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Sunday, January 20, 2013

SUNDAY SPORTS **UPDATED**

Newly minted Maple Leafs alternate captain Joffrey Lupul has signed a five-year contract extension. Lupul 25 goals and 67 points in 66 games last season. He was acquired by Toronto in a trade with the Anaheim Ducks on February 9, 2011. The Maple Leafs next play tomorrow when they host the Buffalo Sabres.

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NHL fans in the United States have tuned in to hockey's return to television. NBC's broadcast yesterday earned the highest preliminary rating for a non-Winter Classic regular-season game since 2002. The network says yesterday's ratings were up 67 per cent from the average for regular-season games on NBC last year.

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The Edmonton Oilers are set to open their season tonight with a visit to the Vancouver Canucks. The Oilers will top overall draft pick Nail Yakupov in the lineup along with new defenceman Justin Shultz. The Calgary Flames also open their season with a home game against San Jose.

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This year's Super Bowl contestants will be decided today. The Atlanta Falcons play Colin Kaepernick and the San Francisco 49ers for the NFC championship, while the Baltimore Ravens meet Tom Brady and the New England Patriots in an AFC title game rematch. The Patriots are rated about a nine-point favourite.

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A Notre Dame spokesman says the university decided against disclosing the hoax against Manti Te'o immediately after an investigation commissioned by the school confirmed it. The school says they didn't think it would be in the best interest of the teams playing in the BCS championship game or the individuals involved. The hoax about Te'o's "dead'' girlfriend became public Wednesday when it was reported by Deadspin.com.

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Scott Stallings takes a five-stroke lead into the final round of the Humana Challenge, putting him position for his third PGA Tour victory. John Rollins is among those tied for second as the leaders begin play in the California desert. Calgary's Stephen Ames is 11 strokes off the lead.

(The Canadian Press)

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