Wakeup Call: Letang returns to Penguins today

Wakeup Call: Letang returns to Penguins today
March 17, 2014, 8:30 am
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Here's your wakeup call -- a combination of newsworthy and/or interesting tidbits -- for Monday, March 17:


Carl Edwards prevails through the rain at Bristol. (AP)


Mike Schmidt's mystery illness -- remember when the Phillies announced he wouldn't be an instructor at camp this year, and wouldn't say why? -- turned out to be Stage 3 melanoma, discovered when he had a "crusty little thing" on his hand checked out last August. But he's with the team now, says he feels "fantastic" after two operations, radiation and chemotherapy, and hopes he's got it beat. (CSN Philly)

Fatherhood first: Old friend Carl Crawford -- well, he used to play here; I don't know if he thinks of us as "friends" -- is skipping the Dodgers' season-opening trip to Australia to be on hand for the birth of his child. (Yahoo! Sports)

Boys, boys . . . it's March, for God's sakes! (AP)

First he hurt his shoulder. Now his elbow's bothering him. No wonder Jon Niese is calling this the "spring training from hell." (AP)

You've got nothing on poor Patrick Corbin, Jon. (AP)

Looks like Manny Machado's goal to play on Opening Day was a little optimistic, though he continues to hold out hope. (CSN Baltimore)

Should the A's be worried about Sonny Gray? (CSN Bay Area)

One day after saying they would focus on internal options to replace the injured Jose Iglesias, the Tigers are rumored to be making a run at Mariners shortstop Nick Franklin, which means another potential Stephen Drew landing spot closes its doors. Once again, we find ourselves saying: Well played, Mr. Boras. Well played. (NBC's Hardball Talk)

If the Tigers had any thoughts of convincing Jimmy Rollins to waive his no-trade clause, forget it. (CSN Philly)

Chone Figgins has more (professional) lives than Heatchliffe. Or Garfield. Or, for those with a few years on you, Morris The Cat. Or . . . (Hardball Talk)


So who are the bracket busters? The ones-and-dones? The Elite Eight, and the Dangerous Two? Pat Forde breaks it all down in the Big Dance Edition of Forde Minutes. (Yahoo! Sports)

Want to know why SMU, Wisconsin-Green Bay, et al, didn't make it? Here's why. (Yahoo! Sports)

How did the selection committee do this year? Well, here are three things it got right . . . and three things it got wrong. (Yahoo! Sports)

No. 1 Florida came this close to not being the overall top seed. (AP)

No. 6 Virginia became a No. 1 seed by winning its first ACC tournament championship since 1976. (AP)

But should the Cavaliers be a 1? (NBC's College Basketball Talk)

Puzzled as to why Coach K got that technical yesterday? He is, too. (AP)

That's the spirit, Delaware! (CSN Philly)

Getting snubbed by the NCAAs is one thing. Getting snubbed by the N.I.T., now that hurts. (CSN Baltimore)

I think it's a little early to be preparing an entry of Declaring For The NBA Draft, but Indiana's Noah Vonleh disagrees. (Yahoo! Sports)

And now it's time for Selection Monday. (AP)


If you'd like a lesson in the potential irresponsibility of social media, read this. (NBC's College Football Talk)


Tip of the hat to John Senden on his first tour victory in seven years. (AP)

And one to Fred Couples, who wins his 10th Champions Tour title. (AP)


Kris Letang returns to practice with the Penguins today, less than seven weeks after suffering a stroke. (AP)

That's the good news in Pittsburgh, and they can use some after back-to-back losses to the Flyers. (AP)

Marian Hossa gets a goal and two assists in his return after five games on the sideline due to injury and leads the Blackhawks past the Red Wings. (CSN Chicago)

The Canucks win a shootout against Bobby Loo and the Panthers. (AP)

You gotta do better than this to impress your new team, Tim. (NBC's Pro Hockey Talk)

Can you believe the Capitals are still in the hunt for an Eastern Conference playoff spot? This upcoming three-game trip to the West Coast, though, could make or break their chances. (CSN Washington)

The Stars-Blue Jackets game that was halted when Rich Peverley collapsed on the bench will resume April 9 from the point of the stoppage. (AP)


Ray Allen sparks a game-closing 21-7 run, and reaches some personal milestones in the process, in leading the Heat past the Rockets. (AP)

So who's hotter? Doc's Clippers, who've now won 11 straight . . . (AP)

. . . or the Spurs, who reach the 50-victory plateau for the 15th straight year by winning their 10th in a row? (AP)

Not that they would have done anything had they gotten there, but the Cavs' playoff hopes are probably in the toilet with the news that Kyrie Irving's biceps injury may sideline him for the rest of the season. (NBC's Pro Basketball Talk)

Attention Sixers Nation: You may be applauding this state-of-the-art Tankapalooza being pulled off by your team, but if you think the resulting high draft picks will result in an immediate turnaround, well, Brett Brown would like you to lower your expectations. (Pro Basketball Talk)


This poor young Carolina fan melts down at the news -- delivered someone gleefully, I thought, by his father -- than the Panthers "fired" Steve Smith. (You Tube). So now Smith is trying to reach the boy to, I assume, console him. (CSN Baltimore) He won't have to console the younger sister, though; she's ready to turn her affections to Cam Newton. 

By the way, you think the Patriots are thin at wide receiver? Take a look at the Panthers. (Yahoo! Sports)

The Seahawks would appear to have more than their fill of pass rushers, but that's not stopping them from kicking the tires on Jared Allen. (NBC's Pro Football Talk)

Emmanuel Sanders insists he and his agent did everything on the up-and-up in choosing the Broncos over the Chiefs. (Pro Football Talk)

Kansas City, however, begs to differ . . . and may actually have some recourse. (Pro Football Talk)

Mario Manningham, one of the heroes of the Giants' second Super Bowl win over the Patriots, could be headed back to New York. (CSN Bay Area)

Speaking of the Giants, they're in a mano-a-mano battle with the Jets over Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. (Pro Football Talk)

Didn't take Arian Foster long to remember why he quit Twitter in the first place. (CSN Houston)

It's bad enough the Raiders think either Matt Schaub or Mark Sanchez is the answer to their QB issue. But since both those guys are still under contract to other teams, they'd actually have to trade for one of them. (Pro Football Talk)


Your winners at Indian Wells: Novak Djokovic  . . . (AP)

. . . and Flavia Pennetta, who nearly retired last year after her ranking sank to 166th. (AP)