Other Sports

     === News Summaries from The Sports Network - Wednesday, August 20 ===
                     === Browns name Hoyer starting QB ===
 Berea,  OH (SportsNetwork.com)  - Brian Hoyer will be the starting quarterback
 for the Cleveland Browns to begin the season.
 Coach Mike Pettine made the announcement on Wednesday morning, selecting Hoyer
 over rookie Johnny Manziel.
 "We've  maintained all  along that if it  was close, I would prefer to go with
 the  more  experienced player," said  Pettine in a statement Wednesday. "Brian
 has  done a  great job  in the  meeting rooms  and with  his teammates  on the
 practice field and in the locker room."
 The Browns will open their season on Sept. 7 against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
 Hoyer  started each  of the Browns' first two preseason games. He completed 6-
 of-14  passes for  92 yards in the  opener against Detroit and was just 2-of-6
 for 16 yards this past Monday against Washington.
 Manziel,  selected  with the  22nd overall  pick in May's  draft, threw for 63
 yards on 7-of-11 passing in the first preseason game against the Lions. He was
 7-of-16  for  65 yards with  a touchdown on Monday,  but was also sacked three
 "It's  obviously disappointing,"  said  Manziel after  practice Wednesday.  "I
 didn't  play terrible  (in the first two preseason games), but I made strides.
 If  I would  have  done better  in  the last  two weeks,  it  would have  been
 different outcome. I'm going to continue to give it my all every day."
 Hoyer  started  three games for  the Browns  last year, but  a torn ACL in the
 first  quarter of  a Week  5 victory  over Buffalo  ended his  season. He  led
 Cleveland  to  a pair of  wins in his first  two starts and completed 57-of-96
 passes  for 615  yards with  five touchdowns  and three  interceptions in  his
 limited action.
 The  Michigan  State product entered the  NFL with New England as an undrafted
 free  agent in  2009 and  appeared in  13 games  over three  seasons with  the
 Patriots.  He then split the 2012 campaign with Pittsburgh and Arizona, making
 one start in two appearances with the Cardinals.
                       === Steelers bring back Keisel ===
 Pittsburgh,  PA  (SportsNetwork.com) -  The Pittsburgh Steelers have re-signed
 defensive end Brett Keisel to a two-year contract.
 Financial terms were not disclosed.
 Keisel  has  played his entire 12-year  career with the Steelers, who selected
 him in the seventh round of the 2002 NFL Draft. However, he had not received a
 contract  offer as  an unrestricted  free  agent this  summer. The  Pittsburgh
 Post-Gazette  reported that  the  Arizona Cardinals  were set  to  make him  a
 proposal earlier this week.
 The Post-Gazette reported a deal with the Steelers was in the works on Tuesday
 and Keisel revealed his plans to stay in Pittsburgh on Twitter.
 "I  am  very excited  to finish  what I  started in  2002 with the @steelers,"
 Keisel wrote. "Time to get to work!!"
 Keisel  has started 110 of the 144 games he has played with Pittsburgh and has
 helped  the  Steelers to a pair  of Super Bowl  titles. He has 29 career sacks
 with seven forced fumbles and seven fumble recoveries.
 A 2010 Pro Bowl selection, Keisel also has three sacks in 16 postseason games.
 The Steelers released defensive tackle Al Lapuaho to open a roster spot.
                          === Bucs release Hawkins ===
 Tampa,  FL  (SportsNetwork.com)  -  The Tampa  Bay  Buccaneers  released  wide
 receiver Lavelle Hawkins on Wednesday.
 Hawkins  spent last season with the San Diego Chargers, appearing in just four
 games, after playing his first five years with the Tennessee Titans.
 In  six seasons  in the league, Hawkins  has 71 catches for 771 yards with one
                  === Jim Kelly has no evidence of cancer ===
 Orchard  Park,  NY (SportsNetwork.com) -  Doctors treating Jim Kelly for sinus
 cancer  said there  is  no longer  evidence  of  cancer in  the  Hall of  Fame
 "The  treatments  so far have completely  eliminated Mr. Kelly's pain, and his
 level  of  function has  essentially returned to  normal. Further, on physical
 examination,  there is no evidence of cancer," Dr. Peter Constantino said in a
 statement  released by The New York Head & Neck Institute at Lenox Hospital in
 Kelly  had the  follow-up  screening Tuesday,  three  months after  completing
 several  rounds  of radiation  and chemotherapy.  He will  undergo a series of
 tests over the coming week to determine if further treatment is necessary.
 "It  is  possible that no further  treatment will be required, and the testing
 over the next week will define this issue," Constantino said.
 Kelly was initially diagnosed with cancer in his upper jaw in June 2013 before
 undergoing surgery. Doctors found a recurrence of that cancer in March.
              === Broncos WR Norwood tears ACL, done for year ===
 Englewood, CO  (SportsNetwork.com)   -  Denver  Broncos wideout Jordan Norwood
 has  suffered a  torn anterior cruciate ligament  in one of his knees during a
 Wednesday practice and is out for the season.
 The  Denver  Post was  first to  report the news,  revealing that Norwood fell
 awkwardly  at the sideline while going against cornerback Brandon Harris for a
 pass by quarterback Peyton Manning. He was carted off the field, then sent for
 an MRI, which revealed the extent of the damage.
 "Appreciate  the love  n support  from  friends fam  fans and  the like.  ACL,
 ShmayCL.  Ill be  back in  no time.  Blessed, favored,  n in  my Gods  hands,"
 Norwood stated on his Twitter account.
 Norwood, undrafted out of Penn State, spent last season away from football. He
 posted  13 catches for  137 yards in two games with Cleveland in 2012, and has
 posted 36 receptions for 405 yards and one score for the Eagles and Browns.
 He  garnered  the interest of the  Broncos through the club's GM, Tom Heckert,
 for whom Norwood played in his previous two league stops.
       === Tingelhoff selected as senior nominee for Pro Football HOF ===
 Canton,  OH (SportsNetwork.com) - Minnesota Vikings center Mick Tingelhoff was
 selected  as the  senior nominee for the  Pro Football Hall of Fame's Class of
 Tingelhoff will be an automatic finalist on the ballot next February.
 A  six-time  Pro Bowl  selection and  five-time First-Team All-Pro, Tingelhoff
 never  missed a  game in 17 seasons  with the Vikings from 1962-78. He started
 all  240  games he played and  appeared in 19 postseason games, including four
 Super Bowls.
 Tingelhoff  will  join 15 yet-to-be-named  modern-era finalists in addition to
 two  contributor finalists  from which the Class of 2015 will be selected. The
 Pro  Football Hall of  Fame's selection meeting will be held on Jan. 31, 2015,
 in Arizona, the day before Super Bowl XLIX.
             === Schilling says chewing tobacco gave him cancer ===
 Boston,  MA (SportsNetwork.com)  - Former All-Star pitcher Curt Schilling said
 chewing smokeless tobacco gave him cancer.
 Schilling,  appearing  on WEEI radio in  Boston, said he is in remission after
 undergoing treatment for squamous cell carcinoma. He revealed his diagnosis in
 February  with  a statement through  ESPN and spoke  publicly about it for the
 first time on Wednesday.
 The  47-year-old  six-time All-Star said he  chewed tobacco for about 30 years
 and firmly believes it is the reason he developed cancer.
 "I'll  go to my grave believing that was why I got what I got," Schilling said
 during  the radio interview. "Absolutely. No question in my mind about that. I
 do  believe without  a doubt,  unquestionably, that  chewing is  what gave  me
 "I'm  not going to sit up here from the pedestal and preach about chewing. ...
 It  was an addictive habit, I can think about so many times in my life when it
 was so relaxing to just sit back and have a dip and do whatever. And I lost my
 sense  of smell, my taste buds for the most part, I had gum issues, they bled,
 all this other stuff. None of it was enough to ever make me quit.
 "The  pain I was  in going through this treatment, the second or third day, it
 was  the first  thing and the only thing  in my life that I've ever had that I
 wish I could go back and never have dipped. Not once. It was so painful."
 Schilling  said  he  lost  75  pounds during  his  treatment,  which  included
 radiation and chemotherapy, and added that his recovery is challenging.
 "There  are  so many  things that  are damaged  during the process," Schilling
 noted.  "I  don't have any  salivary glands, so I  can't taste anything, and I
 can't smell anything right now. And there's no guarantee they'll come back."
 The  news about Schilling comes just two months after Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn
 died  after  battling cancer  of  the  salivary  gland  following his  use  of
 smokeless tobacco.
 Schilling  pitched  20  seasons  in  the  majors  with  five  different  teams
 (Baltimore,  Houston, Philadelphia, Arizona, Boston) before retiring following
 the 2007 campaign.
                         === Rays activate OF Myers ===
 St. Petersburg,  FL  (SportsNetwork.com) - Reigning  American League Rookie of
 the  Year Wil  Myers was activated from  the 60-day disabled list by the Tampa
 Bay Rays on Wednesday.
 Myers  had been on  the DL since June 1 due to a slight stress fracture in his
 right  wrist. The  injury  occurred during  outfield  collision with  teammate
 Desmond Jennings during a game in Boston.
 He didn't have surgery for the injury, but did wear a cast and missed 70 games
 in total.
 The  23-year-old captured the AL's top rookie honor after batting .293 with 13
 home  runs and 53 RBI  in just 88 games last season, but was in the midst of a
 sophomore  slump in 2014.  Myers was hitting just .227 with five homers and 25
 RBI through 53 games at the time of the injury.
 To  make room on  the roster, the team optioned Vince Belnome back to Triple-A
 Durham, while moving Jerry Sands from the 15-day DL list to the 60-day.
       === Rangers agree to terms with former first-round pick Hayes ===
 New  York, NY  (SportsNetwork.com) - The New York Rangers agreed to terms with
 free agent forward Kevin Hayes on Wednesday.
 Hayes  was selected with  a first-round pick by Chicago in 2010, but could not
 agree  to terms  with the Blackhawks by  the deadline last Friday and became a
 free agent.
 The  Blackhawks  retained Hayes'  rights  through  college. He  concluded  his
 collegiate eligibility last season and had until Aug. 15 to reach a deal.
 Hayes  was a  finalist for the Hobey  Baker Award as the top player in college
 last  season. He  skated in 40 games  for Boston College and compiled 27 goals
 with 38 assists to rank second in the nation with 65 points.
 The  22-year-old Massachusetts native scored 44 goals and added 88 assists for
 132 points in 142 collegiate games. He helped BC win the national championship
 in the spring of 2012.
 Chicago,  under  terms of the  collective bargaining agreement, will receive a
 compensatory  pick in  the 2015 NHL Draft.  It will be the No. 24 selection in
 the second round.
                     === Red Sox activate Ross from DL ===
 Boston,  MA  (SportsNetwork.com)  -  The  Boston  Red  Sox  activated  catcher
 David  Ross from  the 15-day  disabled  list on  Wednesday among  a flurry  of
 roster moves.
 Ross   had  been   bothered  by  plantar  fasciitis  in  late  July,  and  was
 finally  placed on  the disabled  list Aug.  2, one  day after  his last  game
 appearance, against the New York Yankees.
 The  37-year-old  Ross is batting just  .192 with six  homers and 12 RBI in 40
 games this season.
 In  addition, Boston  optioned catcher Daniel Butler and pitcher Steven Wright
 to  Triple-A  Pawtucket and recalled utilityman  Alex Hassan from its top farm
 Hassan  went  1-for-7 and scored a  run in his first major-league recall, from
 June 1-3.
 Wright  allowed one run over four relief innings on Sunday against the Astros.
 Butler finished 0-for-11 in three games earlier in August.
                 === NHL changes draft lottery rules again ===
 New  York,  NY (SportsNetwork.com)  - The National  Hockey League on Wednesday
 announced further changes to its draft lottery.
 In  an  attempt at  addressing greater  competitive balance  in the league and
 among  its  non-playoff participants, the  percentages of each team which does
 not  qualify for the postseason will be altered. Each of the bottom four clubs
 will receive lower odds, while the 10 best will see their odds increase.
 Last  season, the worst club in the NHL had a 25 percent chance of winning the
 lottery and picking first, while the new allocation lowers that to 20 percent.
 The  second-worst club  enjoyed 18.8-percent  odds of  winning, which  are now
 lowered to 13.5 percent.
 The  13th  and 14th non-playoff  franchises, which  previously had a less than
 one-percent  chance to win the lottery, will now see the odds increased to two
 percent and one percent, respectively.
 In addition, beginning in 2016, three separate draws will be held to determine
 each  of  the top  three picks  in the draft.  The winners  will be locked, in
 order, from first to third slot.
 The  alterations come  just  over 18  months since  the  league announced  its
 previous  change,  which made  all  14  teams that  fail  to  qualify for  the
 playoffs  eligible  to win the  right for  the top selection. Previously, only
 the five teams with  the fewest points in the standings had the opportunity to
 win the lottery.
 Changes  announced this year will take effect over a two-year period, starting
 with next season's lottery.
                     === Serena is top seed at the Open ===
 New  York, NY (SportsNetwork.com)  - Five-time champion Serena Williams is the
 top seed for the U.S. Open, which will begin Monday in Flushing Meadows.
 The  world No.  1 great  has won  the last  two Opens  by beating  former top-
 ranked  star Victoria  Azarenka in  a pair  of finals.  The powerful  American
 has  reached the last three finals in Flushing, having finished as a runner-up
 in 2011.
 Williams  is  followed in the seedings  by French Open runner-up Simona Halep,
 Wimbledon  champ  Petra Kvitova, former Wimbledon finalist Agnieszka Radwanska
 and French Open titlist Maria Sharapova, who was a U.S. Open champ in 2006.
 Seeds  6-through-10 in  New York will be Angelique Kerber, Wimbledon runner-up
 Eugenie  Bouchard, former  French Open  champ Ana  Ivanovic, former  U.S. Open
 runner-up Jelena Jankovic and former Open finalist Caroline Wozniacki.
 Five  of the  top-10  seeds  -- Williams,  Sharapova,  Ivanovic, Jankovic  and
 Wozniacki -- are  former or  current world  No. 1s.
                    === Furyk to play in PGA Grand Slam ===
 Palm  Beach Gardens,  FL (SportsNetwork.com)  - Jim  Furyk will  be the  final
 competitor in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf.
 Furyk  will  join this  year's three  major champions  -- Bubba Watson, Martin
 Kaymer  and Rory  McIlroy -- in the  foursome that will compete in the 36-hole
 event  to  be held  Oct.  13-15  at Port  Royal  Golf  Course in  Southampton,
 Since  McIlroy won  both the British Open and PGA Championship, Adam Scott was
 initially  invited  to round  out the  field as the  defending champion of the
 event. Scott, though, was unable to compete due to a scheduling conflict.
 Furyk,  the 2003  U.S.  Open  champion, was  runner-up  in  this year's  Major
 Champions  Points  List, which  charts the performance  throughout the year of
 active major champions.
 "It's  exciting  to cap  a great  year in golf  by matching  a foursome of the
 game's  premier  performers over 36 holes,"  said PGA of America president Ted
 Bishop  in a statement  Wednesday. "The PGA Grand Slam of Golf is a reward for
 achieving a milestone in a golfer's career."
 Furyk won the Grand Slam of Golf in 2003 and again in 2008.
               === Tulsa's Sims captures rookie monthly honor ===
 New  York, NY  (SportsNetwork.com) - Tulsa's Odyssey Sims was named the WNBA's
 top rookie for the month of August.
 Sims  led the WNBA in scoring during the month with an average of 23.5 points.
 She  scored 20 or more points in five of the six games and 25 or more in three
 of those contests.
 The  Baylor product,  who was selected second  in the 2014 WNBA Draft, led all
 rookies  in scoring  during the season with  an average of 16.7 points and 4.2
                    === Kent State football player dies ===
 Kent,  OH  (SportsNetwork.com) - Kent  State football player Jason Bitsko died
 Wednesday. He was 21 years old.
 The  school said  Bitsko was  found unresponsive  in his  off-campus apartment
 shortly  before 9 a.m. ET. Police believe he died from an undetermined medical
 "Our  players, coaches and everyone involved with our team are hurting because
 he  was  family," said  Kent State  football coach Paul  Haynes in a statement
 Wednesday. "As a team, we will come together and get through this one day at a
 According  to the  school, calls  were placed  to Bitsko's  roommate after  he
 failed  to show up for morning practice. The roommate called 911 after finding
 Bitsko  in  his bed. Police  arrived on the scene  within three minutes of the
 Bitsko  was set to begin his fourth season with the Golden Flashes. He started
 12 games at center last season and was slated to start again in 2014.
            === Wicked Strong and Tonalist meet again in Travers ===
 Saratoga  Springs, NY  (SportsNetwork.com) - Wicked Strong and Tonalist, first
 and  second in the Jim Dandy Stakes, meet up again in Saturday's $1.25 million
 Travers Stakes at Saratoga Race Course.
 The  1  1/4-mile "Mid-Summer Derby"  has attracted  a field of 10 3-year-olds,
 including Haskell Invitational winner Bayern.
 Wicked  Strong, trained by Jimmy Jerkens for Centennial Farms, will start from
 post  7  with his  regular jockey Rajiv  Maragh. The morning  line has the Jim
 Dandy  champ  as the 7-2  third pick  with Tonalist at  3-1 and Bayern the 2-1
 program favorite.
 Wicked  Strong,  wearing blinkers for  the first  time, captured the Jim Dandy
 over  Tonalist on July  26 by a solid 2 1/4 lengths. The victory made the colt
 a  millionaire as  he has  banked $1,244,610  with three  wins in  nine career
 "We needed to see that from him," Jerkens said about the Jim Dandy. "He's been
 slowly  developing  all along.  He certainly  didn't run  bad in those (Triple
 Crown) races, but he hadn't put it together like that. It was good to see."
 The  3-year-old began  his 2014 season with a disappointing ninth-place finish
 in  the  Holy Bull  Stakes at Gulfstream  Park. After a  fourth in an optional
 allowance race, he won the Wood Memorial at odds of 9-1.
 Wicked  Strong  overcame some problems in  the Kentucky Derby to finish fourth
 and  again finished  fourth, in  a dead  heat with  California Chrome,  in the
 Belmont Stakes won by Tonalist.
 Tonalist  has drawn  to Wicked Strong's immediate inside for Saturday. Trained
 by Christophe Clement, the colt will again have Joel Rosario in the saddle.
 "I'm  looking  forward to  the Travers.  I'm looking  forward to  a mile and a
 quarter.  I'm  looking forward to  the pace  scenario. I'm excited. Let's go,"
 Clement said.
 Owned  by  Robert Evans,  Tonalist gained national  attention with his Belmont
 Stakes  victory, denying  California Chrome the Triple Crown. Four weeks prior
 to the Belmont the colt won the Peter Pan Stakes at Belmont Park.
 Tonalist has won half of his six career starts for $1,077,000.
 Bayern,  trained by  Bob Baffert for Kaleem  Shah Inc., will break from post 2
 with Martin Garcia getting his second straight mount on the colt.
 Bayern  ran away from  the field to win the Haskell by 7 1/4 lengths as he won
 for  the first time beyond a mile. Coming into the Haskell, the colt's biggest
 win  came  in the  seven-furlong Woody  Stephens Stakes  on the Belmont Stakes
 program, He won that stakes by seven lengths.
 "The  Haskell was  pretty  impressive," Baffert  said. "Will  he  take a  step
 backward?  I don't  know, but he looks  good. He's not a really big horse, but
 he's  fast. He's  a handy horse, and he's  got a lot of speed. I'm not totally
 convinced  he can go a mile and a quarter, but he's pretty fast. You just have
 to  let him  go and what happens,  happens. You can't worry about it. When you
 have a horse with that kind of brilliant speed, you have to use it."
 The  3-year-old,  unraced last year, has  four wins from seven lifetime starts
 for $1,077,680.
 Here  is  the field for the  Travers in post position order: Commanding Curve,
 Shaun  Bridgmohan,  15-1;  Bayern,  Martin Garcia,  2-1;  Charge  Now,  Junior
 Alvarado,  15-1; V.  E. Day,  Javier  Castellano, 15-1;  Viva Majorca,  Julien
 Leparoux, 20-1; Tonalist, Joel Rosario, 3-1; Wicked Strong, Rajiv Maragh, 7-2;
 Kid  Cruz,  Irad Ortiz Jr., 12-1;  Ulanbator, Brian Hernandez Jr., 30-1 and Mr
 Speaker, Jose Lezcano, 10-1.
 The Travers has a scheduled post time of 5:46 p.m. ET and will be televised by
 NBC Sports Network.
 08/20 19:04:38 ET

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