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11/17/2011 - 2:43pm
McCourty, Spikes, Fletcher miss again

FOXBORO -- Devin McCourty, Brandon Spikes and Dane Fletcher were missing from Patriots practice for a second straight day as the team practiced in sweats and shells inside the Dana Farber Field House on Thursday afternoon. 

McCourty injured his right shoulder when Sterling Moore collided with him while both were attempting to make a play on Plaxico Burress in the second quarter Sunday night. Spikes injured his right knee during the Nov. 6 loss to the Giants and hasn't practiced since while Dane Fletcher has missed the last three games with a thumb injury. 

The Patriots will practice Friday and Saturday and participate in a walk-through on Sunday before playing host to the Chiefs on Monday night at Gillette Stadium. For more, visit the Patriots team page at weei.com/patriots


11/17/2011 - 2:10pm
Cherington: No new candidates added yet

MILWAUKEE -- Red Sox GM Ben Cherington, on his way out of the GM meetings, said that the team had no news to report on its managerial search. With the Cubs closing in on hiring Dale Sveum (Chicago president of baseball operations Theo Epstein, without mentioning specific names, characterized the search as being "in the final inning"), the Sox are still considering the possibility of adding one or more candidates to their search process. However, at this point, it remains a purely theoretical matter, as the team will step back from the search process over the coming days while Cherington and Mike Hazen (expected to be promoted to Assistant GM any day) take part in a scouting mission to the Dominican Republic that will include a private workout with soon-to-be international free agent Younis Cespedes. 

"We’re probably going to take a little breather this weekend because we’ll be in the [Dominican Republic], then pick it up...

11/17/2011 - 1:49pm
Ventrone lands back with Pats, again

FOXBORO -- Safety Ross Ventrone is back on the Patriots, signed to the team's practice squad on Thursday in advance of the team's game against the Chiefs this Monday night at Gillette. Ventrone has been released eight times since signing with the Patriots as a rookie free agent out of Villanova in April 2010.  

His signing to the practice squad marks his 21st transaction with the Patriots. To make room, the team released defensive back Josh Victorian. 

Victorian, 23, has had four stints on the New England practice squad this season. He went to training camp with Baltimore after signing with the Ravens as a rookie free agent out of Louisiana Tech on July 28. Victorian, 5-10, 190 pounds, originally joined the Patriots practice squad on Sept. 22.

For more, visit the Patriots team page at weei.com/patriots and the blog It Is What It Is....

11/17/2011 - 12:50pm
Rosenthal: Ownership didn't back Cherington

Ken Rosenthal, MLB on FOX reporter and FOXSports.com senior baseball writer. was a guest of the Mut & Merloni show on Thursday. Rosenthal was asked about the Red Sox managerial search. Several reports have Dale Sveum -- thought by many to be the leading candidate for the position -- on his way to Chicago to accept the managerial job for Theo Epstein and the Cubs. 

"You look at the events that are happening and have to wonder what they are doing," said Rosenthal. "And here they are, six weeks since Francona departed, and still don't have a manage and are in fact about to extend their search, perhaps. It is apparent that they are not going to get their No. 1 choice, or the only guy that they brought in for a second interview."

Peter Gammons tweeted on Thursday that the Sox have perhaps shifted their philosophy when it comes to this managerial search, now looking for a...

11/17/2011 - 12:49pm
Boychuk sick, Ference, Paille may return
By: DJ Bean

Bruins defenseman Johnny Boychuk is considered questionable for Thursday night's game against the Blue Jackets after he missed the team's morning skate with flu-like symptoms. 

With Boychuk potentially out, Andrew Ference may make a quicker return to the lineup than initially expected. If Ference is unable to go, the Bruins would need to make a call-up in order to ice six defensemen. 

"Right now [Ference] is fine, and unless that changes over the course of the next few hours, we don't anticipate calling anybody up," Claude Julien said. "He felt good this morning, and that was something that we had to look at with Johnny's situation. Had he not been, we would have probably been more cautious and called somebody up."

Forward Daniel Paille is also considered a game-time decision for Thursday night's game. He has been practicing with the team wearing a full cage due to the slapshot he took to the face last Monday...

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