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Tiger Woods misses the cut at U.S. Open (AP)
Tiger Woods reacts while in the rough on the first hole during the first round of the U.S. Open at Winged Foot Golf Club on Friday, June 16, 2006, in Mamaroneck, N.Y. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)AP - The longest layoff in Tiger Woods' career ended with his shortest week at a major. Woods kept thinking he was one putt or one shot away from turning it around Friday in the U.S. Open until there was nothing left to do but tap in for another bogey, sign for another 76 and head home. At 12 over par, he missed the cut in a major for the first time in 10 years as a professional.


Stackhouse suspended for foul on Shaq (AP)
Miami Heat center Shaquille O'Neal (32) is defended by Dallas Mavericks guard Jerry Stackhouse, right, in the second half of Game 4 during the NBA basketball finals in Miami, Thursday, June 15, 2006.  The Heat won, 98-74. (AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez, Pool)AP - Shaquille O'Neal mocked his collision with Jerry Stackhouse as being less vicious than a love tap from his daughters. The NBA declared it worthy of a one-game suspension.


Mora's HR victimizes Mets as Orioles win (AP)
New York Mets pitcher Aaron Heilman, right, reacts as Baltimore Orioles' Melvin Mora rounds third after hitting a two-run home run during the seventh inning of their baseball game, Friday, June 16, 2006, at Shea Stadium in New York. (AP Photo/Ed Betz)AP - Maybe the New York Mets should have stayed on the road. Welcomed home Friday night after a 9-1 road trip that pushed them 9 1/2 games in front in the National League East, the Mets managed just four hits and were beaten 6-3 by the Baltimore Orioles, ending an eight-game winning streak.


Pujols optimistic about faster return (AP)
St. Louis Cardinals' Albert Pujols talks with teammates before the game against the Cincinnati Reds, June 6, 2006 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis in this file photo. Pujols is on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right oblique muscle and had beeb expected to miss four to six weeks. But now he believes he may return much sooner than that. (AP Photo/Tom Gannam)AP - Albert Pujols, who's eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list early next week, was optimistic Friday that he'd return from a strained side muscle much sooner than St. Louis officials had originally predicted.


A's win 8th straight as Zito Ks 11 Dodgers (AP)
Oakland Athletics' Barry Zito pitches against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the first inning of a baseball game Friday, June 16, 2006, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)AP - Barry Zito has his Cy Young Award stuff again. His curveball is at its nastiest and he's found a rhythm with his fastball, too. What perfect timing coming in his contract year — not that the future is at the front of Zito's mind. It's mid-June, and the Oakland Athletics are on a roll.


Chad Johnson pulls groin during practice (AP)
Cincinnati Bengals receiver Chad Johnson yells during practice on June 7, 2006, in Cincinnati in this file photo. Johnson pulled a groin muscle during minicamp on June 16 and was takenoff the field on a cart.  (AP Photo/Al Behrman)AP - Bengals receiver Chad Johnson pulled groin muscles during minicamp Friday and was taken off the field on a cart.


Heat exhaustion: Mavs regroup for Game 5 (AP)
Dallas Mavericks players DeSagana Diop, left,  of Senegal, Dirk Nowitzki, center, of Germany,  and Jerry Stackhouse, right, sit on the bench in the closing minutes in Game 4 against the Miami Heat during the NBA basketball finals in Miami, Thursday, June 15, 2006. Dallas lost, 98-74. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)AP - Try to picture this: Dirk Nowitzki, wearing sandals, headphones and slathered from head-to-toe in suntan lotion, strolling along a tropical beach whistling along to his favorite David Hasselhoff tune.


Bonds homers, then Ks to end game (AP)
San Francisco Giants' Barry Bonds watches the ball fly after hitting his second inning home run against the Seattle Mariners  at Safeco Field in Seattle on Friday June 16, 2006. (AP Photo/Kevin P. Casey)AP - Barry Bonds stepped to the plate in the ninth inning of a one-run game, homer No. 718 of the seven-time MVP's career still fresh in the minds of everybody in attendance. And J.J. Putz went right after him.


This could be auf wiedersehen for U.S. (AP)
United States captain Claudio Reyna, left, midfielder Landon Donovan, center, and forward Brian McBride jog on the pitch during a training session at the World Cup stadium in Kaiserslautern, Germany Friday, June 16, 2006. The U.S. team is preparing to face Italy in the 2006 World Cup soccer Saturday. Other teams in Group E are Ghana and Czech Republic. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)AP - One more loss and it could be auf wiedersehen for the U.S. World Cup team.


Hurricanes Doug Weight out for Game 6 (AP)
Carolina Hurricanes' Doug Weight celebrates his team's second goal against the Edmonton Oilers during the first period of Game 5 of NHL Stanley Cup Finals hockey Wednesday, June 14, 2006 in Raleigh, N.C. (AP PHOTO/CP, Paul Chiasson)AP - The Edmonton Oilers lost a key player at the beginning of the Stanley Cup finals. Now, it's Carolina's turn to deal with an injury.


Rivers crossing
SAN DIEGO – With Drew Brees no longer in his way, Philip Rivers can finally let his talent flow as the Chargers' QB.

Big Ben apologizes, vows to wear helmet (AP)
A contrite Ben Roethlisberger pledged to wear a helmet if he rides a motorcycle again. The Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback is also eager to get back on the field and start winning games once he recovers from facial injuries suffered in a scary wreck earlier this week. In his first comments since crashing his motorcycle and undergoing seven hours of surgery, Roethlisberger released a statement...

Winslow back on field at Browns minicamp (AP)
Kellen Winslow Jr. looked much like the player the Cleveland Browns drafted when he took the field Friday for the first time in nearly two years. The long muscular frame, speed and soft hands all seem to be in tact after his long rehabilitation from a motorcycle accident. He even dunked over the crossbar after making a catch, drawing hoots and hollers from his teammates at minicamp.

Chad Johnson pulls groin in practice (AP)
Bengals receiver Chad Johnson pulled groin muscles during minicamp Friday and was taken off the field on a cart. Johnson was battling safety Kevin Kaesviharn for a pass when he got hurt. Coach Marvin Lewis didn't think the injury was severe. "I think he would have loved to have finished practice, but they just took him in and iced him down," Lewis said.

Browns RB Droughns apologizes for arrest (AP)
Cleveland Browns running back Reuben Droughns apologized Friday in his first public statement since being charged with assaulting his wife last month. "I'm sorry for bringing this negative attention to the team once again," Droughns said at the team's minicamp. "I'm a good character guy." Droughns is charged with one count of assault and two counts of harassment.

Chargers C Hardwick gets six-year deal (AP)
San Diego Chargers center Nick Hardwick agreed Friday to a new six-year contract that will run through the 2011 season. Hardwick has started all 27 games he's played for the Chargers. He's responsible for calling out the blocking schemes for the offensive line, and the Chargers have rushed for 2,000 yards each of the last two seasons.

NFL meets with Anaheim officials (AP)
Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen is convinced the NFL needs a team in the Los Angeles area. Where and when remain the multimillion dollar questions. Bowlen and NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue were among league officials who held a luncheon meeting Thursday with Anaheim Mayor Curt Pringle, other city officials and Orange County business leaders.

Giants WR Burress addresses absences (AP)
Plaxico Burress has no regrets for his absences. Burress missed both a mandatory team meeting the day after the New York Giants 23-0 playoff loss to Carolina and the team's offseason workouts, preferring to work out in Florida. "No one was happy with the way the season ended," the Giants top wide receiver said Thursday.

Flagrant foul-up
The NBA made a big mistake in suspending Jerry Stackhouse for his hard foul on Shaquille O'Neal.

Mavs' Stackhouse suspended for Game 5 (AP)
Hoping a change of scenery will sharpen their focus in the NBA finals, the Dallas Mavericks switched hotels. On the short move to Fort Lauderdale, they lost Jerry Stackhouse. The club's top reserve will miss Game 5 on Sunday after being suspended for one game without pay for his flagrant foul on Heat center Shaquille O'Neal in the third quarter of Miami's 98-74 blowout win in Game 4.

Jordan becomes part-owner of Bobcats (AP)
Bob Johnson wanted Michael Jordan involved with his NBA team from the start. It just took the Charlotte Bobcats owner three years to make it happen. Jordan bought a significant piece of the Bobcats on Thursday, becoming the second-largest individual investor behind Johnson. He was named the managing member of basketball operations, and will immediately turn his attention to helping general manager...

Riley wants Heat to ignore news (AP)
After winning the last two games in the NBA finals, the Miami Heat are all over the news in their hometown. And if they want to read about it, they'd better do it somewhere besides the arena. Two days after some of his players helped dedicate a new Learn & Play center, Heat coach Pat Riley made it clear Friday that he doesn't want them doing any reading at all.

Wade, O'Neal haven't had to do it alone (AP)
In the wee hours of Friday morning, a famished James Posey grabbed a lukewarm hot dog from a pile stacked in a rectangular silver chafing dish. "Starving, man," he said while applying ketchup and mustard. "Got to eat something." He keeps playing like this, the Miami Heat will get him as many dogs as he wants.

Mavericks collapse early in Game 4 (AP)
The Dallas Mavericks arrived in Miami on the verge of shedding, once and for all, their label as a soft, jump-shooting team that ignores defense. Avery Johnson was winning the battle of wits with Pat Riley. Dirk Nowitzki was rising from two years of being an MVP finalist to next year's preseason favorite.

Yao says he's '50-50' to play in worlds (AP)
Yao Ming said his chances of playing for China this summer in the world championships are "50-50" as he continues to recover from a broken left foot. The 7-foot-6 Yao will head to Shanghai in the next week to continue rehabilitation. He broke the fifth metatarsal in the foot on April 10 in Utah and had surgery four days later.

Power shift
Edmonton finally scored on the power play Wednesday, but that wasn't the only trend reversal in Game 5.

Hurricanes won't have Weight for Game 6 (AP)
The Carolina Hurricanes have shown they can cope with injuries. They'll get another chance to display their powers of resiliency -- in the Stanley Cup finals, no less. The Hurricanes are poised again to win their first cup, but they'll have to play Game 6 Saturday night without center Doug Weight. He was knocked out by a crushing hit from two Edmonton players, which apparently left him with an...

Roloson skates, but return unlikely (AP)
While everyone was wondering whether Doug Weight would be well enough to return to the Carolina Hurricanes lineup, the Edmonton Oilers welcomed back an injured star. Dwayne Roloson, the Oilers' only goalie in their first 18 playoff games, skated in practice with his teammates on Friday. But because of the right knee sprain sustained in the Stanley Cup finals opener, he was reduced to shooting pucks...

Loose Oilers focus on forcing Game 7 (AP)
Ryan Smyth laughed his way through Chris Pronger's entertaining interview session that got funnier with each successive sound byte. The Edmonton Oilers are locked in a tight Stanley Cup finals series with the Carolina Hurricanes. Yet, to watch the upstarts from the Western Conference on Friday, it would have been hard to tell they were the ones trailing 3-2 in the best-of-seven matchup.

'Canes ready to go after another injury (AP)
The Carolina Hurricanes didn't act worried. Two 'Canes stood on opposite sides of center ice, playfully flipping a puck back and forth at each other in some sort of impromptu game that only a hockey player would understand. Throughout Friday's practice, there were plenty of smiles, plenty of encouraging words, plenty of stick-tapping salutes when someone whipped off a great shot or slid across the...

Special teams key Oilers' Game 5 win (AP)
Right when the Edmonton Oilers figured out how to score on the power play, they saved their season with a short-handed goal. So maligned was Edmonton's man-advantage unit, workhorse defenseman Chris Pronger tried to end the line of questioning a few hours before the Oilers' extended the Stanley Cup finals with a 4-3 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday night.

Stars shuffle coaches, hire new asst. GM (AP)
Three-time Stanley Cup-winning goalie Andy Moog was given a player development role with the Dallas Stars on Friday, and his spot behind the bench as assistant coach will be taken by former player Ulf Dahlen. The Stars also hired Frank Provenzano as assistant general manager. Moog, who spent the past four seasons as an assistant coach, will continue to work with goalies throughout the organization.

Rangers D Ozolinsh pleads guilty to DWI (AP)
New York Rangers defenseman Sandis Ozolinsh has pleaded guilty to driving while impaired. Ozolinsh, who spent time this season in the NHL's substance abuse program, was arrested May 3 on a drunken driving charge, but pleaded guilty Thursday to the lesser charge of driving while impaired. He was ordered to pay a $300 fine.

Family tradition
From the sport's very beginnings, fathers and sons have been the backbone of NASCAR.

Lester gets first half of job done (AP)
As much as Bill Lester would've liked a shot at NASCAR's top stock car series 20 years ago, he's hoping to take advantage of the situation now.

Kahne wins pole for Nextel Cup 3M Performance 400 (SportsTicker)

Busch regulars hoping to break Cup drivers' streak (AP)
Regan Smith expects a NASCAR Busch series race is bound to be won by a driver who doesn't also appear in the Nextel Cup. Smith would prefer it be him. For years, Cup drivers have excelled in Busch races, often the undercard to the Nextel race the next day. But this year, they're a perfect 15-for-15 -- making some racing fans wonder if the streak will ever end.

Hamlin recognized after first win (AP)
Suddenly, Denny Hamlin is a star.

Hendrick foresees no issues with Busch and Mears (AP)
Car owner Rick Hendrick does not foresee any problems between feuding drivers Kyle Busch and Casey Mears when the two become teammates next year.

Gordon looking for Michigan improvement (AP)
Jeff Gordon has not had the kind of NASCAR Nextel Cup season he had hoped for. But the four-time series champion,...

Teen drives his way into career using video games (AP)
GLADEVILLE, Tenn. – Playing video games is the only way most people live out their pro sports dreams.

Ganassi has yet another lame duck driver (AP)
LONG POND, Pa. – Casey Mears was diplomatic about why he would continue to give a full effort for Chip...

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