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BC-AP Sports Digest



Estimated read time: 7-8 minutes

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The supervisor is Fred Lief, followed by Ralph Russo at 5 p.m. and Vin Cherwoo at 1 a.m. The New York sports desk can be reached at 800 845-8450, ext. 1630. Sports Photos, ext. 1918; graphics, ext. 7636; agate, ext. 1635. AP stories, along with the photos that accompany them, also can be obtained from http://www.apexchange.com. Reruns are available from the Service Desk (800 838-4616) or your local AP bureau. All times EDT.

TOP STORIES

SWM--PHELPS COMEBACK

Michael Phelps is coming out of retirement, lured back into the pool by the fun of it and the possibility of swimming at a fifth Olympics in Rio in 2016. The 22-time Olympic medalist will compete for the first time since the 2012 London Games at a meet this month in Mesa, Ariz. By Beth Harris. SENT: 850 words, photos. UPCOMING: 950 words, photos by 5 p.m.

— With:

— SWM--Phelps Comeback-Legacy. By National Writer Paul Newberry. UPCOMING: 500 words, photos by 6 p.m.

BBO--PATERNITY LEAVE IN SPORTS

The Mets' Daniel Murphy was criticized on talk radio for spending three days with his family after the birth of his son. His team leapt to his defense. The four major North American sports leagues are becoming increasingly open to paternity leave as more players want to be around when a baby arrives. By Jon Krawczynski. SENT: 850 words, photos.

GLF--ON GOLF: BUBBA'S ENCORE

AUGUSTA, Ga. — Much is expected of major champions. Win two of them and the expectations grow. Augusta National suits Bubba Watson perfectly. That doesn't mean his game is limited to the Masters. That's the next step for one of golf's most exciting players. By Golf Writer Doug Ferguson. SENT: 750 words, photos.

NEW/DEVELOPING

PISTORIUS TRIAL

PRETORIA, South Africa — The prosecutor in Oscar Pistorius' murder trial tries to show that the Olympic runner is lying when he says he killed his girlfriend by mistake. He points to what he says are Pistorius' numerous inconsistencies in his account of the fatal shooting. By Gerald Imray and Christopher Torchia. SENT: 800 words, photos.

HKN--PREDATORS-TROTZ

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Barry Trotz, who has coached one team longer than anyone currently in the NHL, will not be back for a 16th season with the Predators. Nashville, which has been coached only by Trotz, is not renewing his contract. The team missed the playoffs the last two seasons. By Teresa M. Walker. SENT: 550 words, photos.

BBN--CARDINALS-BREWERS

MILWAUKEE — The Brewers go for their 10th in a row when they play the Cardinals. Milwaukee is 10-2 and off to its best start since opening the 1987 season at 13-0. Matt Garza starts for the Brewers against Lance Lynn of St. Louis. By Genaro C. Armas. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game starts 8:10 p.m.

BKN--GRIZZLIES-SUNS

PHOENIX — The Memphis Grizzlies look to clinch the final playoff berth in the West and eliminate the Phoenix Suns from postseason contention when the teams meet in their next-to-last game. By Bob Baum. UPCOMING: 750 words, photos. Game starts 10 p.m.

BKL--WNBA DRAFT

UNCASVILLE, Conn. — The WNBA holds its draft, with the Connecticut Sun expected to take Chiney Ogwumike of Stanford or Odyssey Sims of Baylor with the first pick. By Basketball Writer Doug Feinberg. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos. Draft starts 8 p.m.

COMMENTARY

CAR--INDYCAR-IN THE PITS

LONG BEACH, Calif. — Ed Carpenter's decision in November to race only on ovals and turn his car over to a more skilled driver on road and street courses is validated by Mike Conway's victory at Long Beach. By Auto Racing Writer Jenna Fryer. SENT: 650 words, photos.

NHL PLAYOFFS

HKN--NHL PLAYOFFS-10 THINGS

Ten things to watch when the NHL playoffs begin this week with a new format, some stars trying to return from injuries and renewed rivalries. By Hockey Writer Larry Lage. UPCOMING: 900 words, photos by 5 p.m.

HKN--BRUINS-PLAYOFFS

BOSTON — The Boston Bruins won the Presidents' Trophy for having the NHL's best record during the regular season. Next up are the Detroit Red Wings in the first round of the playoffs. By Howard Ulman. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 5 p.m.

HKN--BLACKHAWKS-PLAYOFF PUSH

CHICAGO — With Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane expected back from their injuries, the Chicago Blackhawks begin what they hope will be another Stanley Cup run. The defending champions open against the St. Louis Blues on Thursday. By Andrew Seligman. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 5 p.m.

HKN--PENGUINS-PRESSURE

PITTSBURGH — Forget the 109 points. The scoring title for Sidney Crosby. The steady play of Marc-Andre Fleury. The long slog through the regular season will be forgotten if the Pittsburgh Penguins don't make a deep run through the Stanley Cup playoffs, and the Penguins know it. By Will Graves. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— Also:

— COLUMBUS, Ohio — HKN--Blue Jackets-Sticking Around. By Rusty Miller. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— PHILADELPHIA — HKN--Flyers Advance. By Dan Gelston. UPCOMING. 700 words, photos, by 6 p.m.

— SAN JOSE, Calif. — HKN--Sharks-Playoffs. By Josh Dubow. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 6 p.m.

— Selected team wrapups.

AUTO RACING

CAR--NASCAR-HENDRICK'S STRENGTH

DARLINGTON, S.C. — One thing is clear entering the first off week for NASCAR's Sprint Cup series — Hendrick Motorsports is strong as ever. While the superstar program has only Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s season-opening victory at Daytona, its drivers are challenging week after week. By Pete Iacobelli. SENT: 650 words, photos.

CAR--F1-HAAS

CONCORD, N.C. — NASCAR team owner Gene Haas is out to prove that an American-based team can succeed in Formula One. He plans to field "Haas Formula" in 2015 or 2016, depending on how long it takes to find an engine supplier and get things up and running. By Steve Reed. SENT: 650 words, photos.

— Also:

— PARIS — CAR--F1-Red Bull Hearing. By John Leicester. SENT: 750 words, photos.

— MARANELLO, Italy — CAR--F1-Ferrari-Domenicali Resigns. SENT: 350 words, photos.

— MUNICH — CAR--F1-Ecclestone Charges. SENT: 120 words, photos.

FEATURES

BKN--PISTONS-FUTURE

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — The Detroit Pistons will have a new general manager next season after finishing more than 20 games under .500. The coach was already fired more than two months ago. Players aren't sure what to think about this team, where stability is hard to come by. By Noah Trister. SENT: 400 words, photos. UPCOMING: 650 words, photos by 5 p.m.

FBN--BROWNS-MACK STAYS

BEREA, Ohio — Pro Bowl center Alex Mack was one step out the door from leaving Cleveland last week. But following a muddled free agency courtship, he's staying put and says he's more committed to helping the Browns become winners. By Tom Withers. SENT: 130 words, photos. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 6 p.m.

BOX--ARREOLA-STIVERNE

LOS ANGELES — Chris Arreola once wanted to win football championships at USC, but he would gladly settle for the WBC heavyweight title when he faces Bermane Stiverne next month at the Trojans' Galen Center for the retired Vitali Klitschko's belt. By Greg Beacham. UPCOMING: 500 words by 6 p.m.

SOC--ASIAN STRUGGLE

HANOI, Vietnam — Across Southeast Asia many soccer fans care far more about European clubs than they do about their local teams. Match-fixing, corrupt governing bodies and chaotic management are partly to blame. By Chris Brummitt. SENT: 700 words, photos.

COLLEGE BASEBALL

— BBC--Pick Six-College Rdp. Texas, which finished last in the Big 12 last year, has won 14 of 16 games. By Eric Olson. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos by 5 p.m.

— TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — BBC--Florida St-Winston Watch. Busy weekend for Heisman winner Jameis Winston: Florida State-Georgia Tech baseball and football spring game. By Kareem Copeland. SENT: 500 words, photos.

OTHER NEWS

— INDIANAPOLIS — NCAA-Unions. NCAA provides school leaders with talking points about the potential for a college athletes' union. SENT: 100 words. UPCOMING: 350 words by 5 p.m.

— TORONTO — HKN--Leafs-Shanahan. Maple Leafs introduce Brendan Shanahan as team president. SENT: 350 words, photos.

— SAN DIEGO — FBN--Merriman-Nike Lawsuit. Former NFL linebacker Shawne Merriman suing Nike for trademark infringement. SENT: 130 words.

— SAN JOSE, Calif. — FBN--49ers-Culliver Arrested. 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver pleads not guilty to hit-and-run charges, brass knuckles possession. SENT: 120 words.

— INDIANAPOLIS — BKN--Pacers-Deal. City officials expected to approve deal keeping Pacers in Indianapolis for 13 more seasons. SENT: 130 words. UPCOMING: 250 words by 6 p.m.

— MONACO — TEN--Monte Carlo Masters. Fabio Fognini, Tommy Robredo reach second round of Monte Carlo Masters. By Jerome Pugmire. SENT: 400 words, photos.

CAPSULES

— BBO--Baseball Capsules.

— BKN--NBA Capsules.

Monday's Time Schedule (EDT)

Baseball

Tampa Bay at Baltimore, 7:05 p.m.

Atlanta at Philadelphia, 7:05 p.m.

Pittsburgh at Cincinnati, 7:10 p.m.

Washington at Miami, 7:10 p.m.

Seattle at Texas, 8:05 p.m.

St. Louis at Milwaukee, 8:10 p.m.

N.Y. Mets at Arizona, 9:40 p.m.

Oakland at L.A. Angels, 10:05 p.m.

Colorado at San Diego, 10:10 p.m.

NBA

Miami at Washington, 7 p.m.

Boston at Philadelphia, 7 p.m.

Milwaukee at Toronto, 7 p.m.

Charlotte at Atlanta, 7:30 p.m.

Orlando at Chicago, 8 p.m.

San Antonio at Houston, 8 p.m.

Oklahoma City at New Orleans, 8 p.m.

L.A. Lakers at Utah, 9 p.m.

Memphis at Phoenix, 10 p.m.

Minnesota at Golden State, 10:30 p.m.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

The Associated Press

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