Friday Myriad: Morning TV, friendly soccer

I have survived Double Deadline Day. I survived the sauna that passes for RFK Stadium’s press box. I survived the long Metro ride home, which ended with a ranting woman accusing me of using my Blackberry to transmit shortwave signals into her head to make her hair fall out. (Among other problems corroborating such an accusation: She had a very healthy head of hair.)

So what will I be watching now that all of this is done? There’s the British Open, which some will watch for Tiger drama but I enjoy for the spectacle of seeing pro golfers deal with bunkers that look like they’re hiding the Millennium Falcon. The Tour de France has a good two-man race between defending champ Alberto Contador and youngster Andy Schleck. And there’s soccer, soccer and more soccer.


7 p.m.: Soccer, Manchester United-Celtic. Euro friendlies have always struck me as something I’d much rather watch in person than on TV, but plenty of people would disagree with me on that. Must be a considerable number disagreeing with me, as this game is taking up an ESPN network’s air time rather than filling summer time slots on FSC. ESPN2

9 p.m.: Boxing, Zab Judah-Jose Armando Santa Cruz. Unusual to see a name like Judah’s on the Friday Night Fights card. ESPN2


3:35 a.m.: Rugby, Tri-Nations, New Zealand-South Africa. See Travis’ preview.

5 a.m.: Golf, British Open coverage starts with multiple angles/holes online, then on TV at 7 a.m. ESPN/

8:30 a.m.: Cycling, Tour de France, Stage 13. Versus

Noon: Soccer, USA-Switzerland, U-20 Women’s World Cup. Fresh from a stunning 1-1 draw with Ghana, which would apparently frustrate the USA in every sport ever invented, the young Americans try to regroup against the Swiss. Good news for the Swiss: They have Atlanta Beat prodigy Ramona Bachmann. Bad news: They lost their opener 4-0 to South Korea. ESPNU/

4 p.m.: Soccer, San Jose-Tottenham. Really? This friendly is on TV while Philly-Toronto (3:30), Columbus-New York (7:30), Dallas-Salt Lake (8:30) and Colorado-Kansas City (9) are on Direct Kick and online? OK, then. Columbus-New York won’t feature Thierry Henry’s debut, but the Red Bulls could leap over the Crew into first in the East.  ESPN/ESPN Deportes

7:30 p.m.: Soccer, USA-Sweden women. Tale of two halves when these teams met earlier in the week. The USA dominated the first half and finally got a goal. Early in the second, Amy Rodriguez hit the crossbar, and Sweden scored on a counter. It finished 1-1, with Sweden looking better the rest of the way. That’s not normal for a home game and speaks to a possible depth problem. Fox Soccer Channel


6 a.m.: Golf, British Open. All feeds live at the same time. ESPN/

7:30 a.m.: Cycling, Tour de France, Stage 14. Versus

3 p.m.: Soccer, Seattle-Celtic. Again, huge game if you’re within driving/train-riding distance of Qwest Field. Or if you have a fierce Celtic tie. ESPN/ESPN Deportes

5 p.m.: Soccer, WPS, Boston-Washington. The Breakers are making a charge with two straight wins, while the goals have dried up for the Freedom. FSC

7:30 p.m.: Soccer, MLS, D.C. United-Los Angeles. Both teams looking to rebound from a loss. There, the similarities end. It’s worst vs. first at RFK. (Technically, D.C. is a point ahead of Philly, but the Union have three games in hand.) FSC


  • World Series of Poker: Main Event will be whittled down to 27 players on Friday and then down to the “November Nine” on Saturday.
  • Full soccer listings at Soccer America, including SuperLiga.
  • Selected weekend listings at USA TODAY
  • ESPN3: U-20 Women’s World Cup, Australian Rules football, CFL, NBA Summer League and a ton of golf.
  • Tennis Channel: Nothing live this weekend.
  • Universal Sports: Ironman, some Tour simulcasts and AVP Hermosa Beach.
  • More Olympic sports: U.S. championships in boxing and mountain bike.

Monday Myriad: No soccer withdrawal here

Sixteen years ago, I felt a few pangs of withdrawal. I had been able to watch maybe half of the World Cup games on my little TV in my little living room in my little apartment. After that dreary final … nothing. No MLS. No regular European broadcasts. No women’s soccer.

Sunday, an hour after bidding farewell to the group of friends who came over to drink Dutch and (blech) Spanish beer while we gorged ourselves on food and watched a final that was a little less dreary, I went back into our HDTV room downstairs and flipped to Fox Soccer Channel. WPS — Washington Freedom vs. FC Gold Pride. And while the officiating was just as atrocious as the worst of what we saw from South Africa, I could rest assured that I was still watching soccer. As I’ve said elsewhere, U.S. soccer fans have been enabled. We can watch all weekend. And all week. Sorry, Tim Dahlberg, but we don’t need your permission.

And because we’re sports geeks who watch and comment on every competition shy of the foosball games downstairs (for the record, I was able to play an actual game against someone tall enough to see the table for once, and I won twice by a 10-2 count), we have much else to follow as well.

Women’s soccer: USA’s revenge over Ghana! The USA start play Tuesday in the U-20 Women’s World Cup, and it’ll be an upset to end all upsets if Ghana duplicates its 2006 and 2010 2-1 men’s victories. Dive all you want. Not going to happen.

Cycling: Lance Armstrong is now fourth in the Tour de France … on his own team. We can see if Team Radio Shack regroups to give Levi Leipheimer a push for the final podium, but more realistically, we’re looking at a Cadel Evans-Andy Schleck-Alberto Contador shootout.

Olympics (winter and summer): We’ve seen speedskaters take up cycling. Bobsledders recruit from football and track. So can skeleton veteran Katie Uhlaender make it back to the Olympics in weightlifting?

Volleyball: The U.S. men made a nice run at the World League final six, beating Russia in the first match of two in the final weekend. But the pool leaders came back for a 3-1 win in the finale, and the USA didn’t qualify as the “lucky loser” second-place team.

Basketball: Gold medal for USA U-17 men.

Track and field: Tyson Gay beat Asafa Powell in the highlight of the Diamond League’s stop in England.

Rowing: USA women’s eight still a powerhouse.

Poker: We’re down to 2,557 players in the World Series of Poker Main Event. Exiting gracefully on Day 2B were poker legend Doyle Brunson, baseball great Orel Hershiser, Seinfeld‘s Jason Alexander, Phil Ivey and Chris “Jesus” Ferguson.

Some of the names we’ll be watching on Day 3 (which is really Day 7, but they have four Day 1s and two Day 2s to accommodate the crowd):

– Bruce Buffer, UFC cage announcer
– Hank Azaria, Apu and many, many other Simpsons voices
– Johnny Chan, two-time Main Event winner
– Chris Moneymaker, 2003 surprise winner who helped start the poker boom
– Joe Cada, defending champion
– Daniel Negreanu, top poker pro and lively Twitter personality
– Allen Cunningham, like Negreanu a former WSOP Player of the Year
– Frank Kassela, sure to be this year’s Player of the Year
– Jennifer Harman, top poker pro
– Phil “Unabomber” Laak, one of the better nicknames among poker pros
– Vanessa Rousso, Duke grad like me but obviously much smarter
– Jack Ury, age 97
– Gabe Kaplan, Mr. Kotter

Sunday was a rest day at the WSOP, but they’ll be back on the Tour de France’s rest day Monday. Strange how that works.

Rugby: New Zealand sent what some in the U.S. media might call “a message,” dominating South Africa 32-12 in a Tri Nations matchup ahead of next year’s World Cup in New Zealand.

Cricket: Bangladesh beat England for the first time ever in a one-day international. Carrie Dunn captured some of the late drama.

Friday Myriad: World Cup by day, MMA by night

Going back to the chronological look at the weekend, after some …


Rugby: NBC and Universal Sports will show the 2011 and 2015 World Cups. Huge step forward for the sport in this country. And the UK media will surely appreciate having another sport in which they can do stories about American ignorance — the soccer-ignorance stories are turning into more of a challenge these days.

Chess: Searching for Bobby Fischer is a terrific film. Exhuming Bobby Fischer merely prolongs the sad demise of a troubled genius. If you want a happier story, check this piece from the NYTimes‘ excellent chess blog on the post-chess careers of several phenoms who decided not to stick with it.

Poker: David Baker emerged from a final table that included Daniel Negreanu, John Juanda and Erik Seidel to win the 2-7 Draw Lowball world title. Sammy Farha took an Omaha world title. The limit hold-em world title will be decided by the time we all wake up to watch soccer Friday morning.

MMA: A few days after competing in USA Wrestling’s team trials for the upcoming world championships, 2008 Olympic wrestler Ben Askren went back to MMA and won Bellator’s welterweight tournament over veteran Dan Hornbuckle. (MMA Fighting Stances)

Soccer: World Cup are also on ESPN Deportes, Univision and DirecTV also has countless broadcasts and re-broadcasts in several languages.


7:30 a.m.: World Cup soccer, Germany-Serbia. Germany routed hapless Australia 4-0 in their opener; Serbia lost 1-0 to Ghana and may need a miracle here or some help from Australia tomorrow. ESPN

*** 10 a.m.: World Cup soccer, USA-Slovenia. Can the U.S. men win a game they really should win? One that would go a long way toward seeing them through to the next round? Will soccer fans across the country collectively lose it? ESPN ***

2:30 p.m.: World Cup soccer, England-Algeria. The other two teams in the U.S. group are in action. Broadcast bumped from ESPN by U.S. Open golf. ESPN2

7 p.m. (highlights): Cycling, Tour de Suisse, seventh stage. The story so far: Fabian Cancellara showed his Swiss pride after learning of Switzerland’s staggering upset over Spain, but he abruptly fell out of contention in Thursday’s mountain stage (Velo News coverage). Lance Armstrong, gearing up for France (the Tour, not the underachieving soccer team), is in seventh place overall after a good showing Thursday. The race finishes with a time trial Sunday. Versus


7:30 a.m.: World Cup soccer, Netherlands-Japan. Numbers wizards Nate Silver now has the Dutch as the second favorite in the tournament after Brazil. Japan also has three points from its first game. ESPN

10 a.m.: World Cup soccer, Ghana-Australia. No pressure or anything, but Ghana looks very much like the African team most likely to do something in this tournament. ESPN

2:30 p.m.: World Cup soccer, Cameroon-Denmark. This was an odd pick for network TV. ABC

2:30 p.m.: Rugby, Churchill Cup final, England Saxons (their B-team) vs. Canada, in Red Bull Arena. Universal Sports

5:15 p.m.: Rugby, Churchill Cup third place, USA vs. France B. Universal Sports

** 9 p.m.: MMA, The Ultimate Fighter season finale. Court McGee faces Kris McCray in the tournament final. The non-tournament co-main event has two intriguing light heavyweights who aren’t quite in contention: Matt Hamill, a deaf fighter whose rise is chronicled in a long-delayed film, and Keith Jardine, whose fighting stance suggests a drunk swatting away flies. But the most-anticipated fight might be Jamie “Crabman” Yager vs. Rich Attonito, who won a hotly contested race to oppose the brash loudmouth who has shown a tendency not to back up his words. The card also has reliably entertaining fighters Chris Leben (vs. Aaron Simpson) and Spencer “The King” Fisher (vs. Dennis Siver). Spike **

10 p.m.: Boxing, Super Six super middleweight tournament, Andre Ward vs. Allan Green. Check the USA TODAY preview. Ward is 1-0 in the tournament; Green replaced Jermain Taylor. Showtime


7:30 a.m.: World Cup soccer, Slovakia-Paraguay. Each team drew its first game, though those games have been erased from my memory. Might still have nightmares about them. ESPN

10 a.m.: World Cup soccer, Italy-New Zealand. Might ask the family if there’s anything else we can do. ESPN

** 2:30 p.m.: World Cup soccer, Brazil-Ivory Coast. Ahhhhhh. Actual soccer might be played in this one. ABC **

4 p.m.: Beach volleyball, AVP Virginia Beach men’s final. Universal Sports

5 p.m. (same-day delay): Cycling, Tour de Suisse, final stage (time trial). Versus

9 p.m.: MMA, WEC returns with a lightweight main event between former champion Jamie Varner and up-and-coming fighter Kamal Shalorus, who has had an interesting journey from a small town in Iran to an international wrestling career for Britain to mixed martial arts. The card also has two bantamweights with gaudy records — Josh Grispi vs. LC Davis. Versus


  • Modern pentathlon: Margaux Isaksen and Will Brady are in the World Cup Final.
  • Volleyball: The U.S. men beat Finland twice in World League play last weekend to get their record up to 2-2. Egypt visits this weekend in the Charlotte suburb of Concord, N.C.
  • Track and field: Basically an off week before the USA Championships.
  • More events: Canoe/kayak World Cup, badminton N.Y. Open


  • World Series of Poker: The most intriguing event of the weekend is the heads-up no-limit hold-em world championship, which starts with 256 and runs like a slow-moving basketball bracket. How to follow.
  • College World Series (NCAA baseball): ESPN, Saturday and Sunday.
  • Full soccer listings at Soccer America. (OK, it’s all World Cup right now.)
  • Selected weekend listings at USA TODAY
  • Tennis Channel: WTA Eastbourne, with Friday semis and Saturday final. Nothing Sunday; Wimbledon starts Monday.
  • Universal Sports: Swimming (Santa Clara Invitational) is on TV and online.
  • Cycling.TV: Live audio and highlights from Tour de Suisse

And for the final word on South African history this weekend, we check in with Little Steven. And Bono. And Pat Benatar. And Bob Dylan.

Friday Myriad: USA-England II, Liddell-Franklin I, Track-Field II

No, we’re not going to forget the rest of the sports world during the big month in South Africa. That said, I’m backing off from the chronological viewing program this week and doing a more basic linking spree. Enjoy.


World Cup: DirecTV has everything in HD, some in 3D and a total of seven languages — English, Spanish, Arabic, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese. (press release)

WPS: The league is getting more pickup from Comcast regional networks. Best off checking your local affiliate for delayed broadcasts; the league site’s schedule just has the live ones.


Well, sort of. It’s the USA against the England Saxons, essentially England’s B team, Sunday at the Churchill Cup. That’s one day after that other USA-England game in South Africa.


Diamond League raced in Rome on Thursday and will resume Saturday in New York, where 5,000-seat Icahn Stadium is sold out. Universal Sports, 8 p.m. ET

The Rome highlights:

  • Men’s 400: Jeremy Wariner barely held off Angelo Taylor in a thriller, winning in a world-leading 44.73. (Universal Sports video)
  • Men’s long jump: Dwight Phillips with a world-leading 8.42 meters.
  • Women’s high jump: Another duel between the USA’s Chaunte Lowe and Croatia’s Blanka Vlasic, another win for Vlasic on fewer misses.
  • Men’s 100: No Bolt or Gay, so Jamaica’s Asafa Powell just shaved a little bit off his world-leading time. Down to 9.84 seconds.
  • Women’s 400 hurdles: Also a routine world-leader for Lashinda Demus (52.82).
  • Men’s 200: Walter Dix’s 19.86 broke Michael Johnson’s 11-year-old meet record.
  • Men’s shot put: Christian Cantwell’s 14-meet win streak went down to the last throw. Nailed it. 21.67 meters.

Expected in New York (entry list PDF):

  • Women’s pole vault: Silver medalist Jenn Suhr, formerly Jenn Stuczynski, is due back in action after an Achilles injury
  • Men’s 1,500: Bernard Lagat and Lopez Lomong
  • Men’s 400 hurdles: Bershawn Jackson and Kerron Clement
  • Men’s pole vault: Aussie favorite Steve Hooker and U.S. veteran Tim Mack
  • Women’s 1,500: Shannon Rowbury, not just mentioned here because she went to Duke. Also Cristin Wurth-Thomas.
  • Women’s 200: Allyson Felix and Jamaica’s Veronica Campbell-Brown
  • Women’s 100 hurdles: Lolo Jones and a lot of people with comparable PBs


Beach volleyball: Men and women both in Moscow for FIVB action that Universal Sports’ blogger says will draw huge crowds. (Russia’s soccer team, coincidentally, isn’t in the World Cup.) Online at women’s medal matches, 10 a.m. Sunday / men’s medal matches, 9:30 a.m. Monday

Wrestling: The U.S. team for this year’s World Championships is being determined tonight and tomorrow. (USOC; video highlights at

Volleyball: Like Frank Zappa and the Mothers, the U.S. women are in Montreux. (USOC)

Figure skating: Sorry, ice dancing fans and infatuated guys on the Web — Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto are hanging up the skates.

Triathlon: Hunter Kemper is injured and will miss Hy-Vee Race. (Twitter – @vmichaelis)


Nadal lost, leaving Sam Querrey a nice opportunity to win a title at Queen’s Club. Maria Sharapova is in the women’s semis. Men’s semis and final on Tennis Channel

Former No. 1 Roger Federer is still in at the Gerry Weber Open.


UFC 115: We have Chuck LiddellRich Franklin, Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic-Pat Barry, Martin Kampmann-Paulo Thiago and a host of others heading into a very busy stretch of fights. And yes, I was busy writing all that with Sergio Non this week.

Bellator: Pat Curran is the Season 2 lightweight champion in a decision Sergio didn’t like. On Thursday, it’s the welterweight tournament finale between Dan Hornbuckle and Ben Askren, the 2008 Olympic wrestler who has a very quick turnaround from attempting to make the Olympic wrestling team today (see above). The good news is that Askren was wrestling at 163 pounds and will fight at 170, so he shouldn’t worry about making weight.


World Championships: Frank Cassela took the Seven Card Stud Hi-Low Split-8 or Better Name This *&*$ing Event So We Don’t Have to Type All That Stuff title on Tuesday, beating notables such as Jennifer Harman (third) and John Juanda (fifth).

The 2-7 Draw Lowball championship is down a final table that includes Juanda, Erik Seidel and Daniel Negreanu. Check the official updates or get Negreanu’s colorful first-hand Tweets about the event and whatever else springs to mind.

The Ladies event is underway, though a few men have elbowed their way to the tables. Shaun Deeb said he was doing it for charity after losing a bet, which we wouldn’t believe except that they are indeed in Vegas. Duke grad Vanessa Rousso is already out, so we’re rooting for chess GM and SportsMyriad interviewee Jennifer Shahade. Shannon Elizabeth has a healthy chip stack at the moment.

Back in the a.m. for World Cup Virtual Viewing.

Monday Myriad: USA, Russia split

Going quickly today with two big projects in the last four days before the World Cup:

Beach volleyball: Olympic champs Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser won their 50th title together at the AVP Huntington Beach Open. Their records this year: 17-0 AVP, 23-5 FIVB. (Universal Sports)

The women’s side has been a bit less one-sided, with world champions Jen Kessy and April Ross winning twice on the FIVB tour but not winning this season on the domestic AVP circuit until Sunday, when they held off Misty May-Treanor and Nicole Branagh. For all their accomplishments, Kessy and Ross had never won near their hometowns in southern California. May-Treanor and Branagh haven’t beaten Kessy and Ross this season but seemed to be closing the gap in Sunday’s three-setter. Gold medalist May-Treanor is playing with Branagh this season because Kerri Walsh is out on maternity. (Universal Sports)

Tennis: Rafael Nadal (no surprise) and Francesca Schiavone (big surprise) are your French Open winners.

Poker: Men “The Master” Nguyen won his seventh World Series of Poker bracelet in the seven-card stud World Championship.

Rugby: USA 39, Russia 22 at the Churchill Cup. The Eagles shook off some rust in the first half and pulled away in the second. (USA Rugby)

Volleyball: Not as good for the USA vs. Russia — the U.S. men dropped their first two matches of the World League in Ekaterinberg, Russia.

Triathlon: Sarah Haskins finished fifth in Madrid to move up to fourth in the World Championships Series. Jarrod Shoemaker finished ninth to move up to 10th in the series; Matt Chrabot finished 14th to remain in the top 10 at ninth.

College softball: Maybe it seems like UCLA and Arizona are in the championship series every year, but this year, they’re the fifth and 10th seeds. And Arizona had to battle back through the losers’ bracket after losing 9-0 to Tennessee. And even though UCLA has 10 titles and Arizona 8 (next on the list: Texas A&M with 2), they haven’t faced each other in the final since 2001. Game 1 is on ESPN2, 8 p.m. ET.

College golf: Augusta State is the upset winner in the men’s tournament. Yes, Division I. (AP)

Table tennis: A U.S. women’s team consisting of 41-year-old Olympic veteran Jun Gao, three 14-year-olds and a 13-year-old finished 16th at the World Team Championships, clinching a spot in the 2012 world event. (USOC)

Friday Myriad: French finals, final Cup tune-ups

One side effect of the World Cup: These are the last MLS weekend games until June 25. They’ll play a few midweek games June 9-10, then break.

This is an eclectic weekend. How often do you see beach volleyball on two channels? College rugby on a major network?

If you’re an MMA fan, this is your one weekend off before a dizzy stretch with five cards (UFC PPV, Ultimate Fighter finale, WEC, Sengoku, Strikeforce) in nine days.


7 a.m.: Tennis, French Open men’s semi, #5 Robin Soderling-#15 Tomas Berdych. Tennis Channel

11 a.m.: Tennis, French Open men’s semi, #2 Rafael Nadal-#22 Jurgen Melzer, possibly on delay. Might also see women’s double’s final, Williams sisters vs. Kyeta Peschke-Katarina Srebotnick. NBC

11:55 a.m.: Soccer, France-China. Start the panic in Paris if this one goes awry. ESPN2

2 p.m.: Track and field, Diamond League, Bislett Games, Oslo. Universal

7/9:30 p.m.: Softball, Women’s College World Series, winner’s bracket games. ESPN

8 p.m.: Hockey, Stanley Cup finals Game 4, Philadelphia-Chicago (Chicago leads 2-1). Versus


8:30 a.m.: Soccer, USA-Australia. How well have the final 23 acclimated to South Africa? We’ll find out. ESPN2, with live coverage right here at

9 a.m.: Tennis, French Open women’s final, Samantha Stosur-Francesca Schiavone, and men’s doubles final, NBC

12/2:30 p.m.: Softball, Women’s College World Series, elimination games. ESPN2

4 p.m.: Soccer, Toronto-Kansas City. How far can Dwayne De Rosario and Stefan Frei really carry TFC? Direct Kick/

4 p.m.: Rugby, Sevens Collegiate Championship Invitational, San Diego State-Tennessee, Army-Navy, California-Dartmouth, Ohio State-Penn State, NBC

7/9:30 p.m.: Softball, Women’s College World Series, elimination games. ESPN

7:30 p.m.: Soccer, New York-Chivas USA. The Red Bulls rebounded nicely with a big home win Wednesday, stopping the plummet out of the playoff places. FSC

  • 7:30 p.m.: D.C. United-Real Salt Lake. Direct Kick/
  • 8 p.m.: Los Angeles-Houston. Galavision
  • 8:30 p.m.: Dallas-San Jose. Direct Kick/
  • 8:30 p.m.: Chicago-Philadelphia. Direct Kick/
  • 9 p.m.: Colorado-Columbus. Direct Kick/

10:15 p.m.: Boxing. Miguel Cotto-Yuri Foreman bout tops card from Yankee Stadium. HBO

10:30 p.m.: Soccer, Seattle-New England. Two teams with high expectations try to shake off the early-season misfortune. Direct Kick/


9 a.m.: Tennis, French Open men’s final, NBC

1/3:30 p.m.: Softball, Women’s College World Series, unbeaten teams in each bracket vs. other surviving teams. ESPN

2 p.m.: Beach volleyball, AVP Huntington Beach Open women’s final, ESPN2

3 p.m.: Cycling, Dauphine Libere prologue (delay), Versus

4 p.m.: Beach volleyball, AVP Huntington Beach Open men’s final, NBC

4 p.m.: Rugby, Sevens Collegiate Championship Invitational final, NBC

6 p.m.: Soccer (WPS), Chicago-Atlanta. Missing St. Louis Athletica? See several of their players in action for the visiting Beat. FSC

7/9:30 p.m.: Softball, Women’s College World Series (if necessary), winners advance to best-of-three championship. ESPN2

8 p.m.: Hockey, Stanley Cup finals Game 5, Chicago-Philadelphia. NBC


  • Beach volleyball, track and field televised (see above)
  • Volleyball: U.S. men open World League play at Russia
  • Triathlon: World Championship Series, Madrid;
  • Modern pentathlon: Final World Cup before the final; Saturday/Sunday coverage at Americans Margaux Isaksen (ninth) and Will Brady (21st) in good shape to reach 36-athlete final.


Friday headlines and the Weekend Watch

Not that those of us in the Mid-Atlantic will be inside on what’s shaping up to be a beautiful weekend …


Media: Best April Fool’s gag seen yesterday: ESPN to cancel Pardon the Interruption to expand Around the Horn to an hour, bring in more people sure to grate on your nerves and judge it with a decibel meter. (Sports Media Watch)

Soccer: Houston came back to beat Real Salt Lake 2-1 with two penalty kicks in one minute, both against Jamison Olave. The second benefited from some embellishment by Luis Angel Landin, but RSL coach Jason Kreis is holding his tongue. In the second game of the night, Edson Buddle scored the only two goals in the L.A. superclasico as the Galaxy beat Chivas USA 2-0.

Soccer: The biggest development in last night’s MLS games was the injury to Brian Ching, who’s essential to the Dynamo and very much in the forward mix for the World Cup. He fell hard, clutching his hamstring. Watch for updates.

Swimming: As a teen, Chloe Sutton was one of the early U.S. success stories in the rough-and-tumble world of open-water swimming. Now she’s skipping college and winning in the pool. Interesting read on the winner of the 200m and 800m freestyle on day 1 of the Columbus Grand Prix yesterday. Universal Sports is airing the Grand Prix action. (USA Swimming)

Rugby: Gotta love games decided on last-second drop goals. (AP)

Soccer: Bobby Convey’s frustrations have boiled over in San Jose. (Mercury News)

Soccer: West Ham is complaining that Fulham didn’t have its best players in the lineup in a loss to Hull, which is battling the Hammers in the EPL relegation zone. Hey, Dempsey played! (BBC)

MMA: UFC’s June date in Vancouver, thought to be in doubt, has been confirmed. If you’re willing to pay expenses to send an MMA/Olympics writer back to Vancouver for a weekend, e-mail beau dot dure … (MMA Fighting Stances)

WEEKEND WATCH (all times ET)

A selective look at what’s going on …

All weekend

Curling – Men’s world championships, Universal Sports. 2006 Olympic bronze medalist Pete Fenson returns to Italy, and the Canadian Press frets that Canadian rookie skip Kevin Koe must open against against him.


1 p.m.: Tennis – Sony Ericsson men’s semifinal, FSN. Andy Roddick vs. Rafael Nadal in a matchup sure to draw more interest than the eventual final.


7:30 a.m.: Soccer – Manchester United-Chelsea, ESPN2. Just the top two teams in the world’s biggest soccer league. Yeah, we know — Wayne Rooney will miss it.

9:30 a.m.: Soccer – Schalke-Bayern Munich, GolTV. Just the top teams in the world’s (second? third? fourth?) biggest soccer league.

12:30 p.m.: Tennis – Sony Ericsson women’s final, CBS. It’s a throwback – Venus Williams vs. Kim Clijsters.

12:30 p.m.: Rowing – The Boat Race. Yes, THE Boat Race. Oxford-Cambridge. If you know a legal way to watch, please drop us a comment. (AP preview, BBC preview)

9 p.m.*: Boxing – Did you have any questions after Roy Jones Jr. took a unanimous decision over Bernard Hopkins at RFK Stadium in 1993? Good news: They’re fighting again, just a few years beyond their peaks. *Main event will be after the Final Four games conclude. (USA TODAY preview)


1 p.m.: Tennis – Sony Ericsson men’s final, CBS. Roddick-Nadal winner vs. Berdych-Soderling winner.

6 p.m.: Soccer – MISL championship, local TV and B2TV. Milwaukee Wave hosting Monterrey La Raza, which knocked out the Baltimore Blast in the semifinals. Milwaukee got a bye. (Milwaukee Magazine preview)

Tuesday’s headlines: Moscow mourns, Man U in Munich

– The Champions League continues today at 2:30 p.m. ET with Bayern Munich-Manchester United (FSN) and Lyon-Bordeaux (FSC), but Wednesday’s action will have a somber tone as CSKA Moscow takes the field two days after a subway bombing that killed 39 people. The club has asked to wear black armbands (Reuters). (TV listings – Soccer America)

– CSKA Moscow’s basketball team, where Americans Trajan Langdon and J.R. Holden have carved out long careers, is in action today in the Euroleague quarterfinals against Spain’s Caja Laboral. CSKA leads the best-of-5 series 2-0. (Euroleague)

– Back to soccer’s European elite — Chelsea’s Didier Drogba has a two-match European ban. (BBC)

– Break up the U.S. men’s rugby sevens, which beat Thailand 62-0 and will play in another Cup quarterfinal. Will the USA turn into a rugby power now that the sport’s in the Olympics? (USOC)

– Tony Benshoof is the Terminator of luge. He’s having back surgery and says he might return for another season. (AP)

– Dana White talks often about the Internet being the future of broadcasting, and maybe he’s not kidding: The Ultimate Fighter will have tons of archival footage and extras online. (FanHouse)

– South Africa’s Carter Semenya, whose gender is still in question, has not been cleared to run. (AP)

– The collection of strange Diego Maradona headlines continues: He was treated at a hospital after being bitten by one of his dogs. Are the media too obsessed with him, or is his life that strange? (Reuters)