AUTO RACING: NASCAR reinstated A.J. Allmendinger on Tuesday, saying the driver had successfully completed his rehabilitation program after testing positive for a banned substance.
Allmendinger was suspended two months ago after failing a random drug test in June and his backup “B” urine sample later tested positive. NASCAR has not revealed the substance, but he has said he tested positive for Adderall, a prescription drug typically used to treat attention deficit disorder. He does not have an ADD diagnosis or prescription, and said he took it a couple of days before the June 30 race at Kentucky Speedway because he was tired.
“The Road to Recovery program was really helpful to me in getting my priorities reset away from the race track,” Allmendinger said in a statement. Allmendinger was suspended July 7, just hours before the race at Daytona and forcing Penske Racing to bring in Sam Hornish Jr. at the last moment. Allmendinger was released by Penske Racing after the “B” sample failed and the only way to come back to the series was to complete NASCAR’s “Road to Recovery” program.
Now that he’s done it, he may find a home sooner than anyone expected back in July.
Team owner Roger Penske had Allmendinger as his guest at the IndyCar season finale last weekend and said the 30-year-old driver is a viable candidate for rides in both NASCAR and IndyCar. Penske said he’d consider hiring Allmendinger again.
Florida joins Ottawa with NHL layoffs
Nhl: The Florida Panthers announced the layoffs of an unknown number of staff members, only the third full day of the NHL’s lockout.
The Panthers are believed to be the NHL’s second team to publicly announce layoffs since the league’s collective bargaining agreement with its players expired at 11:59 p.m. on Saturday and ushered in the league’s fourth work stoppage in the last 20 years.
The Ottawa Senators already had layoffs and full-time employees have been placed on a reduced work week.
• Ehrhobb playing in Germany: Buffalo Sabres defenseman Christian Ehrhoff will be spending the NHL lockout playing in his native Germany.
Ehrhoff reached an agreement to play for his hometown team, the Krefeld Penguins. The deal was reached after the German team agreed to pay about $26,000 a month to insure the player in the event of injury.
Notre Dame, UConn may play at Fenway
football: Connecticut and Notre Dame are reportedly in negotiations to play a football game at Fenway Park in Boston.
The Day of New London and the Boston Globe, both citing officials involved in the talks, said the game would be played in 2014, and would be considered a home game for the Fighting Irish.
The park has hosted 41 football games in its 100-year history, but none since the New England Patriots beat the Cincinnati Bengals 33-14 on Dec. 1, 1968.
Skaters call abuse claims ‘baseless’
Speedskating: Olympic bronze medalist Lana Gehring, U.S. teammate Jessica Smith and seven other speedskaters signed a statement claiming abuse allegations against their coach are “baseless” and a “false attack on his character.”
Gehring and Smith said they don’t believe allegations leveled against short track coach Jae Su Chun or assistant Jun Hyung Yeo.
The charges were leveled recently by more than a dozen other athletes in complaints to the U.S. Olympic Committee and U.S. Speedskating.
U.S. Speedskating announced Monday that Chun was being placed on administrative leave and Yeo in charge while an independent law firm investigates the abuse claims.
Staples Center, Kings put up for sale
Miscellany: The company that owns the Staples Center and the Los Angeles Kings announced it is being put up for sale, sparking a potential billion-dollar bidding war for some of the sports and entertainment world’s glitziest properties.
The Anschutz Co., run by Denver billionaire Philip Anschutz, said it is seeking a buyer for its AEG subsidiary, which also has stakes in the L.A. Live entertainment venue in downtown Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Kings professional hockey team and the Los Angeles Galaxy pro soccer team.
If a deal goes through, it would mark the second blockbuster sports transaction in Southern California this year, following the $2.15-billion purchase of the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team.
• Real Madrid wins: Real Madrid scored twice late in an electrifying finish to beat Manchester City 3-2 to open the Champions League group stage.