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Sale of Phoenix Coyotes to the NHL is approved

Team's six-month journey through U.S. Bankruptcy Court comes to an end.

November 03, 2009|Robyn Norwood; Diane Pucin | Wire Reports

The Phoenix Coyotes' bumpy six-month journey through U.S. Bankruptcy Court has come to an end with a judge's approval of the sale of the franchise to the NHL.

Judge Redfield T. Baum signed the order Monday after a quiet, brief hearing in a mostly empty courtroom, a stark contrast to earlier scenes of high drama featuring countless high-priced attorneys locked in often-bitter arguments.

The NHL's bid totals about $140 million. The figure listed in the sale order is $128.4 million, but that does not include the $11.6 million the NHL has agreed to spend to purchase claims of nearly all the unsecured creditors in the case.

NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said the league would work to quickly close the deal and take full control of the Coyotes' business operations.

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The Washington Capitals say Alexander Ovechkin is "week to week" because of an upper-body injury.

The Capitals said the two-time league most valuable player suffered an "upper-body strain" in Sunday's overtime loss to Columbus.

Ovechkin had an MRI exam and will travel with the team while receiving treatment.

Ovechkin has sat out only four games -- and only two because of injury -- since coming to the NHL in 2005.

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Philadelphia Flyers winger Simon Gagne is expected to be sidelined the next six to eight weeks after having abdominal and hip surgery.

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The Ducks put forward Erik Christensen on waivers and reassigned forward Matt Beleskey to San Antonio of the American Hockey League.

-- Robyn Norwood

PRO BASKETBALL

Rondo says he, Celtics have deal

Rajon Rondo says he has agreed to a five-year contract extension with the Boston Celtics, keeping the star point guard from entering the market as a restricted free agent after the season.

The deal has yet to be signed, but Rondo said Monday that was just a "formality."

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Milwaukee Bucks guard Michael Redd is out for at least two weeks after straining a tendon in his left knee during the team's home opener.

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The Minnesota Timberwolves have exercised contract options for next season on Corey Brewer and Kevin Love.

The moves guarantee Brewer a $3.7-million salary in his fourth year and Love a $3.6-million salary in his third year.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Florida's Spikes benched for half

Top-ranked Florida will be without star linebacker Brandon Spikes for the first half of Saturday's game against Vanderbilt.

Coach Urban Meyer suspended Spikes on Monday, two days after the defensive captain apparently tried to gouge the eyes of Georgia running back Washaun Ealey in the Gators' 41-17 victory.

Spikes issued a statement apologizing for what he did.

ETC.

Walton won't be part of NBA crew

Former UCLA great Bill Walton, 57, who has missed portions of the last two seasons while undergoing surgeries to correct back problems, said in a statement that he is not going to be part of ESPN's NBA basketball coverage.

In a statement released by ESPN, Walton said: "As I return after a grueling multi-year, life-threatening, life-changing ordeal with back problems, it is time to dedicate the rest of my life to service."

Walton has been an NBA analyst for ESPN since the cable network began covering the league. He had one more year left on his contract.

-- Diane Pucin

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The Galaxy's Landon Donovan is a finalist for Major League Soccer's most-valuable-player award.

Donovan, FC Dallas' Jeff Cunningham and New England's Shalrie Joseph were the top three in voting by league players, general managers, coaches, referees and media.

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Doug Barron, a 40-year-old journeyman who lost his tour card three years ago, became the first player to be suspended by the PGA Tour for testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance.

Barron was immediately suspended for one year.

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Roger Federer made a winning return from a six-week break, beating Belgium's Olivier Rochus, 6-3, 6-4, at the Swiss Indoors tournament in Basel.

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