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Yanks to Give Farnsworth $17M for 3 Years (AP)
Atlanta Braves closer Kyle Farnsworth, right, celebrates with Braves catcher Brian McCann (16) after their 3-1 won over the New York Mets, in this  Sept. 6, 2005 file photo  at Turner Field in Atlanta. Frnsworth agreed to $17 million three-year contract with the New York Yankees Friday Dec.2. 2005.  (AP Photo/Gregory Smith-File)AP - The New York Yankees agreed Friday to a $17 million, three-year contract with reliever Kyle Farnsworth, moving quickly to replace Tom Gordon as the primary setup man for Mariano Rivera.


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Twins Acquire Castillo From Marlins (AP)
This is a 2005 file photo of  Luis Castillo  of the Florida Marlins baseball team. Castillo was traded to the Minnesoat Twins for minor league pitchers Travis Bowyer and Scott Tyler. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer-File)AP - The Minnesota Twins acquired speedy second baseman Luis Castillo on Friday from the cost-cutting Florida Marlins for a pair of pitching prospects.


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Croatia, Slovakia Tied in Davis Cup Play (AP)
Croatia's  Davis Cup team player Mario Ancic in action during his Davis Cup final match against Slovakia's Dominik Hrbaty in Bratislava, Slovakia, Friday, Dec. 2, 2005. (AP Photo/Anja Niedringhaus)AP - Neither Croatia nor Slovakia was able to move closer to its goal of winning the Davis Cup for the first time. The nations, both finalists for the first time, were 1-1 after opening singles matches Friday. That means the best-of-five series won't be decided until the reverse singles Sunday.


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IOC Still Seeking Turin Doping Solution (AP)
A view of the Turin 2006 Olympic megastore, opened in Turin's Vittorio Square, Italy, Thursday, Dec. 1, 2006. The winter Olympic games are scheduled to open in Turin on Feb. 10, 2006. (AP Photo/Alberto Ramella)AP - IOC president Jacques Rogge says he's confident a solution can be worked out with the Italian government on how to punish doping at the Turin Olympics.


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Eagles Withdraw Complaint Against Dallas (AP)
AP - The Philadelphia Eagles have withdrawn a tampering complaint against the Cowboys filed after Dallas owner Jerry Jones suggested on a radio show that his team is often interested in players such as suspended wide receiver Terrell Owens.

Landeta Latest in Line of Eagles Punters (AP)
This 2004 handout from the NFL shows Sean Landeta. When Sean Landeta punts against Seattle on Monday night, he'll be the fourth Eagles punter this year, joining injured starter Dirk Johnson, Nick Murphy and Reggie Hodges. (AP Photo/HO, NFL)AP - What do you get when you cross a linebacker, long snapper and a USFL veteran? For Philadelphia, the answer is one of its most unstable and unreliable kicking and punting situations in years.


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Parker helps Spurs edge Mavs in all-Texas NBA match-up (AFP)
Tony Parker, seen here 29 November 2005, scored 20 of his 30 points in the second half as the National Basketball Association champions San Antonio edged Dallas 92-90(AFP/Getty Images/File)AFP - Tony Parker scored 20 of his 30 points in the second half as the National Basketball Association champions San Antonio edged Dallas 92-90.


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Gordon, Phillies Reach Preliminary Deal (AP)
New York Yankees' relief pitcher Tom Gordon reacts as the final out is made in the eighth inning against the Los Angeles Angels in Game 1 of the American League Division Series, Tuesday night, Oct. 4, 2005, in Anaheim, Calif. Gordon and the Phillies reached a preliminary agreement Thursday night, Dec. 1, 2005, on an $18 million, three-year contract, giving Philadelphia a replacement for departed closer Billy Wagner.(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill,file)AP - The Phillies' new closer hasn't finished games regularly in four years. Apparently, that's of little concern to Philadelphia, which reached a preliminary agreement with Tom Gordon on an $18 million, three-year contract on Thursday, giving the team a replacement for departed closer Billy Wagner.


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Italian Officials Condemn Fan Violence (AP)
AP - Italian soccer officials on Friday condemned violence that caused an Italian Cup match between Juventus and Fiorentina to be halted for 20 minutes.

Panthers Trade Huselius to Flames (AP)
AP - The struggling Florida Panthers traded winger Kristian Huselius to the Calgary Flames for defenseman Steve Montador and minor league center Dustin Johner on Friday.

Showdown Sunday
Four divisional matchups in Week 13 could go a long way in determining who finishes first.

ESPN suspends Irvin for one week (AP)
Michael Irvin says he has been suspended by ESPN for one week for not telling the network about his arrest last week, when police found a drug pipe hidden in his car during a traffic stop. Irvin, who has maintained that the pipe belonged to a friend, told The Associated Press on Thursday that he won't return to the air until Dec.

Panthers advised on beating drug tests (AP)
The doctor accused of writing illegal steroid prescriptions for three former Carolina Panthers advised the players how to take the drugs without failing league tests, The State reported Friday. A judge heard tape-recorded conversations Thursday between Dr. James Shortt and the three players, in which Shortt details how he could help them avoid being detected for performance-enhancing drugs, the...

Big Ben's thumb painful, but he'll play (AP)
Another week, another injury for Ben Roethlisberger. Roethlisberger's right thumb injury "is pretty painful," he said Thursday, but the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback is hopeful it won't severely affect his throwing in Sunday's key AFC North game against the Cincinnati Bengals. The injury, not disclosed until Wednesday, follows injuries to both knees that kept Roethlisberger out of four games.

McNabb's doctor wants QB to take it easy (AP)
The doctor who performed season-ending surgery for a sports hernia on Donovan McNabb said the Eagles quarterback should "take it easy" before returning to the field. Dr. William Meyers, who operated Monday at Hahnemann University Hospital, said McNabb had multiple tears and needed surgery immediately.

Volleyball bounces Saints from Alamodome (AP)
The one place the New Orleans Saints could call home during this hurricane-displaced season was the Alamodome. And now that's about to change -- the NCAA takes over the Alamodome next week for its women's volleyball tournament. The football team's locker room will move to a high school baseball field.

Rams prez: Martz '05 return unlikely (AP)
St. Louis Rams president John Shaw says he would be shocked if Mike Martz got medical clearance to return to coaching this season. Martz stepped down Oct. 24 on doctors' orders while suffering from endocarditis, a bacterial infection of the lining of the heart. Interim coach Joe Vitt has coached the team the last six games, going 3-3 heading into Sunday's game against the Washington Redskins, and...

Dungy says Colts aren't perfect (AP)
So many elements of the Indianapolis Colts are working perfectly that coach Tony Dungy is having a tougher time than usual finding things to fix. But there are problems that need solving, he said. There's a lot to like about the undefeated Colts. They rank third in the league in total offense and fourth in total defense.

Holmgren admits error in officials flap (AP)
Seattle Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren said Wednesday he "kind of messed up" when he said the NFL told him there were officiating mistakes made during last Sunday's overtime win over the New York Giants. "I think it's kind of a tempest in a teapot," Holmgren said near the end of news conference. "I kind of messed up.

Jauron picks Lions QB, Bly apologizes (AP)
Interim coach Dick Jauron designated Jeff Garcia to start at quarterback for Detroit at quarterback Sunday against Minnesota. There had been speculation that Harrington, or even rookie Dan Orlovsky, would start Sunday against the Vikings instead of the 35-year-old Garcia because team president Matt Millen said Monday when he fired coach Steve Mariucci that he wanted to get more out of younger...

Life after Larry
The Pistons have hardly been lost without Larry Brown, discovering a new winning style under Flip Saunders.

Brown makes return to Detroit on Friday (AP)
Larry Brown has a lot of experience with this: returning to an NBA city where he used to coach. The Hall of Fame coach will be doing it for seventh time Friday night when he leads the New York Knicks at Detroit. This time, however, won't be like the rest. "I was fired, so it's a little different," Brown said Thursday during a conference call.

Parker, Finley key Spurs' win in Dallas (AP)
Michael Finley looks a lot more comfortable in that San Antonio Spurs uniform than he did the first time he played against Dallas. Finley scored 15 points, including three key free throws in the final 23 seconds, and the Spurs held on to beat his former team 92-90 Thursday night and remain alone atop the Western Conference.

Vujacic's 3 lifts Lakers over Jazz in OT (AP)
Kobe Bryant missed at the buzzer and had to watch the end from the bench -- and the Los Angeles Lakers still won. Bryant made two free throws after a disputed foul with 0.4 seconds left in regulation, and Sasha Vujacic won it for the Lakers on a 3-pointer with 20 seconds to play in overtime of a 105-101 victory over the Utah Jazz on Thursday night.

Nuggets suspend Lenard for one game (AP)
The Denver Nuggets suspended guard Voshon Lenard for one game without pay on Thursday for conduct detrimental to the team. Lenard, who is averaging 8.5 points in 10 games this season, will miss Friday night's game at Phoenix. "This is an internal matter that we have dealt with in-house," Nuggets general manager Kiki Vandeweghe said in a statement.

Marshall lifts Cavs over Clips in OT (AP)
Donyell Marshall made the biggest play when it mattered, then made two more when it meant the most. Marshall converted a key three-point play in regulation, then hit consecutive 3-pointers in overtime to help the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Los Angeles Clippers 112-105 Wednesday night. "I still didn't shoot well, but made them when it counted," said Marshall, who shot 1-for-7 before scoring nine...

Nuggets' Karl suspended for two games (AP)
George Karl has never been shy about sharing his candid opinions and as a result, he has often found himself lighter in the wallet. This time, he also got suspended without pay. The league came down hard on Karl for publicly criticizing officials after the Nuggets' 101-92 loss to New Jersey. Karl began his two-game suspension with Wednesday night's Nuggets-Hornets game in Denver.

Heat finally win on road without Shaq (AP)
Shaquille O'Neal was wearing a suit and tie, Dwyane Wade didn't score in the first or fourth quarters and still the Miami Heat beat the Atlanta Hawks by 22 points Wednesday night. Apparently there's a long way from first to last in the NBA's Southeast Division. In the Heat's first road victory without O'Neal, Jason Williams scored 21 points to help Miami beat Atlanta 96-74.

Pistons hit 10 3s, top Nets 93-83 (AP)
Flip Saunders is getting a sense of what motivates his defending Eastern Conference champion Detroit Pistons. Richard Hamilton scored 30 points and Detroit tied a team season high with 10 3-pointers in a 93-83 win over the New Jersey Nets on Wednesday night. "My take is that these guys need challenges," said Saunders, in his first year as Pistons coach.

Nash leads Suns past tired Pacers 109-91 (AP)
Steve Nash didn't intend to shoot a lot of 3-pointers. They just came naturally in the flow of the game. "I wasn't looking for them, I don't ever focus on them," Nash said after scoring a season-high 31 points, including a career-high seven 3-pointers, as the well-rested Phoenix Suns beat the tired Indiana Pacers 109-91 Wednesday night for their fourth straight victory.

Power rankings
Will the arrival of Joe Thornton in San Jose rescue the Sharks from the bottom third of the Power Rankings?

Minus Thornton, Bruins blank Senators (AP)
The Boston Bruins followed up the trade of captain Joe Thornton with another stunning development -- this one on the ice. A day after shipping out their star, the last-place Bruins beat first-place Ottawa 3-0 on Thursday night, handing the Senators their first shutout of the season and their first loss of any kind in seven games.

Khabibulin not to start Friday (AP)
Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin got his Stanley Cup ring Friday, plus the night off against the team that helped him earn it. Khabibulin will not start Friday night's game against the Tampa Bay Lightning, who he guided to the 2004 NHL title. It's the first time Khabibulin, who signed a four-year, $27 million free-agent contract with the Blackhawks in August, would have faced his...

Sabres RW Dumont has sports hernia (AP)
Buffalo Sabres forward J.P. Dumont has been diagnosed with a sports hernia that could require surgery and cost him a large portion of this season. Coach Lindy Ruff said the decision on surgery hasn't been made, and that Dumont might get another opinion. Two doctors have already examined Dumont, whose ailment originally was diagnosed as an abdominal injury.

Malik helps Rangers win sixth straight (AP)
Marek Malik's sudden offensive prowess has made him the brunt of Jaromir Jagr's jokes. Malik has quickly become a fan favorite at Madison Square Garden, and not just when he and the Rangers are on the ice. The defenseman scored his first goal in regulation and fellow defenseman Maxim Kondratiev netted his first in the NHL to lead New York to its sixth straight victory, 2-1 over the Pittsburgh...

Amonte lifts Flames over Red Wings (AP)
An early two-goal deficit wasn't enough to rattle the Calgary Flames. The Flames rallied by wearing down Detroit's defensemen, and Tony Amonte scored the tiebreaker 19 seconds into the third period to lead Calgary to a 3-2 win over the Red Wings. "We stuck to our game plan: Go in and get the puck behind the 'D' and wear their defense down," said Chuck Kobasew, who had a goal and an assist.

Sabres win again on Campbell's OT goal (AP)
The Buffalo Sabres keep finding ways to overcome their injury woes. Brian Campbell scored 2:15 into overtime and Tim Connolly had a goal and two assists as Buffalo extended its season-high winning streak to five games with a 3-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night. Campbell, who scored the winning goal in Friday's 3-1 victory over the Canadiens, took a pass from Connolly and beat...

Leafs' Tellqvist gets first career SO (AP)
In a matchup of two of the top four power plays in the NHL, Atlanta was short-handed more often than Toronto -- and the Thrashers paid for it Thursday night. Mikael Tellqvist stopped 28 shots for his first career shutout, Darcy Tucker scored twice and the Maple Leafs stretched their winning streak over Atlanta to six games by beating the Thrashers 4-0.

Blues end record 7-game home skid (AP)
Patrick Lalime hardly looked rusty after a six-game benching. Lalime stopped 25 shots and Dennis Wideman scored his first career goal and added an assist, helping the St. Louis Blues beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-1 on Thursday night. "Of course, I was looking forward to it," Lalime said. "It's been a while and it's nice to be out there again." Simon Gamache got his second career goal and Keith...

Horton scores in return to lift Panthers (AP)
After being sideline for 10 games, Nathan Horton wanted to help the Florida Panthers in any way possible. Horton scored in his first game back after being sidelined due to an injury, and Roberto Luongo stopped 37 shots to lead the Panthers to a 3-2 victory over the Washington Capitals on Thursday night.

New York minute
NEW YORK – Tony Stewart and Co. are keeping busy during NASCAR's Champion's Week in Manhattan.

Earnhardt named most popular once again (AP)
Dale Earnhardt slipped this season in the points standings, but not in the popularity department.

Humbled Busch on hand for season-ending ceremonies (AP)
It took two quiet weekends out of a race car for Kurt Busch to realize he needed an attitude adjustment.

NASCAR champion ready to get in shape (AP)
Tony Stewart went on a shopping spree last week that he hopes will lead to a new and improved Nextel Cup champion.

Stewart's slow start turns into championship season (AP)
What started out as a lost season for Tony Stewart wound up as the best time of his life. Few who saw it will...

In NASCAR, 2005 a season of personality (AP)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – The season started with Tony Stewart out front, only to fade at the end of the biggest...

Authorities identify four killed in plane crash off Dana Point (AP)
Off-road racer Jason Baldwin was among four people killed last weekend in a plane crash off the California coast, authorities confirmed Wednesday. Divers recovered the bodies Tuesday, three days after the plane sank in about 200 feet of water off Dana Point. Along with the 35-year-old Baldwin, also identified were pilot Daniel M.

NASCAR's championship format was a winner, and closer than it looked (AP)
There was no last-lap drama in this Chase.

Sister: Racer Baldwin aboard crashed plane (AP)
Off-road racer Jason Baldwin was one of four people aboard a small plane that crashed into the Pacific off the Orange County coast. "It was his time to go," his sister, Kelley Renezeder, said Sunday. "We will all learn in our way why he died. He did not die as though he never lived. He lived each day to the fullest." A dive team will arrive Tuesday to retrieve the wreckage of the plane, which crashed...

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