Canucks score with 18 seconds left to take finals opener
Raffi Torres scored on an exceptional pass from Jannik Hansen with 18.5 seconds to play, and the Vancouver Canucks beat the Boston Bruins 1-0 Wednesday night in the Stanley Cup finals opener. Roberto Luongo made 36 saves in his third shutout of the post-season for the Canucks, but Boston's Tim Thomas matched him until Torres, who is the only Vancouver player with previous finals experience, slipped through the defense for a beautiful goal that launched a wild celebration at Rogers Arena. Thomas stopped 33 shots for the Bruins, who went scoreless on six power plays. Game 2 is Saturday night in Vancouver.
■ The Florida Panthers formally introduced Kevin Dineen as the franchise's 11th head coach Wednesday. Dineen replaces Pete DeBoer, who was fired on April 10, one day after completing his third season behind the Florida bench. Like DeBoer, this will be Dineen's first NHL head coaching job.
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Armstrong demands '60 Minutes' apology
Attorneys for Lance Armstrong have demanded an on-air apology from 60 Minutes after the head of Switzerland's anti-doping laboratory denied allegations that the seven-time Tour de France winner tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs at the 2001 Tour de Suisse. In a letter sent Wednesday to CBS News Chairman and 60 Minutes Executive Producer Jeff Fager, lawyer Elliot Peters said the May 22 segment about Armstrong was built on a series of falsehoods, and he accused the CBS show of sloppy journalism.
"In the cold light of morning your story was either extraordinarily shoddy, to the point of being reckless and unprofessional, or a vicious hit-and-run job," Peters wrote. "In either case, a categorical on-air apology is required."
CBS News spokesman Kevin Tedesco said Wednesday he couldn't immediately comment on the letter, but he said, "We consider this the most thorough investigation into doping in the sport of cycling ever done."
Former teammate Tyler Hamilton alleged in the piece that Armstrong talked about using the banned blood-booster EPO to prepare for his third Tour de France in 2001 and that the International Cycling Union helped him hide a positive test at the Swiss event. Last week, the head of Switzerland's anti-doping laboratory, Martial Saugy, denied allegations that Armstrong tested positive for performing-enhancing drugs during the 2001 Tour de Suisse.
Saugy said his lab found suspicious levels of EPO in four urine samples from the race Armstrong won, but he didn't know whether any belonged to Armstrong, who has denied doping and has never tested positive. Federal prosecutors in Los Angeles are investigating an alleged doping program in Armstrong's teams.
Memphis, Louisville set to play again
Memphis and Louisville will renew their longtime rivalry in the 2011 Basketball Hall of Fame Shootout. The game, which was announced by Basketball Hall of Fame officials in Springfield, Mass., on Wednesday, will be at 4 p.m. Dec. 17 at Louisville's KFC Yum Center and will be broadcast nationally by CBS. It will be the 86th meeting between the two teams, with the Cardinals holding a 51-34 advantage. The Cardinals and Tigers will meet again in the 2012-13 season at FedExForum in Memphis. The teams have not played since Louisville left Conference USA in 2005.
SPORTS IN THE COURTS
Ex-Gator Jenkins pleads no contest
Former Florida cornerback Janoris Jenkins has pleaded no contest to a marijuana-possession charge. Jenkins, who was kicked off the team following his third arrest in 23 months, was ordered to pay court costs and fines totaling $421 on Tuesday. But he was not placed on probation or ordered to perform community service. Jenkins was considered one of the best cornerbacks in the Southeastern Conference. But his off-the-field problems probably cost him millions in the NFL.
■ A New Jersey judge declared a mistrial Wednesday in the armed-robbery prosecution of a former Seton Hall basketball player. Kelly Whitney was accused of robbing several students in an off-campus apartment in March 2010. Former Pirates player Robert Mitchell pleaded guilty and testified against Whitney, saying he and Whitney robbed the students at gunpoint. But jurors were unable to reach a verdict on any of the 27 counts Whitney faced. The Essex County Prosecutor's Office says it plans to retry Whitney, who played for Seton Hall from 2002 to 2006 and finished his career with 1,448 points.
■ A lawyer for Manny Pacquiao said Wednesday night that the boxer has settled a defamation lawsuit against other boxing figures who intimated he used performance-enhancing drugs. Attorney Daniel Petrocelli said in a release that Pacquiao settled with former boxer Oscar de La Hoya and Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy Promotions on confidential terms.
Faried named OVC's top male athlete
Morehead State's Kenneth Faried was selected Wednesday as the Ohio Valley Conference Male Athlete of the Year in voting by the league's athletics directors and sports information directors. Faried, who completed his degree and eligibility and is projected to be picked in the NBA Draft's first round, was also the OVC Player and Defensive Player of the Year. Eastern Kentucky senior distance runner Kat Pagano was named the OVC's Female Athlete of the Year Wednesday. The two winners will receive their awards at the League's annual Honors Luncheon on June 3 in Nashville.
During his senior year, Faried became the NCAA's modern-era rebounding leader with 1,673, passing former Wake Forest star Tim Duncan. The senior from Newark, N.J. averaged 17.3 points, 14.5 rebounds, 2.3 blocks and 1.9 steals per game while hitting 62.3 percent from the field.
■ For the second straight season, Kentucky men's tennis junior Eric Quigley has been named an Intercollegiate Tennis Association All-American, the school announced Wednesday. The South Oldham graduate, who was named a singles and doubles All-American last season, earned singles All-America honors in 2011 after being seeded in the top 16 of the NCAA Tournament.
FIFA re-elects Blatter, backs ethics reform
Sepp Blatter was re-elected FIFA president on Wednesday after a major bribery scandal left him as the only candidate to deal with a sport reeling from a wave of corruption allegations. Blatter, a 75-year-old Swiss executive who has been in office since 1998, was handed a final four-year term as head of soccer's governing body in a vote at FIFA's congress. He received 186 votes out of 203 ballots. Qatari executive committee member Mohamed bin Hammam, withdrew from the race last weekend amid bribery allegations. Blatter immediately took steps toward major reform by winning the assembly's backing for his proposal to have future World Cup hosts selected in a vote of all 208 federations instead of the 24-man executive committee. The congress also endorsed his plans to revamp the ethics committee and bring in more transparency.
The last word
Dallas Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki and shooting coach Holger Geschwindner were figuring out which moves Nowitzki can still make with his injured finger, but Geschwindner said it shouldn't be a problem for Thursday's Game 2 against the Heat:
"Hey, (Rajon) Rondo played with one arm, so he might be able to play with nine fingers."