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BASEBALL

Minor change for postseason

For all the talk about tightening the postseason, Major League Baseball made only one slight change this year and held off on major revisions. The awkward off day between Games 4 and 5 of the League Championship Series will be eliminated. Instead, there will be yet another off day between the Division Series and the start of the LCS, the commissioner's office said. The overall length of the postseason will not be shortened and the first round will remain best-of-five at least through 2011. This year's switch will make it more difficult for a team to get through the best-of-seven LCS with only three starting pitchers, as the Yankees did last year.

GOLF

Tiger schedules his Masters talk

Tiger Woods will hold his first news conference in nearly five months on Monday of the Masters week. Augusta National released a tentative interview schedule that shows Woods speaking to reporters on April 5.

Arnold Palmer believes Woods should be more open with the media. "It's up to him to do and say whatever he feels he needs to do to redeem the situation, put it in the proper place," Palmer said. "My opinion, as I said . . . I was going to keep to myself. But I suppose the best thing he could do would be open up and just let you guys shoot at him."

NHL

Head-shot rule nearly law

All that stands between the NHL and a rule banning blindside hits to the head is final approval from the players' association. The union's representatives on the competition committee signed off on the new rule. The executive board soon will vote on the proposed edict to eliminate dangerous hits against unsuspecting skaters. In a statement, the players' association said it would vote within 48 hours.

NBA

Nets manage to beat Kings

Brook Lopez had 26 points as the Nets (8-63) moved a step closer to avoiding the worst NBA record ever by beating Sacramento, 93-79, to snap an eight-game losing streak and a franchise-record, 14-game skid at home.

FOOTBALLTE Crumpler joins Pats

Free-agent tight end Alge Crumpler signed with New England. He had 27 receptions and one touchdown last season for the Titans. Crumpler is the only tight end on the Patriots' roster who has played in an NFL game. - AP

Giants sign DE Tollefson

Restricted free-agent defensive end Dave Tollefson signed his second-round tender offer from the Giants. The non-guaranteed contract is for $1.684 million.

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