– Penguins’ F James Neal (broken foot) and F Jordan Staal (knee) are expected to miss 4-6 weeks. Neal was hit by a shot in the foot late in Saturday’s game against New Jersey, while Staal was injured Friday night when he collided knee-on-knee with Rangers’ F Mike Rupp. Staal is believed to have a strained ligament, but that remains unconfirmed. Neal leads the team with 21 goals. The two join F Sidney Crosby and D Kris Letang on the sidelines. The Pens have suffered 210 man-games lost this season to injury, including missing key players like Crosby (32 games), D Zbynek Michalek (20), Letang (16), F Evgeni Malkin (7), Staal (6) and D Paul Martin (6). The Pens are on pace for 431 man-games lost, which would eclipse the devastating 350 lost last season. Head coach Dan Bylsma said,
“Jordan Staal has a knee injury, 4-6 weeks at this point it looks like depending on recovery time for him. James Neal in (Saturday) night’s game late in the game received a shot to the foot, broke his foot. The next few days we’ll see what that timetable looks like, but it’s weeks, not days at this point.”
– Flames’ F Jarome Iginla scored in his 500th career goal as the Flames beat the Minnesota Wild 3-1 on Saturday night. Iginla becomes the 42nd player in NHL history to reach the milestone. All the goals in the game came in the third period, and Iginla’s 16th of the year came as the second for the Flames. With 33 points, Iginla’s numbers have fallen considerably this season. The Flames captain is on pace for just 62 points. Here’s the video of Iginla’s historic goal:
– Coyotes’ F Shane Doan recorded his first career hat trick (in his game No. 1601) to lead the Coyotes to a 5-1 win over the Islanders on Saturday night. The winger’s final goal beat the third-period buzzer and needed video review. Check out the video:
– According to TSN, the NHL now has 60 days to file a grievance in regards to the new proposed schedule being rejected by the NHLPA. This action would seek declaration the NHLPA withheld their consent unreasonably in violation of the CBA. As well, the league may seek damages on behalf of the teams whose business will be most impacted next year (ie Red Wings, Jets, Blue Jackets, etc.) This grievance and the issues identified within would require a decision from an arbitrator before collective bargaining.
– Following the Broncos OT win over the Steelers, pornstar Samantha Saint (@MissSaintXXX) continued her #nakedtebowing trend on Twitter. This time around, Destiny Dixon (@DESTINYDIXON) and Angela Sommers (@RealAngSommers) have been added. Check it out:
– According to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen, Colts’ owner Jim Irsay “will never trade” QB Peyton Manning. Mort also reports both Irsay and Manning have vehemently denied discussing pushing back the March 8 due date for Manning’s $28M option bonus. The duo will “jointly determine” Manning’s future, and the matter of Manning’s potential release remains a “medical issue” for the time being. Manning will likely be released just before or on March 8.
– FOX Sports’ Jay Glazer would be “shocked” if Jeff Fisher isn’t the Rams’ new head coach within the “next 48 hours,” and reports the Dolphins are moving on to other candidates. Fisher’s agent is the father of Rams’ director of football operations Kevin Demoff, one was one of many signs that pointed to Fisher leaning towards the Rams.
– Midwestern State University student Brittany Salvesen posted a YouTube video, asking Broncos’ QB Tim Tebow to be her date at a Christian sorority formal (Sigma Phi Lamdaa). Check out the video:
Speaking of Tebow, a video of a dunk Tebow fan has surfaced, where the fan Tebow’s on a bar tabletop and falls behind the counter. Check it out:
– Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes reports that the Orioles and Blue Jays recently sent scouts to watch OF Manny Ramirez take batting practice in Miami. Based on comments by president of baseball operations Dan Duquette, it sounds like the Orioles might legitimately have some interest. “Manny’s an interesting guy. He’s interesting to the fans. And he can hit. Or he could hit. I don’t know if he still can. He wants another opportunity. He’s trying hard to get one.” Duquette has some history with Ramirez, as he signed him when he was GM of the Red Sox in 2000. The O’s don’t have anyone locked into the DH spot, so they could give Manny a shot after he serves his 50-game suspension for a second positive PED test.
– Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com reports that the Phillies are interested in free agent reliever Kerry Wood. Crasnick says the Phillies’ interest could depend on the status of RHP Jose Contreras, who had season-ending elbow surgery in August. Wood, 34, posted a 3.35 ERA and 57/21 K/BB ratio over 51 innings last season.
– The Japanese website Sponichi reports that the Rangers are interested in free agent RHP Hiroki Kuroda. The report was translated and introduced by Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker. The Rangers already have lots of pitching depth and will get more if they come to terms with RHP Yu Darvish. Kuroda, who is looking for a $12-13M deal.
– Joe Paterno’s son, Scott, spoke with ESPN and discussed his father’s health, Bill O’Brien being hired as the new coach of Penn State and Jerry Sandusky. Check out the video:
– Mavericks’ F Dirk Nowitzki has posted a video of himself doing a dramatic reading of Britney Spears’ hit song, “Oops I Did It Again.” Check out the video for a good laugh:
– The sports director for a CBS affiliate in Orlando claims that “multiple sources” told him Magic’ F Dwight Howard is re-thinking his trade request, and that there’s an 80% chance that he’ll stay with the team. According to the rumor, Howard wants to convince Nets’ G Deron Williams to play with him in Orlando. Take this with a grain of salt at this point in time.
– Nets’ coach Avery Johnson said Saturday that F Brook Lopez (foot surgery) is “right on schedule.” Lopez’s original timetable was set at 6-8 weeks following December 23 surgery. If he ends up missing exactly seven weeks, that puts his return at February 10. At that point, the Nets still have 38 games left in the season.
– Hornets’ G Eric Maynor (torn ACL) will miss the rest of the 2011-12 season. Maynor, 24, was averaging 15 minutes this season as the backup point guard.
– John Morrison answered numerous fan questions for the fansite Starship-Pained.com including a query regarding life after WWE.
“I feel like I got off an express train walked to my car, and sped away. I’m still busy as all hell, but now, I’m the one driving,” he said.
He was also asked, “What do you think will help you get to the next level when you return to WWE?” Morrison said,
“JoMo needs to cut promos.”
– WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross has updated his blog, which you can read in its entirety over at JRsBarBQ.com. Here are some highlights of what JR wrote about:
Chris Jericho On RAW: “What do I expect from Chris Jericho live on Raw this Monday night? I have no way of knowing but w/o saying a word he made an impact and created ample discussion last week in Memphis. What if Jericho decided to disrespect the live audience and the TV viewers again by NOT addressing them again this week? Would there be outrage, disgust or smiles?”
His Goatee: “Is my mostly gray goatee permanent? TBD. We’re still getting to know each other. It’s an experiment as a result of a lazy guy not shaving during the holidays. I’m not becoming a TV villain as best that I know and if I was I could do so w/o facial hair.”
Legends House: “Would I like to see the Iron Sheik in the WWE Legends House? That would be a hoot. Lots of beeps and perhaps a need for closed captioning. As best that I know, the cast has NOT been finalized for this WWE Network reality show.”
Ultimate Warrior vs. Kevin Nash: “What’s my take on @RealKevinNash and Warrior’s verbal issues? Not sure what prompted it but they will likely NEVER have an official, physical confrontation. It did provide some entertaining exchanges during a slow news week.”
– WWE will release a DVD and Blu-ray chronicling the life of Edge on April 10, 2012. It is titled “You Think You Know Me – The Edge Story.” Several WWE employees as well as peers not affiliated with the organization were interviewed for the documentary portion of the release.
– Matt Hardy published a statement on Facebook acknowledging his past mistakes, which in 2011 included two arrests for driving while intoxicated, one arrest for drug possession and one arrest for violating a court order. The former WWE Superstar wrote,
“I have made more than my share of mistakes in life, but those mistakes have also made me into the person I am today. I can’t change my past, so I won’t ever deny it or attempt to hide it either.
“When someone compliments me, I greatly appreciate it. When someone insults me, it doesn’t bother me because I know exactly how good I am and am confident in what I have to offer to others in my life now. No one’s perfect-not me, not you, not anyone. We can all only try and be the best human being we can be.
“I understand my human defects and work on improving them every day. I’ve NEVER been so full of life and had so much excitement for every new day of life. I’ve been given so much in life, it’s time for me to give back.
“Whether you love me or despise me, God bless you all.”