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Hurricanes wipe out Oilers, Markkanen 5-0 (AP)
Carolina Hurricanes' Doug Weight (39) celebrates his goal as Edmonton Oilers goalie Jussi Markkanen, of Finland, looks back during the third period of the Hurricanes' 5-0 win in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup hockey finals in Raleigh, N.C., Wednesday, June 7, 2006. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)AP - The kid looks like he's done it all before. So do the Carolina Hurricanes, halfway home to their first Stanley Cup championship after a dominating performance on Tobacco Road.


Grimsley released day after steroid search (AP)
Arizona Diamondbacks Jason Grimsley fields a grounder in front during their game against the San Diego Padres, May 16, 2006, in Phoenix. Grimsley was released by the Diamondbacks on Wednesday, June 7, 2006 a day after federal agents searched his home as part of an investigation into steroid use by athletes. (AP Photo/Roy Dabner)AP - Pitcher Jason Grimsley was released by the Arizona Diamondbacks on Wednesday, a day after his home was searched by federal agents following his admission he used human growth hormone, steroids and amphetamines.


Jackson reaches WNBA points mark fastest (AP)
Seattle Storm's Lauren Jackson (15), of Aistralia, shoots over Chicago Sky's Candice Dupree in the first quarter during a WNBA basketball game, Wednesday, June 7, 2006, in Seattle. In the second quarter, Jackson scored her 3,000th career WNBA point, the fastest player ever to do so and the 11th player to hit that mark. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)AP - Lauren Jackson scored 19 points and reached 3,000 in her career faster than any player in WNBA history to lead the Seattle Storm to an 86-73 victory over the Chicago Sky on Wednesday night.


Titans trade former MVP McNair to Ravens (AP)
Tennessee Titans quarterback Steve McNair passes against the Seattle Seahawks in the third quarter of an NFL football game in a Sunday, Dec. 18, 2005 photo, in Nashville, Tenn. The Tennessee Titans ended their stalemate with quarterback Steve McNair on Wednesday and traded the former MVP to the Baltimore Ravens pending a physical. (AP Photo/John Russell, file)AP - Steve McNair finally split with Tennessee Titans and is heading for Baltimore.


Zito looking to pull off Belmont surprise (AP)
Trainer Nick Zito smiles as he looks out of the Preakness Stakes barn during workouts at Pimlico Race Course in this May 18, 2006, file photo in Baltimore. Zito is pleased with the progress that injured Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro is making. (AP Photo/Don Wright/file)AP - Nick Zito did his best to put a positive spin on Saturday's $1 million Belmont Stakes.


Titans trade McNair to Ravens (Reuters)
Tennessee Titans quarterback Steve McNair (L) avoids a high diving Indianapolis Colts' Raheem Brock (R) during a game in Indianapolis, December 4, 2005. The Titans traded McNair to the Baltimore Ravens on Wednesday on condition the oft-injured MVP quarterback passes a physical. (John Sommers II/Reuters)Reuters - The Tennessee Titans traded Steve McNair to the Baltimore Ravens on Wednesday on condition the oft-injured MVP quarterback passes a physical.


Familiar, new faces brighten NBA finals (AP)
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, left, jokes that team scout Reggie Johnson, right, is his new girlfriend during team basketball practice in Dallas, Wednesday, June 7, 2006. The Mavericks will face the Miami Heat in the NBA Finals.  (AP Photo/LM Otero)AP - Never mind that the Miami Heat and the Dallas Mavericks are NBA finals neophytes.


Everett gives Mariners 10-9 win over Twins (AP)
Seattle Mariners' Carl Everett hits a walkoff home run on a pitch from Minnesota Twins' Jesse Crain during the 11th inning of a baseball game Wednesday, June 7, 2006, in Seattle. The Mariners won 10-9. (AP Photo/John Froschauer)AP - This was so sweet for Seattle, manager Mike Hargrove looked as if he might kiss Carl Everett. Hargrove traded back slaps and hugs and then placed his hand on Everett's cheek — all after his slumping veteran lined a home run in the bottom of the 11th inning to give the surging Mariners a 10-9 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday night.


'Real' exhibition set for Salt Lake City (AP)
England's national soccer team captain David Beckham stretches during a squad training session for the World Cup at Mittelbergstadion in Buehlertal, Germany, Wednesday June 7, 2006.  England are due to face Paraguay, Trinidad and Tobago and Sweden in their Group B games at the World Cup.  (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)AP - The partnership Dave Checketts has been picturing for two years between Real Salt Lake and Real Madrid is coming together.


New York Islanders to hire coach and GM (AP)
Ted Nolan, former Buffalo Sabres head coach, answers a question during a news conference before speaking at Buffalo State College on behalf of the Native American Heritage Celebration in this April 16, 2003, file photo. Nolan reportedly will be named head coach of the New York Islanders on Thursday. (AP Photo/Don Heupel/file)AP - Neil Smith built one champion in New York, now he'll try to do it again.


Diamonds in the rough
Virginia linebacker Ahmad Brooks tops the list of potential candidates for the July 13 supplemental draft.

Titans trade QB McNair to Ravens (AP)
The Baltimore Ravens are confident Steve McNair is healthy and ready to be their starting quarterback. The Tennessee Titans swapped the face of their franchise and a fan favorite for what is believed to be a fourth-round pick in next spring's draft. The former league MVP was set to be introduced Thursday afternoon as the prime quarterback Baltimore has sought throughout its 10-year existence if he...

Favre returns to practice for Packers (AP)
Brett Favre was back on the field Tuesday, a day after being held out of a voluntary practice. Packers coach Mike McCarthy said he planned to hold the quarterback out of Monday's practice all along -- despite comments last week that led most to believe Favre would take part in all four practices this week.

Lewis: Henry, Nicholson shamed Bengals (AP)
Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said Wednesday that he let two players know they've disgraced the team with their off-field legal problems. "I told the people that yes, you embarrass us as an organization, myself, and the coaches when these things occur," Lewis said of rookie linebacker A.J. Nicholson and second-year receiver Chris Henry.

Texans hire Broncos' Smith as GM (AP)
The Houston Texans hired Rick Smith as general manager on Monday, reuniting the former Denver assistant GM with new coach Gary Kubiak. Smith becomes the second general manager in Texans history, following Charley Casserly, who resigned following the draft. Casserly is considered the front-runner to become the NFL's vice president for football operations, succeeding Art Shell, who left to become...

Bad toes sideline Texans' Mario Williams (AP)
Houston Texans No. 1 draft pick Mario Williams will be sidelined for the rest of the week after having the toenails on both of his big toes removed. Williams, a 6-foot-7, 292-pound defensive end, had the procedure done on Monday after struggling with infections because of problems with his toenails. Houston has been going through organized team workouts for the past month and had their first day of...

Contract year not changing Brian Dawkins (AP)
No matter his contract situation, Brian Dawkins doesn't plan to play or act any differently. The five-time Pro Bowl safety could be entering his final season with the Philadelphia Eagles. But Dawkins isn't going to hold out for a new deal or cause any problems. "Whether it's a contract year, whether it's the first year after a contract, whether it's the third year on a four-year deal, I'm going to...

Saints acquire TE Tim Euhus from Bills (AP)
The New Orleans Saints traded linebacker Courtney Watson to the Buffalo Bills on Tuesday in exchange for tight end Tim Euhus. It's the second time this year that Watson has been traded. He was sent to Miami earlier this offseason but the deal was voided when Eddie Moore, the player the Saints had obtained, failed a physical.

Makes and Misses: The Finals analysis
How can Dallas handle Shaq and Dwyane Wade? Who on the Heat can stay with Dirk Nowitzki? Readers want to know.

Shaq, Riley seek another title (AP)
Regrets are a terrible souvenir of the NBA finals, and Shaquille O'Neal had a few after his most recent trip. A decade earlier, so did Pat Riley. And though they already own seven championship rings between them, the Miami Heat center and his coach were haunted by the ones they weren't wearing. So O'Neal sacrificed salary to improve his supporting cast, and Riley moved from the executive suite to...

Wade still hurting, will play in Game 1 (AP)
Dwyane Wade headed toward the practice floor Wednesday carrying his basketball sneakers in his right hand, a box of tissues in his left. And for good measure, he sniffled a bit. Wade is hurting as these NBA finals loom, still suffering from a sinus infection that's bothered him for several days. But Miami's leading scorer insists he'll be ready when the NBA finals between the Heat and the Dallas...

NBA finals foes Shaq, Cuban are friends (AP)
A few months after dot-com billionaire Mark Cuban bought the Dallas Mavericks, Shaquille O'Neal brought up the newest NBA owner during a talk at an Internet convention. "Mark Cuban is my hero," O'Neal told the audience. Cuban still grins at the memory. "I have a video to prove it," he said. O'Neal and Cuban struck up their relationship in the summer of 2000 and have developed a pretty good bond for...

Shaq in playful mood as Game 1 nears (AP)
Shaquille O'Neal says that when the ball goes in the air to open the NBA finals Thursday night, he'll be all business until the series ends. Until then, the Big Fella is all about fun. On the eve of the NBA finals, O'Neal displayed his usual playful antics while interacting with reporters Wednesday, flashing his grin, spewing one-liners and even messing with the people charged with creating a...

Blazers, Rose Garden to be sold together (AP)
Portland Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen and the group that runs the Rose Garden Arena agreed Wednesday that when the time comes, the team and building will be sold together. The agreement would make it easier to sell the Trail Blazers. "We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Portland Arena Management.

At long last, Mourning gets to NBA final (AP)
Alonzo Mourning walked into the arena, took his spot at a podium set up along a sideline, looked around and smiled. After a career of waiting, his chance has finally arrived. All the pain he's endured in his 13-year career -- surgeries on his finger, face and knee, plus that little matter of a life-threatening kidney disease that forced both a temporary retirement and a transplant -- are behind him...

Nets pick up coach Frank's '07-08 option (AP)
The New Jersey Nets have exercised the option on coach Lawrence Frank's contract for the 2007-2008 season, the team said Tuesday. Frank signed a four-year, $10 million contract extension at the beginning of the 2004-2005 season. He led the Nets to a 49-33 record and the Atlantic Division title for the second time in three years this season.

One and done?
Edmonton saw its starting goalie skate off with an injury Monday. Did its Cup hopes follow him out the door?

'Canes overwhelm Markkanen, Oilers 5-0 (AP)
The kid looks like he's done it all before. So do the Carolina Hurricanes, halfway home to their first Stanley Cup championship after a dominating performance on Tobacco Road. Cam Ward became the first rookie in 20 years to post a shutout in the finals and the Hurricanes swept away Edmonton 5-0 in Game 2 Wednesday night, the Oilers looking downright miserable without playoff star Dwayne Roloson.

Isles may name Nolan coach, Smith GM (AP)
Neil Smith is about to find out if rebuilding a dynasty is as tough as breaking a curse. Smith was in charge when the New York Rangers ended 54 years of frustration and finally won a Stanley Cup title. Six years after being dismissed by the Broadway Blueshirts, he's set to take over the once-proud New York Islanders.

Markkanen, Oilers play shaky Game 2 (AP)
Jussi Markkanen stumbled behind the net and then nearly fell in his crease. Everyone expected the Edmonton Oilers' new No. 1 goalie to be rusty. Why his teammates were just as shaky is anyone's guess. Markkanen went from the shadows to the spotlight in the Stanley Cup finals Wednesday night as he replaced injured goalie Dwayne Roloson, but the Oilers were steamrolled 5-0 by the Carolina Hurricanes.

Power play sparking Hurricanes in finals (AP)
Two games into the Stanley Cup finals, the Carolina Hurricanes' power play has turned a too-close-to-call matchup between special teams into a landslide. The Hurricanes scored three goals with the man advantage to overwhelm Edmonton's previously stingy penalty kill in a 5-0 win in Game 2 on Wednesday night, giving the special-teams edge to Carolina for the second straight game.

Ladd is other rookie lifting Hurricanes (AP)
Cam Ward isn't the only rookie playing a key role for the Carolina Hurricanes during the playoffs. Andrew Ladd scored what turned out to be the winning goal in the first period of the Hurricanes' 5-0 win over the Edmonton Oilers in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup finals Wednesday night, the latest solid performance for the physical forward who was a first-round draft pick for Carolina two years ago.

Owner: Carolina plans to keep Laviolette (AP)
The Carolina Hurricanes would be willing to match any offer to keep coach Peter Laviolette when his contract expires, team owner Peter Karmanos Jr. said Wednesday. "I don't have any conceivable reason why he wouldn't be back," Karmanos said shortly before the Hurricanes faced Edmonton in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup finals.

Stuck in the mud
NEW WESTON, Ohio – Tony Stewart tried like heck to get the engines roaring at his charity event, but Mother Nature had other ideas.

NASCAR reinstates Grubb (AP)
NASCAR on Wednesday reinstated driver Kevin Grubb, who had been suspended since failing a drug test in 2004.

Scientologists, start your engines: Dianetics to sponsor race team (AP)
Race fans, let the couch-jumping begin.

Bill Elliott to drive three races for Toyota this season (AP)
Bill Elliott will run three races this season for Red Bull Racing as a warmup for its 2007 debut as one of Toyota's initial teams.

NASCAR takes playing hurt to a new level (AP)
Ricky Rudd once had to duct tape his swollen eyes open to race. Davey Allison, driving with a broken hand, had to glue Velcro onto his cast and the steering wheel so he could grip it.

Kenseth rallies with three laps left to win at Dover (AP)
One day after turning 30, Jamie McMurray came close to giving himself the perfect belated birthday gift: a trip to Victory Lane.

Kenseth wins NASCAR Neighborhood Excellence 400 (SportsTicker)

Stewart needs Rudd after 38 laps at Dover (AP)
Tony Stewart said he's ready to go 500 miles at Pocono.

Krohn Racing wins six-hour Rolex race at Watkins Glen (AP)
Jorg Bergmeister pulled away from Alex Gurney on a restart with just over six minutes left to win the Sahlen's Six Hours of The Glen at Watkins Glen International on Saturday. The restart in the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series race, which was plagued by intermittent rain, came after the eighth caution.

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