Sports

WNPR News sports coverage brings you a mix of local and statewide news from our reporters as well as national and global news from around the world from NPR. For local sports coverage, take a look at CPTVSports.org or follow our sports television broadcasts 24/7 at CPTV Sports.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Tue July 1, 2014

With Proposed Hartford Stadium Come Questions, Concerns, and Criticism

David Panagore.
Chion Wolf WNPR

When officials from the City of Hartford announced it would build a Minor League Baseball stadium, many people were caught by surprise, including Hartford residents.

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NBA Draft
9:01 am
Fri June 27, 2014

UConn's Shabazz Napier Joins the Miami Heat

Former UConn star Shabazz Napier will start his professional career with the Miami Heat.
Peter Morenus UConn Today

The Miami Heat hope that UConn's King can keep The King in South Beach. Shabazz Napier was drafted in the first round of the NBA draft by the Charlotte Hornets, who subsequently traded him to Miami.

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Rent or Own?
4:54 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

When It Comes to Paying For Stadium, Hartford Changes Course

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra.
Chion Wolf WNPR

The city of Hartford is changing its plans for how to build, and pay for, a new minor league baseball stadium downtown. The mayor and the city council now plan to ask developers and private investors to weigh in. 

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Play Ball
4:21 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

If a Ballpark Comes to Hartford, Who Gets the Luxury Seats?

Jupiterimages/Photos.com Thinkstock

Much has been written about whether the city of Hartford should have its own box in the new proposed baseball stadium its considering building to house the New Britain Rock Cats.

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Code Switch
12:16 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Latinos Pledge Allegiance To More Than One Soccer Team

Team USA goalie Tim Howard reacts as Portugal scores its second goal during the 2014 FIFA World Cup match.
Warren Little Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 7:18 am

I would never have imagined that my immigrant mom, a Spanish teacher, a proud mexicana, would be cheering for Team USA in the World Cup. A few days ago I overheard her talking to my tía on the phone. She told her sister, "Isn't it great that the American team is playing so well? Now we have two teams to root for!"

Until then, I didn't realize cheering for two teams was an option. As a Latina living in the U.S., deciding whom to root for was like answering the question "where are you really from?"

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Thu June 26, 2014

Should Minor League Rock Cats Relocate to Hartford?

Pedro Segarra.
Chion Wolf WNPR

The lure of professional sports teams has often been irresistible to municipal leaders. It’s very easy to imagine a stadium filled with happy fans, spending money and spreading civic pride.

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Stadium, Stadium, Stadium
4:16 pm
Wed June 25, 2014

Hartford City Council to Hire Its Own Stadium Consultant

The proposed site for a Hartford ballpark.
Credit City of Hartford

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra's plan to build a new minor league baseball stadium in the heart of downtown is facing more scrutiny from the city council. 

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Sweetness and Light
8:21 am
Wed June 25, 2014

Deford: NCAA Says Amateurism Is Alive And Well, But The Jig Is Up

Wisconsin's Traevon Jackson at practice for the 2014 NCAA men's college basketball tournament. Commentator Frank Deford says that, despite NCAA claims to the contrary, most college players are not typical students — "their job is to play a sport."
Jae C. Hong AP

Originally published on Wed June 25, 2014 12:48 pm

Amateurism is dead, revealed so in the trial against the NCAA now in progress in Oakland, Calif., U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken presiding. Before her skeptical eyes, amateurism has been laid out naked on a courtroom slab for a jury of all fans to see that it has no beating heart.

Amateurism, Judge Wilken has been told in the case, commonly known as the O'Bannon trial, nobly protects college athletes from being exploited by evil outsiders — so the NCAA knighthood was created in order that colleges could tie up athletes all by themselves.

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Play Ball, And Politics
11:01 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

Ballpark Debate Makes For Interesting State Senate Politics

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra, Rock Cats Owner Josh Solomon, and Council President Shawn Wooden announce the deal earlier this month.
Credit Jeff Cohen / WNPR

It may be baseball season.

It's also political primary season.

When it comes to the ballpark in Hartford, two opposing candidates for state senate have two very different views. 

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QUIET DOWN, Monkey Mind!
4:59 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

Practicing Tai Chi at WNPR

The Tai chi master Yang Chengfu demonstrating the Single whip.
Credit Jdcollins13 / Wikimedia

You'd think Tai Chi would be a required part of any public radio employee's day, but only on Tuesday did it happen.

Colin McEnroe was hosting a show about sports that are on the rise, like pickleball, roller derby, and even World Extreme Pencil Fighting. When it came time for Tai Chi, he thought it would be cool if we could find a guest who could show us the ropes live. 

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Where To Build
4:17 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

Locating Hartford's Proposed Ballpark

Two possible locations for a Rock Cats stadium in Hartford, as proposed by Pendulum.
City of Hartford

The city of Hartford has said it looked at other city locations for a new minor league baseball stadium -- including a location on Market Street, the sometimes-home of Cirque du Soleil.

Now, there are some documents to back that up. 

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Rise of Soccer
12:11 pm
Tue June 24, 2014

World Cup Ratings Spike: How Popular Is Soccer In The U.S.?

Fans gather in Chicago's Grant Park to watch the U.S. play Portugal Sunday — a game that set a new ratings record for soccer on ESPN.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 1:42 pm

Sunday's thrilling and frustrating World Cup match between the U.S. and Portugal drew an average of 24.7 million viewers, according to the Nielsen ratings company, a result that puts the game above the recent NBA finals.

The game's total U.S. viewership of 24.7 million includes ratings from both ESPN (18.2 million viewers) and the Spanish-language Univision (6.5 million); it doesn't include the 1.37 million people ESPN says streamed the game online.

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Basketball
10:30 am
Tue June 24, 2014

LeBron James Will Reportedly Become Free Agent, Ending Miami Contract

Miami Heat superstar LeBron James, seen here at a news conference last week, will reportedly file papers to become a free agent, opting to end his contract with Miami.
Alan Diaz AP

Originally published on Tue June 24, 2014 11:34 am

NBA star LeBron James is shaking things up at the Miami Heat, reportedly opting to end his contract early to become a free agent. The move comes one week after James and the Heat were trounced by the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA Finals.

"LeBron James' agent Rich Paul has told Heat LeBron will exercise early termination option," ESPN's Chris Broussard tweeted today.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:00 am
Tue June 24, 2014

Pickleball, Tai Chi, and World Extreme Pencil Fighting? Exploring Sports on the Rise

World Extreme Pencil Fighting in Seattle, WA.
Sol Neelman - www.SolNeelman.com

Pickleball is one of the fastest-growing sports in America, and for one good reason: that 77-million-person wave of boomers headed into their 60s and beyond. Pickleball is what you play when your knees and shoulders start saying "no" to tennis. We talk about the game and its sudden surge.

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World Cup
5:45 pm
Mon June 23, 2014

Doing The Math: How The U.S. Can Advance In The World Cup

U.S. forward Clint Dempsey (8) celebrates after scoring his team's second goal during a match against Portugal at the Amazonia Arena in Manaus on Sunday.
Francisco Leong AFP/Getty Images

The "Group of Death" is living up to its name.

Going into the third and final match of group stage, all four teams — the U.S., Germany, Ghana and Portugal — still have a mathematical chance of moving on to the round of 16.

Of course, the U.S. had a prime chance at sealing the deal last night against Portugal. But, as we told you, a last-gasp goal by Portugal scuttled those plans.

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Bringing Baseball Downtown
5:04 pm
Mon June 23, 2014

Stadium Deal Not Approved Yet, But Hartford Goes Out to Bid

A rendering of a proposed Rock Cats stadium in Hartford.
Credit City of Hartford

There's a lot of work yet to be done before a minor league baseball stadium in the state's capital city becomes a reality. For starters, it has to be approved by the Hartford city council, and that won't likely happen until later this summer.

Mayor Pedro Segarra, however, isn’t waiting around for the city council to act.

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Soccer
2:59 pm
Mon June 23, 2014

Win, Lose or Draw, U.S. Can Still Advance In World Cup

U.S. forward Clint Dempsey scores during a Group G football match between USA and Portugal at the Amazonia Arena in Manaus during the 2014 FIFA World Cup on June 22, 2014. (Odd Andersen/AFP/Getty Images)

There were 30 seconds left to play and the United States team was beating Portugal 2 to 1. The majority pro-American crowd of more than 40,000 at last night’s World Cup game in Brazil were ready to party, but it wasn’t to be.

Portugal scored with less than half a minute to go, and now the U.S. looks ahead to Thursday evening’s game against Germany to determine its World Cup future.

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:26 am
Mon June 23, 2014

The Scramble Is Proud of June Thomas

Credit Kevin Wong / Flickr Creative Commons

On Monday, we do The Scramble. And on the Scramble, we always start with a SuperGuest, which means that in defiance of public radio logic, we pick the person first and then figure out what the topics will be. 

This week we started with June Thomas, one of my favorite Slate.com writers and talkers, and someone I assumed would want to riff at least a little bit about pop culture. Instead, her top two choices are Gay Pride month and dentistry.

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World Cup
1:53 pm
Sun June 22, 2014

In A Stunning Finish, Portugal Ties U.S.

Clint Dempsey of the United States is challenged by Portugal's Bruno Alves (left) and Ricardo Costa during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Group G match Sunday in Brazil.
Warren Little Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 23, 2014 8:03 am

It was heartbreaking. It was stunning. It was the reason they call Group G the "Group of Death."

With 30 seconds left and despite astronomical odds, the United States men's national soccer team was about to qualify for the second round of the World Cup.

But just like that, Portugal's superstar Cristiano Ronaldo crossed to Silvestre Varela, who headed it into the net, tying it, 2-2, marking the final play of the game.

This means everyone in the group of death has a mathematical chance at advancing.

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Soccer Science
3:38 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Scientists Keep A Careful Eye On The World Cup Ball

A close up of the Brazuca ball in NASA's Ames Fluid Mechanics Laboratory. Smoke highlighted by lasers visualizes air flow around the ball.
NASA's Ames Research Center

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 8:45 am

While many millions are enjoying the drama of the World Cup, a handful of scientists are keeping their eyes very closely on the ball.

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The Right Ballpark?
3:19 pm
Thu June 19, 2014

Hartford Leaders Respond to Stadium Concerns

From left, Hartford treasurer Adam Cloud, State Rep. Brandon McGee, City Councilwoman Cynthia Jennings, City Council President Shawn Wooden, State Rep. Doug McCrory, and City Councilmen Kyle Anderson and Ken Kennedy.
Jeff Cohen WNPR

The debate over whether to relocate the minor league Rock Cats from New Britain to Hartford continues, and the Hartford's elected officials are now feeling some heat.

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No-No
7:47 am
Thu June 19, 2014

Dodgers' Ace Kershaw Notches His First No-Hitter

Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw (left) celebrates his no-hitter with his teammates after striking out 15 Colorado Rockies batters.
Chris Carlson AP

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 11:41 am

The no-hitters just keep coming. That's the case for the Los Angeles Dodgers, as the team's pitchers have thrown two games without giving up a hit in less than a month. Clayton Kershaw used 15 strikeouts to complete the feat Wednesday, matching teammate Josh Beckett's May 25 effort.

Getting the no-hitter was "pretty cool," Kershaw said after throwing 107 pitches in the game.

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NFL
1:52 pm
Wed June 18, 2014

Washington Redskins' Trademark Registrations Cancelled

Several of the Washington Redskins' trademark registrations have been canceled. The team will appeal the decision.
Nick Wass AP

Originally published on Wed June 18, 2014 5:25 pm

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has revoked the trademark of the NFL's Washington Redskins, after ruling in a case brought by five Native Americans who say the name disparages them. While the decision could have wide repercussions, it does not require the team to change its name. It is also subject to appeal, which the team has confirmed it will pursue.

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Sweetness And Light
3:26 am
Wed June 18, 2014

Deford: How To Host A Sports Extravaganza That Won't Break The Bank

Remodeling the National Stadium Mane Garrincha in Brasilia, Brazil, for the FIFA World Cup cost the Brazilian government $900 million.
Eraldo Peres AP

Originally published on Thu June 19, 2014 10:22 am

You know, it is the 21st century, and it is possible to acknowledge that and make both the World Cup and the Olympics more affordable. The current waste and opulence simply aren't defensible anymore.

For the soccer pooh-bahs to demand that Brazil build new stadiums, costing billions of dollars, is unconscionable. How much more logical to utilize existing stadiums in neighboring countries, in large cities like Buenos Aires, Montevideo and Santiago.

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