Lakers Take Home NBA Championship: Top Stories, Sports and Business News — Oct. 12

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LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers are NBA champions, Operation Warp Speed invests in AstraZeneca’s antibody treatment and DraftKings analyst coverage initiations. These are the stories shaping sports and business for Monday, October 12th, 2020.

Coronavirus Update

According to Johns Hopkins, There are over 37.6 million cases of the virus worldwide, with over one million deaths.

The U.S. has surpassed 7.7 million cases with 214,000 deaths.

Per the COVID-19 Tracking Project, there were 46,776 new cases reported Sunday, which is lower than the 57,206 cases reported the day earlier. Over 943,645 new tests were reported. And 464 deaths were reported yesterday, which is lower than the 663 deaths reported the day prior.

AstraZeneca’s antibody treatment will get a $486 million investment from the Trump Administration’s Operation Warp Speed to supply up to 100,000 doses, with the government able to acquire up to a million doses.

The antibody combinations AZD7442 trials will enroll over 6,000 adults for the prevention of COVID-19, with around 4,0000 adults for the treatment of SARS-CoV-1 infections.

CEO Pascal Soriot said: “This agreement with the US Government will help accelerate the development of our long-acting antibody combination which has the potential to provide immediate and long-lasting effect in both preventing and treating COVID-19 infections. We will be evaluating the LAAB combination in different settings from prophylaxis, to outpatient treatment to hospitalization, with a focus on helping the most vulnerable people.”

DraftKings: What Wall Street Is Saying

It's a busy season for bookmakers as NFL and college football are in full swing.

Despite some recent coronavirus hiccups in the professional league, fall football is back and gamblers aren’t the only ones who have noticed.

Analysts at Oppenheimer raised the company’s price target on to $65 per share after the company raised $1.06 billion of capital following its 32 million shares secondary offering.

Analysts at Needham reaffirmed their buy rating and $70 PT despite mixed preannouncement figures as the firm bets on the continued expansion of the online gaming market.

Meanwhile, analysts at Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse initiated coverage of DraftKings, though Credit Suisse held a more bullish outperform rating while Deutsche started coverage with a hold rating.

We’ve spoken about DraftKings quite a bit here on Synergy in recent weeks as the company has announced partnerships with the NFL and ESPN, and Oh yea Michael Jordan recently took an equity stake in the company.

And now increased interest from analyst firms all work as tailwinds for DraftKings stock.

The biggest headwind for the company however is the uncertainty surrounding whether the college and professional football leagues will be able to finish their seasons due to complications from the coronavirus pandemic. 

Sports Illustrated's Robin Lundberg and TheStreet's Tony Owusu contributed to this report.

You can follow Katherine Ross on Twitter at @byKatherineRoss.

Read more from Katherine Ross here.

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