NOLL'S CRISLER NAMED IBCA/SUBWAY PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Bishop Noll senior Larry Crisler was named the IBCA/Subway Player of the Week for District 1 boys.
Crisler averaged 22.7 points over three games, leading the Warriors to their fourth straight Greater South Shore Conference tourney title. Crisler had 36 points, six rebounds, four assists and seven steals in an 87-61 opening-round win over Marquette. He had 20 points in a 75-50 semifinal victory over Whiting. He finished the week with 12 points, seven rebounds, three steals and three assists in a 64-48 title-game win over Lake Station.
Other local nominees included Davon Dillard (Bowman Academy), Bryce Hanaway (Hebron), Christian Jacobs (West Side), Jake Koselke (Morgan Township), Rolanda Curlington (Lake Central), Nicole Konieczny (LaPorte) and Jill Rosenbaum (South Central).
HAWKS FALL TO FLAMES IN OT: T.J. Brodie scored at 2:26 of overtime, lifting the Calgary Flames to a 5-4 win over the slumping Blackhawks on Tuesday night.
Mikael Backlund scored twice for the Flames (19-27-7), who won three straight games for the first time this season. Matt Stajan had a goal and an assist; Lance Bouma also scored, and Lee Stempniak set up three goals.
Marian Hossa scored twice for the Blackhawks (32-10-13), who were 0-2-2 in their previous four games. Patrick Kane and Ben Smith also scored for Chicago.
MLB OKS PROTECTIVE CAP FOR PITCHERS: Major League Baseball has approved a protective cap for pitchers to reduce the effects of being hit in the head by line drives.
The new hat will be available for pitchers to test during spring training on a voluntary basis. Major leaguers and minor leaguers won't be required to wear it in games this year.
The safety plates are sewn into the hat and custom fitted. They weigh an extra six to seven ounces and offer increased protection to the forehead, temples and sides of the head.
Several pitchers have been hit in the head by line drives in the last few years. Brandon McCarthy sustained a brain contusion and skull fracture after being struck, and Doug Fister was hit during the World Series.
The safety hats are made by isoBLOX and were introduced Tuesday.
CUBS SEEK PERMIT TO PUT SIGN AT WRIGLEY FIELD: The Cubs have asked the city's permission to put a 650-square-foot sign at Wrigley Field that may partially block views of the field from the surrounding rooftop businesses.
The rooftop owners have said they will file a lawsuit if the team puts up anything that cuts into their views. However, at least one city official is calling the application a positive development, even if it forces the courts to get involved in the dispute over renovation of the century-old ball park.
"It gets this show on the road," Alderman Pat O'Connor told the Chicago Sun-Times. "Now we have a finite time in which we'll get an answer and get a project going."
The Cubs filed a permit application after talks with the rooftop owners fell apart last week. The club owners also filed a defamation lawsuit against a stadium financing consultant who once advised the Cubs' prior owner, the Tribune Co.
The team is planning a $500 million renovation plans for the ballpark, which is expected to take five years. The Cubs want to expand the cramped clubhouse, improve training facilities and build a 175-room hotel nearby.
JAMES, DURANT SET TO SQUARE OFF: There will be times tonight when LeBron James and Kevin Durant are matched up 1-on-1 against each other, moments both of them will surely savor.
But this is not LJ vs. KD, MVP present vs. MVP future.
It's Heat vs. Thunder, and the two superstars don't disagree on that point.
Durant is on a thrilling roll, with 30 or more points in 11 consecutive games and putting up numbers that even make James marvel in appreciation. If the season was ending right now, voters would likely tab Durant as the one who should be hoisting the league's MVP trophy over James, who has gotten it in four of the past five seasons.
Head to head, though, James' teams have beaten Durant's teams 13 times in 16 meetings.
Around the horn
The Carolina Panthers have announced they have given head coach Ron Rivera a three-year contract extension through the 2017 season. ... A published report says the University of Michigan has expelled ex-Wolverines kicker Brendan Gibbons for violating the school's sexual misconduct policies.