- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 4, 2015


Josh Gordon has been pushed out of bounds again by the NFL. And this time, there’s no guarantee he’ll be back.

The troubled wide receiver was suspended by the league for at least one year without pay on Tuesday for violating the league’s substance-abuse program. The 23-year-old’s third suspension since turning pro has placed his once promising career in jeopardy and could be the end of his days with the Browns.

Gordon, who has already served two league suspensions for drug violations, will have to apply for reinstatement. A league spokesman said his one-year ban begins immediately, meaning he will miss the entire 2015 season and forfeit his $1.07 million salary and a portion of the $2.3 million bonus he got while signing a four-year contract in 2012.

The former Pro Bowler has been a repeat offender of the league’s drug policy, and his latest offense seems to have driven a deep wedge between him and the Browns.

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) - Falcons owner Arthur Blank said Tuesday he has seen enough of the NFL’s investigation of fake crowd noise at Atlanta’s home games to acknowledge wrongdoing.

The NFL is trying to determine if the Falcons pumped artificial crowd noise into the Georgia Dome for home games the last two years. Apparently, the answer is yes.

Blank had a quick response when asked if there was a fine line for crowd noise not allowed by the league.

Blank said he expects the league to report its findings in two to three weeks.

The Falcons could be fined or penalized with the loss of a draft pick if found to have added fake crowd noise during the opposing team’s huddles when they were trying to call a play.



LOS ANGELES (AP) - Former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva has tested positive for steroid use.

Silva, the 39-year-old Brazilian widely considered the greatest mixed martial artist in the young sport’s history, tested positive for Drostanolone metabolites and another steroid in an out-of-competition test Jan. 9.

Nick Diaz, his opponent at UFC 183 last Saturday, also tested positive for elevated levels of marijuana metabolites in results released Tuesday night by the Nevada Athletic Commission.

The UFC said the commission is doing further testing to confirm the results, but the stunning announcement casts a large shadow over Silva’s impressive comeback from a badly broken leg last Saturday for a unanimous-decision victory over Diaz.

In a brief statement, the UFC said it was “disappointed to learn of these initial results.”



ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) - Los Angeles Angels slugger Josh Hamilton could be out for two months after surgery on his right shoulder.

Hamilton will have surgery to repair his AC joint on Wednesday, the Angels announced.

The 2010 AL MVP needs surgery to fix a shoulder that has been bothering him since last September. The pain returned last week, and the club decided on surgery at the Texas Metroplex Institute for Sports Medicine and Orthopedics.

Full recovery will take six to eight weeks, but Hamilton could resume baseball activities within three weeks, the Angels say.

The 33-year-old Hamilton hasn’t played at an MVP level since joining the Angels on a five-year, $125 million free-agent contract two seasons ago. He has 31 homers and 123 RBIs in two years for Los Angeles.

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Two-time Super Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson will again visit the Texas Rangers during spring training.

Details were still being worked out, but the Seattle Seahawks quarterback is likely to have a similar experience as last year.

Weeks after Seattle won the Super Bowl last year, Wilson spent a day in Surprise, Arizona. He went through a morning workout with the Rangers, took the lineup card to umpires before a spring training game and sat in the dugout without playing. He also addressed Rangers minor leaguers.

Texas selected Wilson from the Colorado Rockies in the Triple-A portion of baseball’s December draft in 2013. Wilson was a minor league second baseman for parts of two seasons (2010-11) before going back to college to play football. He just finished his third NFL season.



PHOENIX (AP) - Phoenix Mercury guard Diana Taurasi will sit out the 2015 WNBA season after receiving a lucrative offer from her Russian club team to rest this summer.

Taurasi led the Mercury to their third WNBA title in 2014, earning finals MVP honors before returning to Russia, where she’s played the past several offseasons.

Taurasi sent a letter to Mercury fans saying it was a tough decision, but that the toll of playing year-round and the financial opportunity from UMMC Ekaterinburg in Russia led her take the 2015 WNBA season off.

She plans to return to the WNBA in 2016.

A seven-time WNBA All-Star, Taurasi is the league’s second all-time leading scorer and a two-time finals MVP. She also was league MVP in 2009.

SYDNEY (AP) - Lauren Jackson’s Australian club, the Canberra Capitals, says the three-time WNBA MVP will undergo further surgery on her troublesome right knee and miss the rest of the domestic season.

Jackson played just six games for the Capitals in the Australian league after an 11-month break recovering from the hip and knee injuries that kept her out of last year’s world championships.

The Capitals on Wednesday said scans show she needs more surgery on her knee, possibly as early as next week.

It is not clear how long Jackson will be off the court, or when she’ll be able to rejoin the Seattle Storm.

Jackson said: “It’s been a long road to recovery and this is another small setback. I just have to take things one day at a time.”

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