Statistics are part of the lifeblood of sports journalism, perhaps even more than in non-sports journalism. They affect team and league decisions and are a big part of how fans (readers) perceive their favorite sports. Here are some sources for sports statistics:
Sports Reference: Free basic stats and advanced analytics
Professional League Statistics
Other Sport Statistics Sources (mix of free and paid sources)
Several filters will help refine your searching:
Sports Journalists Battle for Relevancy: A Nieman Report. In an age of social platforms and celebrity athletes, Bleacher Report, The Players' Tribune, and The Athletic are challenging legacy sports media
What Does It Take to Cover Big Time Sports? Former Associated Press vice president talks about the future of sports journalism.
The Society of Professional Journalists has put together a "Diversity Toolbox" to help journalists improve their reporting. Here are a few highlights from the Toolbox as well as from the Poynter Institute, the American Press Institute, and the Women's Media Center.