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Video: Islanders’ James Wisniewski suspended for obscene gesture

10.13.10 at 10:59 am ET
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Islanders defenseman James Wisniewski was suspended Tuesday by the NHL for two games because of an obscene gesture he made toward Rangers forward Sean Avery during Monday’s game on Long Island (video below). During a stoppage of play in the first period, Wisniewski made a gesture simulating oral sex while being separated from Avery by the referees. Wisniewski said he didn’t remember making the gesture, but the actions were caught on tape and available on YouTube before the game was even over.

“A lot of actions on the ice are regrettable,” Wisniewski said in a statement. “I’ve been given a suspension from the league, and I’m going to accept it and move on from here.” Wisniewski will sit out games against the Capitals on Wednesday and the Penguins on Friday.

Read More: James Wisniewski, NHL, Rumor Mill, Sean Avery

Gilbert Arenas admits faking injury to let teammate start

10.13.10 at 10:05 am ET
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Wizards guard Gilbert Arenas said he faked a knee injury before the team’s preseason home opener so that teammate Nick Young could start.

Prior to Tuesday night’s game vs. the Hawks, Washington coach Flip Saunders announced that Arenas would sit with a sore knee. After the game, Arenas told a different story.

“I told [Young] I’d sacrifice playing tonight so he can get some time in because I know he’s kind of frustrated he’s not getting a chance to crack the [small forward] position, especially since we’re going three guards,” Arenas said with a smile. “So I told him I’ll go and fake an injury or say something’s wrong with me so you can start.”

Young started and played 31 minutes, scoring a team-high 24 points in the Wizards’ 107-92 victory.

Arenas, who is returning from a 50-game suspension last season for bringing guns into the locker room, said his knee was fine and that he would play in Thursday’s game vs. the Bucks.

Read More: Gilbert Arenas, Nick Young, Rumor Mill,

Report: Fredi Gonzalez to manage Braves

10.13.10 at 9:53 am ET
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According to MLB.com, multiple sources have confirmed that Fredi Gonzalez will be introduced as the Braves new manager on Thursday. Gonzalez was speculated as a leading candidate to succeed Bobby Cox since Gonzalez’ dismissal by the Marlins on June 23. Gonzalez served as a member of the Braves coaching staff from 2003-06, during which time he was widely respected by players and administrators.

As manager of the Marlins, Gonzalez went 276-279 in three-plus seasons and posted winning seasons in 2008 and 2009. The Marlins were just two games below .500 when he was dismissed in June. During his time with the Marlins, Gonzalez kept his family’s residence in suburban Atlanta, continuing to strengthen his close friendship with Cox as well as Braves pitching coach Roger McDowell. Other Braves veterans who have voiced their support for Gonzalez include Chipper Jones, Tim Hudson and Brian McCann. They were all in Atlanta while Gonzalez completed his four-year stint as Braves third base coach.

Read More: Atlanta Braves, Bobby Cox, Fredi Gonzalez, Rumor Mill

Agent tells magazine he paid college football players

10.13.10 at 9:25 am ET
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Former sports agent Josh Luchs told Sports Illustrated he paid college football players in the early to mid-1990s, and many of the players confirmed it. Among the players Luchs claimed he paid were 1998 No. 2 pick Ryan Leaf, 1994 No. 10 pick Jamir Miller, 1992 23rd pick Chris Mims. Leaf and Miller declined comment. Mims died two years ago.

Luchs listed more than 20 other college players he said he paid, and seven of them confirmed receiving money in violation of NCAA rules. Ravens tackle Jonathan Ogden turned down cash but admitted receiving Janet Jackson concert tickets from Luchs, also against NCAA rules.

Luchs also accused ESPN draft expert Mel Kiper of helping promote players for agent Gary Wichard ‘€” who is in the middle of the University of North Carolina controversy. Kiper denied the accusation. Luchs sued Wichard for breach of contract after leaving Wichard’s agency but lost. Wichard filed a grievance with the NFLPA over Luchs’ handling of a commission check, and Luchs was suspended in 2007 for one year.

Read More: Chris Mims, Jamir Miller, Josh Luchs, Rumor Mill

Jets CB Darrelle Revis’ hamstring acting up again

10.13.10 at 9:11 am ET
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Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis said his left hamstring was “very sore” after the team’s victory over the Vikings on Monday night. Revis had missed the previous two games because of the strained hamstring, which he sustained in the first half of the Jets’ 28-14 win over the Patriots in Week 2. After the Jets defeated the Vikings, 29-20, Revis said the hamstring was bothering him throughout the game.

Coach Rex Ryan was not sure as of Tuesday if Revis will play against the Broncos on Sunday. “There was added swelling in his leg,” Ryan said, “but hopefully he’ll be ready to roll.”

Revis was not up to his best against the Vikings, and the Jets chose to use Antonio Cromartie on Randy Moss. Revis mostly defended Percy Harvin and Greg Lewis in what Ryan called a “decent football game” by the star player.

Read More: Darrelle Revis, Rex Ryan, Rumor Mill,

NFL expected to review controversial catch rule

10.13.10 at 8:43 am ET
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The NFL is expected to review the rule that cost Lions receiver Calvin Johnson a potential winning touchdown in a season-opening loss to Chicago. After Johnson went to the turf with possession, he placed the ball on the ground as he ran up to celebrate. The pass was ruled incomplete because Johnson didn’t maintain possession of the ball throughout the entire “process” of the catch.

“The going-to-the-ground rule definitely will be discussed,” said Rich McKay, NFL competition committee co-chairman, at Tuesday’s fall league meetings. “It’s been discussed the last couple of years. It’s a difficult rule. … There’s a definite conflict. We have to go back and look if we extended it too far.”

The competition committee will meet after the Super Bowl to suggest any rules changes to team owners at the league’s spring meetings in March 2011.

Read More: Calvin Johnson, NFL, Rumor Mill,

LeBron James leaves Heat’s game with leg cramps

10.13.10 at 8:01 am ET
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LeBron James scored 22 points in 26 minutes in an exhibition game vs. CSKA Moscow on Tuesday night in Miami, but the Heat forward left the game in the third quarter with leg cramps. “I’m fine,” James said. “I can be ready the next game if I needed to play.”

The Heat already are missing Dwyane Wade, who strained his hamstring in the preseason opener Oct. 5.

Read More: LeBron James, Rumor Mill,

Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Transgender woman sues LPGA

10.13.10 at 7:54 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

WHAT’S HAPPENING LOCALLY TODAY:
NBA Preseason: Celtics at Knicks, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE, WEEI)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ A transgender woman is suing the LPGA after being banned from the women’s world championship in long-drive golf due to a rule that competitors must be female at birth. Lana Lawless, a 57-year-old retired police officer who had gender-reassignment surgery in 2005, won the event in 2008. But the organization that oversees the competition, Long Drivers of America, this year has decided to match the LPGA’s policy, ruling out Lawless. “There is no such thing as born female,” Lawless said. “Either you’€™re female, or you’€™re not.”

‘™¦ With LeBron James limping off the court with muscle cramps in Tuesday night’s exhibition vs. CSKA Moscow, Ira Winderman in the South Florida Sun Sentinel writes that maybe the Heat are pushing too hard in the preseason.

‘™¦ At CBSSports.com, Clark Judge looks at the impact special teams play is having on the NFL this season, on the heels of the Chargers’ disaster vs. the Raiders and the Dolphins’ troubles vs. the Patriots.

‘™¦ The Wall Street Journal looks at how the NFL stands to lose a ton of money whether or not there is a work stoppage next season, as advertisers hesitate to make major commitments.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Oct. 13, 2003, the Red Sox beat the Yankees in Game 4 of the American League Championship Series. Which Sox player set a team record with his fifth home run of that postseason?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “I love the guy as a person, as a player. I don’€™t think I’€™ve ever had an altercation with a teammate. I think you command a certain level of respect in the locker room. I think that’€™s the culture of our team. I don’€™t think I’€™ve ever seen any players in our locker room fight. That’€™s just not the way it is.” ‘€” Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, denying reports of an altercation with Randy Moss

STAT OF THE DAY: 6-0 ‘€” Cliff Lee‘s career postseason record, after leading the Rangers past the Rays in Game 5 of the American League Championship Series on Tuesday night

‘NET RESULTS: A young Chargers fan loses it when his team is beaten by the Raiders.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Todd Walker

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Paul Simon turns 69 on Wednesday.

Read More: Lana Lawless, LeBron James,

Report: Mariners interview Bobby Valentine

10.12.10 at 3:44 pm ET
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The Mariners interviewed Bobby Valentine Monday, according to the Seattle Times as their search to replace former manager Don Wakamatsu gets underway. Seattle will also interview former Astros manager Cecil Cooper and former Pirates manager Lloyd McClendon later this week.

The full list of candidates also includes former Indians manager Eric Wedge and former Blue Jays manager John Gibbons who will also reportedly interview this week. All five men have experience managing at the big league level, a stark contrast to two years ago when the Mariners hired Wakamatsu when all seven of the finalists had no previous experience at the big league level.

Valentine has 15 years of experience managing after stints with the Rangers and Mets, but he has not managed in the States since 2002. He also has a connection with the Mariners front office as he served as the Mets Triple-A manager when Mariners GM Jeff Zduriencik was the Mets farm director.

Read More: bobby valentine, Rumor Mill, Seattle Mariners,

A.J. Burnett gets the call in ALCS

10.12.10 at 3:41 pm ET
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A.J. Burnett will get the start in game 4 of the American League Championship Series against the winner of the Rays-Rangers series that concludes tonight. The move comes after the Yankees said they would have skipped him in the team’s first round series against the Twins if the series had gone to a fourth game.

Burnett with consistency, finishing the last four months of the season with a 4-13 record and ERA over six runs a game. Last postseason Burnett was 1-1 with 5.27 ERA in five starts, but did win Game 2 of the World Series against the Phillies.

The Yankees went with a three man-rotation last season in the playoffs with Burnett joined by C.C. Sabathia and Andy Pettitte. But this year the third sport in the rotation went to Phil Hughes.

Read More: A.J. Burnett, Andy Pettitte, cc sabathia, Rumor Mill