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    By Stephen F. Holder, Times Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    NFC: Seahawks (12-5) at Falcons (13-3)

    The Falcons hope to erase memories of three one-and-done playoff appearances over the past five seasons, this time against a Seahawks team that has won six in a row.

    Time: 1 p.m. today TV/radio: Ch. 13; 98.7-FM, 1010-AM

    Coaches: Seahawks — Pete Carroll (25-23, 2-1 in playoffs at Seattle; 58-54, 3-3 overall); Falcons — Mike Smith (56-24, 0-3 playoffs)

    Stat pack

    Breaking it down

    Seahawks game-breaker: Yes, Russell Wilson is quite a quarterback as his 100.0 rating suggests. But the Falcons should be wary of his running ability. A third of his rushes have resulted in first downs.

    Falcons game-breaker: Wilson should be mindful of where S Thomas DeCoud lines up. The Falcons' interception leader looks to add to his six picks during his best season.

    Why the Seahawks will win: Seattle's physical and aggressive play wears on the Falcons, who showed some weaknesses in a Week 17 loss to the Bucs. Can the Falcons match that after a bye week?

    Why the Falcons will win: For one, Atlanta is as good a home team as there is in the NFL. But more than that, its offensive playmakers (WRs Julio Jones and Roddy White and TE Tony Gonzalez) can match up with Seattle's superb defense. Few teams can.

    Look out for: Seahawks rookie DE Bruce Irvin makes his first career start after top pass-rusher Chris Clemons tore his left ACL last week. Irvin has big shoes to fill but must create pressure on QB Matt Ryan.

    Prediction

    Seahawks 26, Falcons 23

    Stephen F. Holder, Times staff writer

    Rushing yards

    passing yards

    total yards

    Rushing yards allowed

    passing yards allowed

    total yards allowed

    falcons

    seahawks

    87.3 (29th) 161.2 (3rd)

    281.8 (6th) 189.4 (27th)

    369.1 (8th) 350.6 (17th)

    365.6 (24th) 306.2 (4th)

    242.4 (23rd) 203.1 (6th)

    123.2 (21st) 103.1 (10th)


    Getty ImagesGetty Images

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    By Stephen F. Holder, Times Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    AFC: Texans (13-4) at Patriots (12-4)

    Patriots quarterback Tom Brady padded his stats against the Texans in Foxborough on Dec. 10, throwing for four touchdowns in a 42-14 rout.

    Time: 4:30 p.m. today TV/radio: Ch. 10; 98.7-FM, 1010-AM

    Coaches: Texans — Gary Kubiak (59-53, 2-1 playoffs); Patriots — Bill Belichick (151-57, 16-6 in playoffs at New England; 187-101, 17-7 overall)

    Stat pack

    Breaking it down

    Texans game-breaker: Andre Johnson quietly posted a career-high 1,598 yards receiving this season (on 112 catches) despite being 31 and in his 10th season. Still, he has never won anything meaningful in the NFL and hopes to change that.

    Patriots game-breaker: Brandon Lloyd was a go-to player in the first meeting. He caught seven passes for 89 yards, including a 37-yard touchdown.

    Why the Texans will win: Arian Foster is ready to roll, rushing for 140 yards and a touchdown against a good Bengals defense last week. The Texans are 8-0 this season when he runs for 100 or more yards.

    Why the Patriots will win: There's just not enough evidence the Houston secondary can hold up against Brady. In its two biggest tests this season, against the Packers and Patriots, the unit gave up a combined 634 passing yards and 10 touchdown passes.

    Look out for: Texans DE J.J. Watt, who had one of his quieter games in the loss to the Patriots. Watt, who registered 20½ sacks in the regular season, had none and four tackles.

    Prediction

    Patriots 34, Texans 24

    Stephen F. Holder, Times staff writer

    Rushing yards

    passing yards

    total yards

    Rushing yards allowed

    passing yards allowed

    total yards allowed

    texans

    Patriots

    132.7 (8th) 136.5 (7th)

    239.4 (11th) 291.4 (4th)

    372.1 (7th) 427.9 (1st)

    323.3 (7th) 373.3 (25th)

    225.8 (16th) 271.4 (29th)

    97.5 (7th) 101.9 (9th)


    MCTMCT

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    By Matt Baker, Times Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    TALLAHASSEE — North Carolina's last trip to the Tucker Center ended with coach Roy Williams pulling his starters in the final seconds as Florida State fans prepared to rush the court to celebrate a 33-point win.

    On Saturday afternoon, the Tar Heels' key players stuck around to savor a 77-72 victory, giving the Seminoles an uphill climb to a fifth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and sending many of their 12,060 fans streaming to the exits early.

    "They did the things they had to do to win," FSU coach Leonard Hamilton said.

    Like rebound and make clutch plays.

    The 'Noles (10-6, 2-1 ACC) mustered only 19 boards, their worst output in at least five seasons. The Tar Heels (11-5, 1-2) had that many on the offensive glass, which fueled 23 points from P.J. Hairston and 14 from James Michael McAdoo.

    UNC grabbed 22 more rebounds and scored 19 second-chance points to doom FSU's hopes of its first-ever three-game winning streak over the Tar Heels.

    "That's the ball game right there," said Clearwater High alum Okaro White, who led FSU with 15 points and six rebounds.

    UNC's pressure also flustered FSU's offense early to help the Seminoles drop to 4-5 at home. Leading scorer Michael Snaer (nine points) finished in single digits for the third time this season, and No. 2 scorer White was scoreless at halftime.

    The Seminoles made up for their top players' slow starts with six first-half steals and big moments from Montay Brandon. The freshman guard hit a 3 as the shot clock expired to give FSU a 21-19 lead with 6:12 left in the half and slammed home a dunk on the next possession after one of White's three steals.

    "They are so good defensively," Williams said. "It was a struggle for us every possession."

    So UNC made every possession a struggle for the Seminoles late.

    FSU had two crucial steals late. The first ended with Hairston blocking a Snaer layup. The other, by Terrance Shannon with 59 seconds left and the Seminoles trailing by three, resulted in Marcus Paige taking the ball right back.

    "We went in and came out with nothing," said Shannon, who finished with 12 points and three blocks.

    But FSU's 11 3-pointers on 22 attempts gave the 'Noles a chance at opening the ACC season 3-0 for the first time. White had seven consecutive FSU points, including two free throws that put the Seminoles up 72-69 with 4:16 left.

    But the 'Noles didn't score after that, ending the game with three turnovers, three failed jumpers and a missed layup. A basket by Jackson Simmons, who turned 20 Saturday, with 3:09 left gave UNC the lead for good.

    "When the game's on the line," Hamilton said, "they made us pay."

    FSU had one final chance and fought through confusion to get the ball to Snaer far beyond the arc with 16 seconds remaining.

    "I don't know that I've competed against many guys that I had as much respect for as I do Michael Snaer," Williams said. "When he shot that ball out there … I thought it was going to go in."

    But Snaer's shot didn't fall, and Paige came down with the rebound for the Heels, who avoided matching their worst start in league play.

    Moments later, FSU fans began streaming for the exits.


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    By Tom Jones, Times Sports Columnist
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    Oprah Winfrey has been tapped by Lance Armstrong to conduct the first interview since the cyclist was stripped of his Tour de France titles and resigned from his Livestrong cancer charity because of doping allegations. The interview, which will take place Monday at Armstrong's home in Austin, Texas, will appear on Winfrey's OWN network at 9 p.m. Thursday.

    It's a smart move by Armstrong to select Winfrey. While Armstrong is an international name and Winfrey is a worldwide celebrity herself, my gut feeling is Armstrong won't be pushed by Winfrey.

    The network said Winfrey and Armstrong will talk about the alleged doping scandal and the charges that Armstrong lied about doping throughout his career (the New York Times and USA Today are reporting he will admit to doping, story 10C). However, will Winfrey get tough? Will she allow Armstrong to evade questions? Will she be willing to treat it like a news interview instead of a celebrity interview?

    I'd rather see someone such as Bob Costas or Jeremy Schaap interview Armstrong. I want someone who is going to be suspicious and maybe even a little adversarial instead of forgiving and complicit.

    Having said all of this, I honestly don't care what Armstrong has to say at this point. I'm all for second chances and forgiveness and, yes, Armstrong has helped raise millions for cancer, and that's great. However, not only did he deny doping for years, he went on a campaign to destroy the lives and assassinate the characters and reputations of those who dared to point out that he was a cheater.

    In so many ways, Armstrong is worse than someone such as Pete Rose. At least when Rose lied all those years about gambling on baseball, he wasn't trying to ruin anyone else's life in the process.

    All in all, I'd rather Armstrong just go away. His actions have already spoken louder than his words ever could.

    The list

    On Monday, Alabama demolished Notre Dame to win the BCS title. It was the Crimson Tide's third national title in four seasons, making it not only a modern-day dynasty but one of the greatest dynasties in college football history. Where exactly does this Alabama team rank? Here's my take on the best four-year stretches in college football history over the past 75 years:

    1. Nebraska (1994-97)

    Hard to beat this Cornhuskers stretch under coach Tom Osborne. This is how Nebraska did over these four seasons: 13-0, 12-0, 11-2, 13-0. It included at least a share of three national titles, including the 1995 team that might have been the best ever. The '95 Huskers won by an average score of 53-14, averaged 562 yards per game and never trailed all season in the second half.

    2. Alabama (2009-12)

    What coach Nick Saban has been able to do in today's game with so many great teams from year to year is remarkable. Three national titles and only five losses over the past four seasons.

    3. Oklahoma (1954-57)

    This four-year stretch included a 47-game winning streak, which remains a Division I record. Legendary coach Bud Wilkinson led the Sooners on an incredible 41-1 run during this time, including two national titles.

    4. Army (1944-47)

    The Black Knights had a 32-game unbeaten streak in the midst of these four seasons and won back-to-back national titles with undefeated seasons in 1944 and 1945. Army also claimed a national title in 1946 when it went 9-0-1, with the tie coming against Notre Dame at Yankee Stadium. This era also produced two Heisman winners: Mr. Inside (Doc Blanchard) and Mr. Outside (Glenn Davis).

    5. Miami (1986-89)

    The Hurricanes won two national championships during this run, which doesn't even include their best team — the Vinny Testaverde team that was upset by Penn State in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl. And in the other season, they finished second in the country. They lost only three times in four seasons.

    6. Florida (2006-09)

    Coach Urban Meyer, left, won two national championships and the Gators finished No. 3 in another season. This four-year stretch did have a bit of a down season when the Gators went 9-4, but that also happened to be the season when quarterback Tim Tebow won the Heisman Trophy.

    7. Oklahoma (1973-76)

    Showboating coach Barry Switzer won two national titles (1974, 1975). The two seasons the Sooners didn't win it, they still finished in the top five. Just three losses and two ties in 46 games.

    8. Notre Dame (1946-49)

    It's practically impossible to judge teams from this long ago, but just looking at the records, these Irish teams must be noted. They went 36-0-2 and claimed three national championships under coach Frank Leahy.

    9. Southern California (2003-06)

    The NCAA doesn't count some of these games, but I do. The Trojans went 12-1, 11-0, 12-1 and 11-2 in this span. They won a national championship and they split another. They also lost to Vince Young's Texas team in one of the great college games ever played. In addition, Matt Leinart and Reggie Bush won Heismans.

    10. Florida State (1996-99)

    Bobby Bowden's Seminoles only won one national title (1999) in this stretch, but they did play in two other games for the national championship. FSU went 45-4 over this stretch and never finished lower than third in the polls.

    We are the champions

    In doing the research for today's "List" item, I noticed that the University of Alabama now claims to have won 15 national championships. Ridiculous.

    In 1941, the Tide lost two games and finished 20th in the Associated Press poll, but Alabama claims a title because one obscure poll based on mathematics listed the Tide as No. 1. Meantime, both the 1964 and 1973 teams — also considered national champions by Alabama — lost their bowl games.

    Alabama is hardly alone in making these kind of title claims. Deadspin did a little research, going back to the beginning of college football in the late 19th century. In 142 years of college football, Deadspin determined that if you believe all the schools out there, you would have 242 claims to a national championship.

    Say what?

    Knicks star Carmelo Anthony suggests the Celtics' Kevin Garnett said something nasty about Anthony's wife during some in-game trash talking last week. That's why he got in Garnett's face and that's why he later waited for him at the Celtics team bus after the game. Celtics coach Doc Rivers, meantime, said he knows "for a fact" that KG did not say what Anthony claims.

    I don't see how Rivers would know that "for a fact" since he wasn't next to the two during the verbal exchange. In addition, Garnett has a reputation for being one of the game's biggest trash talkers and others have said he crosses the line of good taste.

    Here's the bottom line: KG is a jerk, but Anthony should feel sheepish that Garnett could get under his skin like that. Seriously, he never heard of "sticks and stones?"

    Start me up

    Former Lightning captain Dave Andreychuk was coming off back-to-back 50-goal seasons when the 1994-95 lockout wiped out half the season and delayed the start until late January 1995.

    "It was tough to rebound for a guy like myself," said Andreychuk, who was 31 at the time. "It took me a while to get going. I got better as the year went on."

    Andreychuk ended up with 22 goals and 16 assists in 48 games with Toronto.

    Random thoughts

    I still don't get how Jim Rice (.298 average, 382 homers, 1,451 RBIs) is in baseball's Hall of Fame and Fred McGriff (.284, 493, 1,550) is not. … Speaking of Rice, remember that monster season he had in 1978 when he batted .315 with 46 homers and 139 RBIs and won the AL MVP? Know how much money he made that season? $125,000. … Why is it that you see so many college football coaches get shots in the NFL, but not nearly as many college basketball coaches make the jump to the NBA?

    tom jones' two cents


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    By Rick Stroud, Times Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    TAMPA

    Bucs coach Greg Schiano sat by his pool one day last week evaluating candidates for the openings on his staff.

    It certainly was a more relaxed pace than a year ago. Schiano was hired Jan. 26 and had to scramble for candidates because many of the vacancies on other teams had been filled.

    If anything surprised Schiano in his first season as an NFL coach, it was how difficult it is to fill out a staff when other teams routinely deny permission for interviews of their assistants.

    As a result, Schiano hired eight assistants who had worked for him at Rutgers during some point in their careers. When it came to others, he had to use his instincts to hire the best available talent.

    It's no surprise, then, the Bucs will have significant turnover on their staff in 2013.

    Already the Bucs have three coaching positions to fill: defensive backs, quarterbacks and receivers.

    "I'm still in the process of evaluating all our coaches," Schiano said. "And that started with evaluating myself."

    Defensive backs coach Ron Cooper was the latest to leave, agreeing last week to coach the secondary for Willie Taggart at USF.

    Quarterbacks coach Ron Tur­ner became the coach at Florida International, and receivers coach P.J. Fleck accepted the coaching job at Western Michigan.

    Indications are there will be a few more departures. Schiano said he is anxiously waiting to see if offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan is hired as coach by the Bears. It seems as though Sullivan is a long shot, and the Bucs hope a decision will be reached by the middle of this week.

    Defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan will return despite the Bucs blowing four fourth-quarter leads this season.

    The Bucs essentially told Cooper to seek other opportunities but did not announce it. He's a good coach and a better person. But let's be honest: The lack of production in the secondary led to losses. Tampa Bay was last in the NFL in passing defense and nearly set a league record for passing yards allowed in a season.

    Certainly not all of it was Cooper's fault. The Bucs decided to go with Aqib Talib and Eric Wright at cornerback, and both were suspended for four games for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing drugs. Talib later was traded to the Patriots. The Bucs will have to address cornerback through the draft and free agency, especially because Wright will almost certainly be released before offseason workouts begin.

    Safety Mark Barron, the seventh overall draft pick in 2012, hit a plateau in November until picking up the pace in the final two games.

    The loss of Turner means Josh Freeman will enter the final season of his contract with his third quarterbacks coach in as many seasons. And the Bucs don't plan to discuss a contract extension with him until after 2013.

    Fleck was arguably the Bucs' best position coach. He had some talent to work with. Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams combined for 2,380 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns. But the Bucs have no depth at receiver. Arrelious Benn, a second-round pick in 2010, has not played a complete season due to injuries and lost his job in the slot to Tiquan Underwood. Sammie Stroughter, who spent most of the season on injured reserve, is a free agent.

    Schiano has his work cut out for him.

    ROOKIE ACHIEVEMENTs: Barron, RB Doug Martin and LB Lavonte David were named to the NFL all-rookie team by Pro Football Weekly and the Pro Football Writers Association. Martin had 1,926 yards from scrimmage, third most ever for a rookie. Barron had 89 tackles, four tackles for loss, one interception, 10 passes defensed and one forced fumble. David led the Bucs with 139 tackles, including two sacks, and had one interception and five passes defensed while pacing all rookies with 20 tackles for loss.


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    Times wires
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    BATON ROUGE — No. 11 Florida made up for a lack of manpower by dominating the boards.

    Will Yeguete had 13 rebounds to lead five Gators with at least seven, and short-handed Florida cruised to a 74-52 victory over LSU on Saturday.

    Florida starting guard Mike Rosario sat out with an ankle sprain. His replacement, Casey Prather, suffered a high ankle sprain during the game. He had six points in 13 minutes.

    "I was really, really pleased," said Florida coach Billy Donovan, who used just eight players. "We had two veteran guys out and really kind of found out (they were out) relatively close to tip. I thought it was a really, really good win for our guys."

    Florida outrebounded LSU 53-34, but Tigers big man Johnny O'Bryant III is still recovering from a leg injury and played only 14 minutes.

    "We did a good job crashing the boards," said Yeguete, who has right knee tendinitis. "The big man, the 7-(foot)-3 guy (Andrew Del Piero), was tired, so we just kept crashing him over and over."

    Kenny Boynton scored 20 and Patric Young 14 for the Gators (12-2, 2-0 SEC). Yeguete had 10 points.

    Both teams struggled to find their shots early, but Florida's aggressive defensive rebounding and stingy possessions allowed the Gators to build a 15-10 lead. The Tigers rallied, with Anthony Hickey finding Del Piero slicing through the paint to lay in a tying basket.

    The teams traded baskets before Florida broke a tie at 19 with a 10-1 run to end the first half, punctuated by Scottie Wilbekin's jumper at the buzzer.

    Despite getting into the bonus early, the Gators made just 2 of 7 free throws in the first half, but Donovan's team had just two turnovers on the way to a 29-20 halftime lead.

    "They were tough," Del Piero. "They would have people come in one after another. That will really wear you down at the end."

    The Gators expanded their lead in cutthroat fashion to open the second half, scoring 12 of the half's first 15 to go up 41-25. Boynton made two 3-pointers and scored eight in the first five minutes.

    "We understood what shots to take and what not to take," Boynton said. "In the second half we shut them out, saw what was open and what wasn't, and did a great job at adjusting."

    LSU created opportune looks at the basket all game but shot 32.3 percent. With 13 minutes left, the Tigers were shooting 25 percent.

    "We are just going to put this game behind us," said Hickey, who led the Tigers with 15 points. "We were in a war and just couldn't capture the win. We've got a lot of fights left."

    LSU (9-4, 0-2) has lost four of its past seven.


    Associated PressAssociated Press

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    By Steve Bittenbender, Special to the Times
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Already short-handed because of injuries to Shaun Noriega and Kore White, USF coach Stan Heath chose to relegate two Bulls starters to the bench against Louisville.

    The result was a near-historic loss for the Bulls, what Heath hopes serves as "a wakeup call" for a team that has lost three straight games to start Big East play.

    The No. 3 Cardinals blasted the Bulls 64-38 on Saturday afternoon. It was the worst offensive performance for USF (9-6) since Jan. 30, 1997, when the Bulls scored 36 against Marquette.

    "I'm sure Rick (Pitino, Louisville coach) had them fired up because we snuck out with one last year," said Heath, referring to the Bulls' 58-51 victory Feb. 29. "They came to play. They weren't going to let something slip up again. We caught the full wrath."

    Heath chose to start freshmen Zach LeDay and JaVontae Hawkins in place of senior Jawanza Poland and junior Victor Rudd. The upperclassmen went a combined 4-of-18 in a 61-53 loss to Villanova on Wednesday at the Sun Dome. By the time Poland and Rudd entered the game, with 8:50 left in the first half, Louisville (15-1, 3-0) led 25-8.

    "If you watched our last game, their effort wasn't really there," Heath said of Poland and Rudd. "Their focus wasn't really there. They're two upperclassmen, and it's just not acceptable. … So it was hopefully a wakeup call."

    Despite the demotion, Rudd paced the team with 10 points and eight rebounds.

    In searching for a silver lining, Heath noted that the Bulls held the Cardinals to 38 percent shooting. But Louisville dominated the boards, outrebounding the Bulls 49-24, including a 19-6 edge in offensive rebounds.

    "The one thing we were preaching is in (USF's) five (prior) losses, it was (due to) double-digit offensive rebounding," Pitino said. "That was going to be one of our focal points tonight, was rebounding. We played as if every shot was going to be a pass to somebody."

    In losses to Syracuse, Villanova and Louisville, the Bulls have been outrebounded 134-82. They allowed 57 offensive rebounds.

    Louisville was led by senior guard Peyton Siva, who finished with 17 points. Junior center Gorgui Dieng scored 12 and grabbed 16 rebounds.

    The Bulls travel to Rutgers on Thursday. Despite the 0-3 conference start, Rudd said it's not too late.

    "We still have a chance to grind it," he said.


    Getty ImagesGetty Images

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    Times wires
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    AUSTIN, Texas — After nearly 15 years of vehement denials, Lance Armstrong will confess that he used performance-enhancing drugs during his cycling career when he is interviewed by Oprah Winfrey, the New York Times and USA Today reported.

    Armstrong, 41, will give a limited confession to Winfrey and will not provide much detail of the doping that antidoping officials have said occurred throughout his cycling career, the New York Times said.

    He is scheduled to sit down with Winfrey in his home in Austin on Monday for the interview, which will be shown Thursday on the Oprah Winfrey Network. USA Today first reported the news late Friday.

    When reached by email, Armstrong declined to comment. His Austin-based lawyer, Tim Herman, did not immediately return an email for comment.

    The New York Times reported Jan. 4 that Armstrong was considering admitting publicly that he had used banned drugs and blood transfusions. Last fall, after 11 of his former teammates had testified against him, he was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles for doping and for his involvement in what officials called the most sophisticated, organized and professional doping program in sports history.

    Armstrong is coming forward to discuss his past doping because he reportedly wants to persuade officials to lift his lifetime ban from Olympic sports so he can return to competing in triathlons and running events.

    Last month, Armstrong met with Travis Tygart, chief executive of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, to begin discussing a way in which an admission from Armstrong could mitigate his punishment. Under the World Anti-Doping Code, athletes can receive up to a 75 percent reduction of a ban if they provide substantial assistance to antidoping authorities in building cases against other cheats. For his ban to be reduced, though, Armstrong will have to give information about the people who helped him in his doping.

    If Armstrong does confess, he opens himself to more legal troubles. He has been named as a defendant in a federal whistle-blower case that contends that Armstrong and his associates on the U.S. Postal Service cycling team used taxpayer dollars to finance a systematic doping program. The government is considering joining that case as a plaintiff.

    Armstrong might also have to repay $12 million he received from SCA Promotions, a company based in Dallas that paid him millions for winning several Tours de France. Jeffrey Tillotson, a lawyer for the company, said Friday that he was waiting to see the interview with Winfrey before filing a lawsuit asking Armstrong to return that money.

    Armstrong is also being sued by the Sunday Times of London for more than $1.5 million over the settlement of a libel case. The newspaper paid Armstrong nearly $500,000 after it published claims from the book L.A. Confidentiel that he had used performance-enhancing drugs.


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    By Andy Warrener, Times Correspondent
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    ST. PETERSBURG — Dixie Hollins continued its dominance of the St. Petersburg City Tournament Saturday, winning its sixth consecutive team title by placing 12 wrestlers in the finals, where five emerged as champions.

    "This was a good confidence booster for our guys," Rebels coach Nick Spataro said after his team easily outpointed Northeast 245-187. "They get to bring home trophies and medals; it gets us ready to roll for the end of the season when it really counts."

    Rebels junior Andre Matthews (285 pounds) was named most outstanding wrestler for the heavyweights, while Vikings senior Joshua Deese (152) took the honor for the middle and lightweights. Both pinned all of their opponents.

    Senior Adam Lovell (145) helped to seal the victory for Dixie Hollins. He won a tight final against Northside Christian freshman Clifton Thomas when Lovell scored a takedown with 10 seconds left to win 9-7.

    David Schultz (113), Thomas Esker (120), Luis Aldana (170) were the three other Dixie Hollins individual champions.

    Northeast edged St. Petersburg for second place, 187-151.5. The Vikings got a lift from Danny Guiterrez (126) pinning Vincent Clanzy of Dixie Hollins in the first round of their final. Vikings senior Stephen Doyle (182) edged Dixie Hollins' Artez Small 8-6.

    Boca Ciega's Jacob Mohr breezed through at 138 pounds and pinned Dixie Hollins' Andrew Boylson in the final.

    Junior Ezekiel Villalba (132) was Lakewood's lone champion.

    St. Petersburg senior Thomas Moser (22-0) continued his dominance at 160 pounds, repeating as city champion and pinning all three of his opponents.

    Moser's senior teammate, Brandon Mayhone (220), kept his unblemished record (22-0) intact by pinning Admiral Farragut sophomore Jarvar Nader in the first round.

    Northside senior Alex Kruklinski (195) dispatched all three of his opponents by pins and all in the first round. Kruklinski improved to 21-1 on the year.

    Flagler Invite: Countryside's Matt Collora scored a 12-0 major decision to beat Winter Springs' Brandon Staley for the 106-pound championship at the Flagler County Rotary Invitational. The Cougars' Jake Laursen was sixth at 182 pounds.


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    New York Times
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    MELBOURNE, Australia — With another Australian Open beginning Monday, the addition and subtraction continue at the top of the men's game.

    Though Andy Murray appeared to transform the lead pack into a true Big Four last year by winning the Olympics and the U.S. Open, the pack is back to being a Big Three with Rafael Nadal's layoff because of injury and illness well into its seventh month.

    "It's like missing one of the lead singers of a band," coach and TV analyst Brad Gilbert said. "And it's not like (Nadal is) 32 years old. He's in the prime of his career (he is 26). … Obviously, it gives an opportunity for more other guys, but I just miss seeing Nadal compete."

    Murray, often thwarted by Nadal in the late stages of majors, was a beneficiary of his absence in London and New York. Seeded third at the Australian Open, he landed in Roger Federer's half of the draw Friday, leaving defending champion Novak Djokovic with David Ferrer, the fourth seed, in his half and Tomas Berdych in his quarter.

    The question is whether Nadal's absence makes it easier for an outsider to win with Djokovic, Federer and Murray in the mix.

    "I still think you're going to have to beat two of those guys at least to win a major, so the equation is still the same," said Roger Rasheed, a veteran Australian coach now working with a leading outsider, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

    "Does 'Rafa' being out help anyone think, 'Well, now is my chance?' I guess it depends a bit on the work you've done."

    On the women's side, it also isn't easy to see any outsider staging a meaningful uprising with Serena Williams, 31, fresh off her latest bravura performance in winning the Brisbane International last week.

    "I think you can only go by what we saw last season, and I think 'motivated' is the key word for Serena," said Chris Evert, an 18-time Grand Slam singles champion and now an ESPN analyst.

    "(Motivation) has kind of gone up and down with her during her career, because quite frankly she has such a zest for life that she had other interests and she hasn't been as tunnel-visioned as probably champions are. But now I think … she realizes she's older and doesn't have a lot of time. So I think she's eyeing the number of Grand Slams and eyeing history, and I think she has in her mind that she has two or three vintage years left in her."

    Margaret Court holds the career Grand Slam singles titles record with 24. Steffi Graf is second with 22, followed by Helen Wills Moody (19), Evert and Martina Navratilova (both 18), then Williams with 15.


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    Times wires
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    Seattle's cornerbacks are going to have their hands full today.

    At least that's the Seahawks' hope, because Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman are going to be asked to engage with, battle and frustrate Falcons receivers Julio Jones and Roddy White at the line of scrimmage.

    "We're going to try and hang with them," coach Pete Carroll said.

    Stand up and man up. That's what Sherman shouted on the sideline during last week's wild-card win at Washington and in the locker room afterward.

    But Washington, like Seattle, is a run-oriented offense. Atlanta is part of the NFL's new era of airborne offenses. And as far as receiving tandems go, White and Jones are a pair of aces.

    "Probably the most complete we've faced," Seattle defensive coordinator Gus Bradley said. "I don't want to slight anybody else, but (they're) very talented."

    They will be playing into the teeth of a Seahawks defense that in many ways works from the outside in. The ability of Browner and Sherman to play man-to-man coverage and the range of safety Earl Thomas over the top key the defense.

    And as strong and fast as the Falcons' receivers are, the Seahawks don't intend to concede anything.

    "I expect our guys to try to play like they always play," Carroll said. "They don't need to change anything."

    Atlanta's Matt Ryan was one of 11 quarterbacks to throw for more than 4,000 yards this season, the second straight season he has done so. The Falcons had the fewest rushing yards of any playoff team in the regular season, yet were No. 7 in scoring overall.

    They had three players catch more than 70 passes, tight end Tony Gonzalez (93), White (92) and Jones (79). Even running back Jacquizz Rodgers caught 53 passes, three more than Seattle's leader, receiver Sidney Rice.

    That puts the onus squarely on the secondary. And it starts with the cornerbacks who, in a rare instance, won't have a huge size advantage.

    "We're built similarly," Sherman said in reference to the Falcons' receivers.

    Browner is 6 feet 4, giving him an inch on the 6-3 Jones. The 6-3 Sherman has 3 inches on White, who was a two-time high school state champion in wrestling.

    "It's going to be a fun matchup because they're physical," Sherman said. "They've got two great receivers. We've got two good corners. It's going to be a fun matchup for both sides."

    Said Thomas: "It just gives us an opportunity to show what we're made of."


    Getty ImagesGetty Images

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  • 01/12/13--18:59: Pats seek elusive title
  • Times wires
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    There are only three.

    It's natural to believe there would be more. This is the 10th time the Patriots have made the playoffs in 13 seasons under coach Bill Belichick.

    They have won a lot of those playoff games, too. Tom Brady could surpass Joe Montana as the winningest playoff quarterback in history today against the Texans. But when it comes to the big prize, the Super Bowl …

    "Winning one early in my career (as a rookie), you kind of get the sense that it happens like this all the time. But it doesn't," said defensive tackle Vince Wilfork, who along with Brady and receiver Deion Branch are the only remaining players from all three Super Bowl title teams.

    "It's very, very hard to win at this level — at any level."

    The Patriots have come close since their last title. They went 18-0 in 2007 before losing 17-14 to the Giants in the Super Bowl. Last season they had the ball in the final seconds of Super Bowl XLVI, but Brady threw incomplete into the end zone to lose 21-17 to the Giants.

    It has been so long since the Patriots won a Super Bowl that the quarterback they faced in that game — the Eagles' Donovan McNabb in Super Bowl XXXIX for the 2004 season — no longer is in the league. It was their third title in four seasons.

    "That was some kid back then," Brady, 35, said of looking back on his first Super Bowl title, a 20-17 win over the Rams that wrapped up the 2001 season.

    "You really don't quite understand what has happened or what has been accomplished until you try so many times and you don't get to accomplish those things. It's very hard to win that final game of the year."

    Getting to this point is routine for New England. Since its last Super Bowl title, it has been to the playoffs in six of seven seasons and won at least one playoff game four times. But in many ways, it is as inexperienced at winning it all as the Texans, who had never been to the playoffs until last season.

    The Patriots, though, believe they have the advantage of experience, even if it has not been all good.

    "You have to understand what's at stake," Wilfork said. "I think that's the biggest thing for this team to understand, where we're at and what it's going to take to win. That's when you talk about how many times you've been in the postseason.

    "But if you can't put it out and you can't execute, I don't care how many times you've been at this level or how many games you've played in the postseason, it won't matter. It will not matter."


    Getty Images (2012)Getty Images (2012)

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    Times wires
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    NEW YORK — The NHL is officially ready to go back to work.

    After a 36-hour vote that ended Saturday morning, the players association announced its members approved the collective bargaining agreement reached with the league last week.

    That night, the sides completed a memorandum of understanding — a document that includes the major points of the deal — that had to be signed before camps could open and the schedule could be released.

    The plan was for training camps to open today.

    Of the 763 players eligible to vote on the deal, 679 did; 667 voted yes, 12 no, ESPN reported.

    The Board of Governors unanimously ratified the deal Wednesday.

    Voluntary physicals and medical exams were permitted to begin Friday. Sabres goalie Ryan Miller joined teammates in Buffalo that day and had a few things to get off his chest about the 113-day lockout.

    "The best thing to do is acknowledge that it was stupid," said Miller, who participated in negotiations. "It was just a stupid, useless waste of time."

    Fired leafs gm speaks: Brian Burke never saw his dismissal as Maple Leafs general manager coming. "There's sometimes when you get fired and you see the vultures circling and you understand it's coming," he said at a farewell news conference in Toronto. "This one here was like a 2 by 4 upside the head to me." Burke was fired Wednesday morning, called and told to report to the team office while driving to the airport for a Board of Governors meeting in New York to vote on the labor deal. Burke, fired after four years and no playoff appearances, said he hadn't received a "satisfactory" answer to why he was fired, though he did say, "Obviously, your job as the GM is to bring in players that win. We didn't win."


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    By Damian Cristodero, Times Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    TAMPA — The Lightning opens training camp today at the Tampa Bay Times Forum with players needing to be aggressive, yet careful.

    They have to push to make the most of a six-day camp leading to Saturday's season opener against the Capitals, but not hard enough to cause injuries.

    Every season has a version of that scenario. But this season it is exacerbated because the short camp with zero exhibition games bumps up against what should be a torrid, lockout-shortened 48-game season in which a fast start is imperative.

    "The consensus in the league is everyone is concerned about injuries," Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman said.

    The problem areas will be groins, backs and hip flexors as players exert themselves in ways most have not since last season.

    Players who played in Europe or the minor leagues during the 113-day lockout might have an advantage, but most did not.

    A core group of Tampa Bay players skated three times a week at the Ice Sports Forum in Brandon after the lockout began in September. But even they said the pace and intensity were nothing like a training camp.

    "It's obviously a little bit of a worry," said center Steven Stamkos, who spent most of his time in Toronto working with trainer (and former Lightning player) Gary Roberts. "You've got to try to be careful and maintain your body through the next week. Usually in camp you have your fitness-testing day. You have a couple of conditioning days to get your legs back, but we don't have time to do that."

    Coach Guy Boucher said camp will mostly be about scrimmaging, which will stress players' bodies even more.

    "Keep in mind these guys have been liked caged animals for the past four months," head athletic trainer Tommy Mulligan said. "Just the normal competitive nature of them, the intensity they're going to want to hit the ice with on Day 1 is going to be that much higher. You just want to rein that in a little bit so they don't overdue it and hurt themselves early on."

    Is that practical? Defenseman Sami Salo, who is 38 and has battled injuries his whole career, said no. "I don't think anybody is really going to be holding back," he said. "Everybody wants to push themselves to the limit. That's the only way you're going to be ready is to mimic a game."

    Said goaltender Mathieu Garon: "I want to push as hard as I can." Garon, 35, will be interesting to watch. He is coming off last season's torn groin.

    "Knock on wood, but I've been active for the past six months, and I've been skating three times a week and in the gym pretty much every day," he said. "I'm not worried about it."

    Other Lightning players to keep an eye on:

    • Goalie Anders Lindback, who needed six stitches last month to close a right-knee cut sustained while playing in Finland.

    • Defenseman Marc-Andre Bergeron, who hasn't played since Feb. 7 because of a bad back that needed surgery.

    • Right wing Dana Tyrell, who hasn't played an NHL game in a year because of a second surgery on his right knee.

    There are precautions. Defenseman Matt Carle said doing what he calls "prehab" warmups is key, as are drinking lots of fluids, spending time in the cold tub after workouts and getting proper rest.

    "And everybody being aware, especially the players," Mulligan said. "If they do feel something coming on, whereas a lot of times they'll say, 'It will go away,' make us aware and get on it and treat it early."

    "We have to make sure we're ready from a team perspective," Stamkos said. "We can't afford to start slow."


    DIRK SHADD   |   TimesDIRK SHADD | Times

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    By Joel Anderson, Times Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    SEFFNER — Tatiana Manuel won the opening tap and directed the ball to Andrea Mauger, who sprinted in for an easy layup. Academy at the Lakes led Seffner Christian only four seconds into the game. It lasted for about half a minute.

    Within a few minutes Saturday, Seffner Christian showed again that its most difficult challenges are going to come from outside the bay area.

    Sophomore forward Peyton Walker scored 17 to lead four players in double figures, lifting the Crusaders to a 63-45 victory over Academy at the Lakes in a game that had been billed as a showdown between two of the area's top private-school powers.

    "With us, you've got to pick your poison," Seffner Christian coach Greg Fawbush said. "We had some mismatches and we eventually exploited them."

    Jaitesha Hanson and Ally Parrimore each scored 13, and Sara Denny added 10 for the Crusaders (18-2), who won their third straight after losing twice at the Queen of Palms Tournament in Fort Myers over the break.

    Seffner Christian used the tournament as a measuring stick for its then-undefeated team, given that most of its local games had quickly turned into lopsided contests. Outside of the games at the Queen of Palms, the Crusaders had won their games by an average score of 68-24.

    Academy at the Lakes (16-2) figured to prove a stiffer challenge, boasting victories over solid programs such as Plant, Wiregrass Ranch and Academy of the Holy Names.

    But it didn't take the Crusaders long to show the gap between the teams.

    After the Wildcats scored in the first four seconds, they didn't make another basket until midway through the second quarter. By that time, Seffner Christian had opened a 30-11 lead.

    The Crusaders pushed the pace and soon wore down the Wildcats, who only dressed eight players. Compounding Academy's problems was early foul trouble for senior Timecia Cohen, who drew her fourth foul on a technical with three minutes remaining in the first half. Cohen fouled out midway through the third quarter.

    "They have a ton more depth," Wildcats coach Karim Nohra said. "The bottom line is I made a strategical error in our plan of attack. I had a gut thing; I should have gone with my gut."

    Asked what the alternative was, Nohra quipped: "Not going to tell you."

    Mauger led the Wildcats with 14, Manuel added 11 and seventh-grader Taylor Polasky chipped in with nine.


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    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    In the end, owner Jeff Vinik said, the Lightning will be better off financially because of the new collective bargaining agreement.

    With the owners now getting 50 percent of revenue (up from 43 percent under the old agreement) and revenue sharing of $200 million a year (up from $150 million), there certainly will be more money in every owner's pocket.

    But consider this: Assuming league revenue grows 6 percent annually (it grew 7.2 percent under the old deal), the salary cap in 2021-22, the last season of the new 10-year deal, would be $96 million, according to an analysis by Canada's Globe and Mail newspaper. The salary cap floor would be $70.9 million.

    The Lightning's payroll this season: $63 million, about $7 million under the $70.2 million cap.

    In other words, Tampa Bay, a small-market team that annually loses money and is in the lower tier of the league in terms of revenue, according to Forbes magazine, must drastically grow its business to keep up with the projected salary inflation.

    "Those numbers don't scare me," Vinik said. "I hope the league does prosper to that extent. … To the extent we get to that level, that would be awesome, because that means the game of hockey is really booming in North America."

    Though Vinik would not say (and probably can't say yet) if the new agreement makes the Lightning a break-even franchise or even a money-maker, he did say, "I think if we continue to do what we've done the last three years — we've built a great organization on and off the ice — we should be in good shape."

    One reason he cited is expanded revenue sharing.

    The distribution is difficult to figure because even this season the amount available will be calculated on total league revenue. Individual team revenues will determine which organizations benefit, though the formula is not clear.

    According to the NHL, "The distribution of the revenue-sharing pool will be determined on an annual basis by a revenue-sharing committee on which the (players union) will have representation and input."

    There also are those who do not believe expanded revenue sharing will have much of an effect.

    In an email, John Vrooman, a sports economics professor at Vanderbilt, said the NHL's $200 million revenue sharing "is considered a joke in a league with $3.3 billion in revenue."

    "The owners argue this sharing arrangement is comparable to (Major League Baseball), where national revenue is shared equally and 31 percent of local revenue is pooled and shared. MLB shares $400 million on local revenues of $6.6 billion, which is about twice the size of NHL. The difference, of course, is that national revenue in MLB is about three times the size of NHL revenue even in relative terms."

    And Drew Dorweiller of the Montreal valuation firm Dartmouth Partners told Toronto's Star newspaper that at best "(revenue sharing) will help nudge some of the marginal teams into profitability. … But (for) some of the lost causes like Phoenix and Nashville … it probably will confirm that nothing can be done."

    Even so, Vinik said, "I think it's great for the league that we have enhanced revenue sharing. I think it will help many teams, including the Tampa Bay Lightning. It's a very important component of revenue for a lot of the teams, including us."

    Bottom line, Vinik said, the deal is "a fair deal for the owners and the players. … It does help us on our long-term path for having hockey survive in Tampa Bay for many years to come."


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    Times staff
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    Training camp

    Opens: 12:30 today, Tampa Bay Times Forum; Monday-Thursday, Estero; Friday, Times Forum. All sessions free and open to the public. More: tampabay.com/blogs/lightning

    Fan Fest: 9 a.m. today, Times Forum. Player autographs 10-11. Game-used equipment sale. More: tampabay.com/blogs/lightning

    Tickets: Presale today for season ticket holders and camp attendees. Single-game tickets on sale to general public 10 a.m. Monday at (813) 301-6600 and Ticketmaster (outlets, ticketmaster.com, 1-800-745-3000). The Lightning will pay Ticketmaster fees for Sunday and Monday purchases.

    Lightning roster

    Forwards

    No. Name Age HtWt

    4 Vinny Lecavalier 32 6-4 208

    11 Tom Pyatt 25 5-11 186

    12 Ryan Malone 33 6-4 219

    16 Teddy Purcell 27 6-2 201

    18 Adam Hall 32 6-3 213

    19 B.J. Crombeen 27 6-2 214

    26 Marty St. Louis 37 5-8 176

    28 Kyle Wilson 28 6-2 205

    42 Dana Tyrell 23 5-11 185

    44 Nate Thompson 28 6-0 210

    67 Benoit Pouliot 26 6-3 195

    91 Steven Stamkos 22 6-1 188

    Defensemen

    No. Name Age HtWt

    2 Eric Brewer 33 6-3 220

    6 Sami Salo 38 6-3 215

    15 Brian Lee 25 6-3 208

    25 Matt Carle 28 6-0 205

    29 Brendan Mikkelson 25 6-3 206

    47 Marc-Andre Bergeron 32 5-9 198

    77 Victor Hedman 22 6-6 229

    Goalies

    No. Name Age HtWt

    32 Mathieu Garon 34 6-1 206

    39 Anders Lindback 24 6-6 212

    Minor-league invitees: Defensemen — Keith Aulie (No. 3), Matt Taormina (55), Radko Gudas (75), Mark Barberio (8). Forwards — Mike Angelidis (10), Cory Conacher (36), Pierre-Cedric Labrie (76), Tyler Johnson (63), J.T Wyman (34).


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    By Damian Cristodero, Times Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    The Tampa Bay Lightning's lockout-shortened, 48-game season begins Jan. 19 at home against the Washington Capitals. Here is the full schedule:

    (Print out souvenir schedules featuring Lightning forwards Marty St. Louis and Steven Stamkos)

    2013 TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING SCHEDULE

    Sat. Jan. 19 Washington 7:00PM

    Mon. Jan. 21 At N.Y. Islanders 1:00PM

    Tue. Jan. 22 At Carolina 7:00PM

    Fri. Jan. 25 Ottawa 7:30PM

    Sun. Jan. 27 Philadelphia 6:00PM

    Tue. Jan. 29 Florida 7:30PM

    Fri. Feb. 01 Winnipeg 7:30PM

    Sat. Feb. 02 N.Y. Rangers 7:00PM

    Tue. Feb. 05 At Philadelphia 7:30PM

    Thu. Feb. 07 At New Jersey 7:00PM

    Sat. Feb. 09 At Boston 1:00PM

    Sun. Feb. 10 At N.Y. Rangers 7:30PM

    Tue. Feb. 12 Montreal 7:30PM

    Thu. Feb. 14 Washington 7:30PM

    Sat. Feb. 16 At Florida 7:30PM

    Tue. Feb. 19 Toronto 7:30PM

    Thu. Feb. 21 Boston 7:30PM

    Sat. Feb. 23 At Carolina 7:00PM

    Sun. Feb. 24 At Pittsburgh 7:30PM

    Tue. Feb. 26 Buffalo 7:30PM

    Thu. Feb. 28 At N.Y. Rangers 7:00PM

    Sat. Mar. 02 At Boston 1:00PM

    Mon. Mar. 04 At Pittsburgh 7:30PM

    Tue. Mar. 05 At New Jersey 7:00PM

    Thu. Mar. 07 Winnipeg 7:30PM

    Sat. Mar. 09 Montreal 7:00PM

    Tue. Mar. 12 At Florida 7:30PM

    Thu. Mar. 14 N.Y. Islanders 7:30PM

    Sat. Mar. 16 Carolina 7:00PM

    Mon. Mar. 18 Philadelphia 7:30PM

    Wed. Mar. 20 At Toronto 7:00PM

    Sat. Mar. 23 At Ottawa 2:00PM

    Sun. Mar. 24 At Winnipeg 8:00PM

    Tue. Mar. 26 Buffalo 7:30PM

    Fri. Mar. 29 New Jersey 7:30PM

    Tue. Apr. 02 Florida 7:30PM

    Thu. Apr. 04 At Carolina 7:00PM

    Sat. Apr. 06 At N.Y. Islanders 7:00PM

    Sun. Apr. 07 At Washington 7:00PM

    Tue. Apr. 09 Ottawa 7:30PM

    Thu. Apr. 11 Pittsburgh 7:30PM

    Sat. Apr. 13 At Washington 7:00PM

    Sun. Apr. 14 At Buffalo 5:00PM

    Tue. Apr. 16 At Winnipeg 8:00PM

    Thu. Apr. 18 At Montreal 7:30PM

    Sun. Apr. 21 Carolina 6:00PM

    Wed. Apr. 24 Toronto 7:00PM

    Sat. Apr. 27 Florida 7:00PM

    Times are EST


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  • 01/12/13--20:01: Magic roars past Clips
  • Times wires
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    LOS ANGELES — Two streaking teams going in opposite directions:

    The Clippers, co-owners of the NBA's best record and on a roll at home. The Magic, playing opponents close only to fall short while piling up the franchise's longest skid since the 2003-04 season.

    Both streaks came to an end Saturday.

    J.J. Redick gave Orlando its first lead on a 3-pointer with 42 seconds left, Arron Afflalo tied his season high with 30 points, and Orlando won 104-101 to snap a 10-game skid.

    "It wasn't a letdown by us. Don't try to take anything away from them," Clippers guard Chris Paul said. "They made tough shot after tough shot. J.J. Redick had a hand in his face half the time."

    The loss ended the Clippers' franchise-record 13-game home winning streak.

    The team also got a scare when All-Star Paul went down holding his right knee with 54 seconds to go. He returned after a timeout and hit a 15-footer to draw his team within one with 33 seconds left.

    But the Clippers turned the ball over on Jamal Crawford's offensive foul, with Redick drawing the charge.

    Josh McRoberts found Nikola Vucevic open under the basket, and Vucevic dunked to extend Orlando's lead to 104-101 with 8 seconds left. After a timeout, Crawford missed a 3-pointer as time expired.

    The Magic had fourth-quarter leads against Miami, New York, Portland and Denver this season but could not finish.

    "We weren't just losing and not giving the effort," Afflalo said. "We were losing very close games, and we kept fighting."

    Orlando won its first game without Glen Davis, who hurt his left shoulder Dec. 19.

    "We were able to put it together, and some things went our way," Magic coach Jacque Vaughn said. "We earned it."

    With the Clippers' loss, Oklahoma City (28-8) took over the league's best record, with Los Angeles falling half a game behind.

    WALL STEADY IN RETURN: 2010 No. 1 overall draft pick John Wall made his season debut for the Wizards, scoring 14 points in 21 minutes in their 93-83 victory at home against Atlanta. It was the guard's first game since being diagnosed with a stress injury to his left kneecap in September. No. 3 2012 overall pick and former Florida star Bradley Beal, playing with Wall for the first time, scored 16 for the Wizards, who have the worst record in the league but have their first winning streak this season.

    GAME HIGHLIGHTS: Jrue Holiday scored 30 and Thaddeus Young had 18 points and 12 rebounds as the 76ers snapped a five-game losing streak, beating the visiting Rockets 107-100. … Al Jefferson scored 10 of his 20 in the third quarter as the visiting Jazz rallied to beat the Pistons 90-87. Brandon Knight missed a 3-pointer in the final seconds that would have tied it for Detroit, which trailed by 13 with 3:26 left. … George Hill scored 19 and David West had a triple double with 14 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists as the host Pacers beat the Bobcats 96-88 for their fourth straight win. Recently signed Dominic McGuire started in place of Indiana's leading scorer, forward Paul George, who sat out because of illness.

    LATE FRIDAY: Kevin Durant scored a season-high 42 and Russell Westbrook had 27 points and 10 assists as visiting Oklahoma City routed the short-handed Lakers 116-101, handing Los Angeles its sixth consecutive loss. The Lakers are in the midst of their longest skid since March 2007 while playing without injured stars Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol.

    AROUND THE LEAGUE: Mark Cuban said he plans to keep star Dirk Nowitzki even though the Mavericks have their worst record since a few months after Cuban bought the team in 2000. Cuban said before Saturday night's game against Memphis that he wanted to be clear with Nowitzki that he was committed "through thick and thin" to getting the team back in contention. … Timberwolves assistant Terry Porter will coach his fourth consecutive game today in San Antonio as coach Rick Adelman remains in Minnesota while his wife, Mary Kay, undergoes hospital tests.

    Magic 104, Clippers 101

    ORLANDO (104): Jones 0-2 0-0 0, Nicholson 4-8 0-0 8, Vucevic 7-9 4-6 18, Nelson 4-14 1-1 11, Afflalo 10-19 7-8 30, Redick 8-14 1-1 21, McRoberts 2-8 2-2 7, Smith 3-6 0-1 7, Harkless 1-1 0-0 2, O'Quinn 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 39-81 15-19 104.

    L.A. CLIPPERS (101): Butler 3-7 0-0 8, Griffin 15-22 0-0 30, Jordan 5-6 0-0 10, Paul 4-11 1-1 10, Green 4-7 0-0 10, Barnes 4-10 0-0 10, Bledsoe 1-4 0-0 2, Crawford 4-12 3-3 13, Odom 3-5 0-0 6, Turiaf 0-1 0-0 0, Hill 0-3 2-2 2. Totals 43-88 6-6 101.

    Orlando 26 23 26 29— 104

    L.A. Clippers 31 26 26 18— 101

    3-Point GoalsOrlando 11-25 (Redick 4-8, Afflalo 3-3, Nelson 2-7, Smith 1-2, McRoberts 1-5), L.A. Clippers 9-22 (Butler 2-4, Green 2-4, Crawford 2-4, Barnes 2-5, Paul 1-3, Griffin 0-1, Odom 0-1). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsOrlando 49 (Vucevic 15), L.A. Clippers 42 (Griffin 8). AssistsOrlando 28 (Nelson 9), L.A. Clippers 32 (Paul 16). Total FoulsOrlando 12, L.A. Clippers 15. TechnicalsAfflalo, Orlando defensive three second, Crawford. A19,060 (19,060).

    Wizards 93, Hawks 83

    ATLANTA (83): Korver 2-6 0-0 5, Smith 4-13 2-6 11, Horford 8-16 0-0 16, Teague 6-10 6-7 19, Harris 3-6 1-2 8, Pachulia 2-4 1-2 5, Williams 3-12 0-0 8, Johnson 0-6 6-8 6, Jenkins 2-4 0-0 5, Stevenson 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 30-78 16-25 83.

    WASHINGTON (93): Webster 6-10 2-6 15, Nene 3-5 2-2 8, Okafor 3-8 4-6 10, Price 6-12 4-4 16, Beal 6-16 3-4 16, Seraphin 4-10 0-0 8, Wall 5-11 4-5 14, Vesely 0-1 0-0 0, Ariza 1-2 0-0 2, Booker 1-1 0-0 2, Temple 1-3 0-0 2. Totals 36-79 19-27 93.

    Atlanta 17 33 16 17— 83

    Washington 27 24 22 20— 93

    3-Point GoalsAtlanta 7-24 (Williams 2-6, Jenkins 1-1, Teague 1-3, Harris 1-3, Korver 1-4, Smith 1-4, Stevenson 0-1, Johnson 0-2), Washington 2-11 (Webster 1-3, Beal 1-3, Temple 0-1, Price 0-4). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsAtlanta 51 (Horford 12), Washington 57 (Okafor, Nene 10). AssistsAtlanta 23 (Harris 5), Washington 17 (Wall 4). Total FoulsAtlanta 20, Washington 27. TechnicalsSmith, Teague, Williams, Seraphin. A15,331 (20,308).

    Pacers 96, Bobcats 88

    CHARLOTTE (88): Kidd-Gilchrist 2-7 0-0 4, Warrick 5-13 3-5 13, Biyombo 4-4 0-0 8, Walker 5-9 5-5 16, Henderson 6-12 0-0 12, Gordon 9-14 2-3 21, Sessions 2-11 3-3 7, Taylor 1-2 0-0 3, Adrien 0-2 0-0 0, Haywood 2-4 0-0 4. Totals 36-78 13-16 88.

    INDIANA (96): McGuire 0-3 0-2 0, West 7-15 0-0 14, Hibbert 4-9 1-2 9, Hill 7-17 2-2 19, Stephenson 8-13 0-0 17, Green 3-12 0-0 8, T.Hansbrough 1-3 1-1 3, Johnson 1-3 0-0 3, Mahinmi 2-5 1-1 5, Augustin 5-9 4-4 18. Totals 38-89 9-12 96.

    Charlotte 24 21 20 23— 88

    Indiana 23 20 26 27— 96

    3-Point GoalsCharlotte 3-7 (Gordon 1-1, Taylor 1-1, Walker 1-2, Henderson 0-1, Warrick 0-1, Sessions 0-1), Indiana 11-28 (Augustin 4-8, Hill 3-7, Green 2-8, Johnson 1-2, Stephenson 1-3). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsCharlotte 44 (Kidd-Gilchrist 8), Indiana 55 (West 12). AssistsCharlotte 20 (Sessions 6), Indiana 24 (West 10). Total FoulsCharlotte 20, Indiana 21. TechnicalsStephenson. A13,656 (18,165).

    Jazz 90, Pistons 87

    UTAH (90): Carroll 2-5 1-1 5, Millsap 6-13 5-6 17, Jefferson 10-18 0-0 20, Tinsley 0-1 0-0 0, Foye 6-9 2-2 17, Watson 0-3 2-2 2, Favors 3-5 1-4 7, Hayward 2-8 2-3 6, Burks 5-7 0-0 12, Kanter 2-2 0-0 4. Totals 36-71 13-18 90.

    DETROIT (87): Prince 3-8 2-2 8, Maxiell 2-5 3-4 7, Monroe 6-9 0-0 12, Knight 7-16 0-0 16, Singler 2-2 0-0 4, Stuckey 2-6 3-4 9, Drummond 4-5 1-4 9, Villanueva 1-5 1-3 4, Daye 1-3 2-2 5, Bynum 6-6 1-2 13. Totals 34-65 13-21 87.

    Utah 13 26 25 26— 90

    Detroit 26 24 11 26— 87

    3-Point GoalsUtah 5-10 (Foye 3-5, Burks 2-2, Hayward 0-1, Tinsley 0-1, Carroll 0-1), Detroit 6-16 (Stuckey 2-4, Knight 2-7, Daye 1-2, Villanueva 1-3). ReboundsUtah 38 (Jefferson 10), Detroit 41 (Monroe 11). AssistsUtah 21 (Watson 6), Detroit 21 (Bynum 4). Total FoulsUtah 22, Detroit 22. TechnicalsDetroit Coach Frank. A18,441 (22,076).

    76ers 107, Rockets 100

    HOUSTON (100): Parsons 9-18 4-4 23, Morris 2-6 0-2 4, Asik 6-7 4-4 16, Lin 2-13 3-4 7, Harden 10-19 7-8 29, Douglas 1-6 0-0 2, Patterson 1-4 0-0 3, Delfino 6-11 0-0 16, Smith 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 37-84 18-22 100.

    PHILADELPHIA (107): Turner 6-10 0-0 12, T.Young 8-14 2-4 18, Allen 1-6 1-2 3, Holiday 11-22 7-7 30, Richardson 7-15 0-0 16, Hawes 5-9 0-0 10, Wright 3-6 0-0 8, Wilkins 1-3 5-6 7, Ivey 1-2 0-0 3. Totals 43-87 15-19 107.

    Houston 25 25 26 24— 100

    Philadelphia 29 29 27 22— 107

    3-Point GoalsHouston 8-32 (Delfino 4-7, Harden 2-9, Patterson 1-2, Parsons 1-7, Morris 0-2, Douglas 0-2, Lin 0-3), Philadelphia 6-18 (Wright 2-5, Richardson 2-7, Ivey 1-1, Holiday 1-3, Hawes 0-1, Turner 0-1). ReboundsHouston 50 (Asik 10), Philadelphia 49 (T.Young 12). AssistsHouston 21 (Harden 6), Philadelphia 26 (Holiday 9). Total FoulsHouston 18, Philadelphia 18. TechnicalsHawes. A17,329 (20,328).


    Associated PressAssociated Press

    0 0

    Times staff
    Saturday, January 12, 2013

    Wrestling

    Springstead wins Flagler Invitational

    Springstead crowned two individual champions and won the team title at the 27th annual Flagler County Rotary Invitational on Saturday in Bunnell, outpointing Winter Springs 203.5 to 191.

    Mike McDonald pinned St. Cloud's Joe McGinley at 113 pounds in 1 minute, 26 seconds, and 138-pounder Jordan Rivera scored a 10-2 major decision over Winter Springs' Patrick Cobb.

    Springstead's Conor Ross lost 2-1 to Jensen Beach's Chris Favoroso in the 170-pound final.

    In the consolation finals, Springstead's Joe Russo (152) pinned Clay's Jeff Rivers in 4:09, while Billy Swift settled for fourth at 160 pounds.


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