U.S. going for Gold -- Cup that is
Soccer: Bob Bradley had Landon Donovan on the bench again to begin the U.S. Gold Cup semifinal against Panama on Wednesday. (Punitive? Strategic? Bradley isn't sayin'.) But the bold move paid off when he had Donovan and Freddy Adu start the second half, and they sparked the late, 76th-minute goal by Clint Dempsey. Adu sent a long pass to Donovan who threaded a gorgeous low cross to Dempsey -- who scored. The U.S. advanced to its fourth Gold Cup final in a row with the 1-0 win.
Mexico replaced five players who were banned after failing drug tests, but still won 2-0 in overtime over Honduras. It faces the U.S. in the Gold Cup final Sunday at the Rose Bowl.
NHL: In his first year as a finalist, the Anaheim Ducks' Corey Perry, 26, received the Hart Trophy as the NHL's MVP in a surprise over the Vancouver Canucks' Daniel Sedin. The Boston Bruins' Tim Thomas followed his Stanley Cup finals MVP with his second Vezina Trophy in three years, honoring him as top NHL's goalie. I'll bet Thomas has lots of marks on his arms from all the times he's pinched himself. It's no dream Tim, you're truly awesome.
MLB: Cliff Lee pitched his second consecutive shutout Wednesday, as the Phillies blanked the Cards 4-0. (Homers from Jimmy Rollins and Ryan Howard didn't hurt.) ... Chris Heisey hit three home runs in the second game of a doubleheader as the Reds topped the Yankees 10-2. The Yankees took the first game 4-2 with help from a rare Jorge Posada home run that also ended the second-longest drought of his career.
College World Series: Vanderbilt beat UNC in an elimination game 5-1 Wednesday. Pitcher Taylor Hill held the Tar Heels to four hits and one run over seven innings in a stellar performance. Homers from Connor Harrell (three-run) and Curt Casali (solo shot) solidified the win. Vandy needs to beat the Gators Friday and Saturday to reach next week's best-of-three final. Keep it going, guys. It's not over 'til it's over.
NBA: Timberwolves coach Kurt Rambis: Fired or not? It sounds like we won't know for sure until after Thursday's draft. In the meantime, rumors continue to fly: Will Lamar Odom go to the Timberwolves for Kevin Love? Or to the 76ers with Luke Walton for Andre Iguodala? Will Steve Nash or Tony Parker get traded for a high pick somewhere? The one sure thing: Deals will get done.
Jimmer Fredette arrived in Manhattan to media fanfare Wednesday afternoon. Will the ghosts of Adam Morrison scare off the NBA general managers? Or will they take a deep breath and call out Jimmer's name? Hang on for the ride.