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Brady has ‘zero’ remorse about return, is gifted lederhosen

Source image: https://apnews.com/article/seattle-seahawks-tampa-bay-buccaneers-tom-brady-nfl-sports-0e7614a0cd2597e3949b4eb7d2796c82

MUNICH (AP) — Tom Brady got a full dose of Germany on Friday when he was presented with Bavarian lederhosen before being questioned about his personal life.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback responded that he doesn’t feel remorse returning for another season.

“Zero, no, definitely not,” Brady told a crowded news conference at a Bayern Munich facility ahead of Sunday’s game against the Seattle Seahawks. “I think I returned because I felt like I wanted to compete. I spoke to the team about it, and they were excited to have me back.”

Brady and Gisele Bündchen recently announced that their divorce is finalized.

Brady was asked by a German reporter about on and off-field challenges and whether he felt remorse about unretiring.

“I don’t really regret those types of things,” the seven-time Super Bowl champion said. “I think when I commit to it, I mean it and I do my best and try to give everything I can to this particular opportunity.”

Another local reporter asked about how he copes with personal and professional challenges.

“You do the best you can do every day and, yeah, that’s what I’ve been trying to do, be the best I can be for my family and for my teammates,” the 45-year-old said. “We all have our challenges. Life is challenging for everybody. We just do our best.”

Brady later explained that he loves the daily routine of the job, as well as the victories like the 16-13 comeback win over the Los Angeles Rams last week. He’s been able to play so long, he said, “because it’s never really felt like work.”

“It’s hard for me to believe I’m still playing at this age, but I enjoy it and I love competing,” Brady said. “Certainly, games like last week are reasons why we do do it because there’s a thrill of victory that is hard to probably replicate at home on Xbox or something like that.”

Coach Todd Bowles spoke before Brady and marveled at the size of the crowd: “I’m sure they didn’t come to see me.”

Bowles was right.

Early in Brady’s session, an editor from German broadcaster ProSieben surprised the quarterback — and everyone else — when he rose from the front row to present Brady with lederhosen.

“That looks nice,” a gracious Brady said to Robert Salkowsky, who explained that it was specially made for Brady with Bucs and TB12 logos.

“We are very proud to have you here in Munich and want you always to have good memories when you think back to Munich,” Salkowsky said.

Brady held up the lederhosen — shorts with suspenders — and said “How would that look going out to the game in that?”

As a team assistant took it away, Brady cracked about one of his backup quarterbacks, “Kyle Trask is going to wear that out there.”

MORE MOMENTUM

The Bucs’ offense has struggled all season, so Brady is hoping they can start to build some momentum.

“This is a very important game for us. We have a bye week after this. It gives you a chance to kind of evaluate where you are at, and I’d much rather evaluate being 5-5 than 4-6,” he said. “We’ve got to win this game and it will take care of that, but Seattle is going to challenge us. They’re creating a lot of sacks and turnovers.”

The Seahawks (6-3) arrived in Bavaria on a four-game winning streak and atop the NFC West.

Brady is 3-0 in international games, having led the New England Patriots to victories in London (2009, ’12) and Mexico City (2017). He threw for 300-plus yards each time, compiling 10 TD passes.

“Playing well is playing well, it doesn’t matter where you’re at and which stadium, what country,” he said. “For us, it’s going to come down to how well we do our job.”

SPECIAL VISIT

Bayern Munich’s coach and some players met up with the Seahawks at Friday’s practice on the soccer club’s first-team campus.

Speedy winger/left-back Alphonso Davies apparently mentioned he’s faster than Seahawks receiver DK Metcalf but all of Canada will be pleased that they didn’t line up and race. Davies is recovering from a hamstring strain and hopes to be fully fit for the World Cup.

The coaches exchanged jerseys — Pete Carroll gave Bayern boss Julian Nagelsmann a Seahawks’ No. 12 shirt.

INJURY UPDATE

Bucs TE Cameron Brate (neck) was a full participant at practice again Friday and was listed as questionable. Brate, who sustained a concussion earlier in the season, will be a game-day decision, Bowles said. Seahawks WR Marquise Goodwin (groin) also practiced fully and is questionable.

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Source: https://apnews.com/article/seattle-seahawks-tampa-bay-buccaneers-tom-brady-nfl-sports-0e7614a0cd2597e3949b4eb7d2796c82

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Report: NWSL to expand in Boston, Utah and California

The National Women’s Soccer League is close to expanding by three teams, which will be in Boston, Utah and the San Francisco area, according to a Friday report in the Wall Street Journal.

The women’s pro league previously indicated it would add at least two teams by 2024. The Wall Street Journal, citing unnamed sources, reported that the franchises in northern California and Utah are set to start play next year, with Boston to join at a later date.

The NWSL did not confirm the report in a statement Saturday to The Associated Press, saying: “We remain engaged in our expansion process and are excited about our prospects. When we have news to share, we will do so.”

The NWSL has 12 teams, after Angel City in Los Angeles and the San Diego Wave joined the league last year.

The Wall Street Journal also reported that the Boston and Bay Area groups will pay about $50 million in franchise fees. The Utah team will pay a reduced fee because of a previous agreement struck when the Utah Royals folded in the 2020 season.

Before the NWSL draft earlier this month, league commissioner Jessica Berman said it would be “somewhere between days and months, more like weeks, when we’ll be in a position to share information” about an expansion.

“What I can say is that I couldn’t be more excited about the opportunities we have in front of us,” she added.

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AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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Former MVP Candace Parker to sign with champion Aces

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Former two-time MVP Candace Parker announced on social media Saturday that she would sign with the defending champion Las Vegas Aces.

Parker spent the past two seasons playing for her hometown Sky, leading Chicago to the WNBA championship in 2021. She also won the 2016 title playing for the Los Angeles Sparks.

She posted on Instagram that Chicago would always be her home, but “my family’s home is on the west coast.

“To play for a championship close to home is the perfect situation for us. I’m looking forward to continuing the journey this summer in Las Vegas.”

The free-agent signing period begins Wednesday, and the Aces can’t comment until then.

Parker, a 6-foot-4 forward/center, adds to an already loaded lineup that includes reigning MVP A’ja Wilson, who also won the league’s top award in 2020. Wilson also was last season’s Defensive Player of the Year.

Chelsea Gray was MVP of the WNBA Finals and Kelsey Plum MVP of the All-Star Game. Wilson, Plum and Jackie Young were All-Star starters.

Parker and Gray were teammates on Los Angeles’ 2016 title team.

The Aces traded one of their key pieces, two-time Sixth Woman of the Year Dearica Hamby, to the Sparks on Jan. 21, creating speculation Las Vegas was creating salary cap room to sign a big-name player.

Parker, the 2020 Defensive Player of the Year and the 2016 Finals MVP, certainly fits that bill. Even at 36 last season, she averaged 13.2 points, 8.6 rebounds and 4.5 assists for the Sky.

“Candace has done so much for our franchise in her time here,” Chicago coach and general manager James Wade said in a statement. “I understand her reasons for wanting to be closer with her immediate family. We wish her nothing but the best. She will always be a part of the Sky family. We will celebrate her time here as she deserves.”

Losing her is a big blow to the Sky, who made the semifinals in last season’s playoffs before losing in five games to the Connecticut Sun. Kahleah Copper is the only starter under contract for next season, so the Sky could head into a rebuild.

“I am beyond grateful for the opportunity to win a championship in my hometown and parade down the same streets I watched the Bulls parade down as a young girl first falling in love with the game of basketball,” Parker posted.

Parker joins the Aces at a time the Women’s National Basketball Players Association said it wanted that organization investigated regarding allegations that Hamby made after being traded. She posted on Instagram she was “lied to, bullied, manipulated, and discriminated against” because she is pregnant with her second child.

The Aces still have not commented on Hamby’s allegations.

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Estrada, Hofstra end No. 18 Charleston’s 20-game win streak

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — This season, Hofstra has been a one-man show. This time, Aaron Estrada had some help as the Pride ended the nation’s longest winning streak.

Estrada scored 25 points, but just two in the second half, while Darlinestone Dubar added 18 as Hofstra had four players in double figures to knock off No. 18 College of Charleston 85-81 on Saturday — ending the Cougars’ 20-game win streak.

“That’s a really big for our program,” Hofstra coach Speedy Claxton said. “To beat a nationally ranked team on their home court when they’ve got it rolling like they do speaks volumes about our kids.”

Claxton saw a team effort to take down the hottest team in the country.

“It wasn’t just Aaron,” Claxton said. “He had a great first half, but we had other guys step up and make baskets or get rebounds when we really needed them.”

The loss ended Charleston’s spotless run that began after losing to then-top-ranked North Carolina on Nov. 11.

Hofstra, the CAA’s leader in field-goal shooting, used that to move past Charleston in the second half as it made 18 of 32 attempts. The Pride led 76-69 with 6:10 to play before the Cougars cut it to two points on Ryan Larson’s foul shots with 2:02 to play.

But Charleston managed just two free throws after that and missed all four 3-pointers they tried.

This is the second straight season the Pride have beaten a Top 25 team. A year ago, Hofstra defeated then No. 24 Arkansas 89-81. The Pride’s only other victory against a Top 25 team came against Southern Illinois in 1976.

Hofstra (15-8, 8-2 Colonial Athletic Association) beat the Cougars (21-2, 9-1) at their own game — 3-point shooting. The Pride were 11 of 22 from 3-point range and overall shot 56 percent from the floor in the second half.

Estrada, who had 23 points in the opening half, shredded the Cougars defense at will. Estrada was 5 of 9 from 3-point range.

“Estrada is a great player, hit a bunch of tough shots, especially in the first half,” Charleston coach Pat Kelsey said. “Hofstra is a very, very talented team. It’s not just Estrada. They were better than us tonight.”

Then Estrada took over. The CAA’s leading scorer at 21.1 points a game scored 16 of the next 24 points for the Pride, including four 3-pointers.

Ante Brzovic’s dunk at the buzzer gave the Cougars a 46-44 advantage at halftime.

Tyler Thomas had 17 points and eight rebounds for Hofstra.

Brzovic finished with 18 points to lead the Cougars.

BIG PICTURE

Hofstra: The Pride are on a roll in 2023. winning seven of their past eight games, including three in a row.

College of Charleston: The Cougars chances of receiving an NCAA Tournament at-large bid took a major blow with the loss to the Pride. Despite having the nation’s longest win streak for three months, Charleston will most likely have to win the CAA Tournament in March to advance to the NCAAs.

NO PLACE LIKE HOME

The Cougars’ 20-game win streak wasn’t the only streak to end on Saturday. College of Charleston played 14 of its first 23 games at TD Arena to start the season and were a perfect 13-0 at home before facing the Pride. Charleston’s 13-game home win streak included three wins in the Charleston Classic. The Cougars became the first mid-major program to win the ESPN event, beating Virginia Tech 77-75 in the championship game. Charleston will finish the season playing four of their final eight games on the road.

POLL POSITION

Charleston’s first loss in nearly three months might drop the Cougars from the national rankings. They have been part of the last four rankings, entering at No. 23 before reaching No. 18 this past week.

UP NEXT

Hofstra returns home to play Towson on Thursday night.

College of Charleston starts a two-game road trip at Drexel on Thursday night.

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AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball and https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-basketball-poll and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

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