SHOT IN ARM FOR ST. LOUIS
ST. LOUIS — Before the NFL's Rams left town in January, the St. Louis Blues were already in line to get an outdoor NHL stadium series game — just not the Winter Classic.
Team chairman Tom Stillman credits the NHL for recognizing the city needed a shot in the arm and scheduling the Blues against the Blackhawks on Jan. 2 at Busch Stadium.
"It's something that St. Louis could use right about now," Stillman said at a news conference attended by commissioner Gary Bettman, executives from both NHL teams plus the Cardinals and former players. "They're all great, but this is the big one."
"This is a major-league city and unfortunately the NFL has not deemed us worthy, which I think is ridiculous," Blues Hall of Famer Bernie Federko said. "It's a soothing moment for sports fans because for our sport, this is the big hurrah."
LIGHTNING: The team hired Sean Walker as vice president of innovation and technology services. Walker, who was the NBA's associate vice president of team, arena and event technology, will be responsible for the overall technological direction of the organization and arena operations.
Big signing beaten to punch
John Stones became the second most expensive defender in soccer history, joining Manchester City for $62 million as the latest solution to the club's defensive issues. Embarrassingly for City, the club was beaten to the announcement of its latest high-profile signing by UEFA, which listed Stones in the English team's squad for the Champions League playoff round about 45 minutes before City tweeted the center back had joined.
SUPER CUP: A superb solo goal by Dani Carvajal just before the end of extra time gave Real Madrid a 3-2 victory over Sevilla in Trondheim, Norway.
ITALY: Inter Milan hired Frank de Boer as coach on a three-year contract to replace Roberto Mancini.
MLS: New York Red Bulls defender Connor Lade will miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL in his right knee.
AUTOS: Denny Hamlin might want to keep his own engraver on standby. The Daytona 500 winner tweeted a picture after he received his version of the Harley J. Earl Trophy that goes to drivers who win the Great American Race. But instead of 2016, the silver plate read "2015." "It just hasn't been the best week as far as mis-prints go," Hamlin said, referring to a headline he saw Monday after his victory at Watkins Glen that said the winner was "Hamilton."
Joe Smith, Times staff writer, Times wires