March 22, 2013 |
UCLA basketball star Shabazz Muhammad is 20 years old, not 19 as widely believed. The news comes just hours before UCLA is scheduled to play against Minnesota in its opening game of the NCAA tournament in Austin, Texas, Friday night. That revelation, first reported by the Los Angeles Times in a front page article today , has led to speculation that his NBA draft prospects could be negatively impacted. Muhammad, UCLA's leading scorer, is expected to leave the school and enter the June draft after the NCAA tournament.
March 16, 2013 |
YANGON, Myanmar - When Mizzima moved its headquarters to Yangon last year from India, media watchers saw it as a sign that political reform in Myanmar was real. For more than a decade, the media group has published hard-hitting coverage of military corruption and Myanmar's dismal human rights record, and many saw its arrival as a bellwether of the regime's tolerance. Recent days, however, have brought growing industry concern about backsliding after the government sent a draft press law to the parliament March 4: It bears an unsettling resemblance to the draconian 1962 media law still in effect, which has long been used to jail, torture and harass journalists.
March 15, 2013 |
With all that's going right for the Ducks these days, they moved Friday to land a player who can buttress their standing by acquiring forward David Steckel from the Toronto Maple Leafs for minor leaguer Ryan Lasch and a seventh-round draft pick in 2014. For a low price, the Ducks (20-3-3) gained a face-off specialist and type of veteran player contending teams typically pursue near the trade deadline (April 3 this season). The Ducks, who have won five straight going into Saturday's road-trip finale at St. Louis, demoted left wing Patrick Maroon to minor-league Norfolk to make roster room for Steckel.
March 15, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - An influential Republican senator involved in drafting a bipartisan immigration bill wants to lower the number of family members of U.S. citizens allowed to immigrate each year and instead increase the number of highly skilled workers. Democrats in the group have not agreed to the approach, but Democratic Senate aides concede that it could be part of the give and take of a deal. The proposal would eliminate the current preference for admitting siblings and adult children of U.S. citizens, but leave in place the preference for spouses and minor children.
March 13, 2013 |
BEIRUT - Moving to quash rumors of mass conscription, the embattled Syrian government said Wednesday that the armed forces remained strong and insisted that there were no plans to sweep up all military-age men into the army. The military is at its "highest levels of readiness and capability, and [is] … well prepared to repel and confront terrorists," declared the official Syrian Arab News Agency, which routinely describes armed rebels as terrorists. Syrian authorities took the unusual step of denying reports that young men were being grabbed at checkpoints and drafted into the army as part of a new general call for military conscription.
March 4, 2013 |
NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan has been busy lately. On Monday he suspended Buffalo Sabres forward Patrick Kaleta for five games without pay for a dangerous boarding infraction Kaleta committed against Brad Richards of the New York Rangers on Sunday night. Kaleta, who has been suspended twice before, is considered a repeat offender and so will lose $76,219.25 to the Players' Emergency Assistance Fund. Here's the video , in which Shanahan says that although Kaleta didn't push Richards with excessive force, “he does so at an extremely dangerous distance from the boards.” Kaleta was given a major penalty and game misconduct after the play.
March 2, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Fired up as once-unimaginable spending cuts start to slice the federal budget, Republicans are launching a new phase in their austerity campaign - resurrecting the party's cost-cutting plan to turn Medicare into a voucher-like system for future seniors. Despite public uncertainty Saturday about the $85 billion in so-called sequester cuts, Republicans now believe they have momentum to ask Americans to make tough choices on Medicare, as rising healthcare costs combine with an aging population to form a growing part of future deficits.
February 28, 2013 |
I'm always looking to make new friends, which is the way I approach a youth baseball draft - new coaches, new buddies. Twenty guys in a community room of the local church, in creaky chairs the preschoolers usually use. Someone jokes, "Who brought the beer?" but there is no alcohol here, just good dads with good intentions. What a pile of sweethearts these guys turn out to be. I ask one of these poker-faced idiots his opinion of one 9-year-old prospect, and he blurts, "HEY, I WAS GOING TO TAKE HIM!"
February 26, 2013 |
INDIANAPOLIS - Oklahoma's Lane Johnson ran nearly as fast as Baltimore receiver Anquan Boldin, leaped as high as Cincinnati receiver A.J. Green, and matched the broad jump of New England running back Stevan Ridley. Were Johnson, say, a safety, his performance at the NFL scouting combine would have been reasonably impressive. But this boggles the mind: Johnson is a 6-foot-6, 303-pound offensive tackle. "Think about those three things for a 300-pound offensive tackle and put that in perspective of what he can be," said NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock, who said Johnson is "going to end up somewhere in the 10-15 range in this draft, and he has the ability to be an All-Pro left tackle.
February 26, 2013 |
If the goals were to clear cap space and continue to stockpile draft picks, Kings General Manager Dean Lombardi accomplished both with one move Tuesday. Lombardi traded left wing Simon Gagne to Gagne's former team, the Philadelphia Flyers, in exchange for a conditional draft choice in 2013. The Kings receive a third-round pick from Philadelphia if the Flyers make the playoffs or a fourth-round pick if the Flyers do not. Gagne, a healthy scratch the last four games, had five assists in 11 games and had not played since Feb. 17 at Chicago, seemingly an ill fit in Kings Coach Darryl Sutter's system.