Justin Bieber Is More Valuable Than Scottie Pippen On The Basketball Court, Too

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Your morning roundup for Feb. 19, the day Wisconsin edges closer to Cairo of the Heartland.

• Justin Bieber shot 3-for-11, scoring eight points, in last night's NBA All-Star Weekend's All-Star Celebrity Game at the All-Star Jam Session. His team, in hockey terms, was a minus-10 with him on the ice. O an he game MVP. Which makes sense when you consider the other team featured perennial second-best Scottie Pippen and a sportswriter Clippers fan as coach. [NBA]

• Karen Cunagin Sypher will play her naughty extortion games in federal prison for 87 months, per a U.S. District judge during whose sentencing hearing she "cried intermittently and gave a short, incoherent statement." [Lexington Herald-Leader]


• In unrelated news, attempted Sypher extortee Rick Pitino and the No. 16 Louisville Cardinals vanquished UConn 71-58. [LHL]

• A 19-year-old player for Holy Family University in Northeast Philadelphia claims Coach John O'Connor elbowed him in the face and knocked him to the gym floor with a backhand at a practice last month. So, now rookie boss is suspended. The past few weeks have truly a golden era for Catholicism in Philadelphia. [6ABC]


• Dave Duerson, safety on the Super Bowl-winning Chicago Bears who later in life got into a heated exchange with Coach Mike Ditka when "discussing the union's treatment of needy ex-players," found dead of unknown reasons in Florida. He was apparently getting married in April. [Chicago Sun-Times]

• The NFL and players' union mediate. [ESPN]

• A bill proposed by a Florida state senator would require a public vote before tax dollars are used to build professional sports stadia. He and his talking-point writers took the unique approach of saying the owners are billionaires and the players are millionaires. [St. Petersburg Times]


• Here is the Kent Hrbek/Ron Gant bobblehead. You're welcome, Braves-fan readers. [Star-Tribune]


• Gunplay in the stands at a Copa do Brazil soccer tournament! [Bob's Blitz]

• Florida International shortstop Garrett Wittels went 0-for-4 in his season opener. This is noteworthy because it marked the end of his 56-game hitting streak, leaving him two games short of Robin Ventura's Division I record. [Fox Sports]


• And, finally, from the "Hickey's Biased" coverage files … Nice to see Rod Brind'Amour's number get retired even if it was in Carolina, where the former Flyer won the Stanley Cup with the current Flyers' coach, who hasn't won a Stanley Cup in Philly. Yet [Philly.com]. Paul, a brave dog owner who didn't want his last name to appear in print, claims he helped scare Michael Vick away from doing the Oprah show. [Fox Sports]

Happy weekend.