congress honors nicklaus
WASHINGTON — The Golden Bear got a gold medal. Congress awarded its highest civilian honor, the Congressional Gold Medal, to golfing great Jack Nicklaus, who accepted the award with a few tears, humility and humor.
In a ceremony in the Capitol Rotunda, the House and Senate leadership bestowed the award on Nicklaus, winner of a record 18 major championships, including six Masters titles, five PGA championships and four U.S. Opens.
"That is a wow," Nicklaus, 75, said as he was presented the medal. He told his family that his whole life he wanted to make them proud of him, and "hopefully I have."
Nicklaus joins Roberto Clemente, Joe Louis, Byron Nelson, Jesse Owens, Arnold Palmer and Jackie Robinson as athletes to be awarded the medal.
Dempsey hurt; Tampa's Green on U.S. team
United States captain Clint Dempsey will miss exhibition games at Denmark and Switzerland because of a strained right hamstring. He is expected to be sidelined two to three weeks. Dempsey was injured during training in Zurich. No replacement will be added for Friday's game at Aarhus, Denmark, against the Danish team. The Americans play Switzerland on March 31 at Zurich.
Tampa native Julian Green remains on the American roster for the exhibition matches. Green, 19, joined Bundesliga club Hamburg this season on loan from Bayern Munich. Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge may loan Green to an English Premier League club next season, according to espnfc.us. Hamburg is on its third manager this season with Green gaining little playing time.
Hobbled Nadal expects to play in South Florida
Rafael Nadal says he'll compete at the Miami Open in Key Biscayne despite turning his left ankle in practice on Monday. Nadal has a bye and isn't scheduled to play until a second-round match on Friday. Nadal spent more than an hour practicing on Tuesday. Nadal will play the winner of today's match between Nicolas Almagro and Sergiy Stakhovsky. Nadal missed most of the second half of 2014 with injuries.
CYCLING: Lance Armstrong has not done enough to get his life ban reduced and his latest bid for rehabilitation is coming too late, World Anti-Doping Agency head David Howman said. Armstrong met with U.S. Anti-Doping Agency chief Travis Tygart this month in hopes of getting a reduction of his ban.
BOXING: Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s payoff for fighting Manny Pacquiao could easily be $180 million, up substantially from earlier predictions of $120 million. Pacquiao is expected to get over $100 million. Ticket prices for the May 2 fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas range from $1,500 in the upper deck to $7,500 at ringside.
MMA: Former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar ruled out a return to mixed martial arts, saying he re-signed with the WWE.