The Rundown for March 8, 2021

CORONAVIRUS UPDATES… The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the U.S. has reached 28,998,832 and the nation’s death toll stands at 525,031, according to figures released last night by Johns Hopkins University… Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious diseases expert, said yesterday that the number of vaccine doses available will sharply rise in the coming weeks following federal approval of Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose shot. The U.S. is now administering at least 2 million shots each day, and 87.9 million doses have been given, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention… The State Department warned yesterday that online platforms directed by Russian intelligence are spreading disinformation about two of the coronavirus vaccines being used in the U.S.

BIDEN ORDER EXPANDS VOTING… President Joe Biden yesterday marked the 56th anniversary of the bloody Selma civil-rights march by signing an executive order expanding voting access and information about voter registration. The order seeks to increase voting access to people with disabilities, active duty military and other overseas voters as well as citizens in federal custody in addition to modernizing voter information platforms and providing outreach to Native American communities. Biden noted that on March 7, 1965, Black demonstrators, including the late U.S. Rep. John Lewis, were beaten by police while crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, in a demand for the right to vote.

U.S., SOUTH KOREA REACH TROOP DEAL… The U.S. has reached an agreement in principle with South Korea on a new arrangement for sharing the cost of the American troop presence. According to the State Department’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, the deal includes a “negotiated increase” in Seoul’s share of the cost. South Korea’s Foreign Ministry said the agreement came after three days of face-to-face talks in Washington. The U.S. keeps about 28,000 troops in South Korea to help deter potential aggression from North Korea.

CAPITOL SECURITY REVIEW… A new security review recommends widespread changes at the U.S. Capitol following the January 6 insurrection. The final report was compiled by former Hurricane Katrina Commander and retired Lieutenant General Russel Honore, along with a task force composed of other former senior military officials. It proposes giving the U.S. Capitol Police authority to request support from the National Guard and outside law enforcement without pre-approval from the Capitol Police Board in “extraordinary emergency circumstances.” The 15-page document will be presented to the House today.

MORE CALLS FOR CUOMO TO RESIGN… Two top New York state lawmakers have stepped up the pressure on New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to resign amid allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate conduct. State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and New York State Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie both asked for Cuomo to step down yesterday. Despite the pleas from fellow Democrats, the governor insists he’s going nowhere.

ENTERTAINMENT
MORGAN WALLEN STAYS ATOP ALBUM CHART
… Morgan Wallen’s “Dangerous: The Double Album” sold 82,000 copies to remain atop the Billboard 200 album chart for the eighth straight week. The Weeknd’s compilation album “The Highlights” jumped into second place after selling 52,000 units. Pop Smoke’s ”Shoot for the Stars Aim for the Moon” stayed at No. 3 with 42,000 copies sold. Pooh Sheisty’s “Sheisty Season” climbed into fourth place with 37,000 units sold. Lil Durk’s “The Voice” sold 36,000 copies to cap the top five.

CRITICS CHOICE AWARDS… “Nomadland” was the big winner at last night’s Critics Choice Awards, capturing honors for Best Picture and Best Director for Chloe Zhao. “Minari” won for Best Foreign Film and its star, Alan S. Kim, was honored as Best Young Actor or Actress. “Ted Lasso” also won twice, with awards for Best Comedy Series and Best Actor in a Comedy Series for Jason Sudeikis. Carey Mulligan won the Best Actress in a Film prize for “Promising Young Woman” and the late Chadwick Boseman was recognized as Best Actor in a Film for “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.” Maria Bakalova won the Best Supporting Actress in a Film honor for “Borat Subsequent Moviefilm,” Daniel Kaluuya was named Best Supporting Actor in a Film for “Judas and the Black Messiah” and Catherine O’Hara was voted Best Actress in a Comedy Series for “Schitt’s Creek.”

SPORTS
NBA ALL-STAR GAME
… Team LeBron cruised past Team Durant 170-150 in yesterday’s NBA All-Star Game in Atlanta. Giannis Antetokounmpo was awarded the game’s MVP trophy after making all 16 field-goal attempts on his way to a game-high 35 points. Stephen Curry made eight 3-pointers and finished with 28 points. The NBA’s regular season resumes on Wednesday.

NHL SCOREBOARD
N.Y. ISLANDERS 5 – Buffalo 2… Anders Lee and Brock Nelson scored 1:02 apart in the second period to open the scoring and the Islanders cruised past the Sabres. Nelson also found the net in the third.

Tampa Bay 6 – CHICAGO 3… The Lightning rolled past the Blackhawks after spotting them a three-goal lead. Yanni Gourde netted two second-period goals and had two assists. Victor Hedman and Ondrej Palat each had a goal and an assist.

CAROLINA 4 – Florida 2… The Hurricanes doubled up on the Panthers for their fifth straight win. Sebastian Aho had a goal and an assist.

New Jersey 1 – BOSTON 0… Kyle Palmieri’s goal with 4:37 remaining broke a scoreless tie and the Devils hung on to clip the Bruins. Goalie Scott Wedgewood stopped all 40 shots in the shutout.

Washington 3 – PHILADELPHIA 1… The Capitals got goals from Alex Ovechkin, Dmitry Orlov and Nick Jensen in downing the Flyers. T.J. Oshi set up two goals.

Pittsburgh 5 – N.Y. RANGERS 1… The Penguins scored three goals 1:01 apart late in the first period and never looked back in skating past the Rangers. Kasperi Kapanen scored a goal and set up two others. Evgeni Malkin added a goal and an assist.

Nashville 4 – DALLAS 3 (SO)… The Predators recovered to outlast the Stars after blowing a three-goal third-period lead. Roman Josi netted the winning goal in the shootout. Eeli Tolvanen had a goal and an assist. Goalie Pekka Rinne made 35 saves.

Ottawa 4 – CALGARY 3 (SO)… Tim Stutzie and Drake Batherson scored in the tie-breaker to send the Senators past the Flames. Connor Brown, Ryan Dzingel and Colin White scored in regulation for Ottawa.

TODAY’S NHL SCHEDULE
Vegas is at Minnesota…
Edmonton hosts Ottawa…
Arizona is at Colorado…
San Jose hosts St. Louis…
Montreal is at Vancouver…
Anaheim hosts Los Angeles

TOP 25 MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL SCOREBOARD
MICHIGAN STATE 70, No. 2 Michigan 64…
No. 3 BAYLOR 88, No. 18 Texas Tech 73…
No. 5 IOWA 77, No. 25 Wisconsin 73…
No. 9 HOUSTON 67, Memphis 64…
No. 15 Texas 76, TCU 64…
No. 20 LOYOLA CHICAGO 75, DRAKE 65

MLB SPRING TRAINING SCORES
PITTSBURGH 13, Baltimore 1…
ATLANTA 5, Boston 4…
ST. LOUIS 8, Houston 5…
N.Y. YANKEES 4, Philadelphia 0…
MINNESOTA 8, Tampa Bay 4…
DETROIT 5, Toronto 1…
Miami 4, N.Y. METS 4 (tie)…
OAKLAND 9, Cleveland 4…
Colorado 1, CHI. WHITE SOX 0…
TEXAS 4, L.A. Dodgers 3…
San Francisco 9, CINCINNATI 4…
ARIZONA 5, Chi. Cubs 4…
K.C. Royals 4, SAN DIEGO 3…
L.A. ANGELS 6, Seattle 2

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