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  1. Photo gallery: Pope Francis visits Africa


    The pope got a taste of Kenyan slum life on Friday, writes Jeffrey Gettleman for the New York Times

    He stepped out of his car on a muddy street and walked slowly past hundreds of poor children who live in shanties. He heard stories of gangs preying on women, of people dying from homemade alcohol and of sinister plots by businessmen to flood children out of their schools and steal land....

    Pope Francis is cheered by children Friday during his visit to Kangemi, one of the 11 slums dotting Nairobi, Kenya.
  2. Lightning 3-game win streak ends vs. Caps

    Lightning Strikes

    WASHINGTON — The Lightning wins at the Verizon Center about as often as civilians leap over the White House fence.

    Wait, never mind, that happened Thursday.

    But considering Tampa Bay's struggles in the nation's capital, why not throw in the Kid, goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy, and see if he can steal one?

    Vasilevskiy was sharp Friday, making 33 saves. But it wasn't enough, as the Capitals, specifically their potent power play, were too much, handing the Lightning a 4-2 loss that snapped a three-game winning streak. Washington went 3-for-4 on the power play; the Lightning was 0-for-2. Tampa Bay is 2-17-2 in its past 21 games in Washington; its last win was the regular-season finale in 2013-14....

    Capitals left wing Jason Chimera get congratulations from the bench after his second-period goal as Lightning defensemen Braydon Coburn (55) and Anton Stralman skate away.
  3. USF basketball falls to No. 1 Kentucky


    MIAMI — Jamal Murray had 21 points and No. 1 Kentucky scored the final 15 points of the first half on the way to beating USF 84-63 in the HoopHall Miami Invitational on Friday.

    It was a meeting between second-year USF coach Orlando Antigua, a former Kentucky assistant, and his old boss, Wildcats coach John Calipari.

    Skal Labissiere added 17 points for the Wildcats (6-0), who led by as many as 31. Charles Matthews scored 11 points and Isaiah Briscoe finished with seven assists for Kentucky, now a winner of 37 consecutive regular-season games and 39 in a row against unranked opponents....

    USF guard Roddy Peters goes up for a shot as Kentucky forward Marcus Lee defends in the first half of the Hoophall Miami Invitational. The Bulls fell to the Wildcats 83-61.   {Associated Press}
  4. Austin Seferian-Jenkins remains doubtful for Bucs game


    TAMPA — DE George Johnson and S Keith Tandy have been ruled out for the Bucs game Sunday in Indianapolis and TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins still hasn't been cleared for contact, making it unlikely he will play.

    Johnson will miss a second straight game with a calf injury. Tandy remains sidelined with a concussion.

    "We're in good shape," coach Lovie Smith said. "We have (only) a couple of guys out. This time of year, that's a good thing."...

  5. Rays release 2016 spring training schedule

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays aren't sure where they will wrap up spring training given the potential for a late-March trip to Cuba, but they will start exhibition play March 2 in Port Charlotte against Dusty Baker's Nationals.

    The Rays on Friday released their 29-game spring schedule which, subject to change, includes 15 games at the Charlotte Sports Park and three road games in the Tampa Bay area — at Dunedin (Blue Jays, March 13, split squad); Clearwater (Phillies, March 17) and Tampa (Yankees, March 24)....

  6. Lightning-Islanders preview

    Lightning Strikes


    Lightning vs. Islanders

    When/where: 7 p.m., Amalie Arena

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 970-AM

    Key stats: As is the Lightning, the Islanders are playing the back end of back-to-back games, following a game against the Panthers on Friday in Sunrise. … New York entered Friday having lost two of its past three, both to the Canadiens. … The Islanders are led by C John Tavares, who had 10 goals and 10 assists entering Friday. … New York's power play ranked 24th at 15 percent. … Lightning G Ben Bishop, expected to start, has won his past three starts, allowing two goals. He has a 1.30 goals-against average since Nov. 4, which was the best in the league. … Tampa Bay is 0-1-1 in second games of back-to-backs this season. … The Lightning lost two of three meetings between the teams last season, winning the game at home Nov. 15, 2014....

  7. Cameron Brate proves smart choice for Bucs at tight end


    TAMPA — When Bucs tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins injured his shoulder in Week 2 against the Saints, the player who would best fill the void left by his extended absence was in streetclothes on the other sideline.

    Harvard graduate Cameron Brate had spent much of his rookie year on the Bucs' practice squad last season, catching a single pass for 17 yards. He had again missed the Bucs' final cuts out of training camp, and a week later, had been released from the practice squad, signed to the same role by New Orleans....

    Cameron Brate #84 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers celebrates his touchdown with teammate Luke Stocker #88 in the third quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on November 22, 2015 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) 582319145
  8. Clearwater hires private eye to crack down on short-term rentals

    Local Government

    CLEARWATER — He sounded like just another tourist calling to rent a waterfront vacation home.

    But really, this was good old fashioned detective work.

    Constantine Janus, private investigator, had been surveilling this three-bedroom house in Island Estates for days. He had crept by twice already to snap photos of the out-of-state cars in the driveway.

    Now with a phone call posing as potential customer, he was about to help his client — the city of Clearwater — crack down on one of the area's most problematic black markets....

    Constantine Janus is a private investigator hired by Clearwater to spy on homeowners illegally renting their houses short-term.
  9. DEP deputy administrator may lack environmental experience, but is an expert in hunting


    Three months after Gov. Rick Scott named Jon Steverson the new secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection, Steverson hired a man with nearly zero environmental experience to serve as one of his top administrators.

    Before getting the $125,000-a-year job as deputy secretary in charge of state lands and parks, Gary F. Clark had no prior experience working for DEP, or for any other state agency, much less managing Florida's state park system....

  10. Tampa taking juvenile curfew off the books

    Public Safety

    TAMPA — After 21 years, Tampa is officially dropping its juvenile curfew.

    Unofficially, it hasn't been enforced for 11 years, ever since the Florida Supreme Court said it was unconstitutional and unsupported by good data.

    "It's not going to change the way we do business," police spokesman Stephen Hegarty said. "It's a housekeeping thing."

    Tampa has a long, on-again, off-again history with curfews for minors....

  11. Millions owed to developers loom over Hillsborough's move to charge more for growth

    Local Government

    TAMPA — On this, politicians and activists on both sides of Hillsborough County's political spectrum seem to agree: Developers should pay more for the roads and other projects needed to support new growth.

    But even if Hillsborough charges builders more, it might be a while before county coffers see a big boost.

    That's because developers hold more than $90 million in credits that they can use to offset future fees. And while a new fee structure could ultimately bring in $35 million a year for roads, sidewalks and transit, county staff says it likely won't until all those credits are used up....

  12. Cyber Monday falls behind Black Friday as No. 1 online shopping day


    Isn't every day pretty much Cyber Monday nowadays?

    A lot of the big retail names, from brick and mortar chains like Walmart and Best Buy to online companies like Amazon, are offering Black Friday-like specials all weekend long online, starting on Thanksgiving and spanning into what has been traditionally known as "Cyber Monday," or the Monday following Turkey Day.

    With so many options of where to browse and shop on the Internet these days, is Cyber Monday really relevant anymore? This year is the 10th anniversary of Cyber Monday, which was coined by the National Retail Federation to create yet another promotional shopping holiday. ...

  13. For Gators, Seminoles, much at stake


    GAINESVILLE — Last week's wins by the Gators and Seminoles weren't even finished yet when No. 10 Florida and No. 14 Florida State began thinking about Saturday's rivalry game.

    "After we beat Chattanooga, we already knew what was next," FSU defensive lineman DeMarcus Walker said. "I remember sitting on the sideline like, it's time."

    And for perhaps the first time in years, the matchup has high stakes befitting both programs' reputations. Today's game at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium marks only the second time in the last decade that both teams boasted top-15 rankings....

    Jake McGee #83 of the Florida Gators scores the game-winning touchdown during overtime in the game against the Florida Atlantic Owls at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on November 21, 2015 in Gainesville, Florida.  (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images) 586071599
  14. This Week in Pictures: A snow-covered Great Wall of China, a playful chimp in Sydney, protests in Minneapolis and Chicago, and much more


    A snow-covered Great Wall of China, protests in Minneapolis and Chicago, Equestrians in England, democracy in the Middle East, a playful chimpanzee in Sydney, displaced persons in Costa Rica and Afghanistan and a papal visit to Nairobi are among the images we have to offer you this week. (All photos are from Getty Images or the Associated Press and were either transmitted or published since November 20.)...

    Pope Francis is cheered by children during his visit to Kangemi, one of the 11 slums dotting Nairobi, Kenya, Friday, Nov. 27, 2015. Pope Francis denounced the conditions slum-dwellers are forced to live in, saying Friday that access to safe water is a basic human right and that everyone should have dignified, adequate housing.
  15. Photo gallery: Florida Botanical Gardens Foundation’s annual Holiday Lights in the Gardens event


    Times staff photographer Jim Damaske got a sneak peek on Monday at the Florida Botanical Gardens holiday lights display, which opens to the public starting today. Here are some photos of what you can expect to see.

    Click here for more info on this annual event.


    A lighted snowmen family display is new this year in the Florida Botanical Gardens holiday lights display.