Patriots owner pleads not guilty to prostitution charges
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft has pleaded not guilty to two counts of
Kraft’s attorney Jack Goldberger filed the written plea with the Palm Beach County court on Wednesday. Kraft, 77, is requesting a non-jury trial.
Kraft was among hundreds of men charged in a crackdown on massage
Jupiter, Florida, police say in court documents that Kraft was chauffeured to the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in a 2014 white Bentley on the evening of Jan. 19, where investigators say they videotaped him engaging in a sex act and then handing over an undetermined amount of cash.
Kraft returned 17 hours later, arriving at the upper-middle class shopping
Kraft’s team then defeated the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl two weeks later, their sixth championship since the 2001 season.
Under Florida law, if Kraft is convicted, he would be required to complete 100 hours of community service, attend a class on the dangers of prostitution and its connection to human trafficking and pay a $5,000 fine. He could also get a year in jail, although that is unlikely.
He could also
The Associated Press
Adams Jr., Rhymes in sync in B.C. Lions’ 25-15 win over Calgary Stampeders
B.C. Lions wide receiver Dominique Rhymes, left, runs the ball as Calgary Stampeders defensive linemen Isaac Adeyemi-Berglund chases him during first half CFL football action in Calgary, Thursday, June 8, 2023.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
By Donna Spencer in Calgary
Vernon Adams Jr. and Dominique Rhymes clicked early for the B.C. Lions in a 25-15 win over the Calgary Stampeders to open the CFL season Thursday.
Rhymes caught two touchdown passes and totalled 100 receiving yards in the game.
He picked up where he left off in 2022 when his 1,401 yards ranked second among CFL receivers behind Winnipeg’s Dalton Schoen and earned Rhymes a league all-star designation.
B.C.’s quarterback was efficient early Thursday.
Adams threw for 176 yards in a pair of touchdown drives — one on B.C.’s first possession of the game and the other in the first minute of the second quarter.
He capped those drives with throws to Rhymes in the end zone.
“It’s the work we’ve been doing as a whole offence together,” Rhymes said. “When they give me opportunities to make plays, I’ve got to make plays for him.
“He’s our quarterback and he’s our leader and I want to be the best person I can be for him, so I can make our offence successful.”
Adams was effective with his feet as well as his arm.
The quarterback rushed for 35 yards on 10 carries and also ran for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.
B.C. kicker Sean Whyte’s 44-yard field goal with 25 seconds remaining put the game out of reach for the Stampeders.
“Starting fast was big,” Lions head coach Rick Campbell said. “It’s a 60-minute game, but playing Calgary here is tough.
“If they get momentum early, it’s really hard. You fight an uphill battle. It was good to get ahead on the scoreboard and Vernon and our offence was a big part of that.”
Tre Odoms-Dukes caught a fourth-quarter touchdown pass from Jake Maier for Calgary’s lone touchdown in front of an announced crowd of 17,942 at McMahon Stadium.
Calgary’s Rene Paredes kicked three field goals on five attempts.
He missed his first two from 39 and 45 yards, but was successful from 22, 39 and 52 yards.
Adams completed 27 of 35 passes for 270 yards and two touchdown throws in the game. He was intercepted by Mike Rose.
The Lions acquired Adams, a 2019 CFL all-star, from the Montreal Alouettes midway through last season when Canadian quarterback Nathan Rourke was injured.
With Rourke now property of the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars, the Lions looked to the 30-year-old Adams to lead their offence.
“I am feeling a lot more comfortable than I was last year getting thrown in the fire,” Adams said.
Maier struggled in Thursday’s first half in completing just seven of 15 passes for 56 yards.
The 26-year-old was under pressure several times and sacked late in the second quarter by Mathieu Betts.
Maier finished 20-for-36 in pass attempts for 154 yards and a touchdown pass. He was intercepted once.
“There’s no excuses,” Maier said. “I’m never going to be an excuse guy.
“We didn’t play that well, especially on offence in the first half and we’re on to Week 2.”
Calgary’s Ka’Deem Carey, the CFL’s leading rusher last season, ran for 42 yards on seven carries.
B.C.’s defence held top Stampeder receivers Reggie Begelton and Malik Henry to a combined 58 yards.
The Lions generated more first downs than the Stampeders over the first three quarters.
“We’ve got to stay ahead of the sticks, meaning we can’t be a second-and-long team,” Stampeders head coach Dave Dickenson said.
“We weren’t able to necessarily give Jake the extra time to make that extra read, make that extra play.
“It’s early. I’m not going to beat them up. I understand what it is. Look in the mirror. We’ve got to be better. Coaches as well.”
Paredes’ field goal from 52 yards late in the fourth quarter pulled the hosts within four points of B.C., but Whyte’s 44-yarder sealed B.C.’s victory.
The Lions and Stampeders both posted 12-6 records in 2022.
B.C. downed Calgary 30-16 in last year’s West Division semifinal before falling 28-20 to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the division final.
“Last year, we went to the game before the final, so we know what type of team we have,” Lions defensive back Garry Peters said. “We came into the camp a lot further ahead.
“We have a lot of veteran guys, so that’s just a testament of what type of team we have and that’s what we put on the field today.”
The Stampeders next face the host Ottawa Redblacks in a second straight Thursday night game to open their season.
The Lions are at home against the Edmonton Elks on June 17 with a pre-game concert by LL Cool J scheduled for B.C. Place
Campbell hopes bringing a win home from Calgary adds to the home-opener buzz.
“We’re trying to do our part on the field,” Campbell said. “Hopefully we get a huge crowd next week.”
Notes: The Stampeders had nine rookies in their game-day lineup, including three receivers, compared to seven for the Lions . . . Since the CFL returned to a nine-team league in 2014, Calgary is 4-4-1 and the Lions are 4-5 in season openers.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 8, 2023.
Matthew Tkachuk returns from big hit in Stanley Cup Final, adds more playoff heroics
SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) — Matthew Tkachuk was down, out briefly and then back with plenty of time to make a difference.
The Florida Panthers star left early in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final after a big hit from Vegas Golden Knights forward Keegan Kolesar, and he missed most of the first period and didn’t return immediately following intermission while being evaluated for a concussion. After looking as if he might be lost for the night, Tkachuk returned in the second and then came through with more of his now trademark playoff heroics.
Tkachuk scored the tying goal with 2:13 left in regulation, forcing overtime and giving the Panthers new life. He then provided the screen on Carter Verhaeghe’s OT goal for a 3-2 victory that cut Florida’s series deficit to 2-1.
The 25-year-old said he knew he was coming back when he left the game, pulled by concussion spotters. That absence felt like a long time ago in the aftermath of another big win he was largely responsible for.
“I felt great — I feel great,” Tkachuk said. “I’m ready to go. Everybody’s excited that we’re in this position right now.”
Florida is in this position rather than facing elimination in Game 4 on Saturday thanks in large part to Tkachuk, who also set up Brandon Montour’s goal that opened the scoring less than five minutes in.
Not long after, Tkachuk stumbled getting up after the hit from Kolesar and skated to the bench. He took a shift on Florida’s power play before going down the tunnel at the demand of concussion spotters mandated by NHL protocol.
At that point, there was zero clarity, even on the Florida bench.
“You’re not informed at all: It’s a complete shutdown,” coach Paul Maurice said. “You are completely in the dark on those. You don’t know when the player’s coming back. There’s not an update.”
Players insist they were not worried. Montour called it a no-brainer.
“He’s going to come back no matter what,” captain Aleksander Barkov said. “He’s really tough guy, and he’s going to battle through everything.”
Tkachuk rejoined his teammates on the bench a few minutes into the second. When he stepped back onto the ice for his first shift since leaving, fans cheered and chanted, “Chucky! Chucky!”
The crowd was even louder and threw rats when Tkachuk scored his biggest goal of many during this run to tie it. He didn’t get an assist on Verhaeghe’s goal but made it happen with a tape-to-tape pass in the neutral zone and was in front of Adin Hill when it happened.
Asked if he was happy Tkachuk returned, Maurice joked that it was after midnight.
“It was fine,” he quipped.
AP NHL playoffs: https://apnews.com/hub/stanley-cup and https://twitter.com/
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