49ers sign K Dawson to replace Akers
SAN FRANCISCO — The San Francisco 49ers have found their new kicker to replace David Akers, signing Browns veteran free agent Phil Dawson to a one-year contract.
The Pro Bowl kicker announced earlier Tuesday via Twitter that he had joined the NFC champion Niners, who parted ways with the six-time Pro Bowler Akers on March 6 following a season in which he made only 29 of 42 attempts a year after he kicked an NFL single-season record 44 field goals.
The 38-year-old Dawson went 29-for-31 on field goals last season in his 14th year with the Browns, making all 13 of his attempts from 40 yards or beyond, including 7-for-7 from 50-plus.
NFL to loan Vikings $200M for new stadium
MINNEAPOLIS — The National Football League team owners have approved a $200 million loan to the Minnesota Vikings for the team’s new $975 million stadium in downtown Minneapolis.
The St. Paul Pioneer reports the loan will be part of the $477 million the Vikings will contribute toward the stadium.
The loan is the maximum amount the league will give a team building a new stadium. It will be paid back over the next 15 years, with some of the money coming through visiting teams’ share of club seat revenue in the new stadium.
Vikings vice president Lester Bagley calls the loan “a big step forward.”
Halladay expects to be ready for first start
CLEARWATER, Fla. — Roy Halladay says he lost about 10 pounds in two days because of a stomach virus, but still expects to pitch during the Phillies’ first series at Atlanta.
Halladay left Sunday’s start against Baltimore after one inning after feeling ill. He was coming off a rough outing that raised concerns about his health.
But the 35-year-old righty insists he’s not bothered by the lower back and shoulder problems that forced him to miss two months last year. Halladay says he would be ready to go when the season opens if he can throw about 75 pitches in his next start and at least 90 in his last spring outing.
Cowboys vs. Dolphins to open preseason
CANTON, Ohio — The Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins will meet in the Hall of Fame Game on Aug. 4 to open the NFL’s preseason.
The night game at Fawcett Stadium will follow the induction ceremonies the previous day. Entering the Hall of Fame will be former Cowboys offensive lineman Larry Allen, former Dolphins wide receiver Cris Carter, and Bill Parcells, who coached in Dallas and later was Miami’s vice president of football operations.
Also being inducted are tackle Jonathan Ogden, defensive tackles Warren Sapp and Curley Culp, and linebacker Dave Robinson.
Devils take Brodeur off injured reserve
NEWARK, N.J. — The New Jersey Devils have activated goaltender Martin Brodeur off injured reserve.
The Devils announced the move Tuesday, hours before playing the New York Rangers.
Brodeur, the NHL’s all-time winningest goaltender, has been sidelined since mid-February with a pinched nerve in his upper back and neck. He missed 12 games and practiced with the team on Monday for the first time since being hurt.
The Devils assigned goaltender Jeff Frazee to Albany of the AHL to make room for Brodeur on the roster.
New Jersey also announced it recalled left wing Tim Sestito from Albany. He was not in the lineup on Tuesday.
Colts add Hasselbeck as backup quarterback
INDIANAPOLIS — Matt Hasselbeck started his career as a backup to Brett Favre. He could end it being the backup to Andrew Luck.
Less than 24 hours after being released by the Tennessee Titans, the 37-year-old quarterback signed with division rival Indianapolis. Terms of the deal were not immediately available.
It looks like a smart move for the Colts, who lost last year’s backup, free agent Drew Stanton, to Arizona last week.
Indy wanted a veteran backup to help mentor its two young quarterbacks — Luck and Chandler Harnish, the first and last picks in the 2012 draft.
While Luck set NFL rookie records for attempts and yards passing last season and finished among the league’s all-time rookie leaders in completions and touchdowns, he was sacked 41 times and hit dozens of others, something the Colts tried to fix last week by signing right tackle Gosder Cherilus and guard Donald Thomas. Hasselbeck now becomes Plan B.
Cavaliers’ Waiters out with a knee injury
CLEVELAND — Cavaliers rookie guard Dion Waiters will miss at least one week with a sore left knee and may need surgery.
The Cavs said an MRI taken Tuesday revealed a loose fragment in Waiters’ left knee. He injured his knee in the first half of Monday’s home loss to Indiana and did not return.
He will rest and have treatment over the next week, and the Cavs said it’s possible the No. 4 overall pick in last year’s draft may need an arthroscopic procedure.
Pennetta earns win at Sony Open
KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. — Flavia Pennetta of Italy won her first-round match 6-4, 6-1 over Johanna Larsson of Sweden at the Sony Open on Tuesday.
Pennetta is making her ninth appearance at this Key Biscayne-based event and has reached the third round on five occasions.
Pennetta played one of the 10 WTA main draw matches scheduled for the opening day of the tournament.
Ayumi Morita of Japan defeated Heather Watson of Britain 1-6, 7-5, 6-4. Kristina Mladecnovic of France scored a 7-5, 6-2 win over Aleksandra Wozniak of Canada.
Hsieh Su-wei of Taiwan battled in the second-set tiebreaker to secure a 6-4, 7-6 (15) victory over Lesia Tsurenko of Ukraine.
From wire sources