<![CDATA[NBC Connecticut - Sports]]>Copyright 2016http://www.nbcconnecticut.com/news/sports http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/NBC_Connecticut.png NBC Connecticut http://www.nbcconnecticut.comen-usFri, 01 Jul 2016 02:29:36 -0400Fri, 01 Jul 2016 02:29:36 -0400NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Serena Williams 'Sad' Some Athletes Skipping Rio Over Zika ]]> Wed, 29 Jun 2016 12:59:58 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/AP_16133484327092.jpg

Tennis star Serena Williams said she will be attending the Olympics in Rio despite concerns about the spread of Zika and is "sad" some have pulled out because of the virus.

"[That’s] something that's been on my mind," Williams told USA Today over the weekend. "I'm really just gonna have to go super protected maybe. I don't know."

Last month, 150 doctors, scientists and bioethicists from more than a dozen countries wrote a letter urging the World Health Organization to put pressure on Olympic officials to move or postpone the games because of global health concerns over the Zika virus.

The letter's authors wrote that Rio's public health system is too weak to make a serious push to rid the city of the mosquito that transmits the virus.

Since the letter was sent, several athletes have announced they will be skipping the Rio games over Zika fears, including golfers Rory McIlroy and Vijay Singh and cyclist Tejay van Garderen. Other athelets have pulled out, citing injuries, need for rest and other reasons. 

Williams told USA Today it's "sad" that some athletes are choosing to stay home.

"At the same time I obviously understand where they're coming from and how they feel," she said. "Part of me feels that way, too, which is why I'm going in, you know, with a whole mindset of how do I protect myself, how do I prevent and also raise awareness for this. That's kind of how I'm looking at it."

Zika, though primarily transferred through mosquitoes, can be sexually transmitted. The virus has been found to cause serious cognitive defects in newborn babies when contracted during pregnancy. It has also been linked to neurological disorders in adults.

This will be William's fourth time competing in the Olympics. She will be defending her champion title in both singles and doubles. Williams also won doubles gold with her sister Venus in 2000 and 2008.



Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Nike Tennis Dress Courts Controversy at Wimbledon]]> Wed, 29 Jun 2016 13:02:16 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-543416436.jpg

Nike has come under fire over the tennis dress it designed for its sponsored female athletes at this year's Wimbledon tournament.

The Championships at the All-England Club started Monday, and the dress named "Premier Slam" immediately courted controversy after players were spotted wearing them.

The dress, retailing for $100 on Nike's website, is standard Wimbledon white, but its loose fit and length has some players and fans complaining it reveals too much. Some players have also complained that the dress flies above the waist and gets in the way during plays, NBC's  "Today" show reported.

During qualifying rounds, Britain’s Katie Boulter used a headband as an impromptu belt to try to keep the dress in place. 

German player Sabine Lisicki, speaking at a press conference Tuesday after her 6-1, 6-3 win over Shelby Rogers, said she didn't feel comfortable "showing that much" and opted to wear a more conventional skirt-and-shirt set.

"For me, the most important thing is to feel comfortable and not to think about anything, and with this I feel great," Lisicki added.

But not all players were concerned with the mini. Eugenie Bouchard posted a photo of herself in the garb, with the caption "Short & Sweet." 

According to "Today," Nike has set up an alterations shop at Wimbledon so that players can make adjustments to their dress.

In a statement to "Today" Nike spokesman Matthew Kneller said the alterations are not part of a "recall" to the dress.

"The product has not been recalled and we often customize products and make alterations for athletes as they compete. We work closely with our athletes to provide them with product that helps them perform and feel their best on the court," Kneller wrote.

Wimbledon's famously strict dress code — which defines white as not inclusive of "cream or off-white" — does not specify a length for female players' skirts or dresses, only that it adhere to "common standards of decency."



Photo Credit: Getty Images
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<![CDATA[Pippen Lists Highland Park Mansion]]> Thu, 30 Jun 2016 07:17:37 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/pippen+house+0628.jpg

The north suburban home of former Chicago Bulls player Scottie Pippen is now on the market.

The Hall of Famer and his wife, Larsa, listed the five-bedroom, 10,000 square-foot home on a 2.9-acre lot in Highland Park Monday for just under $3.1 million.

Built in 2003, the Pippen family purchased the home for a little over $2.22 million in 2004, according to real estate site Redfin.com. The house boasts an outdoor pool, a wine cellar, and of course, a basketball court with a large rendering of Pippen’s Bulls jersey on the wood floor.

Pippen joins former teammate Michael Jordan in having a home on the market in Highland Park. Jordan originally listed his home in the northern suburb for $29 million in 2012. But four years later, the asking price for the 9-bedroom, 17-bath estate with ‘23’ on the front gate has dropped to $14.9 million.



Photo Credit: Redfin.com]]>
<![CDATA[Faces You Won't See in Rio]]> Wed, 29 Jun 2016 12:01:43 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/skipping_rio_header.jpg Some athletes are opting out of the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, citing injuries or concern about the Zika virus, among other reasons.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Pat Summitt's Storied Coaching Career in Photos]]> Tue, 28 Jun 2016 14:33:13 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-73800271.jpg

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[NFL Coach Buddy Ryan Dies at 85]]> Tue, 28 Jun 2016 12:48:51 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Buddy+Ryan.png

Longtime NFL head coach and defensive coordinator Buddy Ryan died of cancer at the age of 85 Tuesday morning, according to NFL.com.

During his 35-year career, James David "Buddy" Ryan was the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles and Arizona Cardinals and the defensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears and Houston Oilers.

After playing college football at Oklahoma A&M University, Ryan accepted his first coaching job at Gainesville High School in Texas. He also spent one year as athletic director at a high school in Marshall, Texas.

From 1961 to 1965, Ryan was a defensive line coach for the University of Buffalo before moving on to the New York Jets, where he won his first Super Bowl ring.

Ryan kept the same position for two years with the Minnesota Vikings, where his "Purple People Eaters" terrorized opposing quarterbacks.

The Chicago Bears named Ryan defensive coordinator in 1978. After a few years in Chicago, Ryan perfected the "46 Defense," which carried the Bears to a Super Bowl win following the 1985 season. That Bears defense is widely considered to be the greatest in NFL history.

Ryan's success with the Bears turned into a head coaching opportunity with the Philadelphia Eagles in 1986. He was fired after going 43-38-1 in five seasons, including an 0-3 playoff record.

The Houston Oilers brought Ryan on as defensive coordinator in 1993. He only lasted one year there, though, and is most famous for punching his team's offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride on the sideline during a game.

Ryan's final NFL job was to serve as head coach for the Arizona Cardinals, where he amassed a 12-20 record in two seasons.

Ryan's twin sons Rex and Rob, the head coach and assistant head coach of the Buffalo Bills, respectively, also have spent decades coaching in the NFL.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[A Look Back at the Legendary Basketball Career of Pat Summitt]]> Wed, 29 Jun 2016 09:26:01 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-136040800-summitt.png Pat Summitt was the winningest coach in Division I college basketball history and during her 38-year career at Tennessee, she brought the Lady Vols to eight national championships. She died at age 64 after fighting Alzheimer's Disease.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[2016 Rio Olympic Games: Swimming]]> Wed, 29 Jun 2016 13:14:44 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/AP_16117516881811-rio-olympic-park.jpg

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Oregon Track and Field Star Pierced in Eye With Javelin ]]> Sat, 25 Jun 2016 18:15:04 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/ambulance-shutterstock_565683792.jpg

An Oregon track and field athlete’s eye was pierced with a javelin after he tripped and fell onto the spear during a meet Friday, NBC News reported. 

Parker Kennedy, 18, was competing at the USA Track & Field Oregon Championships when he fell face-first into the javelin, Hood River Valley High School track and field coach Donnie Herneisen said. 

Kennedy was hospitalized, where he was upgraded from serious to stable condition. 

Kennedy is a star athlete and won the State Pole Vault Championship in May. Kerneisen said the athlete was signed to compete for the University of Washington.



Photo Credit: Shutterstock]]>
<![CDATA[Ray Bourque Charged in OUI Crash]]> Sat, 25 Jun 2016 22:24:35 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/Ray+Bourque.jpg

Boston Bruins legend Ray Bourque is accused of driving drunk and rear-ending a minivan in Andover, Massachusetts.

The defenseman, inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2004, faces charges of OUI and following too closely.

According to Andover Police, Bourque was driving his Mercedes-Benz GL450 when he rear-ended a Toyota Sienna minivan around 11:30 p.m. on Lowell Street.

The crash took place in a construction zone, and no one was injured.

Police determined that Bourque was intoxicated at the time of the crash and arrested him.

Officials confirm Bourque was released on bail. He will be arraigned Tuesday at Lawrence District Court. No attorney information was immediately available.

Bourque played 21 seasons in the NHL, spending all but his final 94 games as a member of the Bruins. He amassed 395 goals and 1,111 assists. Combined, he had 1,506 points — meaning he was just 12 shy of being a point-a-game player in his long career.

The Bruins did not have any comment on Bourque's arrest.



Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Shaq Is US Sports Envoy to Cuba]]> Fri, 24 Jun 2016 16:16:33 -0400 http://media.nbcconnecticut.com/images/213*120/GettyImages-508873874.jpg

Months after President Obama's historic trip to Cuba, 15-time NBA all-star Shaquille O'Neal will visit the island nation.

The State Department announced Friday that O'Neal will be part of a U.S. Department of State Sports Envoy to promote sports to the Cuban youth for four days starting this weekend.

The retired NBA star will be joined by Dallas Mavericks Assistant Coach Kaleb Canales to lead basketball camps for youth and demonstrate how sports can serve as a means of developing academic, leadership, and teamwork skills, according to a State Department news release. He is expected to visit historically significant cultural sites in Havana and further promote positive ties between the United States and Cuban people.

O'Neal played in the NBA for 19 seasons and retired following the 2011 season. He played for the Miami Heat from 2004 to 2008, winning his fourth championship, after many years with the LA Lakers and Orlando Magic.



Photo Credit: Getty Images, File]]>