio

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NBC Olympics, Facebook and Instagram will team up to provide video highlights and interviews on social media daily during the Rio Olympics.

An on-site “Social Command Center” in Rio will capture Facebook Live content, including interviews with athletes and NBC Olympics commentators.

A daily two-minute recap video will be produced for Facebook, while Instagram will have a daily slow-motion video around an inspiring moment.

Instagram will also feature NBC Olympics commentators and athletes on its own account, @instagram, along with highlights of NBC videos through its Search & Explore video channels.

More on the NBC Olympics, Facebook and Instagram partnerships is here.

MORE: Complete U.S. Olympic team roster