President Barack Obama and British Prime Minster David Cameron will attend Tuesday night's NCAA play-in game in Dayton, Ohio, between Western Kentucky and Mississippi Valley State. The two leaders will take part in a live halftime interview with analyst Clark Kellogg.

The White House said the trip will showcase the tight relationship between the two allies. Ohio also is considered a swing state for the upcoming election.

Republicans criticized the trip.

It appears that the era of good feeling in New York that arrived with Jeremy Lin has given way to frustration. Knicks fans called for coach Mike D'Antoni's head Sunday, chanting "Fire D'Antoni" during a 106-94 loss to the 76ers, New York's fifth straight setback.

Forward Carmelo Anthony heard boos during pregame introductions, and he and Amar'e Stoudemire were left on the bench during the fourth quarter.

There were a number of bizarre injuries in baseball last year, and we're off to a strong start in 2012. Rays pitcher David Price injured himself during Thursday's spring training game against the Tigers while using a towel to wipe sweat off his neck. Price said he "felt a little pop," and left the game after two innings (he was scheduled to pitch three) with minor neck spasms.

Heralded Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish made his spring training debut Wednesday and was impressive in two innings against the Padres. The Japanese 25-year-old, acquired after the Rangers won a bidding war for his services in the offseason, allowed no runs on two hits, although Will Venable blasted a ball that the wind kept in the park for a double.

Afterward, Darvish said through his translator that, contrary to the perception of apparently everyone else in the park, the wind helped the ball and that, "I don't think he really squared it up."

Dropkick Murphys lead singer Ken Casey said Jonathan Papelbon can no longer use "Shipping up to Boston" as his entrance song now that the closer has left the Red Sox for the Phillies. "That's not Pap's song," Casey said. "That's the [Boston] closer's song."

A great season for the Syracuse basketball team on the court continues to be marred by off-court news. More than three months after longtime assistant coach Bernie Fine was fired amid accusations that he sexually molested former ballboys, school officials on Monday acknowledged that they self-reported possible violations of the school's internal drug policy last year and the NCAA is investigating.

Eight more men have come forward to join the group that has accused former Red Sox clubhouse manager Donald J. Fitzpatrick of sexual abuse. Fitzpatrick, who died in 2005 at age 76 while serving a 10-year suspended sentence for attempting to sexually assault youths at spring training in Florida, has been accused by more than 20 men of sexually abusing them between the 1960s and '90s.

Eventually, this had to happen.

Jason Varitek is no longer a voice in the Red Sox clubhouse. He retired Thursday and it’s best thing that could’ve happened for all parties involved.



MIKE PETRAGLIA

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The Yankees, who paid $13.9 million in luxury tax last year, want to get their payroll under the luxury tax threshold within two years. Managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner told the media Thursday in Tampa that he wants the payroll trimmed from $210 million to $189 million, which is what the luxury tax mark will be in 2014.

Defenseman Andrew Ference left the Bruins' 4-3 overtime win over the Devils in the third period with what coach Claude Julien called a lower-body injury. Ference took only three shifts in the third period and did not play after his last one ended 5:30 into the period.

"He suffered a lower-body injury," Julien said of Ference. "We took him out instead of forcing it, and I guess what I've been told is we'll know better tomorrow how severe it is and whether he's going to be fine or whether it's going to go the other way."