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Sports briefs, Nov. 18



Preseason holiday hockey tourney set Nov. 26

BANGOR — The fourth annual Holiday Face-Off High School Hockey Tournament will take place on Saturday, Nov. 26 at at Sawyer Arena.

Sponsored by the John Bapst Hockey Boosters, the preseason tourney gives fans a sneak peek of the 2011-2012 Class B teams. The marathon day of hockey features teams from John Bapst, Houlton, Presque Isle, Orono, Old Town and Bangor.

Games start at 8 a.m. and continue through 8 p.m. The game schedules will be posted at Admission is $5 per person. A warm room and refreshments are available.

Joe Paterno has lung cancer, son says

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Former Penn State coach Joe Paterno has a treatable form of lung cancer, according to his son.

Scott Paterno said in a statement provided to The Associated Press by a family representative on Friday that the 84-year-old Joe Paterno is undergoing treatment and that “his doctors are optimistic he will make a full recovery.”

“As everyone can appreciate, this is a deeply personal matter for my parents, and we simply ask that his privacy be respected as he proceeds with treatment,” Scott Paterno said in a brief statement.

The announcement came less than an hour after Penn State said the NCAA would examine how school officials handled a child sex abuse scandal that shocked the campus and cost Paterno a job he held 46 years.

Scott Paterno said the diagnosis was made during a follow-up visit last weekend for a bronchial illness.

Earlier Friday, The Citizens Voice of Wilkes-Barre reported that Paterno had been seen Wednesday visiting the Mount Nittany Medical Center and was treated for an undisclosed ailment and released.

Paterno was fired last week in the aftermath of accusations against former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky, who is charged with sexually abusing eight boys over 15 years. Critics say Paterno should have done more to stop the abuse that a state grand jury detailed in a 23-page report — in particular one assault in 2002.

Paterno initially announced his retirement effective at the end of the season. But university trustees fired him about 12 hours later, on the evening of Nov. 9.

The lurid scandal has tarnished the reputation of a coach and a football program that once prided itself on the slogan “Success with Honor.” The Hall of Famer’s 409 career victories are a Division I record. In all, Paterno guided five teams to unbeaten, untied seasons, and won two national championships.

Laird returns to Tigers, agrees to $1 million deal

DETROIT — Catcher Gerald Laird is returning to the Detroit Tigers, agreeing to a $1 million, one-year contract.

Laird hit .232 with one home run and 12 RBIs in 37 games last season for the World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals. The 32-year-old Laird has a .241 career average with 35 homers in nine major league seasons. He was with the Tigers from 2009-10 and also has played for Texas (2003-08).

Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski says the righty-hitting Laird is a “solid complement to Alex Avila as our backup catcher.”

Laird’s deal includes the same performance bonuses as his 2011 contract: $60,000 each for 50, 60, 70, 80 and 90 games started as a catcher.

Detroit announced the agreement on Friday.

2 Bears, 4 Lions fined by NFL

NEW YORK — Four Detroit Lions, including quarterback Matthew Stafford, and two Chicago Bears were fined Friday by the NFL for incidents in their game last Sunday.

Stafford instigated a scuffle when he grabbed the helmet of Bears defensive back D. J. Moore and threw him to the ground. Stafford was fined $7,500, while Moore was hit for $15,000 for striking back at Stafford and being ejected.

Also docked $15,000 was Lions rookie DT Nick Fairley for driving Bears QB Jay Cutler into the ground.

Chicago receiver Earl Bennett was fined $10,000 for wearing orange shoes, his second uniform violation.

Detroit DE Kyle Vanden Bosch was docked $7,500 for unnecessary roughness: Vanden Bosch threw Bears RB Matt Forte to the ground late.

Detroit guard Rob Sims also was hit for $7,500 for a late tackle.

Baltimore quarterback Joe Flacco was fined $7,500 for a horse-collar tackle on Seattle linebacker David Hawthorne, who had intercepted a pass.

Three Panthers were fined $7,500 each from the Tennessee-Carolina game, all for the same thing: striking an opponent in the face or facemask. Fined were Panthers tackles Byron Bell and Jordan Gross and defensive end Charles Johnson. Gross’ hit was on William Hayes, while Johnson fouled Titans tackle David Stewart.

Titans safety Michael Griffin was fined the same amount for a late hit in the head area with his helmet.

Browns guard Shawn Lauvao also received a $7,500 fine for unnecessary roughness in a loss to Houston on Nov. 6. He head-butted Houston LB Brian Cushing.

Stars announce sale to businessman

FRISCO, Texas — A Canadian businessman has purchased the Dallas Stars.

The Stars said Friday that Tom Gaglardi, president of Northland Properties Corp., will be introduced Monday at a news conference as the team’s new owner. The Stars signed an agreement in September to sell the team to the Vancouver businessman and filed a prepackaged bankruptcy plan to help facilitate the transaction.

The Texas Rangers, who were also once owned by Tom Hicks, went through a similar process before that sale was completed last year to a group headed by Nolan Ryan two months before they went to their first World Series.

Gaglardi said Jim Lites will return as the team’s president and CEO. He has held the position twice previously.

Blue Jays bring back the blue with new uniforms

TORONTO — The Blue Jays are bringing back uniforms with a more vintage look, tweaking its old-school logo, tinkered with the lettering and given the bird head a more stylized look.

Players will wear blue hats and blue shoes for all games next season, the team announced Friday. Black jerseys have been shelved in favor of white uniforms at home, light gray on the road and a royal blue alternate jersey.

The scripted lettering is gone. The uniforms resemble a version of the jerseys worn when the team won consecutive World Series titles in 1992 and 1993.

“Blue Jays” is spelled out on the home and alternate uniforms, while “Toronto” appears on the road jersey.

Bears top draft pick out for season

LAKE FOREST, Ill. — First-round draft pick Gabe Carimi has become the second Chicago Bears offensive lineman placed on injured reserve in less than a week.

Carimi, the team’s starting right tackle, has been out since the second game of the season with a dislocated right knee. Carimi returned briefly to practice, but suffered a setback and underwent an arthroscopic procedure Nov. 11.

Lance Louis moved from right guard to right tackle to replace Carimi and will continue at that position.

“It’s disappointing, yes, but he’s been out for a while and we’ve played most of the season without him,” coach Lovie Smith said. “Gabe eventually will be a great player for us.

“But right now, I mean, other guys have stepped up and we’ve moved on.”

The Bears put left guard Chris Williams on IR earlier this week with a dislocated left wrist and announced Edwin Williams would start Sunday against the San Diego Chargers.

The Bears have elevated two practice squad players to replace Williams and Carimi: former Montana tackle Levi Horn and former Nebraska guard Ricky Henry.

Also Friday, the Bears announced nickel back D. J. Moore is doubtful for Sunday’s game due to an ankle sprain suffered Wednesday. Smith said it’s likely Corey Graham will replace Moore, who was fined $15,000 Friday by the NFL for charging into Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford last Sunday, leading to a scuffle near the Lions sideline. Stafford was fined $7,500 for his part in it.

Moore was not available to comment after Friday’s practice due to his injury

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