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Raonic defeats Becker to move on at Autralian Open

Canadian Milos Raonic advances at Australian Open with win over Germany's Benjamin Becker
BIll Scott, The Canadian Press

MELBOURNE, Australia - Canadian Milos Raonic advanced into the second week of the Australian Open for the third time in five years as he comfortably beat Germany's Benjamin Becker 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 on Saturday.

Becker, who eliminated Australian Lleyton Hewitt in the previous round, was no match for 22 aces off the racquet of the eighth seed from Thornhill, Ont.

Canadians Hill, McMorris win X Games gold

Canadians Kevin Hill, Mark McMorris, claim gold at Winter X Games
The Canadian Press

ASPEN, Colo. - Kevin Hill of Vernon, B.C., grabbed the lead on the first turn and went on to capture the gold medal in the men's snowboard cross Friday at the Winter X Games.

''X-Games was at the top of my list to win and to take the gold here means the world to me,'' Hill said. ''It's been my No. 1 goal for a long time.''

It was the second medal in a week for Hill. He was second in a snowboard cross event last Friday at the FIS world snowboard championships.

Chicago Cubs say baseball Hall of Famer Ernie Banks has died

Chicago Cubs say baseball Hall of Famer Ernie Banks has died
The Associated Press

CHICAGO - Chicago Cubs say baseball Hall of Famer Ernie Banks has died .

Nguyen leads at Canadian championships

Nguyen leads after short program at Canadian figure skating championships
Lori Ewing, The Canadian Press

KINGSTON, Ont. - The infectious smile was missing from Nam Nguyen last week. A favourite to win the Canadian men's title for the first time, the 16-year-old from Toronto was feeling the pressure.

So his coach Brian Orser told him: "Skate like you own the place."

And Nguyen did.

Nguyen, who won fans and melted hearts when he participated in the skating gala of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, as a precocious, bespectacled 10-year-old, scored 81.78 points to top a field that was missing three-time world champion Patrick Chan.

Lowry leads Raptors past 76ers 91-86

Lowry's big 4th quarter leads Raptors past 76ers 91-86
Aaron Bracy, The Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA - Kyle Lowry lifted the Toronto Raptors from what appeared would be a loss — and coach Dwane Casey still wasn't happy.

Lowry scored 17 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter to lead Toronto to a 91-86 comeback victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Friday night.

Kessel at centre of all-star draft laughs

Kessel-Seguin trade, Ovechkin at centre of laugh fest at all-star draft
Stephen Whyno, The Canadian Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Hockey players became stand-up comedians for a night as the NHL all-star draft turned into an entertainment program that could be better television than the skills competition or the game.

Captain Jonathan Toews cracked that he picked Phil Kessel because he's "one of the most coachable players out there," then traded him for Tyler Seguin because, well, why not. Superstar Alex Ovechkin of the $10 million salary stole the show by spending the night lobbying for a $20,000 car.

Kobe to be re-examined before deciding injury fate

Kobe Bryant's torn rotator cuff to be re-examined Monday before deciding his plan with Lakers
Greg Beacham, The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Kobe Bryant's torn right rotator cuff will be re-examined Monday before the Los Angeles Lakers decide whether the superstar guard needs potentially season-ending surgery.

Bryant was examined Friday in Los Angeles after the third-leading scorer in NBA history tore his rotator cuff Wednesday in New Orleans.

NHL all-star weekend missing big stars

NHL all-star weekend missing some stars as Crosby, Malkin are out with injuries
Stephen Whyno, The Canadian Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio - One thing Tyler Seguin was looking forward to at the NHL's all-star weekend was meeting Sidney Crosby. In five seasons in the league, the Dallas Stars centre has never had a conversation with the Pittsburgh Penguins captain.

That won't happen after Crosby withdrew from the event with a lower-body injury.

Duhamel and Radford silencing critics

Canadian pairs skaters Duhamel and Radford silencing their critics
Lori Ewing, The Canadian Press

KINGSTON, Ont. - The hurtful words used to slice deep, but Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford are learning to laugh them off and let their skating answer for them.

And the fact they're winning says plenty.

Sanchez willing to help Jays any way he can

Starter or closer, Sanchez willing to do what it takes to help Blue Jays in 2015
Joshua Clipperton, The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER - Aaron Sanchez is preparing for the 2015 season as if he's going to be in the Toronto Blue Jays' starting rotation on opening day.

But if the hard-throwing 22-year-old is needed in the bullpen, he's willing to take on that task as well.

"I'm getting in shape to make 35 starts this year," Sanchez said Friday. "If that changes they'll let me know, but my mentality right now is going into spring training as a starter."

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