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Video: Penguins’ Matt Cooke delivers another hit to head

03.21.11 at 6:42 am ET
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Penguins forward Matt Cooke was given a five-minute major penalty and ejected from Sunday’s game for his elbow to the head of Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh.

Cooke, who has been suspended three times in the past three seasons for illegal hits, likely faces another suspension this week after sticking out his arm to deck a defenseless McDonagh at center ice near the boards.

“I don’t think you can talk about eliminating head shots from the game, as we have as an organization, and not expect [Cooke’s hit] to be examined,” Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma said. “It’s what looks to be a contact right to the head on the play, so the league will look at that and treat it as such.”

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Nets PG Deron Williams out with injured wrist

03.21.11 at 6:28 am ET
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Nets point guard Deron Williams missed Sunday’s game and will sit out at least two more games with an injured right wrist.

“It’s something that we know: rest ‘€” not surgery ‘€” is required,” New Jersey coach Avery Johnson said. “We’ll treat him. We’ll rest him.”

Williams originally hurt the wrist while with the Jazz before being traded last month.

Read More: Deron Williams, Rumor Mill,

Williams, Middlebury fall in Division 3 Final Four

03.18.11 at 10:17 pm ET
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New England’s two teams in the NCAA Division 3 Final Four fell in close games Friday night in Salem, Va. Williams could not protect a 17-point lead with less than nine minutes remaining and lost to Wooster (Ohio), 73-70, in the opening semifinal. In the nightcap, Middlebury fell short vs. St. Thomas (Minn.), 59-57. The championship game is Saturday at 3:30 p.m.

In the first game, Nate Robertson scored 21 points to lead the Williams attack. James Wang netted 14, while Troy Whittington contributed 12 points and eight rebounds. Ian Franks led Wooster with 24 points, nine rebounds and four assists.

Williams shot an impressive 52.4 percent from the field while Wooster shot 42.6 percent. The Ephs were hurt by their 16 turnovers that led to 25 Wooster points. The Fighting Scots had just five turnovers.

Williams jumped out to a big early lead and had a 17-point lead after two free throws by Brian Emerson made it 63-46 with 8:54 remaining. That’s when Wooster went on a 17-0 run. Franks had seven of the points in the run, including a 3-pointer with 4:42 left that tied the score.

After a Whittington free throw put Williams back on top, Wooster took its first lead of the night on a jumper by Nathan Balch, 65-64.

Following some back-and-forth baskets, the Ephs had a 71-70 lead with 1:06 left after two free throws by Robertson. But Bryan Wickliffe nailed two free throws 16 seconds later to put Wooster on top for good. Balch added a free throw with 25 seconds left for the final scoring.

Williams had two chances to win or tie in the final seconds. Wang missed a 3-pointer with two seconds left. Taylor Epley got the rebound, but his layup rolled off the rim at the buzzer.

In the second semifinal, Nolan Thompson scored 12 points, Ryan Sharry (Braintree/BC High) had 11 points, 11 rebounds and three blocks, and Andrew Locke had eight points, six rebounds and four blocks for Middlebury. The Panthers were hurt by poor shooting at the free throw line (12-for-23) and behind the 3-point arc (3-for-16). They also had 18 turnovers that led to 22 Tommies points.

Middlebury trailed by seven points at the half, 32-25, fought back to take the lead midway through the second period, but then trailed by five points with a minute remaining, 59-54.

Thompson drained a long 3-pointer with 56 seconds left to get the Panthers within two. After a Jamal Davis steal on St. Thomas’ ensuing possession, Middlebury had a final chance to tie or win. But Thompson’s long 3-pointer hit the front rim and the Tommies ran out the final few seconds.

Read More: Division 3 Final Four, Middlebury, Williams,

Singer Terry Cashman to be honored by Baseball Hall of Fame

03.18.11 at 12:54 pm ET
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Terry Cashman, the composer and singer of “Talkin’ Baseball,” will be honored by the Baseball Hall of Fame this year, the 30th anniversary of his signature song.

Cashman, a former minor league pitcher in the Tigers organization (under his real name, Dennis Minogue), had some success as a composer and producer before his 1981 baseball classic that paid tribute to New York icons “Willie [Mays], Mickey [Mantle] and the Duke [Snider].”

“‘Talkin’ Baseball’ symbolizes the spirit of New York baseball in the 1950s and ’60s and the timeless love for the national pastime for every baseball fan whose enjoyed Terry’s ballad over the years,” Hall of Fame President Jeff Idelson said Friday. “We are pleased to honor Terry and his classic tribute to the game and its great players.”

Cashman performed a Boston version of his song as part of the Red SoxWorld Series championship celebration on Opening Day in 2005. He called in to WEEI’s The Big Show to defend himself after being criticized for it.

Read More: Hall of Fame, Rumor Mill, Terry Cashman, WEEI

Report: U. of Miami football suspends six for opener

03.18.11 at 12:14 pm ET
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According to reports out of Miami, the University of Miami has suspended six players for its season opener against Maryland. NBC Miami writes that the suspensions reportedly are for violations of team rules and not related to academics, and that the players are offensive lineman Seantrel Henderson, running back Storm Johnson, linebacker Kelvin Cain, defensive back Keion Payne, defensive lineman Dyron Dye and defensive back Devont’a Davis.

The school did not confirm the report and indicated coach Al Golden was on vacation.

Read More: Miami, Rumor Mill, Seantrel Henderson,

QB Kevin Kolb draws interest from other teams, Eagles coach Andy Reid says

03.18.11 at 11:26 am ET
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Eagles coach Andy Reid said teams have been in touch to discuss backup quarterback Kevin Kolb. With Michael Vick entrenched as Philadelphia’s starter, the team is seeing what it could get for the established No. 2 QB.

“People have shown a little interest [Kolb], and as this thing picks up, I’m sure it will continue,” Reid said in an article on the team’s website. “Listen we’ll sit back and we’ll evaluate.”

Reid noted that the Eagles might decide to keep Kolb.

“You look at his numbers and the things he did when he had the opportunity to start, and you start six or seven games and you’€™re the NFC Offensive Player of the Week twice, and all the 300-yard games he put together and the way he commands the offense and all these things, you’€™re not in a big hurry to get rid of Kevin Kolb,” Reid said.

Read More: Andy Reid, Kevin Kolb, Rumor Mill,

Williams, Middlebury play in Division 3 Final Four Friday

03.18.11 at 10:54 am ET
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NESCAC powers Williams and Middlebury take to the floor in separate semifinals games of the Division 3 NCAA Final Four on Friday night in Salem, Va.

Williams, which reached the title game last season, will play Wooster (Ohio) at 6 p.m., while Middlebury faces St. Thomas (Minn.) at approximately 8. The championship game is Saturday at 3:30.

“It’s been an incredible ride,” Williams coach Mike Maker told NCAA.com. “To be able to go to back-to-back Final Fours, especially after losing seven seniors, is not an easy thing to do. I don’t think we were expected to go very far in the tournament. It’s a big accomplishment to be here.”

Senior center Troy Whittington, a first-team NABC All-American, averages 16.7 points and 9.0 rebounds for the Ephs (29-2), who score 81.7 per game. The 6-foot-6 Whittington shoots an incredible 70.9 percent from the field.

Junior guard James Wang leads the team at 18.5 points per game, and he is one of a few Williams players who can fill it up from behind the arc. Wang shoots 43.5 percent from 3-point range while the Ephs as a team hit 38.9 percent, making 10.4 treys per game.

Middlebury’s only loss this season was to Williams in a January game the Panthers played without standout junior forward Ryan Sharry (eye injury). Sharry, from Braintree and Boston College High School, is the team’s leading scorer (13.8) and rebounder (10.5).

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Read More: Andrew Locke, James, Jeff Brown, Middlebury

405-pound American sumo wrestling champion plans to run LA Marathon

03.18.11 at 10:03 am ET
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A former sumo wrestler who weighs 405 pounds is aiming to set a Guinness Book of World Records mark as the heaviest person to complete a marathon. Kelly Gneiting, who won three U.S. sumo wrestling titles from 2005-07, will run in Sunday’s Los Angeles Marathon.

“Big people can do the unimaginable,” Gneiting told The Los Angeles Times.

Gneiting, who lives on an Indian reservation in Arizona, entered the 2008 LA Marathon but took almost 12 hours to reach the finish line. That performance was not documented by Guinness.

Read More: Kelly Gneiting, Rumor Mill,

Underdog BU set to ‘compete’ vs. Kansas

03.18.11 at 7:34 am ET
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Last Saturday, Boston University knocked off Stony Brook with a pair of John Holland free throws in the waning seconds to win the America East championship and earn their first trip to the NCAA tournament in nine years.

Their reward? A matchup with top-seeded Kansas in Tulsa, Okla., on Friday (6:50 p.m., TBS).

‘€œYou see Kansas, you’€™re like, ‘€˜Wow, we get to go to Oklahoma to play Kansas,’€™ ‘€ BU coach Patrick Chambers said after learning his team’€™s fate Sunday night. ‘€œWhat a great thrill for these guys, for this program, for this university.’€

Chambers and the Terriers know that a 16 seed has never beaten a 1 seed, and no one on BU is going out on a limb and predicting a win. But that doesn’€™t mean the Terriers are expecting a loss, either.

‘€œI just want to compete,’€ Chambers said. ‘€œI think we have a young group that hasn’€™t reached their potential yet. We haven’€™t shot the ball well in a couple of weeks, so I don’€™t think we’€™ve really played up to our capabilities. I’€™m just hoping [this week] to come to practice, get better, get better, and who knows? Just compete, play hard and see what happens.’€

Despite Chambers’€™ assessment that his team hasn’€™t played as well as it could, BU enters Friday’€™s matchup riding an 11-game winning streak. The key for the Terriers has been their defense, as they’€™ve held opponents to 55.8 points per game during that stretch.

Defending America East opponents is one thing. Defending Kansas is quite another, though. The Jayhawks rank fifth in the country in points per game (82.4) and first in field goal percentage (.514).

‘€œWe’€™ve got to defend and rebound,’€ Chambers told WTBU Sports on Tuesday. ‘€œI’€™ve been saying that all year. That’€™s what we’€™ve got to do. We’€™ve got to limit their second-chance points.’€

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Read More: John Holland, Matt Griffin, Patrick Chambers,

Friday’s Morning Mashup: Magazine rates Philadelphia with worst fans in America, Red Sox rooters sixth

03.18.11 at 7:18 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: Celtics at Rockets, 8:30 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI)
MLB Preseason: Tigers at Red Sox SS, 1:05 p.m.
Red Sox SS at Rays, 7:05 p.m.

SATURDAY:
NHL: Bruins at Maple Leafs, 7 p.m. (NESN)
NBA: Celtics at Hornets, 8 p.m. (CSNNE; WEEI)
MLB Preseason: Red Sox at Pirates, 1:05 p.m. (NESN)

SUNDAY:
MLB Preseason: Red Sox at Orioles, 1:05 p.m. (NESN)

AROUND THE WEB:

‘™¦ GQ magazine has a piece on the worst fans in sports. Red Sox rooters, described as “insufferable hypocrites,” came in sixth. Holding the top two spots are Eagles and Phillies supporters, with the Philadelphia residents termed “the meanest fans in America.” Others of note: Yankees fans are ninth, Canadiens fans are 11th, and Lakers fans are 15th.

‘™¦ With Tennessee set to begin play in the NCAA tournament, coach Bruce Pearl might be preparing for his final game with the Volunteers. In The Tennessean, David Climer looks at the predicament the Boston College product has gotten himself into.

‘™¦ Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is being cast as a villain in the NFL lockout. In the Forth Worth Star-Telegram, Randy Galloway writes about Jones’ tough year and how he deals with the hits on his legacy.

‘™¦ The New York Times has a piece on former racehorses that are starving to death because a charity designed to provide for them, the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, has been slow or delinquent to pay for their upkeep.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On March 18, 2000, Bruins legend Ray Bourque became the first defenseman to reach which goal-scoring milestone?

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Read More: Bruce Pearl, Jerry Jones, worst sports fans,