#SportsReport: NY Islanders Coach Fired; Buffalo Bills Builds Staff
In the NBA, Toronto beat Brooklyn 119-109, Dallas edged Chicago 99-98, San Antonio topped Minnesota 122-114, Denver won against the Lakers 127-121, and it was Miami over Houston 109-103.
The Los Angeles Clippers have lost another All-Star. Point guard Chris Paul is expected to miss six to eight weeks because of a torn ligament in his left thumb. Paul is slated for surgery on Wednesday, about a week before fellow All-Star Blake Griffin is expected to return from right knee surgery. Paul is averaging an NBA-high 2.25 steals this season while contributing 17.5 points, 9.7 assists and 5.3 rebounds a game. The Clippers are 7-0 this month, their best start to a calendar year since 1974.
In the NHL, New Jersey edged Minnesota 4-3, Dallas skated by the Rangers 7-6, Toronto beat Buffalo 4-3, Columbus topped Carolina 4-1, Ottawa won against St. Louis 6-4, Calgary beat Florida 5-2, Chicago defeated Colorado 6-4, Vancouver slid past Nashville 1-0, and it was Anaheim over Tampa Bay in overtime 2-1.
The New York Islanders have fired coach Jack Capuano. Assistant general manager/coach Doug Weight will serve as Capuano's interim replacement. GM Garth Snow announced the move yesterday. The Islanders were 17-17-8 and are in last place in the Eastern Conference with 42 points. This was Capuano's seventh season as Islanders coach.
In college men's basketball, Saint Peter's never trailed in a 69-55 victory over Fairfield last night. Trevis Wyche scored 17 points for Saint Peter's. Jerome Segura scored 13 points and made three 3s to lead Fairfield, which has lost three straight. Tyler Nelson added 11 points and Jerry Johnson Jr. had 10. Amadou Sidibe grabbed 12 rebounds and chipped in eight points.
Siena beat Rider 78-68 last night for its fourth-consecutive win. Lavon Long had a career-high 29 points, on 8-of-12 shooting, and grabbed a season-high 12 rebounds for Siena. Khalil Thomas had 20 points and nine rebounds, while Stevie Jordan scored 11 with 11 assists for Rider, which has lost three in a row.
In college women's basketball, Number 1 UConn beat Tulsa 98-58 last night for the Huskies' 92nd consecutive victory. Katie Lou Samuelson scored a career-high 34 points. Napheesa Collier had 21 points and 13 rebounds and Gabby Williams added 13 points, nine rebounds and eight assists for the Huskies, who also won their 33rd straight road game.
The College Football Playoff selection committee has been altered, with former Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer, Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith and Robert Morris University President Chris Howard joining the staff. They will begin three-year terms next season as the replacements for Wisconsin AD Barry Alvarez, former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and ex-Michigan coach Lloyd Carr.
At least three Oregon football players have reportedly been hospitalized following a series of intense workouts. The Oregonian reported late Monday that the players remain hospitalized after being taken there late last week. The school didn't immediately identify the players who were hospitalized. It says in a statement to the newspaper that it will continue to monitor and support the players as they recover. The university says it has "implemented modifications as we transition back into full training to prevent further occurrences."
Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin regrets the language he used to describe the New England Patriots, but is equally upset with wide receiver Antonio Brown for livestreaming Tomlin's postgame speech on social media. Tomlin called Brown's decision to stream more than 15 minutes of Pittsburgh's giddy locker room after a playoff victory over Kansas City "foolish" and "selfish."
Buffalo Bills new coach Sean McDermott continues filling out his staff by hiring Rob Boras to coach tight ends. Boras spent the past four seasons with the Rams, including the last two as offensive coordinator. Boras was previously an assistant with Jacksonville and Chicago, and spent his first 11 seasons coaching at the college level. He becomes the second former Rams assistant to join the Bills after Mike Waufle was hired to serve as defensive line coach last weekend. The 42-year-old McDermott is a first-time head coach. The former Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator was hired last week to replace Rex Ryan, who was fired three weeks ago. Offensive coordinator is the one key position McDermott has yet to fill in Buffalo.
Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones says he alone will decide the future of quarterback Tony Romo. Romo started for Dallas for 10 years before losing his job to rookie Dak Prescott after a preseason back injury. Jones said on his radio show Tuesday he believes Romo can win a Super Bowl, but didn't say where that might be. The Cowboys are most likely to trade or release the franchise leader in passing yards and touchdowns. Dallas could save about $5 million under the cap with a release.
The San Francisco 49ers' list of potential head coaches is down to just Atlanta offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. Seattle offensive line coach Tom Cable has withdrawn from consideration, one day after New England offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels pulled out of the running. Cable's agent says his client is committed to the Seahawks. The Niners can't hire Shanahan until the Falcons' season ends. Atlanta takes on the visiting Green Bay Packers in the NFC championship game on Sunday. The Falcons averaged a league-leading 33.8 points a game this season. Meanwhile, the 49ers are still searching for a general manager.
Alex Rodriguez is no stranger to big money. Now the former New York Yankees slugger will host a new CNBC show in which he guides financially distressed athletes. The network said Tuesday it ordered a pilot. The show's working title is "Back in the Game."
Rodriquez and other mentors will assist one cash-strapped ex-athlete looking to land a job or build a business. Former NFL star Michael Strahan is among the executive producers. The program is to be produced by SMAC Entertainment and Machete Productions. Rodriguez was suspended for the 2014 season following an investigation of his use of banned performance-enhancing drugs. He was released by the New York Yankees last August with more than a season left on his $325 million, 10-year contract. He worked as a TV commentator this past postseason.
Jose Bautista is staying put. A person familiar with the negotiations tells The Associated Press that the Toronto Blue Jays have worked out a one-year, $18 million package with the 36-year-old slugger. The deal includes a mutual option for a second season, with a buyout. Bautista took the contract after turning down Toronto's one-year, $17.2 qualifying offer. The outfielder comes off an injury-plagued season in which he batted just .234 with 22 home runs and 69 RBIs, far below his average numbers over the previous five years.
Elsewhere in the majors:
— The San Diego Padres and first baseman Wil Myers have finalized their six-year, $83 million contract, the largest deal in club history. The 26-year-old Myers batted .259 last season with 28 home runs, 94 RBIs and 29 stolen bases. The deal tops a $75 million, four-year contract pitches James Shields signed before the 2015 season.
— Texas Rangers reliever Jake Diekman is expected to miss at least half the season after he undergoes surgery next week to treat colitis, a digestive condition. Diekman had a flare-up with his condition, which affects the intestines and colon, during the holidays.
— Giants Hall of Famer Willie McCovey has been pardoned by President Barack Obama on tax evasion charges. It was one of the president's 64 pardons granted Tuesday. The slugger was sentenced in June 1996 to two years of probation for evading taxes on baseball memorabilia.
Roger Federer relied on his Grand Slam experience during the most important points to beat Noah Rubin 7-5, 6-3, 7-6 (3) Wednesday, maintaining his record of never failing to reach the third round at the 18 Australian Opens he's contested. After back-to-back wins over qualifiers, the degree of difficulty in his comeback from a six-month injury layoff will increase exponentially. Next up he faces former Wimbledon finalist Tomas Berdych, who had a 6-3, 7-6 (6), 6-2 win over Ryan Harrison.
Women's top seed and defending champion Angelique Kerber had to rally in her second-round match at the Australian Open. Kerber dropped her serve in the first game of the third set before posting a 6-2, 6-7, 6-2 victory. The German is joined in Round 3 by No. 13 Venus Williams, who was a 6-3, 6-2 winner. After the match, Williams withdrew from doubles because of a sore elbow.
Other winners on the women's side include eighth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova and No. 11 Elina Svitolina. The men's bracket included wins by fourth seed Stan Warwrinka, fifth-seed Kei Nishikori, 10th seed Tomas Berdych and No. 12 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Five-time world champ Ted Ligety is cutting short his World Cup skiing season to have surgery on his back. The 32-year-old's five world titles include three in the giant slalom from 2011, '13 and '15. Ligety expects to compete next season and defend his Olympic giant slalom title at the Pyeongchang Games.
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