Thursday, February 3
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Jay Cutler may have pushed harder to return to the NFC Championship game than many would like to believe. Amid questions that he didn't try hard enough to play through a knee injury, [Cutler] received a painkiller shot at halftime of the NFC title game, a source close to the situation told the Sun-Times. It's believed Cutler injured his knee on the first play of the second quarter, when Green Bay Packers defensive lineman Ryan Pickett landed on his left knee. ... Cutler headed to the locker room for halftime ahead of his teammates, and doctors and trainers confirmed their initial, on-field assessment. It's believed the team planned to shelve him for the remainder of the game, at that point [but] that Cutler insisted on trying to play and received a painkiller injection to ease the pain. (Chicago Sun-Times)Comment
A handful of topflight recruits have yet to choose their schools, among them quarterback Jacoby Brissett, who said he was only 60 percent sure of his decision. He still is considering Florida, Miami and Wisconsin, and plans to announce his choice Friday. ... The 60 percent is Miami. The other 40 percent is divided among the other three, though Wisconsin seems to be the leader of that group. Florida is aggressively recruiting Brissett, and he met with offensive coordinator Charlie Weis at least twice in January. Gators coach Will Muschamp said Wednesday his recruiting class might not be finished. (The Palm Beach Post)Comment
Though he'd still like to play in the majors, Jermaine Dye may be headed to retirements. "I will continue to stay in shape and hopefully someone will call. If nothing gets done by the end of the spring, I may call it a career." Dye said he spoke with the Dodgers in December about setting up a workout, but never heard back from the club. The hang-up, according to both Dye and Dodgers officials, was Dye's desire for a major-league contract. The Dodgers were willing to make Dye only a minor-league offer, and ended up signing another right-handed hitter, Marcus Thames, to a one-year, $1 million major-league deal. ... "I feel I can contribute to a team in a big way," Dye said. "I guess I'm just shocked that nobody has called." (FOXSports.com)Comment
Goalie fight! Pittsburgh's Brent Johnson dropped New York counterpart Rick DiPietro with a vicious punch to the jaw. The Penguins shut out the Islanders 3-0.
Awkward ... Former Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez interviews the man who replaced him, Brady Hoke, as part of CBS College Sports' National Signing Day coverage.
Game To Watch
Spurs at Lakers, 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT
- San Antonio Spurs
- Los Angeles Lakers
SI Vault: Darryl Strawberry
This Day in Sports
- 1979 -- Minnesota Twins trade Rod Carew to California Angels for four players.
- 1980 -- Larry Holmes TKOs Lorenzo Holmes in sixth round for heavyweight boxing title.
- 1990 -- Darryl Strawberry enters Smither Center for Alcohol rehabilitation.
- 1998 -- Yankees replace general manager Bob Watson with Brian Cashman.
- 2002 -- Super Bowl XXXVI: Patriots upset Rams 20-17, as Tom Brady wins MVP.