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        === News Summaries from The Sports Network - Tuesday, May 5 ===
 
 
                      === Athletics release Cody Ross ===
 
 Oakland,   CA  (SportsNetwork.com)  -  The  Oakland  Athletics  have  released
 outfielder Cody Ross.
 
 Ross  was designated  for assignment on Saturday after playing just nine games
 and cleared waivers before the club announced his outright release on Tuesday.
 
 The  34-year-old  journeyman has now  been cut  by two teams  in the span of a
 month.  He was released by the Arizona Diamondbacks on April 4 and signed with
 Oakland four days later.
 
 Ross  was just  2-for-22 with three runs  batted in during his short stay with
 the Athletics. He is a career .262 hitter with 132 homers and 508 RBI in 1,073
 big  league  games for the  Athletics, Diamondbacks, Red Sox, Giants, Marlins,
 Reds, Dodgers and Tigers since making his major league debut in 2003.
 
 Ross was the NLCS MVP with the Giants in 2010.
 
 
                    === Marlins release C Saltalamacchia ===
 
 Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - The Miami Marlins released catcher Jarrod
 Saltalamacchia on Tuesday.
 
 The  30-year-old Saltalamacchia  was designated for assignment last week after
 going just 2-for-29 with a .182 on-base percentage in nine games this season.
 
 He  batted  .220 with 11 homers  and 44 RBI in  114 games for the Marlins last
 season after signing a three-year, $21-million contract in December 2013.
 
 Saltalamacchia is a career .240 hitter with 90 homers and 320 RBI in 718 games
 with Atlanta, Texas, Boston and Miami.
 
 
                       === Padres' Morrow lands on DL ===
 
 San  Francisco, CA  (SportsNetwork.com)  - San  Diego  Padres pitcher  Brandon
 Morrow  was placed  on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday due to inflammation in
 his right shoulder.
 
 It's  the  latest setback for the  oft-injured Morrow, who had pitched well in
 five  starts to  begin his first season  in San Diego. A torn tendon sheath in
 his  right  hand limited the right-hander  to just 33 1/3 innings with Toronto
 last  year,  and he threw only  54 1/3 innings  in 2013 before being shut down
 with a forearm problem.
 
 Morrow,  who signed a one-year deal with the Padres in December, went 2-0 with
 a  2.73  ERA through  his first  five starts. The  former first-round pick was
 coming  off  a win against  Colorado on Saturday in  which he allowed two runs
 over six innings.
 
 Odrisamer  Despaigne is  expected to take Morrow's place in the rotation, with
 reliever  Frank  Garces recalled from  Triple-A El  Paso to fill the available
 roster spot.
 
 Garces  made the  Padres' Opening  Day roster  and posted  a 1.59  ERA in  six
 appearances  before  being optioned to El  Paso when Ian Kennedy was taken off
 the DL on April 25.
 
 
                    === Brewers activate Gennett from DL ===
 
 Milwaukee,  WI (SportsNetwork.com)  - The  Milwaukee Brewers  activated second
 baseman Scooter Gennett from the 15-day disabled list on Tuesday.
 
 Gennett had been sidelined by a shower mishap. He sliced his left hand open on
 a  shower  rack at  Pittsburgh's PNC  Park following the  Brewers' 5-2 loss on
 April  19.  Five stitches were  needed to  close the wound  at the base of his
 middle finger.
 
 The  Brewers optioned outfielder Logan Schafer to Triple-A Colorado Springs to
 make  room on the  roster for Gennett, who was batting .207 with one RBI prior
 to the DL stint.
 
 
                 === Cards recall P Lyons for Tuesday start ===
 
 St.  Louis, MO  (SportsNetwork.com) - The St. Louis Cardinals recalled pitcher
 Tyler  Lyons from Triple-A Memphis to start Tuesday's game against the Chicago
 Cubs.
 
 Lyons  will take the turn in the rotation left vacant by ace Adam Wainwright's
 season-ending  Achilles injury.  Tim Cooney  got the  first chance  to replace
 Wainwright, but was demoted after allowing three runs in 2 1/3 innings against
 the Philadelphia Phillies last Thursday.
 
 The  27-year-old  Lyons made  four starts  for Memphis  this season, going 2-1
 with  a  2.91 ERA.  He started  12 games for  the Cardinals  over the past two
 years.
 
 Reliever Sam Tuivailala was optioned to Memphis to clear room for Lyons on the
 roster.
 
 
                    === Indians activate Swisher from DL ===
 
 Kansas   City,  MO  (SportsNetwork.com)  -  The  Cleveland  Indians  activated
 outfielder Nick Swisher from the 15-day disabled list, and he is in the lineup
 for Tuesday's game against Kansas City.
 
 Swisher,  34, had surgery on both of his knees in August and has not played in
 2015.  During  a six-game rehab assignment  for Triple-A Columbus, he had nine
 hits in 24 at-bats, including a home run.
 
 The  veteran enters the third season of a four-year contract on the heels of a
 disappointing  2014  season  that  saw  him  bat  .208  with  a  .278  on-base
 percentage, both career lows.
 
 In  11 seasons for the Indians, Yankees, White Sox and Athletics, Swisher is a
 .251 hitter with a .353 on-base percentage and 239 home runs in 1,451 games.
 
 To  make  room for Swisher on  the roster, Cleveland optioned outfielder Tyler
 Holt to Columbus.
 
 
  === Prust apologizes for referee comments ===
 
 Tampa,  FL  (SportsNetwork.com) -  Montreal  Canadiens  forward Brandon  Prust
 apologized  for  an outburst directed toward  one of the referees in charge of
 Game 2 of his club's Eastern Conference semifinal series.
 
 "I'd like to apologize to Brad Watson ... and the rest of the officials in the
 NHL,  if I've caused any embarrassment or headache ... it was uncalled for. We
 got  into  a heated exchange  that should have  stayed between us," Prust said
 following a Tuesday practice session.
 
 Prust revealed following Sunday's 6-2 loss at Bell Centre that Watson provoked
 and swore at him during an exchange following a fight late in the contest.
 
 "I've always played by the code on and off the ice and on Sunday I crossed the
 line  and what  happened out  there stayed  out there.  It was  tough, it  was
 emotional. I just got into a fight ... I wasn't myself. My emotions were raw,"
 he added.
 
 As  a result  of his  actions, Prust  faced a  conversation with  NHL director
 of  hockey operations  Colin Campbell. Prust was subsequently fined $5,000 for
 his actions.
 
 Game 3 is set for Wednesday night in Tampa.
 
 
            === Benn, Ovechkin, Price named Lindsay finalists ===
 
 Toronto,  ON  (SportsNetwork.com) Dallas  Stars forward Jamie Benn, Washington
 Capitals  captain Alex  Ovechkin and Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price
 have  been  named finalists for  the Ted  Lindsay Award, presented annually to
 the  NHL's top  performer  by the  NHL Players' Association.
 
 Benn  became the first member of the Minnesota/Dallas franchise to win the Art
 Ross  Trophy as the league's leading scorer, picking up career-highs in points
 (87), goals (35) and assists (52). A first-time nominee, Benn could become the
 first player in team history to be honored by fellow players.
 
 A  revitalized  Ovechkin scored 53 goals  to capture the Rocket Richard Trophy
 and  finished  fourth in  the NHL  with 81 points.  He also  led the league in
 power-play  goals (25)  and game-winning goals (11). The native of Russia is a
 three-time winner (2008-10) and also was nominated in 2006 and 2013.
 
 Price  completes a  trifecta of nominations, along with previous nods for both
 the Vezina and Hart Trophies. The dynamic backstop led the league in wins with
 44  --  which also stands  as a new  franchise record -- goals-against average
 (1.96)  and save  percentage (.933).  He's bidding  to become  the first  Habs
 player  to  earn the award  since Guy Lafleur who  did so three straight years
 from 1976-78.
 
 The  Lindsay  Award, voted on exclusively  by the players, was renamed for the
 Hall of Fame forward who helped establish the NHL Players' Association. It was
 previously known as the Lester B. Pearson Award from 1970-71 through 2008-09.
 
 This  year's winner will be announced June 24 during the NHL's awards ceremony
 in Las Vegas.
 
 
                     === James Jones among Raiders cuts ===
 
 Alameda,  CA  (SportsNetwork.com) - Wide  receiver James  Jones was cut by the
 Oakland Raiders on Tuesday, along with guard Kevin Boothe and linebacker Miles
 Burris.
 
 Jones,  31, led Oakland  with 73 catches and six touchdowns in 2014, his first
 season  with  the Raiders.  He averaged  a career-low 9.1  yards per catch and
 finished with 666 yards, second on the team.
 
 After  seven  seasons with Green Bay,  Jones signed a three-year contract with
 Oakland  following the  2014 season. In 120 career games, he caught 383 passes
 for  4,971 yards and 43 touchdowns. He led the NFL with 14 receiving scores in
 2012.
 
 Oakland  signed  veteran  receiver  Michael Crabtree  in  April  and  selected
 Alabama's Amari Cooper No. 4 overall in last week's draft.
 
 
                   === Cardinals TE John Carlson retires ===
 
 Tempe,  AZ (SportsNetwork.com)  - Arizona Cardinals tight end John Carlson has
 decided to retire.
 
 Carlson  signed a  two-year  contract with  the Cardinals  in  March 2014  and
 finished  his lone season in the desert with 33 receptions for 350 yards and a
 touchdown in 16 games.
 
 The  30-year-old Notre  Dame product dealt with a concussion late in 2013 with
 Minnesota,  but did not  indicate why he made the decision to call it a career
 in a statement Tuesday.
 
 "After  much thought  and consideration, my wife Danielle and I know that this
 is  best  decision for  us,"  said  Carlson in  a  statement  released by  the
 Cardinals.  "I  was  blessed to  play  seven  seasons  in  the NFL  for  three
 tremendous organizations -- the Cardinals, Vikings and Seahawks. I will always
 treasure  the experiences and relationships made during that time but I'm also
 very excited about the next phase of my life and what's ahead."
 
 Carlson  was selected by Seattle in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft and
 played  three  seasons with  the Seahawks  before sitting  out the entire 2011
 campaign  because of a  torn labrum. He joined the Vikings for the 2012 season
 and spent two years in Minnesota.
 
 In  90  NFL games,  including 64  starts, Carlson caught  210 passes for 2,256
 yards and 15 touchdowns.
 
 
                    === Chiefs waive Pryor, three others ===
 
 Kansas  City,  MO  (SportsNetwork.com)  -  The Kansas City Chiefs announced on
 Tuesday that four players were waived, among them quarterback Terrelle Pryor.
 
 Pryor  had been  signed to  a reserve/future  contract with  the team  back in
 January.
 
 The  Ohio  State product  started  nine  games for  the  Raiders  in 2013  and
 threw for 1,798 yards with seven touchdowns and 11 interceptions in 11 overall
 contests  that season. He  was traded to Seattle just prior to last year's NFL
 Draft,  but was  released by the Seahawks and did not play this past season.
 
 Linebacker JoJo Dickson, long snapper Jorgen Hus and wideout Corbin Louks were
 also excised from the roster.
 
 
                      === Patriots release CB Dennard ===
 
 Foxborough,  MA (SportsNetwork.com)  -  Cornerback Alfonzo  Dennard was  among
 three players placed on waivers by the New England Patriots Tuesday.
 
 Dennard  started 20  games and logged five interceptions in three seasons with
 New  England, which selected the former Nebraska standout in the seventh round
 of the 2012 NFL Draft. He was active for only six games in 2014 before landing
 on injured reserve prior to Week 17.
 
 The  Patriots  had just  selected two  defensive backs  in this past weekend's
 draft,  nabbing  Stanford safety  Jordan  Richards  in  the second  round  and
 Marshall cornerback Darryl Roberts in the seventh.
 
 Linebacker  Deontae  Skinner and long snapper  Tyler Ott also were released by
 New  England. Skinner  appeared in  seven games  as an  undrafted rookie  last
 season, recording 16 tackles and one sack.
 
 
                      === 49ers sign QB Dylan Thompson ===
 
 Santa  Clara, CA  (SportsNetwork.com) -  The San  Francisco 49ers  signed nine
 undrafted  free agents on Tuesday, including former South Carolina quarterback
 Dylan Thompson.
 
 Thompson set a South Carolina school record and led the SEC with 3,564 passing
 yards  last  season. He  completed 60 percent  of his passes  and threw for 26
 touchdowns.
 
 Of  the remaining  eight undrafted free agents, five were wide receivers: Dres
 Anderson,  Issac Blakeney,  DiAndre Campbell, Darius Davis and DeAndrew White.
 Offensive  lineman  Patrick Miller,  defensive lineman  Marcus Rush and safety
 Jermaine Whitehead were also signed.
 
 
                 === Wizards' Wall misses Game 2 vs. Hawks ===
 
 Atlanta,  GA  (SportsNetwork.com) - Less than  an hour before Tuesday's Game 2
 between the Wizards and Hawks, Washington announced that star point guard John
 Wall wouldn't play because of a wrist injury.
 
 Wall  suffered  the  injury  to  his  left wrist  in  the  second  quarter  of
 Washington's surprising Game 1 victory. He briefly left the game in noticeable
 pain  before gutting out the second half, finishing with 18 points, 13 assists
 and seven rebounds in the 104-98 win.
 
 Wall  has posted  four consecutive double-doubles and is averaging 17.4 points
 and  12.6 assists  through  five  playoff games  for  the  Wizards, who  enter
 Tuesday's slate as one of only two unbeaten teams left in the postseason.
 
 Ramon  Sessions, who  is averaging 6.2 points in 16.6 minutes this postseason,
 is the only other point guard on Washington's roster.
 
 
                  === Grizzlies' Conley returns for Game 2 ===
 
 Oakland, CA (SportsNetwork.com)  - The Memphis Grizzlies welcomed back injured
 point  guard  Mike Conley  on Tuesday  for Game 2  of their Western Conference
 semifinal series against the Golden State Warriors.
 
 Conley missed the series opener -- a lopsided Warriors win -- after undergoing
 successful surgery last Monday to repair a facial fracture.
 
 He  already  missed the final  two games of  Memphis' series against the Trail
 Blazers.  The injury was sustained in Game 3 when he was hit near his left eye
 by  an inadvertent  elbow from  Portland's C.J.  McCollum. Conley  immediately
 dropped  to his  knees  and was  eventually  taken to  the  locker room  under
 assistance, then later transported to a local Portland hospital.
 
 In  Memphis'  three wins of  that series, Conley  averaged 16.0 points and 3.7
 assists while shooting 50 percent from the field.
 
 
            === Isiah Thomas named president of New York Liberty ===
 
 New York, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Isiah Thomas is back in New York.
 
 Thomas was named the president of the New York Liberty on Tuesday.
 
 The  Hall  of Fame player will  be responsible for the basketball and business
 operations  of the  WNBA franchise. He has also taken an ownership interest in
 the team.
 
 "I  am honored  to have the opportunity  to lead the New York Liberty and help
 the  franchise  reclaim its position  as one of the  elite teams in the WNBA,"
 said Thomas in a statement Tuesday.
 
 Thomas  has  had a long  history with  Madison Square Garden Company executive
 chairman  Jim Dolan.  The two worked together when Thomas served as president,
 general manager and coach of the New York Knicks.
 
 "In the fall, Isiah and I began discussions about a possible role for him with
 the  Liberty," said Dolan. "Since that time, Isiah has been advising the team,
 and we are very pleased with the results. He has overseen the strengthening of
 our  coaching  staff, with the  return of  three-time WNBA champion head coach
 Bill  Laimbeer and the  hiring of Herb Williams as assistant coach, as well as
 our recent free agent signings, draft strategy, trade for Epiphanny Prince and
 the return of Liberty legend, Teresa Weatherspoon."
 
 Thomas,  an  NCAA champion at  Indiana and a two-time  NBA champion as a point
 guard with the Detroit Pistons, oversaw the Knicks' operations from 2003-08.
 
 "To  me, basketball is basketball," Thomas added. "These women are outstanding
 athletes who want to compete for a championship in New York. I look forward to
 this challenge -- not just to win a title, but also to help broaden the team's
 fan base."
 
 During his time with the Knicks, which included a coaching stint from 2006-08,
 the  team  never won more than  39 games and  won fewer than 25 twice. Thomas'
 tenure  in  the front office was  also marred by the sexual harassment lawsuit
 filed by former team executive Anucha Browne Sanders.
 
 Thomas was hired by Dolan as consultant for the Knicks in August 2010, but had
 to  step  away  because  he  was  the  head  coach  at  Florida  International
 University.  The NBA  said  his dual  roles would  have  violated conflict  of
 interest rules between collegiate and professional basketball.
 
 FIU fired Thomas in April 2012 after three seasons and a record of 26-65.
 
 
     === Pacquiao denied shoulder treatment before fight; surgery next ===
 
 (SportsNetwork.com)  -  Manny Pacquiao  was  denied  treatment for  his  right
 shoulder  prior to  Saturday's fight against Floyd Mayweather, an injury which
 will reportedly require surgery.
 
 Top  Rank issued  a statement  late Monday,  saying it  had approval  from the
 United  States  Anti-Doping Agency (USADA)  for treatment on a shoulder injury
 Pacquiao  had suffered while training for the welterweight unification bout in
 Las  Vegas, but  the Nevada  Athletic Commission  prevented it  Saturday night
 because it was not notified of any injury.
 
 "On  his pre-fight  medical  form  filled out  earlier  in  the week,  Manny's
 advisors   listed  the  medications  that  Manny  used  in  training  and  the
 medications  that  might be used  on fight night,"  the statement read. "A few
 hours  before he was  expected to step in the ring, when Manny's doctors began
 the  process,  the Nevada Commission stopped  the treatment because it said it
 was unaware of Manny's shoulder injury.
 
 "This  was disappointing  to Team Pacquiao since they had disclosed the injury
 and  treatment  to USADA, USADA approved  the treatments, and Manny had listed
 the medication on his pre-fight medical form."
 
 However,  the New York Daily News reported Tuesday that a member of Pacquiao's
 camp  checked  a box  "no" for  a question regarding  possible injuries on the
 medical form.
 
 If  so,  the News reported,  the state of  Nevada could start an investigation
 since the signed document comes under the penalty of perjury.
 
 Top Rank's statement Monday said Pacquiao underwent tests with the Kerlan Jobe
 Orthopedic  Clinic after the shoulder injury was discovered a few weeks before
 the  fight.  It apparently wasn't serious  enough to warrant a postponement of
 the highly anticipated bout because treatment and rest allowed for Pacquiao to
 continue training.
 
 However,  ESPN has  reported that Pacquiao will now undergo surgery for a torn
 rotator cuff in the shoulder later this week.
 
 Pacquiao  lost  a unanimous  decision Saturday night  and disclosed his injury
 only  in  the post-fight  press  conference.  His  camp  said the  injury  had
 progressed  in the days leading up to the fight and it only worsened after the
 third round on Saturday.
 
 "His shoulder wasn't perfect," Top Rank said, "but it had improved in training
 camp.  However,  as Manny has said  multiple times, he makes no excuses. Manny
 gave it his best."
 
 
      === Sharapova, Kvitova, Ivanovic reach 3rd round at Madrid Open ===
 
 Madrid,   Spain  (SportsNetwork.com)  -  Reigning  champion  Maria  Sharapova,
 former  titlist  Petra  Kvitova  and  seventh seed  Ana  Ivanovic  were  among
 Tuesday's second-round winners at the Madrid Open tennis event.
 
 The  third-seeded former  world No.  1 Sharapova  blitzed Colombian  qualifier
 Mariana Duque-Marino 6-1, 6-2.
 
 "She  is someone who, if you give her time, creates angles, slices and usually
 drop shots a lot more than she did in this match because she has the hands and
 the ability to do so," Sharapova said.
 
 The  French Open  champion  Sharapova  topped Romanian  Simona  Halep in  last
 year's  Madrid finale and was the 2013 runner-up here to American great Serena
 Williams.
 
 Meanwhile,  the  fourth-seeded Kvitova held  off American Coco Vandeweghe 6-4,
 2-6,  6-3 and  the  former top-ranked  star Ivanovic  cooled  off last  week's
 Marrakech  champ Elina  Svitolina, of  Ukraine, 6-3,  6-4 on  the red  clay at
 the Magic Box.
 
 The Wimbledon champion Kvitova was a Madrid titlist in 2011.
 
 In  other  action involving seeds, No.  10 Carla Suarez Navarro of Spain drove
 out  German qualifier  Julia  Goerges 6-3,  7-5,  rising Frenchwoman  Caroline
 Garcia  took out  No. 14  Czech Karolina  Pliskova 6-2,  4-6, 6-1  and Russian
 Anastasia  Pavlyuchenkova  upended No. 15  Italian Sara Errani 3-6, 7-6 (9-7),
 6-4. Pliskova was fresh off her clay-court title in Prague.
 
 Also  on Day  4, Czech Barbora Strycova topped American Varvara Lepchenko 6-4,
 6-2  and  former world No.  1 and  two-time Madrid runner-up Victoria Azarenka
 erased Croat Ajla Tomljanovic 6-3, 6-3.
 
 Azarenka  is rewarded with a third-round match against the current world No. 1
 Williams, who captured back-to-back Madrid titles in 2012 and 2013 and has yet
 to  lose  this year,  going 22-0.  The powerful  American has  won her last 25
 matches overall, dating back to November.
 
 Williams  is  14-3 lifetime against Azarenka,  including a victory in the 2012
 Madrid final.
 
 Some  other third-round  matches will  pit Sharapova  against Garcia;  Kvitova
 versus  Pavlyuchenkova;  fifth-seeded former  No. 1  and 2009 Madrid runner-up
 Caroline  Wozniacki against  ninth-seeded  Agnieszka  Radwanska; and  Ivanovic
 versus Suarez Navarro.
 
 
                   === Raonic, Wawrinka move on in Madrid ===
 
 Madrid,  Spain  (SportsNetwork.com) -  No.  5  seed  Milos Raonic  and  former
 Australian  Open  champion Stan  Wawrinka were a  pair of second-round winners
 at the Madrid Open.
 
 The  Canadian slugger  Raonic subdued  Argentine Juan  Monaco 6-3,  6-4 in  68
 minutes,  while  Tuesday's  nightcap  saw  the  eighth-seeded  Swiss  Wawrinka
 best Portuguese lucky-loser Joao Sousa 7-6 (7-1), 7-5 at the Magic Box in this
 clay-court Masters 1000 event.
 
 Some  seeded stars  played opening-round matches on Day 3, as No. 10 Bulgarian
 Grigor  Dimitrov grounded  American Donald  Young  6-4, 3-0,  retired; No.  12
 Frenchman  Jo-Wilfried Tsonga  handled  Czech  Lukas Rosol  7-5,  6-3; No.  13
 Frenchman  Gael Monfils  whipped  Serb Viktor  Troicki 6-2,  6-0;  and No.  14
 Spaniard  Roberto  Bautista Agut took care  of Romanian wild card Marius Copil
 7-5, 6-3.
 
 In   opening-round   play,  German  Philipp  Kohlschreiber  clipped  Colombian
 qualifier   Alejandro  Falla   6-1,  6-4  to  set-up  a  rematch  of  Monday's
 championship  match in Munich, where the German lost to Andy Murray at the BMW
 Open.
 
 Also  in the first round on Tuesday, Frenchman Richard Gasquet bested towering
 Croat  Ivo  Karlovic 6-3,  6-4; Argentine  Leonardo Mayer leveled Luxembourg's
 Gilles  Muller 6-3,  6-3; Spanish qualifier Albert Ramos-Vinolas overcame last
 week's  Istanbul runner-up  Pablo Cuevas  of Uruguay  3-6, 6-3,  6-4; Fernando
 Verdasco  fought back to beat fellow Spaniard Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 4-6, 6-2,
 6-3;  Spanish  wild card Marcel Granollers  got past Slovak Martin Klizan 5-2,
 retired;  Aussie Nick Kyrgios dismissed Spanish qualifier Daniel Gimeno-Traver
 6-2,  6-3; and  American  Jack Sock  surprised Spanish  wild  card and  recent
 Barcelona runner-up Pablo Andujar 6-4, 7-5.
 
 The  top  seed for this  French Open tune-up is  Roger Federer, who enters the
 tournament  after  winning the inaugural  Istanbul Open on Sunday. The 17-time
 Grand  Slam  champion won  the Madrid  title in 2009  and 2012, beating Rafael
 Nadal  each  time. He also won  in 2006 when  the tournament was played in the
 fall  on  hardcourts, and  last played  at the  Magic Box  in 2013, falling to
 Kei Nishikori in the round of 16.
 
 Last week's Istanbul titlist Federer's second-round opponent on Wednesday will
 be the rising star Kyrgios.
 
 Nadal  is  also entered this  week and  is the third  seed. He is the two-time
 defending  champion  and a four-time  Madrid winner, beating Nishikori in last
 year's finale.
 
 The   former  top-ranked  ace  Nadal  will  face  American  Steve  Johnson  on
 Wednesday.
 
 The  aforementioned  Murray, fresh  off  his  first-ever clay-court  title  in
 Munich,  is the  other former winner in  the draw. Seeded second this week, he
 won the 2008 Madrid title on a hardcourt.
 
 On  the practice courts, Murray could be seen getting acclimated to the ball's
 bounce  in Madrid's  altitude and  warm, dry  conditions, this  following some
 cold and damp conditions in Munich.
 
 
           === Slovakia pulls off another comeback win at Worlds ===
 
 Ostrava,  Czech Republic  (SportsNetwork.com) -  Slovakia used  another third-
 period  comeback to remain undefeated at the 2015 World Hockey Championship on
 Tuesday.
 
 Slovakia  scored three third-period goals to beat Slovenia 3-1. Marian Gaborik
 scored  the go-ahead goal with 5:44 remaining and added an empty-netter in the
 dying seconds.
 
 The  Slovaks have trailed in the third period in each of their three games but
 have  yet to lose. They rallied for a shootout win over Denmark in their Group
 B opener, then clipped Belarus in overtime.
 
 Belarus  rebounded from  that  loss with  a 5-1  win  against Denmark  earlier
 Tuesday.
 
 In Group A action, Denis Hollenstein broke a scoreless tie in the third period
 and  Leonardo Genoni  made 18 saves to  lead Switzerland to a 1-0 victory over
 Germany. Cristobal Huet stopped 23 shots as France blanked Austria 2-0.
 
 
           === Smith, White into semis at Four-Ball Championship ===
 
 San  Francisco,  CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Nathan  Smith and Todd White won two
 matches  on Tuesday  and  advanced to  the semifinals  at  the inaugural  U.S.
 Amateur Four-Ball Championship.
 
 Smith,  a four-time U.S. Mid-Amateur champion, and White beat Jason Higton and
 Ryan Higton 3 & 2 in their quarterfinal match at The Olympic Club.
 
 The  teams matched six  pars and a birdie over the first seven holes to remain
 all  square.  Smith and White  birdied the eighth to  go 1-up, then moved 2-up
 thanks to a par at the 10th.
 
 Another  birdie at  the 13th gave Smith  and White a 3-up cushion. After three
 straight halves, Smith and White were into the semifinals.
 
 They  will face  Austin Connelly and Sam Burns, who claimed their quarterfinal
 match 2 & 1 over Matthew Simone and Cory Bacon.
 
 Sherrill  Britt  and Greg Earnhardt  also won  by a 2  & 1 margin over Draegen
 Majors  and  Brooks  Price.  Majors  and  Price  had  taken  out  stroke  play
 medalists Maverick McNealy and Viraat Badhwar in the round of 16.
 
 Britt  and  Earnhardt will  face Scott  Harvey and Todd  Mitchell in the other
 semifinal. Harvey and Mitchell were 3 & 2 winners over Zach Atkinson and James
 Edmondson.
 
 
 05/05 23:20:12 ET