Arbitrator rules Saints' Jimmy Graham a TE, not WR

Associated Press Published:

FOOTBALL

Arbitrator rules Saints' Graham is a TE, not WR

NEW ORLEANS -- An arbitrator has sided with the New Orleans Saints in ruling that Jimmy Graham can only be considered a tight end for the purposes of his franchise tag designation.

The ruling Wednesday by Stephen Burbank is setback for Graham, agent Jimmy Sexton and the NFL Players Association, who'd filed a grievance arguing that Graham was used as a wide receiver often enough to qualify for the more lucrative receiver tag.

NFL franchise tags, which allow teams to keep one prized free agent, was set this year $7 million for tight ends and $12.3 million for receivers.

The NFLPA says it's reviewing the ruling and will advise Graham on his options, which could include an appeal.

Graham has skipped Saints offseason practices while holding out for a new contract.

Bills LB Alonso has torn knee ligament

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Buffalo Bills starting linebacker Kiko Alonso has torn a ligament in his left knee and is expected to miss the entire season.

Alonso will be scheduled to have surgery, general manager Doug Whaley says in a statement released by the team Wednesday, a day after Alonso was hurt while working out in Oregon.

The injury to Alonso is a significant blow to the Bills before they even open training camp on July 20.

Alonso was an NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year contender last season after being drafted in the second round out of Oregon. He led Buffalo with 159 tackles, two fumble recoveries and tied for the team lead with four interceptions while barely missing a snap in playing all 16 games.

TENNIS

Federer advances, Murray ousted

LONDON -- Seven-time champion Roger Federer advanced to his 35th Grand Slam semifinal with a 3-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4, 6-4 win Wednesday over fellow Swiss player and Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka.

Federer's first-set loss was the first he'd dropped this tournament in five matches, and also marked the first time he'd had his service broken.

He won on his fifth match point with a smash after a strong first serve.

Federer, who lost in the second round here last year, will play either Canadian Milos Raonic or Australian teenager Nick Kyrgios, who beat Rafael Nadal in the fourth round, in Friday's semifinals.

The win improved Federer's record against his Davis Cup teammate to 14-2, including 4-0 at Grand Slam tournaments.

Andy Murray's reign as Wimbledon champion ended Wednesday with a straight-set loss in the quarterfinals to Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov, making his breakthrough after years of being touted as the game's next top player.

Dimitrov completely outplayed Murray on Centre Court, winning 6-1, 7-6 (4), 6-2 to reach his first Grand Slam semifinal.

In women's action, Simona Halep of Romania and Eugenie Bouchard of Canada will meet for a place in the Wimbledon final after winning quarterfinal matches in straight sets Wednesday.

The third-seeded Halep, down 4-1 in the first set, won 11 games in a row to beat 2013 finalist Sabine Lisicki of Germany 6-4, 6-0 in 57 minutes on Centre Court.

The 13th-seeded Bouchard defeated No. 9 Angelique Kerber 6-3, 6-4 to reach the semifinals at a third consecutive Grand Slam.

GOLF

Bubba looks for title shot at new Greenbrier home

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. -- To get ready for this week's tournament, Bubba Watson simply has to walk out his front door.

Watson moved his family a month ago into a home built at The Greenbrier, the resort in West Virginia that has hosted U.S. presidents and royalty -- and now has its resident Bubba.

He'll tee it up in the Greenbrier Classic starting Thursday on the Old White TPC.

Watson is No. 3 in the world and is the top-ranked player in the Greenbrier Classic field. Others include No. 17 Jimmy Walker, No. 18 Steve Stricker and No. 25 Keegan Bradley.

Ten winners on Tour this season are entered, as well as the four past champions of the tournament and 16 ex-major champions, including Nick Faldo and Tom Watson, the Greenbrier's golf pro emeritus.

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