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Senators defenceman Cowen suspended 3 games

Senators defenceman Cowen suspended 3 games for late hit on Jokinen
Lisa Wallace, The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - Jared Cowen says he has no intention of changing his game despite being handed a three-game ban for his hit on Florida's Jussi Jokinen.

The suspension doled out by the NHL on Monday comes at a most unfortunate time for the Ottawa Senators as they head out on a five-game western road trip. They will be without the defenceman as they face Anaheim, Los Angeles and San Jose.

Cowen said he was surprised at the length of the suspension.

B.C. Place Stadium to host rugby sevens event

B.C. Place to stage rugby sevens event as Vancouver wins bid to host
The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER - B.C. Place Stadium will host a stop on the World Rugby Sevens Series in 2016.

Canada faced opposition from 20 bidding nations to stage the two-day event in March 2016 that will feature 16 of the world's top men's sevens teams.

The Canadian campaign was led by John Furlong, former president and CEO of the Vancouver 2010 Olympics, and former Canadian rugby captain Gareth Rees, a World Rugby Hall of Fame inductee.

Gretzky backs Ontario PC leadership hopeful

Wayne Gretzky endorses Ontario PC leadership hopeful Patrick Brown
The Canadian Press

TORONTO - Wayne Gretzky waded into Ontario's Progressive Conservative leadership race on Monday by voicing his support for Patrick Brown, a member of parliament for Barrie, Ont.

The hockey legend endorsed Brown as the best person to become the leader of Ontario's official Opposition.

"I have known Patrick Brown for a number of years now," Gretzky said in a statement. "Hard working and dedicated, Patrick is a strong Conservative. He has the passion and vision to lead Ontario."

Gaudreau expects extra attention on road trip

Flames winger Johnny Gaudreau ready for extra attention on road trip
Donna Spencer, The Canadian Press

CALGARY - The Calgary Flames' swing through northeastern United States is a homecoming of sorts for Johnny Gaudreau. He left a Hobey Baker winner and returns a Calder Trophy candidate.

The 21-year-old's hometown of Carney's Point, N.J., is just 40 minutes southeast of Philadelphia.

Jets' hold on playoff spot slipping

Jets still in top wild-card position, but hold on playoff spot slipping
Judy Owen, The Canadian Press

WINNIPEG - Andrew Ladd believes the Winnipeg Jets can still silence naysayers and grab a spot in the NHL playoffs.

While the Jets hold the first of two wild-card berths in the Western Conference, their grip is slipping after putting up a 4-3-3 run in their last 10 games.

Winnipeg (30-20-11) has 71 points, just two ahead of the surging Minnesota Wild and three in front of both the Calgary Flames and San Jose Sharks, but the Wild and Flames have each played two fewer games.

Canadiens winning despite goal shortage

Canadiens keep winning despite low goal output, thanks to Price and tight defence
Bill Beacon, The Canadian Press

BROSSARD, Que. - With Carey Price in net and the team in first place, no one on the Montreal Canadiens seems overly concerned that they are not scoring many goals.

The Canadiens (38-16-5) lead the Eastern Conference despite ranking 23rd in the NHL with 2.56 goals per game. That they are allowing the league's fewest goals-against per game (2.19) has been enough, for now.

Navarro confirms he wants Jays to trade him

Dioner Navarro says he wants the Jays to trade him so he can play every day
Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press

DUNEDIN, Fla. - Toronto Blue Jays catcher Dioner Navarro, facing an uncertain future with the arrival of Russell Martin, confirmed Monday that he wants out.

The 31-year-old from Venezuela said he had asked the American League team for a trade back in November when Martin was signed to an US$82-million, five-year contract.

Navarro says nothing has changed. He wants to go to a team where he can play every day.

Martin says he's game to catch knuckleball

Russell Martin says he's game to catch R.A. Dickey knuckleball with Blue Jays
Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press

DUNEDIN, Fla. - When Jays knuckleballer R.A. Dickey took to the mound for his bullpen session on the first day of camp Monday, personal catcher Josh Thole was waiting to receive the floater.

Big-ticket free agent Russell Martin was further down the line, handling Daniel Norris. But Toronto manager John Gibbons was quick to note that Martin will get his time with the knuckleball.

"Day 1, it was my decision," Gibbons said of Thole catching Dickey.

House cleaner says she saw 2 guns in Aaron Hernandez's home

House cleaner testifies at Hernandez murder trial that she saw 2 guns in home before killing
Michelle R. Smith, The Associated Press

FALL RIVER, Mass. - A woman who cleaned the home of former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez testified Monday at his murder trial that she saw two guns there before the killing.

Hernandez has pleaded not guilty to the June 17, 2013, killing of Odin Lloyd, who was dating the sister of Hernandez's fiancee. His body was found in an industrial park not far from Hernandez's home. The .45-calibre gun used to shoot him six times was never found.

Sinclair to lead Canada at Cyprus Cup

Cyprus Cup will be Canada's final tournament prior to Women's World Cup
The Canadian Press

Star striker Christine Sinclair will lead Canada's women's soccer team in the 2015 Cyprus Cup, the squad's final tournament prior to this summer's women's World Cup.

Coach John Herdman named his 24-player roster Monday, saying that the objective for Cyprus is build on team unity.

"We'll be only three months out from a World Cup with probably only a few more games after this tournament," said Herdman. "We're starting to define the players' roles and responsibilities in the team environment and the team culture."

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