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2hBill Barnwell

Contender kryptonite: Big weaknesses on the top 15 teams

The pass rush in Dallas and New England. The run defense in Oakland and Washington. A new injury in Seattle. The NFL's likely playoff field is full of holes.

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Cruz thinks OBJ gets bad rap from media (2:05)
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2hIan Begley

NYPD to speak with Barnes over alleged assault

The New York City Police Department is looking to speak with Sacramento Kings forward Matt Barnes regarding an assault at a New York nightclub Monday morning, according to a police spokesperson.

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Earl Thomas out for the season following scary collision (0:46)
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Stephen A. supports Rivera's decision to bench Newton (1:50)
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2hJoe McDonald

Power Rankings: Canadiens climb back to No. 1

The Canadiens are clicking, Rick Nash is doing the dirty work for the second-ranked Rangers and the Blackhawks slip to No. 3. Can Scott Darling hold Chicago's fort until Corey Crawford returns?

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Mark Saxon ESPN Staff Writer 

Moises Alou, GM of the Dominican Republic's WBC team, said Cardinals ace Carlos Martinez committed verbally to pitch for his country. "I don't think it should be a problem. He stayed healthy the whole year, he wants to represent his country and he should be on the team," Alou said. The Dominicans, defending champions, figure again to have a formidable roster. MLB.com reported that both Martinez and top Cardinals prospect Alex Reyes have gotten permission from the Cardinals to participate. Neither was on the provisional roster announced Monday.

MLB 

Middlesbrough break the deadlock

Middlesbrough have taken a 1-0 lead over Hull City in Premier League action today, courtesy of Gaston Ramirez's goal in the 60th minute.

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Andrew Marchand ESPN Senior Writer 

Yankees GM Brian Cashman said on SiriusXM that Aroldis Chapman "is going to be costly. We're prepared to a degree to compete for that."Chapman told ESPN he is looking for a six-year deal.

Ian Begley ESPN Staff Writer 

Joakim Noah had two points and five rebounds in 24 minutes in his first game back following a 2-game absence due to an ankle injury. "I feel better but I still have a lot of work to do. Can't get frustrated with the process," he said. "Our team is definitely playing a lot better basketball right now. So just keep focusing on the positive and just keep focusing on my improvement." Noah remains confident that he will get healthy and be more productive as the season progresses. "It's going to come… no question," he says. He adds: "I know that I'm better than what I'm doing right now."

NBA 

Jesse Rogers ESPN Staff Writer 

The Cubs will increase the cost of season tickets from 6 to 31 percent next year depending on location. The average ticket increase will be 19.5 percent. Club box infield seats will increase the most.

MLB 

Rob Demovsky ESPN Staff Writer 

Julius Peppers was noncommittal about playing beyond this season: "I want to play as long as I can," Peppers said. "If I can play next year, then maybe, but we'll see about that later." Peppers is in the final season of his three-year, $26.1 million contract with the Packers. He just moved into fifth on the career sack list with 142.5, passing Michael Strahan on Sunday.

NFL 

David Lombardi ESPN Staff Writer 

Washington has won 15 of 16 games since blowing a 17-0 lead at ASU last November. Many Husky players tell me that that loss provided the final fuel necessary to motivate Washington and push it into the realm of the elite -- and now the College Football Playoff.

NCAAF 

Adam Rubin ESPN Staff Writer 

Sandy Alderson said David Wright is in California working with his surgeon's physical therapists and is ready to begin baseball activity this month. Asked who the Mets' third baseman is in 2017, Alderson unequivocally said: "David Wright."

MLB 

Adam Rubin ESPN Staff Writer 

Sandy Alderson expects to test Jose Reyes in the outfield during spring training. The Mets did not want to try that in-season last year. Alderson said the Mets will be doing that with minor leaguers this year as well so they are more flexible when they get to the majors.

MLB 

Jordan Raanan ESPN Staff Writer 

Ben McAdoo says "there were a few times yesterday that [Beckham] may have been interfered with." He says the team will have "plenty of use" this week of the process of sending plays to the league for explanations.

NFL 

Paul Kuharsky ESPN Staff Writer 

The Titans are not allowed to wear their personalized cleats for a cause Sunday, despite having a bye on the NFL's chosen Sunday. Doesn't seem fair. WATCH Jason McCourty's thoughts. He'll take a fine and wear his.

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NFL 

Jeff Dickerson ESPN Staff Writer 

Bears rookie Leonard Floyd flashed again on Sunday, recording a pair of sacks to push his season total to seven -- the third-highest number of sacks for a rookie in Bears' franchise history. "What was impressive about Leonard was being able to put maybe a couple of not some of his better plays behind him yesterday," coach John Fox said. "I thought he responded really well in the second half."

NFL 

Tim McManus ESPN Staff Writer 

Eagles tight end Zach Ertz on not blocking Vontaze Burfict on Carson Wentz scramble in first quarter: "I could see that Carson was easily going to make it out of bounds, and thought the play was over by the time I reached Burfict. Carson & I have discussed it and there are no issues. Our full attention is now on beating Washington."

NFL 

Adam Rubin ESPN Staff Writer 

Curtis Granderson and Carlos Villanueva were elected by the MLB Players' Association Executive Board to serve two-year terms as Association Player Representatives. That's the highest elected position among the union membership, according to the MLBPA. Matt Harvey and Andrew Miller were elected as Alternate Association Player Representatives.

MLB 

Tim MacMahon ESPN Staff Writer 

Sources tell ESPN that Mavs have no immediate intention to shop C Andrew Bogut, as their focus for now is trying to salvage their season. However, Mavs management recognizes that Bogut has significant value in the trade market as a proven championship-caliber complementary piece in a contract year and could become motivated to move him if and when it becomes clear that the Mavs have no hope of making the playoffs this season. Several league sources said the Mavs should be able to get a first-round pick from a contender for Bogut.

NBA 

John Keim ESPN Staff Writer 

Redskins tackle Trent Williams will return from his four-game suspension this week and will return to his starting job on the left side. Ty Nsekhe replaced him for the four games and did well, though he had some issues Sunday – perhaps because he's been dealing with a sprained ankle and struggled to anchor and use his strength. "He's our starting tackle and he's the best in the business," Redskins coach Jay Gruden said.

NFL 

Andrew Marchand ESPN Senior Writer 

Aroldis Chapman told ESPN's Marly Rivera he wants a six-year contract. I would be shocked if the Yankees gave him that. I'm not even sure they would go five years, but we'll see.

MLB 

Scott Lauber ESPN Staff Writer 

Rich Hill credited Red Sox pitching guru Brian Bannister and ex-Sox scouting director Jared Porter for helping to turn around career in 2015. Bannister taught Hill to pitch off his curveball and introduced him to spin rate. Porter encouraged him to move on the rubber. Two years later, Hill signs 3-yr, $48M deal with Dodgers.

MLB 

Paul Kuharsky ESPN Staff Writer 

Titans missed shoe cause day, so they get to wear them Sunday. Jason McCourty will wear these.

NFL 

Matt Marrone ESPN.com 

Rich Hill puts the Dodgers uniform back on after he re-signs with L.A. After, an emotional Hill has to pause several times as he addresses the media and answers questions.

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MLB 

David Ching ESPN Staff Writer 

Filed to desk: LSU's Leonard Fournette will enter the 2017 NFL draft, but plans to play in the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl on Dec. 31. Fournette is the nation's No. 1 overall prospect according to ESPN's Todd McShay and No. 2 according to Mel Kiper Jr.

NCAAF 

Brett Okamoto ESPN Staff Writer 

UFC flyweight Demetrious Johnson's disclosed purse for his successful title defense on Saturday is $350k, which is a significant increase from the disclosed $195k he received for his previous defense at UFC 197 in April.

MMA 

Mike DiRocco ESPN Staff Writer 

Jaguars coach Gus Bradley said players are still working hard, still engaged, still competing and expects that to continue. Says he expects that will continue this week against Minnesota and beyond. "As far as their character, that's unwavering."

NFL 

Marly Rivera ESPN Writer 

Aroldis Chapman to me on whether the Cubs have reached out: "The Cubs have never expressed any interest in resigning me, as far as I know."

MLB 

Marly Rivera ESPN Writer 

I just spoke to Aroldis Chapman about his contract negotiations; told me he has not evaluated any offers yet and will do so this week. Chapman: "The only thing I have expressed is that I would like a six-year contract. I know that doesn't mean that I will get it, but that's what I would like to sign. There are rumors out there that I requested $100 million and that's not true at all. I believe he who deserves something, does not need to demand it."

MLB