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NEWS FROM 2007-03-30
West Virginia wins first NIT since 1942
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_co_ga_su/bkc_nit_final"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070330/capt.adec00ca277d43a39303100e74ca6c21.nit_west_virginia_clemson_basketball_nyff116.jpg?x=130&y=106&sig=PwDIFSXAfyKyHhiPGBvHZQ--" align="left" height="106" width="130" alt="West Virginia's Frank Young shakes hands with teammate Rob Summers, center, as Darris Nichols, right,, looks on in the last minutes of the second half of basketball action Thursday, March 29, 2007 at Madison Square Garden in New York. West Virginia won the game 78-73. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)" border="0" /></a>AP - West Virginia has a championship to help lessen the disappointment of missing the NCAA tournament. Frank Young and the Mountaineers shot past Clemson to their first NIT title in 65 years.</p><br clear="all"/>
Bulls down Pistons, clinch playoff spot
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_bk_ga_su/bkn_pistons_bulls"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070330/capt.f04a50ccb146418e89d34177b533b75f.pistons__bulls_ilca109.jpg?x=122&y=130&sig=KUGUp0dLN70QbGFLTTq_BA--" align="left" height="130" width="122" alt="Detroit Pistons guard Chauncey Billups, left, looses control of the ball as Chicago Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich defends during the first quarter of their NBA basketball game at the United Center in Chicago, Thursday, March 29, 2007. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)" border="0" /></a>AP - Kirk Hinrich's first attempt missed. His next two were on target, and a few seconds later, the Chicago Bulls let out a big sigh of relief. Hinrich hit two of three free throws with 2.8 seconds left, and the Chicago Bulls clinched their third straight playoff berth, pulling out an 83-81 victory over the Detroit Pistons after blowing a 12-point lead in the fourth quarter on Thursday night.</p><br clear="all"/>
Predators pour it on, but Wings prevail
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_ho_ga_su/hkn_red_wings_predators"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070330/capt.a4a7aaf620d3441bac1fd77059062b1b.red_wings_predators_hockey_tnmh107.jpg?x=130&y=116&sig=m.oi2Z9U8.aRnq2j.Zc01w--" align="left" height="116" width="130" alt="Detroit Red Wings left wing Kyle Calder, left, battles Nashville Predators center Peter Forsberg (21), of Sweden, for the puck during the third period of an NHL hockey game in Nashville, Tenn., Thursday, March 29, 2007. The Red Wings won 2-1. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)" border="0" /></a>AP - The Predators had Peter Forsberg, Paul Kariya and Jason Arnott on the ice, the goalie pulled for the extra attacker and a man advantage on a power play. And still they couldn't push the puck past Chris Osgood to force overtime. That sums up their struggle to end Detroit's run atop the Central Division and the Western Conference — only to keep coming up short head-to-head.</p><br clear="all"/>
Crocker, Phelps advance toward showdown
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_ot/swm_world_championships_prelims"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070330/capt.xaussw10803300354.australia_swimming_world_championships_xaussw108.jpg?x=130&y=103&sig=5Qcj0hZuI1HXeoLsntH9tQ--" align="left" height="103" width="130" alt="USA's Ian Crocker races in the men's 100m Butterfly heat at the World Swimming Championships in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, March 30, 2007. (AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye)" border="0" /></a>AP - Ian Crocker and Michael Phelps passed the first step on the way to their inevitable showdown in the 100-meter butterfly, while French star Laure Manaudou moved closer to a freestyle triple.</p><br clear="all"/>
Serena, Henin to meet in 'Key' final
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_te_ga_su/ten_sony_ericsson_open"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070329/capt.196f727e66294fef9487e992af540765.sony_ericsson_open_tennis_flkb131.jpg?x=95&y=130&sig=klYZEJcNYq7_MTK.8jiSrw--" align="left" height="130" width="95" alt="Serena Williams celebrates after winning a game against Nicole Vaidisova at the Sony Ericsson Open tennis tournament Wednesday, March 28, 2007, in Key Biscayne, Fla. Williams won 6-1, 6-4. (AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez)" border="0" /></a>AP - Serena Williams beat the best the Israeli Army had to offer. Shahar Peer, a 19-year-old corporal, kept things close for an hour before Williams pulled away, winning 7-6 (4), 6-1 Thursday night for a berth in the final at the Sony Ericsson Open.</p><br clear="all"/>
'Pacman,' Henry to face NFL discipline
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070329/ap_on_sp_fo_ne/fbn_nfl_meetings"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070328/capt.7cebb5003d2f40d0a29fb8fa9b708313.nfl_meetings_football_azmy104.jpg?x=91&y=130&sig=eucXhy3V3K3Chrv09MmYQg--" align="left" height="130" width="91" alt="NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell address the media at the annual NFL meetings, Wednesday, March 28, 2007, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)" border="0" /></a>AP - Next week, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will hold hearings with Tennessee cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones and Cincinnati receiver Chris Henry. Within 10 days of those meetings, Goodell hopes to have disciplined them. The entire league will be watching.</p><br clear="all"/>
Alert the media: Memphis wins 2 straight
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_bk_ga_su/bkn_grizzlies_trail_blazers"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070330/capt.090e455871244ece99b2b64aaa5f146e.grizzlies_trail_blazers_basketball_pda111.jpg?x=70&y=130&sig=E7Ujh8WBhzuHIf9QpiONBg--" align="left" height="130" width="70" alt="Memphis Grizzlies' Tarence Kinsey (7) shoots over Portland Trail Blazers' Freddy Jones during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Portland, Ore., Thursday, March 29, 2007. Kinsey had 20 points as the Grizzlies won 96-92. (AP Photo/Greg Wahl-Stephens)" border="0" /></a>AP - There's no mystery to how the Memphis Grizzlies finally won back-to-back games — they made 35 of 36 free throws. Rookie Tarence Kinsey had 20 points to lead four Memphis starters in double-figures and the Grizzlies beat the Portland Trail Blazers 96-92 Thursday night, becoming the last team in the NBA to win two straight.</p><br clear="all"/>
Female ump flawless in exhibition game
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_ba_ga_su/bbo_spring_training_rdp"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070329/capt.b37f5639b2f14df5af91c623e1c52d99.female_umpire_baseball_azrd103.jpg?x=129&y=130&sig=FZUk_UGw6pnBXpCuhE4JNQ--" align="left" height="130" width="129" alt="Umpire Ria Cortesio makes the call as Chicago Cubs Tyler Colvin grounds out during the sixth inning of a spring training baseball game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Thursday, March 29, 2007, in Mesa, Ariz.(AP Photo/Roy Dabner)" border="0" /></a>AP - Kenny Rogers and Eric Gagne will start the season on the disabled list, while Freddy Sanchez and Jim Edmonds might be ready soon. But the most intriguing person on the field at spring training Thursday has no shot at being in the big leagues next week — she'll be making close calls in the minors.</p><br clear="all"/>
Maradona sedated, treated for abuses
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_so_ne/soc_maradona_health"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070329/capt.dsl10503290107.argentina_maradona_dsl105.jpg?x=123&y=130&sig=gvRk8g9FcBEMldxbKbnf4g--" align="left" height="130" width="123" alt="Former soccer player Diego Maradona gestures during a Argentina's first division soccer match in Buenos Aires between Boca Juniors and Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata in this Sunday, March 18, 2007 file photo. According to media reports in Buenos Aires Maradona was admited into a medical facility Wednesday. Last Sunday his personal doctor Alfredo Cahe said Maradona had put on weight and may take a 'vacation' in Switzerland to help shed the extra kilos.(AP Photo/Daniel Luna)" border="0" /></a>AP - Argentine soccer hero Diego Maradona is being treated for alcoholism and excessive eating and smoking.</p><br clear="all"/>
Canucks win to increase Northwest lead
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070330/ap_on_sp_ho_ga_su/hkn_canucks_kings"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070330/capt.ff99aeb7b9e4426d975a161eb4dc8b6a.canucks_kings_hockey_las107.jpg?x=130&y=91&sig=utyZnEYmIWACP9qkbtZavw--" align="left" height="91" width="130" alt="Vancouver Canucks' Willie Mitchell (8) defends Los Angeles Kings' Michael Cammalleri while Cammalleri tries to score on Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo during the third period of an NHL hockey game Thursday, March 29, 2007, in Los Angeles. The Canucks won 4-2. (AP Photo/Jeff Lewis)" border="0" /></a>AP - The Vancouver Canucks gained an important two points and gave Kings rookie Jack Johnson a rough welcome to the NHL.</p><br clear="all"/>
No change to conduct policy … yet
Browns, Chiefs mulling deal for QB Green (AP)
The Cleveland Browns seem to be beating the bushes for a veteran quarterback after all. General manager Phil Savage confirmed Thursday night that that he contacted Kansas City GM Carl Peterson about Trent Green, a two-time Pro Bowl quarterback, during this week's NFL meetings in Phoenix. "I spoke to a number of teams/GMs about players/picks including KC," Savage said in an e-mail.
Gore, 49ers agree to four-year extension (AP)
Running back Frank Gore has agreed to a four-year contract extension with the San Francisco 49ers, a reward for his team-record 1,695 yards rushing last season. Gore, who led the NFC in rushing in his second pro campaign, was due to earn $435,000 in the upcoming season. With the extension, the Pro Bowl running back will be under contract to the 49ers through 2011 with a deal containing more than...
Broncos and CB Bly agree to extension (AP)
The Denver Broncos agreed to terms Wednesday on a contract extension with cornerback Dre Bly, obtained earlier this month from the Detroit Lions. Details were not released. Bly, 29, had a year left on his contract when he was traded to Denver in exchange for running back Tatum Bell and offensive lineman George Foster.
Goodell to soon discipline Pacman, Henry (AP)
Next week, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will hold hearings with Tennessee cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones and Cincinnati receiver Chris Henry. Within 10 days of those meetings, Goodell hopes to have disciplined them. The entire league will be watching. Goodell wants to enforce a stricter player conduct policy and is formulating his plan.
Troy Brown wants to return to Patriots (AP)
Veteran receiver Troy Brown acknowledged Wednesday that he had offseason knee surgery, after saying in an earlier interview that he intends to play next season and hopes to finish his career with the New England Patriots. "My intentions are to play. That's what the deal is," the 35-year-old unrestricted free agent said Wednesday before attending the Catholic Schools Foundation scholarship dinner.
Judge: Bears fan is not 'Peyton Manning' (AP)
Chicago Bears fan Scott Wiese is no Peyton Manning after all. Macon County Judge Katherine McCarthy ruled this week that Wiese can't legally call himself Peyton Manning because it would be too confusing and might infringe on the privacy of the Indianapolis Colts quarterback. That's fine by Wiese. The 26-year-old was only trying to change his name to make good on a bet he lost when the Colts beat the...
Agent: Jets ink DE Bowens to 3-year deal (AP)
The New York Jets agreed to terms on a three-year contract with free-agent defensive end David Bowens, his agent told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The two sides reached the agreement late Tuesday night and will sign the contract Thursday, agent Harold C. Lewis said. The deal is for $6.1 million, with an additional $2 million in incentives that could make it worth as much as $8.1 million.
Sugar's sour note
Micheal Ray Richardson, who was suspended from the CBA finals for an anti-Semitic rant, wasted his last second chance in pro basketball.
Hinrich's FTs get Bulls in postseason (AP)
Kirk Hinrich's first attempt missed. His next two were on target, and a few seconds later, the Chicago Bulls let out a big sigh of relief. Hinrich hit two of three free throws with 2.8 seconds left, and the Chicago Bulls clinched their third straight playoff berth, pulling out an 83-81 victory over the Detroit Pistons after blowing a 12-point lead in the fourth quarter on Thursday night.
Richardson helps Warriors hold off Suns (AP)
With each shot in Jason Richardson's sensational 3-point barrage, the Golden State Warriors' hobbling guard showed just how serious he's getting about their playoff push. And with every open shot the Phoenix Suns allowed, the Pacific Division champions exposed what's probably their biggest flaw heading into the postseason.
Mavs' focus remains on championship run (AP)
The Dallas Mavericks have already matched their franchise record with 60 victories, and still have 11 regular-season games left. The first team to have three 12-game winning streaks in the same season, Dallas needs only two more wins for another stretch of 10 in a row. Yet, the Mavs don't feel like they've accomplished anything yet.
Kinsey lifts Grizzlies by Trail Blazers (AP)
There's no mystery to how the Memphis Grizzlies finally won back-to-back games -- they made 35 of 36 free throws. Rookie Tarence Kinsey had 20 points to lead four Memphis starters in double-figures and the Grizzlies beat the Portland Trail Blazers 96-92 Thursday night, becoming the last team in the NBA to win two straight.
Blazers promote Pritchard to GM (AP)
The Portland Trail Blazers promoted Kevin Pritchard to their vacant general manager job Thursday. The 39-year-old had served as the assistant general manager since before the season, and has been credited for masterminding the draft day deals that landed rookies Brandon Roy, LaMarcus Aldridge and Sergio Rodriguez.
Ex-NBA star suspended by CBA for slurs (AP)
Former NBA player Micheal Ray Richardson was suspended by the Continental Basketball Association on Wednesday for anti-Semitic comments the Albany Patroons' coach made in a newspaper interview. Richardson will miss the rest of the CBA's best-of-five championship series after he told The Albany Times Union that he had "big-time Jew lawyers" working for him.
Jazz clinch Northwest Division title (AP)
The Utah Jazz helped coach Jerry Sloan celebrate his 65th birthday with a division title. After suffering through the only three lottery seasons in his 19 years with Utah, Sloan saw his team clinch the Northwest Division championship Wednesday night. Carlos Boozer had 25 and 11 rebounds and Mehmet Okur added 23 points and 12 boards to help the Jazz beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 108-102.
Raptors pass Heat for third in East (AP)
Chris Bosh has the Toronto Raptors right where they want to be -- in line for homecourt advantage in the first round of the playoffs. Bosh became Toronto's career leader in double-doubles when he had 13 points and 17 rebounds in a 96-83 victory Wednesday night that moved the Raptors ahead of the Miami Heat for third place in the Eastern Conference.
Nets G House sidelined indefinitely (AP)
New Jersey guard Eddie House will be sidelined indefinitely with a mild concussion and a partial tear of the left hip muscle, Nets President Rod Thorn announced Thursday. House was injured in the second quarter Wednesday night against Indiana. Signed as a free agent in August, House is averaging 8.4 points, while shooting 43 percent from both the field and 3-point range.
Wings beat Preds to tie for points lead (AP)
The Predators had Peter Forsberg, Paul Kariya and Jason Arnott on the ice, the goalie pulled for the extra attacker and a man advantage on a power play. And still they couldn't push the puck past Chris Osgood to force overtime. That sums up their struggle to end Detroit's run atop the Central Division and the Western Conference -- only to keep coming up short head-to-head.
Crosby moves Penguins into Atlantic lead (AP)
One game after clinching a playoff berth, the Pittsburgh Penguins reached another milestone. Sidney Crosby had three assists in a 4-2 victory over the Boston Bruins on Thursday night, raising his NHL-leading point total to 116 and helping the Penguins reach 100 points and sole possession of first place in the Atlantic Division.
Canucks spoil debut of Kings D Johnson (AP)
The Vancouver Canucks gained an important two points and gave Kings rookie Jack Johnson a rough welcome to the NHL. Daniel Sedin scored twice and Roberto Luongo made 32 saves as Vancouver defeated Los Angeles 4-2 on Thursday night. Bryan Smolinski and Tyler Pyatt also scored for the Canucks to help Vancouver build a three-point lead over the second-place Minnesota Wild in the Northwest Division.
Islanders G DiPietro to miss next game (AP)
Rick DiPietro didn't travel with the New York Islanders to Buffalo on Thursday and will sit out a second straight game when his teammates play the Sabres. DiPietro complained of headaches after a rough outing against the New York Rangers on Sunday, when he was piled on in the crease and took at least two shots in the mask.
Iginla's hat trick gets Flames by Wild (AP)
Jarome Iginla and the Calgary Flames have found some consistency down the stretch, and there's no better point in the season for it. Iginla scored his first hat trick of the season to move Calgary closer to clinching the final playoff spot in the Western Conference, and the Flames beat the Minnesota Wild 4-2 on Thursday.
Hejduk keeps Avs' playoff hopes alive (AP)
Milan Hejduk and the Colorado Avalanche took the ice knowing they were in a must-win situation. Hejduk had a goal and an assist to help the Avalanche give their fading playoff hopes a boost with a 4-3 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on Thursday night. "We knew before the game that Calgary was up a couple of goals and definitely we had to win," Hejduk said.
Selanne leads Ducks to record road win (AP)
Teemu Selanne helped the Ducks' power play surge out of a slump. Selanne scored a goal and assisted on three power-play goals in the third period, and Anaheim beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-2 Thursday night to set a franchise record for road wins with 20. "We just had to play a pretty solid road game and I think we did," Selanne said.
Kozlov lifts Thrashers by Leafs in OT (AP)
During his first 10 NHL seasons, Slava Kozlov played for Detroit teams that were perennial Stanley Cup contenders. That's hardly been the case since Atlanta traded for him in 2002, but the Thrashers now have the postseason in their sights. "Right now, with (four) games left, we picked up one point last night and two points today," Kozlov said.
Canucks sign Salo to four-year extension (AP)
Sami Salo has signed a four-year extension with the Vancouver Canucks. "Sami is an elite defenseman who complements our group very well," general manager and senior vice president Dave Nonis said in a statement Thursday. "We are confident that he will continue to perform at the high level he has established for himself over the next four seasons." The 32-year-old Salo made $1.5 million this season...
Healthier Sabres now get back D Lydman (AP)
Add veteran defenseman Toni Lydman to the growing list of healthy Buffalo Sabres. Lydman practiced for a second straight day Thursday and is expected to play against the New York Islanders on Friday after missing six games with an upper body injury. The Sabres have not disclosed the nature of Lydman's injury.
NASCAR Tip Sheet
Hendrick and Childress are hot, but there are an even dozen drivers who clearly are not.
Ragan ready to return to Martinsville (AP)
Credit David Ragan for being a good sport.
Four injured in accident during warmup for Portuguese Rally (AP)
Four people were injured Thursday when a car went off the track during a warmup race for the Portuguese Rally. Armindo Araujo lost control of his Mitsubishi Lancer and hit five onlookers. "The car of Armindo Araujo left the road and made contact with five people who stood in the no-go area," the organizers said in a statement.
Slow start in new ride has Mears racing to catch up (AP)
Gordon admits fatherhood could change him (AP)
Notes: At Bobby Hamilton Racing, everyone misses the boss (AP)
Like everyone else at Bobby Hamilton Racing, 20-year-old Chase Miller misses the boss. But Miller, who drives a...
Schedule forces driver change in KHI's Big Chance promotion (AP)
Kevin Harvick will be driving his own truck Saturday at Martinsville. The man who had won the chance to drive one of Harvick's trucks has been replaced by a younger driver.
Biffle won't be penalized for Bristol infraction (AP)
Greg Biffle will not be penalized for failing post-race inspection at Bristol Motor Speedway in NASCAR's debut of the Car of Tomorrow.