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Rose, Wetterich share lead at Masters (AP)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070406/ap_on_sp_go_su/glf_masters"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070405/capt.2a9cb6dc79174d6b95518786352c7161.masters_golf_auh206.jpg?x=130&y=83&sig=opWjLrTUXRTiA.Kp9rUjpg--" align="left" height="83" width="130" alt="Justin Rose, from England, tees off on the ninth hole in the first round of the 2007 Masters golf tournament at the Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga., Thursday, April 5, 2007. (AP Photo/Rob Carr)" border="0" /></a>AP - Augusta National is called the "cathedral of golf," and it sure sounded like one Thursday. Gone were those roars that resonate along Amen Corner, as much a part of the Masters as the blazing colors of spring and the red numbers under par on the leaderboard. Then again, there were not a lot of birdies to cheer. This was a day the Masters went mute.</p><br clear="all"/>

Braves complete sweep of Phillies (AP)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070406/ap_on_sp_ba_ga_su/bbn_nl_rdp"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070405/capt.34a0f227d4ee463abe93ddc1f322e2ee.braves_phillies_baseball_pagw103.jpg?x=91&y=130&sig=Z5EBE4iR7UuFMuyDQT84uw--" align="left" height="130" width="91" alt="Atlanta Braves pitcher Chuck James throws against the Philadelphia Phillies in the first inning of a baseball game in Philadelphia on Thursday, April 5, 2007. (AP Photo/George Widman)" border="0" /></a>AP - Philadelphia's sluggish start has an all too familiar feel for Phillies fans. Chuck James pitched five solid innings, Kelly Johnson hit a two-run homer and the Atlanta Braves completed a three-game sweep of Philadelphia with an 8-4 victory on Thursday.</p><br clear="all"/>

Daisuke Matsuzaka looks great in debut (AP)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070406/ap_on_sp_ba_ga_su/bba_al_rdp"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070405/capt.9a6f23b1227e4183a66f0e50afb5ad13.red_sox_royals_baseball_modw113.jpg?x=127&y=130&sig=ZE9TlpCnrrmR0T_El9RJlQ--" align="left" height="130" width="127" alt="Boston Red Sox pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka throws in a baseball game with the Kansas City Royals, Thursday, April 5, 2007, in Kansas City, Mo. Matsuzaka made his major league debut. (AP Photo/Dick Whipple)" border="0" /></a>AP - Some pitchers have really good fastballs and some throw darting sliders. Others keep you off balance with off-speed pitches. Now out of Japan comes Dice-K. He seems to have it all. Just ask the Kansas City Royals, who struck out 10 times and managed only six hits in seven innings against Daisuke Matsuzaka in his first major league start.</p><br clear="all"/>

Jagr helps Rangers clinch playoff spot (AP)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070406/ap_on_sp_ho_ga_su/hkn_nhl_rdp"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070406/capt.f437b0ef1b0a4cf0b1e6f8a925a10409.canadiens_rangers_hockey_nyff114.jpg?x=130&y=92&sig=gxpKC5jmEvdthMQm0oc.dw--" align="left" height="92" width="130" alt="New York Rangers' Michal Rozsival (3), Sean Avery (16) and Marek Malik (8) celebrate with teammate Jaromir Jagr (68) after Malik scored during the second period of hockey action against Montreal Canadiens, Thursday, April 5, 2007, at Madison Square Garden in New York. The Rangers won the game, 3-1. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)" border="0" /></a>AP - Jaromir Jagr reached the 30-goal mark for the 15th straight season, helping the New York Rangers clinch their second straight playoff berth. The New York Islanders and Colorado Avalanche won to preserve their slim chances.</p><br clear="all"/>

Defending champion Heat clinch playoffs (AP)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070406/ap_on_sp_bk_ga_su/bkn_heat_cavaliers"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070406/capt.9cb1ca804fd14104bd9592d9ba976a78.heat_cavaliers_basketball_ohmd106.jpg?x=130&y=104&sig=8KzKh89fwTF76CzdMzGKDA--" align="left" height="104" width="130" alt="Miami Heat coach Pat Riley, right, instructs James Posey (42) during a timeout in the first quarter of an NBA basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Thursday, April 5, 2007, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Mark Duncan)" border="0" /></a>AP - The NBA playoffs won't go on without the defending champions. The Miami Heat didn't let a season of bumps, bruises or bad luck stop them from making a run at another title.</p><br clear="all"/>

Stokley mending from Achilles' injury (AP)
AP - The red vertical scar peeked through the top of Brandon Stokley's sock. The former Indianapolis Colts receiver unintentionally glanced in the scar's direction whenever he referenced it.

Arenas' season ends with knee surgery (AP)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070406/ap_on_sp_bk_ne/bkn_wizards_arenas"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070405/capt.a21f97b06ef9471b81c2c174e657c5d7.wizards_arenas_basketball_ny155.jpg?x=130&y=60&sig=XAz.HPFhY_7H7ZheaV3Log--" align="left" height="60" width="130" alt="Washington Wizards' Gilbert Arenas grimaces after spraining his left knee in a collision with Gerald Wallace in the first quarter of the Wizards' NBA basketball game against the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday, April 4, 2007, in Washington. (AP Photo/Lawrence Jackson)" border="0" /></a>AP - Put the Hibachi in storage. Gilbert Arenas is essentially done for the season. The Washington Wizards point guard had surgery Thursday for a left knee injury that will sideline him for two to three months. Even the most optimistic scenario has him coming back only if his team manages to make the NBA finals without him.</p><br clear="all"/>

Giants log first win of season (Reuters)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070406/sp_nm/baseball_national_thursday_dc"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/nm/20070406/2007_04_06t031830_450x316_us_baseball_national_thursday.jpg?x=130&y=91&sig=PFb8w52FStm4FsoHuhjE_A--" align="left" height="91" width="130" alt="San Francisco Giants closing pitcher Armando Benitez (R) celebrates with catcher Bengie Molina beating the San Diego Padres in a National League baseball game in San Francisco, California, April 5, 2007. (Kimberly White/Reuters)" border="0" /></a>Reuters - Barry Bonds belted a run-scoring double in the first inning to set the San Francisco Giants on their way to a first win of the season, a 5-3 home victory over the San Diego Padres on Thursday.</p><br clear="all"/>

Another violent night for Euro soccer (AP)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070406/ap_on_sp_so_ga_su/soc_euro_rdp"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070405/capt.mf81504052154.spain_soccer_uefa_cup_mf815.jpg?x=130&y=89&sig=H1OP6e.eLKz9fGmoI24w2A--" align="left" height="89" width="130" alt="Visiting Tottenham fans fight with police in riot gear during the UEFA cup quarterfinal, first leg match between Seville and Tottenham Hotspur, at Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan stadium in Seville, Spain, Thursday, April 5, 2007. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)" border="0" /></a>AP - Tottenham fans fought with Spanish police in riot gear Thursday night during the English team's UEFA Cup quarterfinal at Sevilla. Seven fans of the London club were reportedly hospitalized &#151; mostly with cuts to their heads. A policeman also was reported to have been injured in the disturbances.</p><br clear="all"/>

Hejduk's hat trick keeps Avalanche alive (AP)
<p><a href="http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/sports/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070406/ap_on_sp_ho_ga_su/hkn_avalanche_canucks"><img src="http://d.yimg.com/us.yimg.com/p/ap/20070406/capt.3bafcd235dfc45c8aee7082fc5871c97.canucks_avalanche_hockey_vcrx102.jpg?x=94&y=130&sig=Yw.EvUYldb_0vYzKbQrcdQ--" align="left" height="130" width="94" alt="Colorado Avalanche's Milan Hejduk, right, celebrates his goal with teammate Brett McLean during the first period of NHL action against the Vancouver Canucks in Vancouver, Canada, Thursday April 5, 2007. (AP Photo/Chuck Stoody,CP)" border="0" /></a>AP - Milan Hejduk single-handedly preserved the Colorado Avalanche's slim playoff hopes and increased the pressure on the Calgary Flames.</p><br clear="all"/>

Mock draft No. 5
The buildup to the NFL draft has reached a point where the same stories and rumors are told over and over until the actual event starts.

Paralyzed ex-Pats WR Stingley dies at 55 (AP)
Darryl Stingley spent more than half his life in a wheelchair, a symbol of the violence of the NFL, where large bodies collide at high speeds on every play. He was only 26 when he clashed head-on with the Raiders' Jack Tatum during an exhibition at the Oakland Coliseum as they leaped for a pass. That play has haunted the NFL for nearly three decades.

Brady Quinn stops in to see Browns (AP)
Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn dressed in a light orange shirt for his visit to the Cleveland Browns. If he gets his wish, he'll soon have a matching orange helmet. Quinn, who grew up in Dublin, Ohio, has said he wants to play for the Browns, the team he rooted for as a kid. On Thursday, he spent a few hours touring the team's headquarters and interviewing with coaches.

'Pacman' not being charged just yet (AP)
Las Vegas prosecutors asked police to do more investigating before charges are filed against Tennessee Titans cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones in a strip club fight that led to a triple shooting. "It isn't that we're missing things, they just wanted more detailed information," said Lt. George Castro, leader of the Las Vegas Police Department's violent crimes unit.

Cowboys re-sign WR Crayton (AP)
Patrick Crayton re-signed with the Dallas Cowboys to remain the No. 3 receiver behind Terrell Owens and Terry Glenn. The Cowboys offered Crayton, who was a restricted free agent, a one-year, $1.3 million tender to remain with the team. The signing was announced Thursday. Crayton played in all 16 games last season, his third with the Cowboys since being a seventh-round pick out of Northwestern...

Saints release K John Carney (AP)
As requested, the Saints released kicker John Carney on Thursday, two days after trading for Olindo Mare. The 43-year-old Carney was the Saints' all-time leader in field goal accuracy percentage (.833). He joined the Saints in 2001 and will be entering his 18th NFL season. "John wanted to explore other opportunities that are available in the NFL," said Saints general manager Mickey Loomis.

Redskins sign CB Macklin (AP)
The Washington Redskins signed cornerback David Macklin on Thursday, adding depth to their defensive backfield. Macklin is entering his eighth NFL season. He spent the past three years with the Arizona Cardinals after four seasons with the Indianapolis Colts. Last year, he had one interception and 33 tackles in 14 games, including seven starts.

Vikings sign former Colts safety Doss (AP)
Safety Mike Doss, who spent the past four seasons with the Indianapolis Colts, has signed with the Minnesota Vikings. During his time in Indianapolis, Doss started 42 of the 46 regular season games he has played in. Doss played in six games last season before he was sidelined by a torn knee ligament. While in Indianapolis, he played under current Vikings defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier.

The Oden ticket
Winning the NBA draft lottery doesn't guarantee you a franchise player, but this year, it just might with a center like Greg Oden.

Shaq, Heat clinch playoff spot with win (AP)
The NBA playoffs won't go on without the defending champions. The Miami Heat didn't let a season of bumps, bruises or bad luck stop them from making a run at another title. Antoine Walker and Shaquille O'Neal scored 20 points apiece and the Heat clinched a spot in the Eastern Conference playoffs Thursday night, beating Cleveland 94-90 in overtime to drop the Cavaliers three places in the postseason...

Parker's 35 help Spurs stifle Suns (AP)
Tony Parker and the San Antonio Spurs have their sights set on catching the Phoenix Suns for the Western Conference's No. 2 seed in the playoffs. And Parker's doing all he can to make it happen. Parker scored a season-high 35 points to lead the Spurs past the Suns 92-85 on Thursday night and bring them within two games of Phoenix for second place in the West.

Arenas needs surgery, out 2-3 months (AP)
Put the Hibachi in storage. Gilbert Arenas is essentially done for the season. The Washington Wizards point guard had surgery Thursday for a left knee injury that will sideline him for two to three months. Even the most optimistic scenario has him coming back only if his team manages to make the NBA finals without him.

Hornets' Mason could miss rest of season (AP)
New Orleans forward Desmond Mason could miss the rest of the season after breaking his nose and cheek bone. Mason, the only Hornets player to start every game this season, took an elbow to the face from Seattle's Chris Wilcox during the Hornets' 102-93 victory Wednesday night. A CT scan taken at a hospital revealed the breaks.

Artest's battery hearing postponed (AP)
Ron Artest's court hearing on misdemeanor domestic battery charges was postponed three weeks on Thursday. The Sacramento Kings forward did not attend the brief proceeding in Placer County Superior Court. "Both sides continue to talk and pursue their independent investigations," Artest's attorney, William Portanova, said.

Vegas' NBA pitch won't restrict betting (AP)
Local officials made no offer to restrict betting on NBA teams in a pitch for a franchise sent to commissioner David Stern on Thursday. The proposal, requested by Stern in February, emphasizes Nevada's gambling regulatory record and argues the system "should provide sufficient cause for the association to permit a franchise to exist comfortably in Las Vegas without concern of corruption or...

Bulls rout Pistons without Ben Wallace (AP)
With two weeks left in the regular season, the Detroit Pistons and the Chicago Bulls are playing for postseason positioning. Only one team looked like it Wednesday night. Kirk Hinrich scored 29 points, Luol Deng added 22 and the Ben Wallace-less Bulls beat the listless Pistons 106-88. "It is significant because we are trying to move up," Bulls coach Scott Skiles said.

Warriors win again, Rockets lose McGrady (AP)
The Golden State Warriors hit all the items of their checklist and got a little bonus to beat the Houston Rockets on Wednesday night. Jason Richardson scored 27 points, including seven 3-pointers, and the Warriors took advantage of Tracy McGrady's absence to beat the Rockets 110-99. The Warriors shut down Yao Ming, forced plenty of turnovers (24) and shot well from 3-point range (16-of-35), all...

Nuggets' Karl wins in return to bench (AP)
George Karl was emotionally spent. The Denver Nuggets coach returned to the team after spending two days with his son, who had surgery to remove cancerous lymph nodes. "We were all aware of the situation, with his son and everything" Nugget forward Carmelo Anthony said after Denver's 120-115 win over Sacramento on Wednesday night..

Brodeur sets single-season mark for wins (AP)
Martin Brodeur and the New Jersey Devils had a record-setting night against the worst team in the NHL. Brodeur surpassed Bernie Parent, Philadelphia's stalwart Stanley Cup-winning goalie, for wins in a season with 48 and the Devils clinched the Atlantic Division title with a 3-2 win over the Flyers on Thursday night.

Rangers, Lightning clinch playoff spots (AP)
The New York Rangers happily gave away the jerseys from their backs, knowing they'd soon don new ones for the playoffs. The final regular-season home game couldn't have gone much better for the Rangers, who clinched a postseason spot in the Eastern Conference tournament with a 3-1 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night.

Red Wings clinch Central despite SO loss (AP)
Nikolai Khabibulin truly earned his latest victory for the Chicago Blackhawks. Khabibulin stopped a season-high 56 shots through overtime, then three of four Detroit shooters in the shootout, to help the Blackhawks beat the Red Wings 3-2 Thursday night. Chicago won its fourth straight and snapped a seven-game losing streak against Detroit that dated to March 2006.

Hejduk's preserves Avs' playoff hopes (AP)
Milan Hejduk single-handedly preserved the Colorado Avalanche's slim playoff hopes and increased the pressure on the Calgary Flames. Hejduk scored three goals, including two just under 4 minutes apart in the third period, to lead the Avalanche to a 3-1 victory over the Canucks on Thursday night. Paul Stastny assisted on all three goals as Colorado improved to 13-1-2 in the last 16 games to pull...

Flames miss chance to get playoff spot (AP)
Jarome Iginla knows the Calgary Flames missed an opportunity to secure a spot in the playoffs, and they're running out of chances. "The way we looked at it was like a series," Iginla said after the Flames's 4-3 loss to the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night. "We lost the first two games and we have the a chance to go home and clinch it.

Pens top Sens, preserve home ice hopes (AP)
The Pittsburgh Penguins gave themselves a chance to get home-ice advantage in their first playoff series in six years. Maxime Talbot scored with 9.8 seconds remaining to lift the Penguins to a 3-2 win over Ottawa on Thursday night and preserve an opportunity to claim home-ice advantage in their first-round playoff matchup against the Senators.

Sabres match franchise record for wins (AP)
The Buffalo Sabres matched a franchise record with their 52nd win -- and did it the hard way. With top spot in the Eastern Conference already secured, the Sabres rallied from a two-goal deficit to beat the Boston Bruins 4-2 Thursday night. Thomas Vanek scored twice and added an assist, and goaltender Ryan Miller stopped 22 shots to win his 39th and set a franchise record -- one ahead of the mark...

Isles get three in third, rip Leafs 5-2 (AP)
The New York Islanders preserved their playoff chances thanks to a milestone goal and a third-string goalie. Jason Blake's career-high 40th goal was the game-winner, and Wade Dubielewicz stopped 28 shots to lead the Islanders to a 5-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday night. "Forty goals is a great feeling, but the bigger concern was winning this game," Blake said.

Backstrom, Wild shut out Oilers again (AP)
Although it may not look like it, the Edmonton Oilers insist they are still trying. Niklas Backstrom shut out Edmonton for the second time in three days, Marian Gaborik scored his 30th goal, and the Minnesota Wild preserved slim hopes of winning the Northwest Division title with their second straight 3-0 victory over the defending Western Conference champions on Thursday night.

Preds snap three-game skid, defeat Blues (AP)
The Nashville Predators are trying to build some momentum for the playoffs. Snapping a three-game skid at home is a good start. David Legwand scored two goals, Paul Kariya notched his 500th NHL assist, and the Nashville Predators beat the St. Louis Blues 4-1 Thursday night to avoid losing four straight for the first time this season.

Trading Paint: The Big 3
All the attention seems to be focused on Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon. The spotlight continues here.

Notes: All-Star race goes big time (AP)
The NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge generally draws a big TV audience and a big crowd to Lowe's Motor Speedway...

Pettys, Rudd favor NASCAR franchising (AP)
As a car owner whose teams are struggling to keep up with multicar megateams, seven-time champion Richard Petty has a solution to guarantee those who built NASCAR stick around: franchising.

NASCAR to mandate change before COT returns to track (AP)
NASCAR will mandate a change in the design of the Car of Tomorrow in an attempt to alleviate the heat that caused foam to melt in several cars last weekend at Martinsville.

Martinsville -- sans hot dogs -- gives Montoya fits (AP)
Juan Pablo Montoya was warned that Martinsville Speedway would be one of the biggest eye-openers in his jump to NASCAR.

Developers drop proposal for NASCAR track in Kitsap County (AP)
Sponsors of a $368 million NASCAR race track proposal for Washington State abandoned their efforts Monday after encountering stiff opposition from local officials and resistance at the state Legislature.

A bump, but no run, as drivers adjust to new car (AP)
Two races featuring the new Car of Tomorrow -- two thrilling drag races to the finish line.

Johnson holds off Gordon at Martinsville (AP)
Jimmie Johnson offered no apologies for putting his mentor through 53 laps of frustration.

Johnson holds off Gordon to win at Martinsville (PA SportsTicker)

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