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Game Plan

September 4, 2013 | By Chuck Schilken
A key member of the Chicago Bears' defense for the past 13 seasons, Brian Urlacher is as an eight-time Pro Bowler, a former AP defensive player of the year and a future Hall of Famer. In his new role as an analyst on Fox Sports 1, the recently retired linebacker revealed another member of those defenses who played a key role in slowing opposing teams' offenses -- the dive guy. In other words, it was someone who would fake an injury in order to stop the clock, particularly during long drives or early in the season, when the athletes tend to get gassed.
March 30, 2014 | Bill Plaschke
SAN DIEGO - For seven innings, it was a game that glittered with the Dodgers' brightest hopes. Then, in what felt like seven minutes, it was a game that swallowed them up in their worst fears. What began as a nice first chapter highlighted by great pitching and smart hitting devolved into a woeful opening verse of lousy relief, shoddy fielding, managerial second-guessing and a giant poke in the belly of the $250-million beast. What began as a pleasant night at Petco Park suddenly became a raging storm that thundered with chants of "Beat L.A. " It was a sweet opener, until the Dodgers forgot to close it, losing a one-run lead in the eighth inning in a 3-1 loss to the San Diego Padres on Sunday in baseball's first 2014 game on U.S. soil.
May 10, 2009 | Jon Caramanica
This week, the third season of "The Game" (8:30 p.m. Fridays) will come to an end aiming to answer several questions. Will Derwin (Pooch Hall) and Melanie (Tia Mowry) finally get married, or will the baby he's expecting with his ex Janay (Gabrielle Dennis) sabotage their plans? Will Malik (Hosea Chanchez) let his newfound family loyalties get in the way of his game on the field, and off? Will Tasha (Wendy Raquel Robinson) finally find love with Rick Fox (playing himself)?
March 9, 2014 | By Mike DiGiovanna
TEMPE, Ariz. - The new instant-replay and home-plate collision rules were the primary topics of the Angels' annual spring-training Players' Assn. meeting Sunday morning. There has been some confusion about the rules and how they've been implemented in exhibition games, and new union chief Tony Clark acknowledged a growing concern among players about whether the rules will enhance or detract from the game. Then, a few hours later, a fifth-inning play in the Angels' 3-1 victory over the Cincinnati Reds did nothing to ease the debate.
April 21, 2010 | By Broderick Turner
He smiled and then chuckled, his voice and demeanor suggesting full admiration for his team's opponent. On Tuesday, the Oklahoma City Thunder blocked 17 shots against the Lakers in Game 2 of the Western Conference playoffs and forced the Lakers into another miserable shooting night. And for the second straight game, the young Thunder took the more experienced defending NBA champions to the brink. "They have our attention," Lakers assistant coach Jim Cleamons said. "They are a worthy opponent.
December 16, 2011 | By David Wharton
Pretty much everyone who wanders into Pat Summitt's office or visits her basketball practice these days has learned to fear the iPad. The coach keeps her tablet filled with brain-wrenching games. Crossword puzzles and Sudoku. Math quizzes and memory tests. "When people come by," said Tyler, her son, "she gets them to sit down and try one of those things. " It was seven months ago that doctors diagnosed Summitt with early-onset dementia, Alzheimer's type, an incurable brain disease that affects memory, thinking and behavior.
September 26, 2012 | Michael Hiltzik
The one thing about the National Football League on which almost everyone agrees is that it takes its job of providing first-rate entertainment very seriously. That could be one explanation for the league's effort to supplement the pleasure of watching two teams of superbly trained athletes compete by adding the comedy stylings of pick-up referees, capped by the spectacular fiasco of Monday night's Seattle Seahawks-Green Bay Packers game. Or the explanation may be simply that a business collecting more than $9 billion in revenue this year sees value in sacrificing one crucial component of its success - credible and firm enforcement of the rules - merely to save about $5 million a year, or five hundredths of a percent.
September 29, 2000
With loudspeakers blaring an electronic screech from the sideline, USC paid particular attention to special teams at practice on Thursday. Two blocked punts in three games have put an emphasis on faster snaps. Zeke Moreno has experience as a long snapper but the coaches worry about him becoming fatigued by covering punts, then staying in the game as the middle linebacker. They would prefer redshirt freshman Norm Katnik fill the role, but he only began snapping this summer.
February 25, 2001
When it comes to courting pro sports teams, Oxnard is a lot like Charlie Brown: No matter how many times its plans fall flat, the city is always ready to try again. The latest team to get city officials doing the wave is the Dallas Cowboys. The National Football League team is considering holding two weeks of its summer training camp at a city practice field. The Cowboys recently sent representatives to check out the field at the Residence Inn by the Marriott hotel in northern Oxnard.
July 20, 2008 | Ann Brenoff, Times Staff Writer
Ah, the difference $2 million makes. Tennis star Pete Sampras has sold his Beverly Hills home after dropping the price from $25 million to $23 million, which is what the Multiple Listing Service says the place fetched. Sampras recently expanded and remodeled the English Tudor-style house, adding lots of detailed finishes throughout. The estate, walled and gated, sits on more than an acre of landscaped grounds that include -- surprise, surprise! -- a north-south tennis court.
March 1, 2014 | By Eric Sondheimer
 Westchester barely held off Narbonne, 62-58, in a City Section Division I semifinal game on Saturday at L.A. Southwest College. Elijah Stewart, who scored 27 points, made a key three-point play in the final 30 seconds to bail out the Comets (28-5), who had trouble guarding Reverand Maduakor. He went to the free-throw line 19 times, making 13 and finishing with 21 points for Narbonne (23-9). Jamal Hicks added 18 points. Myles Stewart contributed 14 points for Westchester, which will play El Camino Real in next Saturday's final.
February 17, 2014 | By James Barragan
SAN DIEGO - Another sellout crowd is on its feet at Viejas Arena for the final minute of yet another San Diego State basketball win. On this night, a well-respected Nevada team that came in with a highly touted defense has been drubbed by 15 points. Xavier Thames, a senior who is San Diego State's leading scorer, has put himself within two points of reaching 1,000 points in his career as the Aztecs win for the 20th consecutive time, tying a school record. Could this team, currently ranked No. 6 with a 22-2 record, be as good as the 2010-11 squad that was 34-3 and made it to the regional rounds of the NCAA tournament?
January 6, 2014 | Chris Foster
There are bigger challenges ahead for UCLA. There must be. The Bruins trampled USC, 107-73, at Pauley Pavilion on Sunday, looking like a team that wants to be a Pac-12 power. The conference opener for both teams was a stat fest for one side. Kyle Anderson had 23 points, Jordan Adams 21 and Bryce Alford 20. The Bruins shot 58%. They had a 41-35 rebounding advantage. The Bruins (12-2 overall, 1-0 in Pac-12 play) even matched their highest point total over USC (9-5, 0-1). The outcome probably will produce a shrug across the conference.
November 30, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
The Clippers are not a healthy team, their starting backcourt and one of their top reserves all dealing with injuries. All-Star point guard Chris Paul has a strained right hamstring, starting shooting guard J.J. Redick has a sprained right wrist and backup small forward Matt Barnes is recovering from left retina surgery. Of the three, Paul has the best chance of playing Sunday against the Indiana Pacers at Staples Center. He sat out his first game of the season Friday night at Sacramento, but Paul remains a game-time decision for the game against the Pacers.
November 16, 2013 | Sam Farmer
The Kansas City Chiefs (9-0) are the NFL's only undefeated team, and quarterback Alex Smith is playing it close to the protective vest. He's ranked 27th in passing yards, yet has a league-low four interceptions. Kansas City's defense leads in several categories - sacks, takeaways, and efficiency in the red zone and on third downs - - but its keep-it-under-the-speed-limit offense hasn't scored a touchdown in the last six quarters. Sunday night's showdown at Denver (8-1) pits the Broncos' top-ranked offense, averaging 458.7 yards per game, and a Kansas City defense that has surrendered a league-low 12.3 points per game.
November 7, 2013 | Chris Dufresne
Those who have waited years to see how Oregon's lightning-quick offense might match up against old-school Alabama in a national title game are going to have to wait at least another year. Stanford, though, might have already provided the answer. For a second consecutive year, with the same man-powered game plan, Stanford knocked Oregon out of the national title race. Last November it was a three-point, Saturday night squeaker in Eugene. This November it was the No. 6 Cardinal toppling the No. 2 Ducks with a 26-20 win on Thursday night at Stanford Stadium.
June 21, 2006 | From a Times staff writer
Disney has postponed production of a film called "The Game Plan" after star Dwayne Johnson, better known as the Rock, ruptured his Achilles tendon Monday while preparing for his role as a professional quarterback. Johnson will undergo surgery in Miami on Friday, a studio spokesman said Tuesday. The movie, described as a family comedy in which Johnson's character discovers while preparing for a championship game that he has a young daughter, was to have begun filming in Boston next week.
October 5, 2008 | Dawn C. Chmielewski, Times Staff Writer
The gig: Levin is chief executive of GYL, a Santa Monica technology investment portfolio focused on digital media companies and video game platforms. He serves as a board member for online virtual world Habbo Inc.; in-game advertising company Double Fusion Inc.; Power Challenge, a maker of multi-player sports games; and game developer Mind Control Software Inc.
November 7, 2013 | By Broderick Turner
  MIAMI - It was a simple statement by Clippers Coach Doc Rivers that told the story about why his team lost, 102-97, to the two-time defending NBA champion Miami Heat on Thursday night. "They're better than us right now," Rivers conceded. "They are. But we're going to work on that. That's what this season is for. You keep working. We knew before the year they were better. "By the way, they've won back-to-back titles. So our job is to keep getting better and by the end of the year, see if we can catch them.
October 28, 2013 | By Sam Farmer
Peyton Manning did not have a pass intercepted in his first four games, and one each in his next three. So the Denver quarterback's three intercepted passes in Sunday's 45-21 victory over Washington were a jolt to him. “Well, it's disappointing,” Manning said after the win. “There's no question, because you feel like you put your defense in a tough spot. Those guys had a great game plan and executed it and all of the sudden we're down, 21-7. The defense had not given up 21 points, they'd give up I guess seven.
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