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Sports news briefs — April 9

Compiled from wire reports


Adrian Peterson says

athletes deserve pay

• Former NFL MVP Adrian Peterson advocated for college athletes on Wednesday, saying they deserved to be paid for the millions of dollars they bring to school coffers and took aim at NBA commissioner Adam Silver’s stated desire to require college players to spend two years in school before declaring for the draft. Peterson said he felt a kinship with Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel as a fellow high-profile athlete who generated significant revenues while he was in school at Oklahoma. “I feel like as much money as universities make, I feel that some of that money should be given down to the players as well because we are the ones that are making this university money,” Peterson said

• Jacksonville University hired Tony Jasick as its men’s basketball coach. Jasick spent the last season as the coach at Indiana-Purdue Fort Wayne. He led the Mastodons to a school-record 25 wins last season.

• Kansas freshman Joel Embiid is entering the NBA draft after a breakthrough season that ended with a stress fracture in his back that kept the 7-footer out of the NCAA Tournament.


Serena, Venus aren’t on Fed Cup roster

• Top-ranked Serena Williams is too wiped out to play in the Fed Cup against France on April 19-20, said U.S. captain Mary Joe Fernandez. “She is mentally and physically exhausted and needs a break, so bad timing for us, unfortunately,” Fernandez said. Neither of the Williams sisters was on the roster for the upcoming World Group playoff, to be played on an indoor hard court at Saint Louis University. Fernandez said the 32nd-ranked Venus’ absence was the result of her signing up for the hard-court tournament being played April 14-20 at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, not realizing that was the same week as the Fed Cup matches.

• Top-seeded Kevin Anderson of South Africa lost to Victor Hanescu of Romania 6-4, 6-4 in the second round of the Grand Prix Hassan II. The Moroccan tournament lost its two highest-seeded players on the same day as No. 2 Gael Monfils of France withdrew after straining his right ankle in practice. Hanescu’s quarterfinal opponent will be Federico Delbonis of Argentina, who edged Canadian qualifier Filip Peliwo 6-2, 6-7 (5), 6-4.


Penguins’ Letang 
to return after stroke

• Less than three months after a stroke put his season in jeopardy, defenseman Kris Letang went back to work for the Pittsburgh Penguins in a game against the Detroit Red Wings. The 26-year-old, who hadn’t played since Jan. 27, was cleared by doctors several weeks ago.

• Former Canucks captain Trevor Linden was hired as Vancouver’s president of hockey operations. The announcement came a day after the Canucks fired president and general manager Mike Gillis.


Rapper Drake to host 
ESPY awards show

• Drake is carving out a new niche as a television host and will helm the 2014 ESPYs, the sports award show of ESPN. The Toronto-based rapper, singer and actor and the sports entertainment network announced the gig Wednesday. The annual light-hearted awards show will be held July 16 at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles and will be broadcast live.

• Gina Carano was to meet with UFC President Dana White to discuss a return to mixed martial arts for a potential bout with bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey. White says he would love to match the unbeaten Rousey against Carano, the biggest stars in women’s MMA history. Carano hasn’t fought since August 2009 while pursuing an acting career.

— From wire reports


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