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A.J. Hawk returns to Packers with five-year deal

03.04.11 at 8:38 am ET
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Linebacker A.J. Hawk, released by the Packers on Wednesday, signed a five-year deal with the team on Thursday. The No. 5 pick in the 2006 draft, Hawk was scheduled to earn $10 million in 2011 before his release and new contract.

“We are pleased to have reached an agreement with A.J.,” Packers general manager Ted Thompson said. “We appreciate his work and dedication and look forward to his contributions to our team in the future.”

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Friday’s Morning Mashup: HS basketball player dies after hitting game-winner

03.04.11 at 7:07 am ET
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Welcome to Friday’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 FRIDAY:
NBA: Warriors at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI)
MLB Preseason: Red Sox at Yankees, 7:05 p.m. (NESN)

SATURDAY:
NHL: Penguins at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
MLB Preseason: Red Sox (SS) at Orioles, 1:05 p.m.
MLB Preseason: Marlins at Red Sox (SS), 1:05 p.m. (NESN)

SUNDAY:
NBA: Celtics at Bucks, 9 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI)
MLB Preseason: Red Sox at Mets, 1:10 p.m. (NESN)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ A high school basketball player in Michigan died Thursday night after hitting the game-winning shot that capped his team’s undefeated regular season. Shortly after he was lifted up by teammates in celebration while fans rushed the court, 16-year-old Wes Leonard of Fennville High School collapsed. He was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead.

Leonard, a 1,000-point scorer, also was an honorable mention all-state quarterback on the school’s football team.

‘™¦ Steve Mandl, who coached Manny Ramirez at George Washington High School in New York and has been at the school for 27 seasons, is fighting a one-year suspension he received for violating the league’s prohibition on recruiting.

‘™¦ ThePostGame.com blog has the story of two girls from Southern California, Ghazaleh Sailors and Marti Sementelli, who play varsity baseball at different high schools. On Saturday, the two are scheduled to be the starting pitchers against each other, making it the first time two girls take the mound as starters on opposing teams.

‘™¦ The University of Oregon football team is taking some heat for paying $25,000 to a Texas man, Will Lyles, who claims to run a scouting service but reportedly steers players to colleges. Oregon also paid a lesser fee to a former University of New Hampshire player, Baron Flenory, who runs camps and has close relationships with recruits. Flenory played at UNH when current Oregon coach Chip Kelly was an assistant for the Wildcats.

‘™¦ Forbes magazine has a look at the top 10 highest-paid college basketball coaches. Kentucky’s John Calipari is No. 1 at $4 million per year. Next up are Michigan State’s Tom Izzo ($3.4 million) and Florida’s Billy Donovan ($3.3 million).

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On March 4, 1984, which former Red Sox catcher was named to the Baseball Hall of Fame?

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Read More: Baron Flenory, Chip Kelly, Ghazaleh Sailors, John Calipari

Report: Bob Sanders to sign with Chargers

03.03.11 at 8:55 pm ET
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According to ESPN.com, free agent safety Bob Sanders — who has spent the entirety of his seven-year NFL career with the Colts — has agreed to sign a one-year deal with the Chargers. Sanders has been an impact member of the Indianapolis secondary when on the field, but he has played in just nine regular season games in the last three years, following a 2007 campaign in which he was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year. That season resulted in a five-year, $37.5 million deal for Sanders from the Colts, but his injuries led Indianapolis to cut him last month.

Read More: Bob Sanders, Indianapolis Colts, San Diego Chargers,

Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Late hockey enforcer Bob Probert had brain trauma

03.03.11 at 7:23 am ET
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Welcome to Thursday’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 THURSDAY:
NHL: Lightning at Bruins, 7 p.m. (NESN)
MLB Preseason: Phillies at Red Sox, 1:05 p.m.

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ Longtime NHL tough guy Bob Probert, who died last July of heart failure at the age of 45, had chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the degenerative brain disease that has afflicted a number of NFL players. Boston University’s Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy made the diagnosis this week after examining Probert’s brain tissue. “In my heart of hearts, I don’€™t believe fighting is what did this to Bob,” Probert’s widow, Dani, told The New York Times. “It was hockey ‘€” all the checking and hits, things like that.”

‘™¦ The third-ranked BYU basketball team lost to New Mexico on Wednesday night, one day after starting forward Brandon Davies was dismissed from the team for a BYU honor code violation. Davies, who reportedly had premarital sex, apologized to his teammates, and they voiced support for him. In the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Ed Graney writes that Davies knew how strict the school’s rules were before he enrolled. In The Salt Lake Tribune, Dave Kragthorpe looks at how Jimmer Fredette will have a tougher job now.

‘™¦ Tina Stewart, a junior guard on the Middle Tennessee State women’s basketball team, was found stabbed to death at her apartment Wednesday. The Blue Raiders (23-6) are the East’s No. 1 seed for the Sun Belt Conference tournament that starts Sunday as they aim for an NCAA tournament berth.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On March 3, 1985, Kevin McHale set a Celtics record for points in a 138-129 victory over the Pistons, a record that would be broken 10 days later by Larry Bird. How many points did McHale score?

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Read More: Bob Probert, Brandon Davies, Jimmer Fredette, Tina Stewart

Michael Vick signs one-year deal with Eagles

03.02.11 at 1:41 pm ET
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Eagles quarterback Michael Vick signed his franchise tender Wednesday, lining him up for a salary of about $20 million next season, pending changes to the collective bargaining agreement.

Vick has his best season in 2010, setting career highs in passing yards (3,018), passing touchdowns (21), rushing touchdowns (9), completion percentage (62.6) and passer rating (100.2).

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Report: LaDainian Tomlinson will return to Jets

03.02.11 at 1:37 pm ET
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The Jets will retain running back LaDainian Tomlinson for the 2011 season, according to ESPNNewYork.com.

Tomlinson, 32, led the Jets with 914 rushing yards last season, but he faded down the stretch. That, coupled with the emergence of Shonn Greene and Joe McKnight in the backfield, raised questions about whether or not Tomlinson would return.

Speculation increased after the team cut veterans Kris Jenkins, Jason Taylor and Damien Woody on Monday. However, sources told ESPN that Tomlinson is safe.

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Yankees’ Mark Teixeira cuts ties with agent Scott Boras

03.02.11 at 11:30 am ET
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Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira has parted ways with longtime agent Scott Boras. Teixeira made the announcement before Wednesday’s spring training game against the Astros.

“I’ve been thinking about it for a while,” Teixeira said. “There’s no reason to get into a lot of specifics right now, but sometimes business relationships just run their course. For me, my family right now, this is the best decision for me.”

Teixeira is currently in the third season of a $180 million, eight-year contract negotiated by Boras.

“Right now, the next contract isn’t really on my mind,” Teixeira said. “When I hired Scott at 18, it was to help me with my career. From the time I was a rookie, people started talking about my free-agent contract. Unfortunately, it took away from a lot of things I did on the field. I felt, at times, I was Mark Teixeira, Scott Boras’ client instead of Mark Teixeira, baseball player.”

Read More: Mark Teixeira, Rumor Mill, Scott Boras,

Report: Serena Williams suffered a pulmonary embolism last week

03.02.11 at 11:11 am ET
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Serena Williams is undergoing treatment after suffering a pulmonary embolism, or blood clot in the lungs, last week, according to People magazine. The article said Williams suffered a setback Monday when she had to undergo emergency treatment for a hematoma caused by treatment.

Nicole Chabot, Williams’ representative, said doctors are monitoring the tennis star’s situation closely to avoid any further complications.

Read More: Rumor Mill, Serena Williams,

No. 3 BYU suspends forward Brandon Davies for remainder of season

03.02.11 at 8:59 am ET
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BYU starting forward Brandon Davies was suspended for the rest of the season for a violation of the school’s honor code. Davies, a 6-foot-9 sophomore, averaged 11.1 points and a team-high 6.2 rebounds for the third-ranked Cougars (27-2).

BYU, led by Player of the Year candidate Jimmer Fredette, is aiming for a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. The Cougars’ first test without Davies comes Wednesday night vs. New Mexico, one of the two teams to have defeated BYU this season.

Read More: Brandon Davies, BYU, Jimmer Fredette, Rumor Mill

Cardinals pitcher Chris Carpenter strains hamstring

03.02.11 at 8:55 am ET
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Cardinals fans probably just want spring training to end before anything else happens. A day after ace pitcher Adam Wainwright had season-ending elbow surgery, Chris Carpenter — the team’s No. 2 starter — strained his left hamstring in the third inning of a 7-1 win over the Marlins, according to The Associated Press.

This time, though, the injury is not considered serious.

“We kind of held our breath,” manager Tony La Russa said. “We came in here and the doctors and trainers said [the injuries] are minor. Looks like we caught a break.”

Carpenter said he has never had a hamstring injury before and that he isn’t too concerned about it.

Read More: Chris Carpenter, Rumor Mill, tony la russa,