Monday’s Sports In Brief
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) Because all those Duke’s guards put up some big numbers, their Hall of Fame coach is on the brink of an even bigger one. Mike Krzyzewski moved one victory from 1,000 for his career in the fifth-ranked Blue Devils’ 79-65 win over Pittsburgh.
Coach K improved to 999-308 during his 40-year career. His first chance to become the first men’s coach in Division I history to reach four figures comes Sunday against St. John’s in Madison Square Garden. That’s also where in 2011 he passed Bob Knight as the winningest men’s coach in college basketball’s top tier.
Nearly everyone in the backcourt played a big role in this one for the Blue Devils – who shot 46 percent and made 11 3-pointers while holding Pitt to three.
NEW YORK (AP) – The NFL is investigating whether the New England Patriots deflated footballs that were used in their AFC championship game victory over the Indianapolis Colts.
”We are looking into it,” league spokesman Brian McCarthy wrote in an email to The Associated Press. ”We do not have anything further to add at this point.”
The inquiry was first reported by the website for WTHR-TV in Indiana, citing an unnamed source.
”We’ll cooperate fully with whatever the league wants us to, whatever questions they ask,” Belichick said during his regular conference call with reporters. He said he was unaware there was an issue until Monday morning.
According to the NFL rule book, home teams are responsible for furnishing playable balls at all times. Each team brings 12 primary balls, while home teams are required to also bring 12 backup balls.
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) – John Elway and Gary Kubiak are back together drawing up blueprints for the Denver Broncos to get back to the Super Bowl.
Elway hired Kubiak on Monday, inking his former backup QB and offensive coordinator to a four-year contract. Kubiak replaces John Fox, who was ousted last week following Denver’s stunning loss to the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC divisional playoffs.
Kubiak and his staff are expected to bring a discipline and toughness that Elway deemed was lacking in Denver, where a talent-laden roster that featured an NFL-high 10 Pro Bowlers lost at home in the playoffs after a bye for the second time in three years.
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) – Tom Brady earned his latest Super Bowl berth, then left Gillette Stadium with his supermodel wife. Patriots coach Bill Belichick probably went straight to the film room.
And it’s best not to ask too many questions about what fun-loving tight end Rob Gronkowski did after New England beat the Indianapolis Colts 45-7 in Sunday’s AFC Championship game.
Vince Wilfork, on the other hand, stopped on his way home and rescued a woman from a partially overturned car.
State troopers said they responded to an SUV rollover in Foxborough not far from Gillette Stadium shortly before 1 a.m. Monday and were surprised to see Wilfork checking on the driver.
Wilfork reached into the vehicle and helped troopers remove 38-year-old Mary Ellen Brooks of Hanson, authorities said, and made sure police didn’t need any more help before heading home.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Max Scherzer will become the highest-paid right-handed pitcher in the major leagues after agreeing to a $210 million, seven-year contract with the Washington Nationals that includes a record $50 million signing bonus.
Scherzer, the 2013 AL Cy Young Award winner for the Detroit Tigers, will receive the money over 14 years, which will lower its present-day value.
The 30-year-old right-hander’s contract is the second-largest for a pitcher, behind only Los Angeles Dodgers lefty Clayton Kershaw’s $215 million, seven-year deal that runs from 2014-20.
Scherzer’s signing bonus tops the previous high of $30 million for any player, given by the Cubs to pitcher Jon Lester this offseason. Scherzer plans to establish residency in Florida, which would shield his signing bonus from D.C. income tax, the person familiar with the negotiations said.
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) – Pitcher Yovani Gallardo was traded by the Milwaukee Brewers to the Texas Rangers for three players and cash Monday night.
Gallardo was 8-11 last year with a 3.51 ERA in 32 starts last season and 89-64 with a 3.69 ERA in an eight-year career with Milwaukee.
Infielder Luis Sardinas, and right-handers Corey Knebel and Marcos Diplan were dealts to Milwaukee as part of Monday’s trade, which could indicate the Brewers may try to pursue free-agent pitcher James Shields.
Gallardo’s contract specifies his 2015 salary increased from $13 million to $14 million when he was traded. Gallardo is eligible for free agency in November.
HOUSTON (AP) – Outfielder Dexter Fowler has been traded from the Houston Astros to the Chicago Cubs for infielder Luis Valbuena and right-hander Dan Straily.
Fowler, 28, hit .276 with eight homers and 35 RBIs last year in his only season with the Astros, who acquired him from Colorado for outfielder Brandon Barnes and right-hander Jordan Lyles. Fowler, who has a .271 career average, asked last week for $10.8 million in arbitration and was offered $8.5 million. He is eligible for free agency after the season.
The 29-year-old Valbuena played third base primarily last year but also saw time at second. He hit .249 with 33 doubles, 16 homers and 51 RBIs. Valbuena agreed Friday to a $4.2 million, one-year contract and can become a free agent after the 2016 World Series.
CORTINA D’AMPEZZO, Italy (AP) – Lindsey Vonn won a super-G for her record 63rd World Cup victory and celebrated with an embrace from a surprise visitor – boyfriend Tiger Woods.
The American broke Annemarie Moser-Proell’s 35-year-old record of 62 World Cup wins with a flawless run down the Olympia delle Tofane course, finishing by a huge 0.85 ahead of Anna Fenninger of Austria.
Wearing a mask, Woods weaved through the crowd unnoticed until he shared an emotional embrace with Vonn, who had no idea that the golfer was coming.
Vonn tied the record of 62 victories when she won a downhill here Sunday, and celebrated with family members who rarely attend her races, including her once-estranged father.