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Digest: Capitals re-sign Kuznetsov, trade Johansson to Devils

In a summer when the Washington Capitals have shown little restraint in spending, the organization made its biggest deal yet Sunday night by signing restricted free-agent center Evgeny Kuznetsov to an eight-year, $62.4 million contract extension. But because they were already facing salary cap constraints with more than $70 million of a $75 million salary cap committed to just 15 players, the Capitals were forced into a situation where they had to shed salary. That move came an hour after Kuznetsov's new deal was announced when the team traded winger Marcus Johansson to the New Jersey Devils for second- and third-round picks in next season's NHL draft. With teams almost certainly aware of Washington's bleak salary cap picture, the Capitals had little leverage in dealing a skilled 26-year-old top-six forward within the Metropolitan Division. Johansson is coming off a career year with 24 goals and 34 assists, but trading him for draft picks clears his $4.583 million salary cap hit and gives the team more wiggle room to re-sign restricted free agents Andre Burakovsky and Philipp Grubauer. Before the trade, the Capitals had roughly $4.6 million for Burakovsky, Grubauer and five other contracts to fill the roster. With Burakovsky and Grubauer both due raises, the team didn't have enough cap space to field a 22-man roster even if those five other players were making the league minimum. After trading Johansson, Washington now has $9,239,893 in cap room, according to CapFriendly.com.

—Isabelle Khurshudyan, The Washington Post

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Major League Lacrosse

Thompson leads Bayhawks to victory in home debut

After trailing 5-0 less than 10 minutes into the game, the host Chesapeake Bayhawks (4-5) responded with seven straight goals to take the lead with just under seven minutes left in the first half and never trailed the rest of the way in a 19-9 Major League Lacrosse victory over the Rochester Rattlers (4-5). Attackman Lyle Thompson had five goals and two assists in his home debut. "Unbelievable. What a performance," Chesapeake coach Brian Reese said. "Some of those shots were like 'Holy crap, how did he get that in?' Lyle is really fun to watch." Thompson, who joined the Bayhawks last weekend after leading the Georgia Swarm to the National Lacrosse League championship, wowed the fans with his stick-handling and accurate shooting. Veteran two-way midfielder Matt Abbott had four goals and two assists for Chesapeake, which ended a four-game losing streak.

—Bill Wagner, Baltimore Sun Media Group

Et cetera

Laurel trio wins acrobatics silver at U.S. championships

Eleanor Chang, Calista Davis and Madison Freed, all of Laurel and Emilias Acro and Cheer, captured the women's senior acrobatics silver medal with 84.103 points at the United States gymnastics championships in Milwaukee on Saturday night. Emma Bentov-Lagman, Cristin Connerney and Helena Hall, all of Eldersburg and LeeAnns Acrobatic and Tumbling Academy/1st Class Gymnastics, finished third (81.707). Sophie Gruszka, Morgan Sweeney and Amanda Waterson, all of Livermore, Calif., claimed the gold (84.480). In the junior acrobatic championships, Kaitlyn Koegel, Annika Mitchell and Paige Murphy, all of Annapolis and 1st Class Gymnastics, won the ages 12-18 women's group; Sean Butehorn, Daniel Disman, Grant Shields and Sean Shields, all of Laurel and Emilias Acro Gymnastics and Cheer, captured the 12-18 men's group; and Isabel Chang, Alexandra Gladkova and Caitlyn Kicza, all of Laurel and Emilias Acro, took the 13-19 women's group. Jessica Stevens of Ellicott City finished fourth overall in women's trampoline with a 146.870. For acrobatic gymnastics, the U.S. championships event is part of the selection process for the U.S. teams that will compete at the World Games, held July 20-30 in Wrocław, Poland.

WNBA: Candace Parker and Chelsea Gray scored 17 points apiece and the host Los Angeles Sparks (12-3) rallied from a 17-point halftime deficit to beat the Washington Mystics, 76-69. Elena Delle Donne led Washington (10-6) with 22 points, but scored just two in the final 17-plus minutes.

Horse racing: Marshall E Dowell's Ghost Bay took the lead from even-money favorite Conquest See Ya in mid-stretch and capture Sunday's featured eighth race at Laurel Park. Ghost Bay ($11.40) won the $45,000 second-level optional claiming allowance for 3-year-olds and up by a half-length in 1:42.17 for 11/16 miles over a firm All Along Turf Course.

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