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Rio mayor unveils controversial Olympic golf course

Rio de Janeiro's mayor unveils controversial Olympic golf course; says construction was legal
Jenny Barchfield, The Associated Press

RIO DE JANEIRO - Rio de Janeiro's mayor unveiled the city's controversial Olympic golf course on Wednesday and laid out an ardent defence of a project that has been criticized by environmental activists and is at the centre of legal wranglings.

The course, part of which has been carved out of a nature reserve, had been kept strictly under wraps during a construction phase that is nearly complete after more than a year's work.

Bills to honour late owner Wilson with life-sized statue

Buffalo Bills to honour late owner Ralph Wilson by erecting life-sized statue
The Associated Press

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. - Late Buffalo Bills owner Ralph Wilson will be honoured with a life-sized statue erected at the stadium that bears his name.

The decision to commemorate the team's founder and Pro Football Hall of Famer member was the brainchild of new Bills owners Terry and Kim Pegula, and Wilson's widow, Mary, the team announced Wednesday. The statue will serve as a centerpiece in a newly established Founder's Plaza at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

The announcement was made exactly a year after Wilson's death. His estate eventually sold the franchise to the Pegulas in October.

Vancouver Whitecaps win one, lose one

Vancouver Whitecaps sign a striker then lose another to suspension
The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER - The Vancouver Whitecaps added a striker Wednesday and then lost one, at least for one game.

The MLS team signed veteran Welsh forward Robert Earnshaw, who had been in camp on trial during the pre-season.

Later in the day, the MLS disciplinary committee announced that Whitecaps striker Kekuta Manneh had been suspended for one game and fined an undisclosed amount for serious foul play that endangered the safety of an opponent.

Canada's basketball learns qualifying road

Canada's men's basketball team drawn in Group B for qualifying tournament
Lori Ewing, The Canadian Press

Canada's path to the 2016 Rio Olympics became clearer Wednesday with the draw for the FIBA Americas men's basketball qualifying tournament.

What remains unclear is what Canada's team will look like.

"We still have a lot of work to do as far as figuring out who's going to be available and what the time commitments with their NBA teams or European teams are going to be, how flexible those teams are going to be in letting us use those players for this event," Canada's coach Jay Triano said on a conference call. "And for the Pan American Games for that matter."

Canada's rugby sevens team facing challenges

Canada's rugby sevens team facing challenges ahead of Hong Kong event
Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press

TORONTO - Canadian coach Liam Middleton has Justin Douglas, Ciaran Hearn and Sean Duke back in the fold for this week's Hong Kong Sevens.

But Hearn, Liam Underwood, Sean White and Pat Kay were all late arriving, after having taken part in the World Rugby Pacific Challenge in Fiji.

"They are a little bit battered," Middleton said. "They obviously played four (15-man) games in just over 12 days so they are pretty beaten up."

Last-place-rooting Sabres fans have message to team: 'Lose!'

Last-place-rooting Sabres fans have message to team in preparing to face Coyotes: 'Lose!'
John Wawrow, The Associated Press

BUFFALO, N.Y. - The Buffalo Sabres are in last place. And many of their fans are openly rooting for the standings to stay that way.

"Lose!" yelled Doug Borsuk, a 10-year season-ticket holder from the upper level during a recent Sabres' home game. "Of course it's weird. But it's ultimately for them to succeed. If they're not going to make the playoffs, they might as well finish last."

Mexico: Wrestler died almost instantly from injury in ring

Autopsy: Mexico wrestler died almost instantly from ring injury, suffered 3 broken vertebrae
The Associated Press

MEXICO CITY - Mexican authorities say an autopsy has found that wrestler Pedro Aguayo died almost immediately of injuries sustained in the ring last weekend.

Gilberto Cota Alanis is deputy prosecutor for Baja California state. He said Wednesday that Aguayo suffered three fractured vertebrae and was dead by the time he reached a hospital. Medical staff tried for 90 minutes to revive him.

The 35-year-old Aguayo was the son of retired wrestling legend Pedro "Perro" Aguayo.

Canada waits on World Cup qualifying foe

Canada waits on World Cup qualifying foe as Dominica and BVI square off
Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press

TORONTO - Shane Marshall's taxi has been parked for the week. The 43-year-old Marshall is attending to his other job — manager of the Dominica soccer team.

Dominica kicks off a two-game series against the British Virgin Islands on Thursday, with the winner advancing to play Canada.

"We know for a fact Canada is a much stronger team," Marshall said Wednesday in an interview. "In the FIFA rankings, they're much higher than us.

Montreal bike firm making Tour de France debut

Former Canadian Olympian's bike company making debut at Tour de France
Ross Marowits, The Canadian Press

MONTREAL - A former Canadian Olympian is finally fulfilling his dream of participating in the Tour de France, 25 years after retiring from competitive cycling — although he won't personally be racing.

Instead, Gervais Rioux's bike company, Argon 18, is sponsoring the Bora-Argon team that has been invited to race this summer in the world's premier cycling event.

Hammond, Senators focused on playoffs

Andrew Hammond, Senators focused on playoff berth, not rookie's records
Lisa Wallace, The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - There's no denying Andrew Hammond has been instrumental to the Ottawa Senators' surge in the standings this past month. His supporting cast can't be overlooked either.

Ottawa has gone 15-1-1 since Hammond took over in the Senators net on Feb. 18, moving into the second and final wild card playoff spot in the Eastern Conference on Monday.

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