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UPI NewsTrack Sports

March 24, 2013 at 11:21 PM   |   Comments

UCLA fires basketball coach Howland

LOS ANGELES, March 24 (UPI) -- UCLA has fired Ben Howland after 10 seasons as men's basketball coach, the school announced Sunday.

In a statement posted on its website, the school said Howland, 55, has been relieved of his duties "effective immediately and a national search for his successor has begun."

The statement said Director of Athletics Dan Guerrero notified Howland of the change Sunday afternoon.

"I want to thank Ben for all that he has done for UCLA in his 10 seasons in Westwood," Guerrero said. "He embraced our tradition and culture and produced some terrific teams and coached a number of wonderful young men. We wish Ben and his family all the best as they move onto a new chapter in their lives."

Howland's UCLA teams went 233-107 and reached the NCAA Tournament seven times -- advancing to the Final Four in three straight seasons from 2006-08 -- but never won an NCAA title.

The Bruins were eliminated in the second round of this season's NCAA tournament, falling to Minnesota 86-66.


Report: Yankees, Angels in deal for Wells

TEMPE, Ariz., March 24 (UPI) -- The New York Yankees will acquire outfielder Vernon Wells from the Los Angeles Angels in a trade, MLB.com reported Sunday.

Citing multiple sources, MLB.com said the deal was not final but Wells -- who is owed $42 million for two more years on his current contract -- said goodbye to his Angels' teammates and cleared out his locker during Sunday's exhibition game.

ESPN said the Yankees will assume $13 million of Wells' salary and MLB.com said the Angels will acquire a minor league player in the deal.

Angels General Manager Jerry Dipoto had confirmed the two teams were working on a deal but he said there had been "nothing definitive" to announce.

"It'd be a huge change," Wells said at the Angels' training facility. "I don't think it's ever easy saying goodbye, but at the same time, if this were to happen, it's a good group of guys over there. I'll just get to know a new family."

The Angels acquired Wells in a 2011 trade with Toronto, where he hit .279, won three Gold Gloves and went to the All-Star Game three times from 2002-10.


Yankees' Jeter to miss home opener

TAMPA, Fla., March 24 (UPI) -- New York Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter will likely be on the disabled list for the team's 2013 home opener, General Manager Brian Cashman said Sunday.

Jeter, who is nursing a sore, surgically repaired left ankle, hasn't missed a Yankee Stadium opener since 2001.

Cashman said the New York captain will probably be on the shelf when the Yankees host Detroit April 6.

The team begins the season April 1 on the road against Boston.

Eduardo Nunez is set to replace Jeter as the team's everyday shortstop while the 38-year-old veteran stays behind in Florida to work on the ankle.

Jeter fractured the ankle during Game 1 of last year's American League Championship series against the Tigers.


Stars deal captain Morrow to Penguins

DALLAS, March 24 (UPI) -- Longtime Dallas Stars team captain Brenden Morrow has been dealt to Pittsburgh, Dallas General Manager Joe Nieuwendyk announced Sunday.

Morrow -- a forward who logged 243 goals and 528 points over 13 seasons with the Stars -- went to the Penguins along with a third-round draft choice in return for defenseman Joe Morrow and a fifth-round 2013 selection.

"Brenden Morrow has represented everything we could ever ask for in a Dallas Star, giving his heart and soul to this franchise," Nieuwendyk said. "That being said, we had a great opportunity to acquire a young, top-end defenseman in Joe Morrow and we are delighted to add him to our organization."

Brenden Morrow, 34, waived his no-trade clause to make the deal happen. He has slumped to six goals and 11 points in 29 games this season after amassing 17 scores and 25 assists over 78 playoff appearances for Dallas.

Joe Morrow was the Pens' first-round selection in the 2011 draft. He has four goals and 15 points in 57 games for Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in the American Hockey League this season.

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