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December 9, 2002
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[Times photo: Bill Serne]
Brad Johnson spread it around effectively, with 23 completions to seven receivers.
1 for the ageless
TAMPA -- They came to see the league's hottest quarterback. From what they had heard, he was unstoppable.

Photo/audio gallery
John Romano's Gimme five
Sound bites
Game balls
10 News video: (56k | High-Speed)

Third receiver Bucs' first-down target
Possession man Joe Jurevicius moves chains on all eight receptions, including two TDs.

Line provides plenty of time to throw ball
TAMPA -- While the Falcons' Michael Vick was sacked twice, Bucs quarterback Brad Johnson went down only once.

Howell ably picks up slack for injured Lynch
TAMPA -- John Howell did not waste any time.

In team effort, QB stands out
Best offensive performance of season revolves around Brad Johnson and his 4 TDs.

Bucs give Vick nowhere to run
The Tampa Bay defense shows off its speed and contains elusive QB Michael Vick.

Letters: Bucs chat
Give credit to Gruden and McKay

Gary Shelton: Undervalue Brooks? Talk to Vick
TAMPA -- Perhaps he needs to howl at the moon. Perhaps then, America could get the proper measure of Derrick Brooks.

Lightning loses another one late
Tampa Bay is beaten for the 10th time after holding either a tie or a lead with 10 minutes left.

Tortorella convinced call went wrong way
CHICAGO -- There is no way to convince Lightning coach John Tortorella the correct call was made Saturday, when a video review wiped out an apparent Tampa Bay goal during a 3-2 overtime loss to the Bruins.

Battered Kings top Spurs
SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- The Spurs might have fared better against the Kings on Sunday if they had a pair of Jacksons. And some steals. And their coach all four quarters.

Harrington holds off Woods for win
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. -- Two holes into the final round Sunday, Padraig Harrington extended his lead to eight strokes over Tiger Woods, then braced for the worst in the Target World Challenge.

Mets retain Trachsel but let Alfonzo walk
NEW YORK -- The Mets signed right-handed starter Steve Trachsel to a two-year contract but decided not to offer salary arbitration to infielder Edgardo Alfonzo, ending his stay in New York.

Healthy Zetterberg scores in overtime to lift ailing Wings
DETROIT -- The Red Wings are fortunate that Henrik Zetterberg skipped the airplane meal.

College football
UM ready to put on big show
CORAL GABLES -- The stage has been set, just like the Hurricanes hoped it would be.

Surprise: FSU to Sugar, Iowa-USC in Orange
CORAL GABLES -- Larry Coker knows the passion for Ohio State football and the pressure that comes with it. He lived and breathed it for three years as a Buckeyes assistant coach, the rabid enthusiasm coupled with the immense expectations.

South Florida not among at-large bowl selections
South Florida's slim hopes of landing a bowl bid as an at-large team ended Sunday when the Motor City Bowl took Boston College (8-4) and the Seattle Bowl went with Oregon (7-5) and Wake Forest (6-6).

Smith finds redemption
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Knowing that actions speak louder than words, Steve Smith finally did something to make the Panthers proud of him.

Injured McNair leaves Indianapolis hurting
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- If sore ribs and turf toe can't stop Steve McNair, the Colts didn't have much of a chance.

Romp allows Saints to be cautious with ailing Brooks
BALTIMORE -- The Saints had enough working in their favor that they didn't need to risk further injury to Aaron Brooks.

This season ties the record for overtimes
The NFL had its 21st overtime game of the season Sunday, tying the record set in 1995.

Jags fall on final heave
JACKSONVILLE -- The old Kardiac Kids of 1980 were downright boring compared with these new Browns.

Texans defense wins when offense cannot
PITTSBURGH -- No NFL team ever played worse offensively and won. What made the difference was very few teams -- much less an expansion one -- have played a game like this defensively.

Chiefs, Vermeil seal Rams' fate
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- It ended with a big, loud thud for the Rams.

NFL game day: week 14
Patriots 27, Bills 17

Monday's Game
Bears (3-9) at Dolphins (7-5)

Dolphins glad Fiedler back
MIAMI -- Jay Fiedler welcomes the sudden appreciation, but the journeyman quarterback knows this much: All it will take is one rotten game for fans to howl for his replacement.

College basketball
'Noles apply lessons to coach's ex-team
Swarming defense helps FSU to 72-55 win in Leonard Hamilton's first game against Miami.

UF helps Bulls beat themselves
USF turns it over 20 times, gets little from top players in 68-52 Gators win.

Taurasi adapts to help Huskies run streak to 46
HARTFORD, Conn. -- Connecticut coach Geno Auriemma figured Diana Taurasi was right where she wanted to be Sunday: just about everywhere.

Irish cut down third straight ranked opponent
WASHINGTON -- Notre Dame won't be sneaking up on any more opponents this season.

In brief
AMERICA'S CUP CHALLENGE: Seattle's OneWorld Challenge avoided disqualification, but will be docked a point in each of the remaining stages of the America's Cup challenger rounds in Auckland, New Zealand, after admitting to breaches of the regatta's protocol.

Outdoors: Daily fishing report
Fishing for speckled trout in the winter is at the top of the list of things I like to do.

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