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The Early Lead: February 13, 2011 - February 19, 2011

George Cohen, NFL-NFLPA mediator, draws praise

Who is George Cohen, who now will act as mediator in talks between the NFL and NFL Players Association? Cohen is director of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service and, with labor issues looming across the world of sports, he...

By Cindy Boren  | February 17, 2011; 4:20 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  NFL  
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Iowa wrestler defaults rather than face girl in state high school tournament

Your Browser DoesNot Support IFrames. The decision Joel Northrup made can't have been an easy one, especially for a wrestler with a 35-4 record entering the state tournament. But rather than face a girl in the first round, Northrup defaulted...

By Cindy Boren  | February 17, 2011; 3:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
 
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Fan advocacy group asks to observe NFL, NFL Players Association talks

Here's a novel idea as the NFL and NFL Players Association negotiate a new collective bargaining agreement: What if the people who foot the bill -- the fans -- were allowed to observe the talks? That's the idea proposed by...

By Cindy Boren  | February 17, 2011; 1:01 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  NFL  
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Arrest made in poisoning of Auburn trees as efforts to save them continue

As an uphill battle to save the 130-year-old oak trees at Toomer's Corner in Auburn, Ala., continues, a man has been arrested and charged with poisoning the iconic foliage that marks a traditional gathering spot for Auburn celebrations. Harvey Almorn...

By Cindy Boren  | February 17, 2011; 12:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  College football  
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Blake Griffin smacks his head on the backboard

What's next for the Blake Griffin highlight reel? How about video of the owie he suffered when he thwacked his head on the backboard on an alley-oop late in the Los Angeles Clippers' 98-90 victory over Minnesota?...

By Cindy Boren  | February 17, 2011; 10:41 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  NBA  
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Miguel Cabrera arrested for DUI in Florida

It's been a weird week. Twice now, athletes have sprung the "Do you know who I am?" line. And twice now it hasn't really worked out as they might have hoped. Miguel Cabrera is the latest, joining Legedu Naanee. The...

By Cindy Boren  | February 17, 2011; 9:48 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  MLB  
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Lakers get a shock from the Cavs...and one guy has to walk home to LA

Their defense is horrendous, their legs are getting older by the possession and their interest level fluctuates between bored and horribly bored. Yikes. That's the kind of stuff people, like Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times, write when, after...

By Cindy Boren  | February 17, 2011; 8:11 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  NBA  
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Michael Vick cancels 'Oprah' appearance

Of all the moves Michael Vick has made, this is one of the more curious ones. He has bailed on Oprah. The Philadelphia Eagles' quarterback -- the NFL's comeback player of the year -- canceled the taping of an interview...

By Cindy Boren  | February 17, 2011; 7:44 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (21)
Categories:  Michael Vick  
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Albert Pujols, Cardinals: No deal at deadline

Updated at 12:08 p.m. The noon deadline set by Albert Pujols and the St. Louis Cardinals passed with no deal in place. The first baseman, who is expected to arrive for spring training in Jupiter, Fla., on Thursday, has...

By Cindy Boren  | February 16, 2011; 10:44 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  MLB  
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Wade hits LeBron James with a perfect 'Hail Dwyane' pass

Dwyane Wade "probably threw the best pass in NBA history," according to the recipient of that pass, LeBron James, in the Miami Heat's 110-103 victory over the Pacers in Indianapolis. It was ridiculously good, that 90-foot, first-quarter Wade-to-James bomb for...

By Cindy Boren  | February 16, 2011; 10:33 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  LeBron James, NBA  
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Senators urge MLB, players' union to agree to ban on smokeless tobacco

Two senators are urging Major League Baseball to do what Stephen Strasburg is trying to do -- kick the smokeless tobacco habit. Frank R. Lautenberg (D-N.J.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) have written Commissioner Bud Selig and Major League Baseball Players...

By Cindy Boren  | February 16, 2011; 8:51 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  MLB  
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Lance Armstrong says he's retiring from cycling for good

Lance Armstrong's last race was the Tour Down Under. (Associated Press) Just in case it wasn't clear -- and it can be murky with athletes -- Lance Armstrong has said that this time his cycling career really is over....

By Cindy Boren  | February 16, 2011; 7:56 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Lance Armstrong  
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Bill Russell, Stan Musial presented with Medal of Freedom

Two Hall of Fame athletes, Bill Russell and Stan Musial, were among 15 people honored by President Barack Obama with the Medal of Freedom as "the best of who we are and who we aspire to be." Russell played on...

By Cindy Boren  | February 15, 2011; 2:43 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
 
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Tony La Russa takes issue with union over Albert Pujols talks

St. Louis Cardinals Manager Tony La Russa had strong words for the MLB Players Association as the deadline for signing Albert Pujols to a contract extension bore down. La Russa, discussing the negotiations at spring training in Jupiter, Fla., said...

By Cindy Boren  | February 15, 2011; 11:45 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  MLB  
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Jim Zorn named Kansas City Chiefs' quarterbacks coach

Former Redskins coach Jim Zorn has been named quarterbacks coach of the Kansas City Chiefs. Zorn was fired Jan. 27 after one season as quarterbacks coach of the Baltimore Ravens, a move that drew criticism from Joe Flacco. Chiefs offensive...

By Cindy Boren  | February 15, 2011; 11:22 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  NFL, Redskins  
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Report: Banks and friend may have started incident (updated)

View more videos at: http://www.nbcwashington.com. Updated at 1:15 p.m. The charging affadavit describing the fight that left Brandon Banks and Christopher Nixon hospitalized and resulted in the arrest of Jason Shorter is less conclusive than NBC 4's report. The...

By Cindy Boren  | February 15, 2011; 8:04 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (29)
Categories:  Redskins  
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Report: Albert Haynesworth accused of sexual assault

Updated at 2:40 p.m. A waitress in Washington, D.C., has accused Redskins defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth of sexual assault at the W Hotel, according to a WRC Channel 4 report. Police and the U.S. Attorney's Office, according to the report,...

By Cindy Boren  | February 14, 2011; 2:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (46)
Categories:  Albert Haynesworth, Redskins  
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Albert Pujols, Cardinals move deadline for a deal to Wednesday

Albert Pujols and the St. Louis Cardinals have agreed to move their deadline for a contract extension from Tuesday to noon Wednesday because Cardinals Hall of Famer Stan Musial is being awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Tuesday at...

By Cindy Boren  | February 14, 2011; 11:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  MLB  
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Jadeveon Clowney decides to play for South Carolina

Jadeveon Clowney has made his decision: He will play for South Carolina. Clowney, the top-rated recruit in the country as a defensive end at Rock Hill, S.C., waited until today to announce his decision because it's his birthday and he...

By Cindy Boren  | February 14, 2011; 10:26 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  College football  
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Tiger Woods fined for spitting in Dubai Desert Classic (updated)

Updated at 12:44 p.m. Tiger Woods has apologized, via Twitter, for spitting on the green at the Dubai Desert Classic. .bbpBox37203687872925700 {background:url(http://a2.twimg.com/profile_background_images/55581779/TwitterBkTW.jpg) #ffffff;padding:20px;} p.bbpTweet{background:#fff;padding:10px 12px 10px 12px;margin:0;min-height:48px;color:#000;font-size:18px !important;line-height:22px;-moz-border-radius:5px;-webkit-border-radius:5px} p.bbpTweet span.metadata{display:block;width:100%;clear:both;margin-top:8px;padding-top:12px;height:40px;border-top:1px solid #fff;border-top:1px solid #e6e6e6} p.bbpTweet span.metadata span.author{line-height:19px} p.bbpTweet span.metadata...

By Cindy Boren  | February 14, 2011; 9:53 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Tiger Woods  
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Jerry Gray's caps whirlwind month with job as Tennessee Titans' defensive coordinator

Over the weekend, Jerry Gray landed a job as defensive coordinator of the Tennessee Titans -- his third gig since Jan. 16. He'd previously been the model of longevity, coaching with the Redskins from 2006 through 2009 and with the...

By Cindy Boren  | February 14, 2011; 9:24 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  NFL, Redskins  
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Where should Plaxico Burress play when he's released from prison?

Plaxico Burress isn't expected to be of prison until June 6 -- and given the NFL labor situation, he's likely to go from lock-up to a lockout -- but that hasn't stopped former teammates from expressing interest in playing with...

By Cindy Boren  | February 14, 2011; 7:58 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  NFL, Redskins  
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Brett Haber offers Dan Snyder free air time; The Economist weighs in

So far, the Wall Street Journal and New York Times have, in blogs and stories taken a whack at weighed in on Daniel Snyder's lawsuit against Washington City Paper because of a piece Dave McKenna wrote last fall. (A piece...

By Cindy Boren  | February 14, 2011; 6:43 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (34)
Categories:  Daniel M. Snyder  
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