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CRAWFORD: Examining the filthiest contracts and ultimate bargains in pro sports

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Kobe Bryant loosens his tie and leans back in his seat, struggling to swallow the Lakers’ latest home loss to Charlotte.In minutes, he’ll chastise coach Mike D’Antoni and the effort of teammates to reporters before presenting no explanation as to why Los Angeles has dropped to 16-31 two weeks before the All-Star break.Why is he befuddled? No doubt he wants to win and Bryant’s championship pedigree proves it, but mired in mediocrity, there’s nothing he can do this season for a franchise trying to stay relevant.


Baseball Elite Poll: Slugfest Lumberton’s to win

Say what you want about the seeding — it is voted on by coaches after all — but the Robeson County Slugfest at Red Springs is Lumberton’s tournament to win this season, jokingly labeled the ‘Pirate Invitational’ a season ago after the program’s seventh title in the last 11 years.Lumberton, seeded third this weekend behind Fairmont and Purnell Swett, has taken the business trip angle in recent years in the spring break kickoff tournament, capturin...

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Harvick survives shootout for 1st Darlington win

DARLINGTON, S.C. (AP) — Kevin Harvick used one of the few weekend missteps to pull out his first Darlington victory.Harvick was among several veteran drivers fighting for the Nationwide Series win Friday night when rookie Chase Elliott used fresher tires and a strong machine to move from the back of the pack to first place over the final two laps.Lesson learned.On Saturday night in the Sprint Cup race, Harvick took advantage of four new tires to pass Dal...

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Bubba’s back on top

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — One of golf’s most exciting players squeezed most of the drama out of the Masters on Sunday. That’s just fine with Bubba Watson.All he cared about was slipping into that green jacket.Instead of hitting a 40-yard hook out of a forest of Georgia pines — the signature shot in his playoff victory two years ago — the final act Sunday at Augusta National took place on the 18th green. Watson had a three-shot lead and consulted w...

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LYBA weekly report

-Lumberton Ford Coach PitchResultsA’s 17, Orioles 2Braves 10, Phillies 1Braves 6, Rays 2Priates 7, Rockies 1Phllies 3, Pirates 1Rays 5, Orioles 3Braves 4, Yankees 1Red Sox 5, Rockies 1A’s 10, Rays 1Braves 11, Rockies 4Red Sox 12, Orioles 4Yankees 8, Phillies 6Standings (W-L-T-P...

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QB competition ripens at UNCP’s spring game

PEMBROKE — The University of North Carolina at Pembroke football team has had an offseason full of transition.Pete Shinnick’s resignation to become the new leader at West Florida gave way to defensive coordinator Shane Richardson who was promoted to the position and installed two new coordinators to help continue building on the program’s recent success.Saturday, the team put the attention back on the field as part of the annual Black and Gold Spring Ga...

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Greene’s recruiting journey ends at Belhaven

RED SPRINGS — The offseason noise for Blake Greene is finally over.He knows where he’ll play college football and says he felt at home during a recent visit to one of the only programs that likes him as a quarterback.Red Springs’ senior playmaker, whose video game-like passing totals in high school put him third all-time in North Carolina football history for touchdowns behind Chris Leak and T.A. McLendon, committed to Belhaven University in Jackson, Mi...

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Pinecrest hosting hickory sticks tourney

It’s almost time to break out the knickers.Pinecrest Country Club will go through a bit of a time warp on Friday when the Carolina Hickory Golf Association holds a tournament at the golf course.The association takes the game back to its roots, with participants using hickory-shafted clubs and donning period-appropriate attire such as knickers, argyle socks and ivy caps.The course will be played at a shorter distance to accommodate the clubs and several o...

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