In case you were out living a life of leisure, here's what you missed in sports on Wednesday.
- Tiger Woods grew testy when questioned about former swing coach Hank Haney's new book, refusing to answer questions but ending one interview by saying, "you're a beauty" and "have a good day." Which is not markedly different from a lot of his prior interactions, but in the past there used to be like six sweaty minutes between the two phrases.
- A Sports Illustrated feature on UCLA basketball paints a picture of a program in disarray due to coach Ben Howland's inability to handle prima donna players. The lowlight came when junior forward Reeves Nelson forced Howland to dress up in a comically small uniform and attempt the tip-off against USC, though it was also embarrassing when he rode Howland around like a bull for the rest of the game, scoring 17 points on 7-68 shooting. "Obviously this is not a great day for our program or for me," Howland said Wednesday, though his statement was undermined by the fact that someone had scrawled "I (heart) dudes" across his forehead in Magic Marker.
- The U.S. National team beat Italy for the first time in 78 years, prevailing 1-0 on Clint Dempsey's 55th-minute goal. "We're very disappointed," said the Italian players after the match, who were forced to console themselves by easily seducing Team USA's wives.
- Despite wearing a mask to protect his broken nose, Kobe Bryant had 31 points, seven boards, and eight assists as the Lakers beat the Timberwolves 104-85. He also said that there's no beef with Dwyane Wade, the man who broke his nose during the All-Star Game. But when the interview was over, loud organ music echoed in the locker room, and Kobe descended into the bowels of the stadium, where he kept a full-sized portrait of Wade among the torches and canals. "Sing once again with me," said Bryant, "our strange duet my power over you grows stronger yet!"
- South Florida beat no. 18 Louisville, Cincinnati beat no. 7 Marquette, and Colorado State beat no. 17 UNLV in a night of college hoops upsets. Nobody was more "upset" by the trend than Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, who called a puzzled reporter after midnight just to say that he "hated it when the favorites lose."
- Jeremy Linsane Linsanity scored 19 points and dished out 13 assists as the Knicks rallied from a 17-point deficit to top the Cavs 120-103. In an attempt to keep the national focus squarely on him, Lin released a line of personalized novelty toys after the game, including pogs, slap bracelets, and troll dolls.
- The Pittsburgh Steelers announced that veteran receiver Hines Ward will be released. "Today we release him from these earthly chains," said team president Art Rooney IV, raising both arms, "so that he might know a better oh, wait no — no, I'm hearing now that we're just releasing him from the team. Just the team. My mistake. Thanks for playing football for us, Hines."
- Sources told ESPN that the Boston Celtics are aggressively trying to trade point guard Rajon Rondo as result of to his high-maintenance personality and his off-court clashes with head coach Doc Rivers. One recurring problem is that Rondo would never visit Rivers for medical advice or accept prescription drugs from him, insisting that his coach "wasn't a real doctor."
- Longtime Clippers fan Darrell Bailey has been asked by the team to stop using the nickname "Clipper Darrell," news that left him "devastated." Clipper players like Chris Paul and Blake Griffin jumped to his defense on Twitter, but the team insisted that Bailey has been abusing the moniker to make money off the organization. As a result of the dispute, Bailey will be forced to go with his second-choice nickname, "Mike Dunleavy Sr. Darrell."