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Bob Corkum named U.S. women’s hockey head coach

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Bob Corkum, who played 12 NHL seasons, succeeds Robb Stauber as head coach of the U.S. women’s hockey team this season.

Corkum was announced as head coach Monday, along with assistants nine-year NHL defenseman Brian Pothier and Joel Johnson, who is in his 14th year on the University of Minnesota women’s team’s coaching staff. Corkum’s deal is through the 2019 World Championship. Pothier and Johnson were named on the staff only for next week’s Four Nations Cup.

Reagan Carey, director of U.S. women’s hockey since 2010, stepped down to pursue other opportunities.

Corkum previously was an assistant coach for the U.S. women’s under-22 team and head coach for the U.S. men’s team at the 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament. He played center for seven NHL teams between 1990 and 2002.

Stauber, a former Los Angeles Kings goaltender, was U.S. women’s head coach for the 2016-17 and 2017-18 seasons, guiding teams to world and Olympic titles. PyeongChang marked the Americans’ first Olympic hockey gold since the first Winter Games women’s hockey tournament in 1998.

Stauber and his wife were named co-head coaches of the newest NWHL team, the Minnesota Whitecaps, in May.

It is unknown if Stauber could return to the U.S. coaching staff before the 2022 Beijing Olympics.

The U.S. plays its first international tournament since the Olympics next week at the Four Nations Cup in Saskatchewan, an annual event that also includes Canada, Finland and Sweden.

The roster includes all of the stars from the Olympic team save captain Meghan Duggan, who is sitting out with an injury but plans to return to the national team later in this Olympic cycle, and twins Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson and Monique Lamoureux-Morando, who are pregnant.

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Gregorio Paltrinieri swims second-fastest 1500m freestyle in history

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Olympic champion Gregorio Paltrinieri swam the second-fastest 1500m freestyle in history, clocking 14:33.10 in his native Italy on Thursday.

Paltrinieri, 25, missed Chinese Sun Yang‘s world record from the 2012 Olympics by 2.08 seconds.

The Italian now owns the second- and third-fastest times in history, including his 14:34.10 from the 2016 European Championships, also held at the 2012 Olympic pool in London.

Paltrinieri is a versatile distance swimmer. At last year’s world championships, he finished sixth in the open-water 10km to qualify for the Olympics, then won the 800m free in the pool in a European record time and finished with 1500m bronze, just missing a third straight world title in that event.

German Florian Wellbrock won the 1500m in 14:36.54 at worlds, with Paltrinieri finishing 2.21 seconds back.

Sun, 28, was in February banned eight years stemming from destroying a drug-test sample with a hammer in September 2018. Sun, who focused more on the 200m and 400m frees in recent years, did not race the 1500m at the 2017 or 2019 Worlds.

Top-level swim meets in the U.S. are scheduled to resume in November with the Tyr Pro Series.

MORE: Michael Phelps qualifies for first Olympics at age 15

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Bianca Andreescu to miss U.S. Open

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Bianca Andreescu withdrew from the U.S. Open, citing “unforeseen challenges, including the Covid pandemic” compromising her ability to prepare to defend her Grand Slam title.

“I have taken this step in order to focus on my match fitness and ensure that I return ready to play at my highest level,” Andreescu, a 20-year-old Canadian, posted on social media. “The US Open victory last year has been the high point of my career thus far and I will miss not being there. However, I realize that the unforeseen challenges, including the Covid pandemic, have compromised my ability to prepare and compete to the degree necessary to play at my highest level.”

Andreescu’s absence means the U.S. Open, the first Grand Slam tournament since tennis resumed amid the coronavirus pandemic, will be without both 2019 male and female singles champions.

Rafael Nadal previously announced he would not defend his title, saying he would rather not travel given the global situation. Roger Federer is also out after knee surgery. Women’s No. 1 Ash Barty didn’t enter, either, citing travel concerns.

Last year, Andreescu made her U.S. Open title run as the 15th seed, sweeping Serena Williams in the final. Ranked 208th a year earlier, she became the first player born in the 2000s to win a Slam and the first teen Slam winner since Maria Sharapova at the 2006 U.S. Open.

Andreescu then missed the Australian Open in January due to rehab from a knee injury that forced her to retire during a match at the WTA Finals on Oct. 30. She also missed the French Open and Wimbledon in 2019 following a rotator cuff tear.

MORE: Serena Williams, reclusive amid pandemic, returns to tennis competition

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