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Gordie Howe, known as ‘Mr. Hockey,’ dies at 88

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Hockey legend Gordie Howe watches practice for the NHL All-Star game in Dallas

Gordie Howe, known as “Mr. Hockey” for a tough but skillful playing style that shattered records over a career spanning five decades, died on Friday at the age of 88, the National Hockey League’s Detroit Red Wings said.

The cause of death was not disclosed. Howe suffered two strokes in October 2014 and also from advanced dementia in recent years.

“Today is a sad day for the Detroit Red Wings and the entire hockey world as together we mourn the loss of one of the greatest hockey players of all time,” Red Wings owner Mike Ilitch said in a statement.

 “My condolences to the family of Gordie Howe, the Detroit Red Wings and all his fans around the world. He will always be Mr. Hockey,” tweeted Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Howe, a Canadian who spent his prime playing for the Detroit Red Wings of the National Hockey League (NHL), was considered one of the greatest hockey players of all time. He may have been eclipsed only by fellow countryman Wayne Gretzky in terms of goals and points, but not in grit and longevity.

Howe attributed his long career, 33 seasons, in such a rough sport to passion.

“You’ve got to love what you’re doing,” he once said. “If you love it, you can overcome any handicap or the soreness or all the aches and pains and continue to play for a long, long time.”

Howe joined the National Hockey League’s Red Wings in 1946 and led them to four Stanley Cup championships before retiring in 1971 after 25 seasons with the team.

Howe was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1972 but by the next year he was on the ice again.

He joined the Houston Aeros of the upstart World Hockey Association (WHA), alongside sons Mark and Marty, and taking the team to two consecutive championships. He would say that playing with his sons was the highlight of his career.

All three Howes joined the WHA’s New England Whalers in 1977 and when the league folded two years later, the Whalers joined the NHL, giving Howe one more season in hockey’s top league.

When he retired for a second time in 1980, Howe was the NHL’s regular season leader in career goals and points, both records later broken by Gretzky.

Howe, the only player to play in the NHL after turning 50, would play all 80 games in his final season as well as a handful of games after turning 52.

Gordon Howe was born in the small farming town of Floral, Saskatchewan, and put on a pair of ice skates when he was 4 years old. He played in an organized league before he was 10 and had a tryout with the NHL’s New York Rangers at 15 but failed to impress.

A year later, a Red Wings scout discovered Howe and two years after that, in October 1946, he scored a goal in his NHL debut in what proved to be the start of one of the game’s most prolific careers.

Howe went on to become a 23-time All-Star, won the Hart Memorial Trophy as the NHL’s Most Valuable Player six times and led the league in scoring six times.

He was part of hockey’s most fabled scoring units, the so-called “Production Line” in reference to Detroit’s auto industry, alongside Sid Abel and Ted Lindsay.

Howe finished in the top five in NHL scoring for 20 consecutive seasons and still holds the record for most consecutive 20-goal seasons at 22.

The term “Gordie Howe hat trick,” consisting of a goal, an assist and a fight in the same game, was coined in reference to the powerful right wing’s reputation for never backing away from a scuffle.

Howe played a remarkable 2,421 games, including playoffs, over his professional career. He is second on the NHL’s all-time goals list with 801, behind Gretzky with 894, and fourth on the points list with 1,850.

At the age of 69, Howe returned to the game in 1997 with the International Hockey League’s Detroit Vipers, playing just one shift for less than a minute.

Howe was married to Colleen Joffa Howe for 55 years until her death in 2009. She managed the business affairs of Howe and their sons Mark and Marty. The Howes also had a son Murray and daughter Cathy.

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Sourav Ganguly complains of chest pain, admitted to Apollo Hospital

Ganguly, according to reports, felt uneasiness last night and suffered from mild chest pain earlier today. He was subsequently brought to the Apollo Hospital.

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Sourav Ganguly

BCCI president Sourav Ganguly was admitted to Apollo Hospital in Kolkata on January 27, after he complained of chest pain. The former Indian cricket team captain had undergone an angioplasty earlier this month after suffering from a mild heart attack.

Ganguly, according to reports, felt uneasiness last night and suffered from mild chest pain earlier today. He was subsequently brought to the Apollo Hospital.

On January 2, he was admitted to the Woodlands Hospital after reporting “chest discomfort, heaviness of head, vomiting and a spell of dizziness”. He was diagnosed with blockages in three coronary arteries.

Ganguly was discharged on January 7, after undergoing a successful angioplasty to clear the artillery blockages. The doctors, however, advised him to undergo angioplasty on other coronary arteries as well.

The condition of Ganguly was stated to be “stable” after being admitted at Apollo Hospital, The Indian Express reported citing family sources.

Ganguly, 48, had retired from international cricket in 2008. He was considered as one of the most successful Indian captains, having taken the team to the finals of 2003 World Cup. He was unanimously elected as BCCI chief in October 2019.

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Virat Kohli issued notice by Kerala HC over association with online rummy game

The action by the court came while hearing a petition which sought a ban on online rummy games. The Chief Justice-headed bench asked the Kerala government to file a reply on the demand raised by the petitioner.

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Virat Kohli

The Kerala High Court on January 27 issued a notice to Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli over his association with an online rummy game portal. Along with Kohli, the notices were also sent to actors Thammanna and Aju Vargheese.

The action by the court came while hearing a petition which sought a ban on online rummy games. The petition was moved by Pauly Vadakkan, a native of Thrissur.

The division bench of Kerala HC, headed by Chief Justice S Manikumar, asked the Kerala government to file a reply on the demand raised by the petitioner.

The petitioner also sought action against the brand ambassadors, citing their role in “attracting the youth” towards the “addictive” rummy portals.

“The stars, who are the brand ambassadors, attracted the audience and took part in the competition,” news agency ANI quoted the petition as saying.

The plea pointed out before the court that several persons died by suicide after losing huge amounts of money through only rummy games. The HC was appealed to issue an immediate ban on such portals.

“Online Rummy is within the limits of gambling…It should be legally prohibited. Other states have done the same. Kerala has a 1960 law. But no other steps have been taken,” the petitioner added.

The online rummy market has surged in India over the past couple of years, primarily due to the growth in usage of mobile internet.

“Because of the extensive demographic and geographic reach of mobile gaming, the industry currently is at Rs 2,000 crore and is expected to grow by 34 percent annually,” Hardik Parekh, Director, Sachar Gaming said.

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Cricket Australia Tells ICC It Couldn’t Identify Those Who Racially Abused Indian Cricketers: Report

Play was halted for a few minutes on the fourth day of the third Test on January 10 after Mohammed Siraj complained of racial abuse from the crowd

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Tim Paine

Cricket Australia has told the ICC that it was unable to identify spectators who racially abused Indian players during the Sydney Test and the six who were ejected from the stands were not the real culprits, a media report stated on Tuesday.

‘The Age’ reported that the CA investigators “have cleared the six men ejected from their seats during the Sydney Test of racially abusing Mohammed Siraj.”

CA has sent the findings to the ICC after a probe. The ICC had given the body 14 days to lodge a report.

“CA, which is awaiting a final report from NSW Police, is satisfied that the six men who were walked out of the lower tier of the Clive Churchill and Brewongle stand by police on the fourth afternoon of the Test did not make remarks of a racial nature to players,” the newspaper said.

“The report (of CA to the ICC) says while they believed players had been racially abused, CA investigators were unable to identify the culprits,” it said.

Play was halted for a few minutes on the fourth day of the third Test on January 10 after Siraj complained of racial abuse from the crowd.

This prompted the security personnel to enter the stands and look for the mischief-mongers before six people were asked to leave.

The BCCI had lodged a formal complaint and the CA had offered an unreserved apology.

The newspaper report said CA “interviewed multiple Indian players and took witness accounts from spectators, among them people who contacted CA to volunteer what they saw and heard during the match.”

“Sources now say the Indians had warned on the ground that they wouldn’t resume play until their complaint was acted upon,” the newspaper said.

“CA was told the men were singing to Siraj, who after complaining to umpires then pointed in their direction when police arrived.”

The newspaper also claimed one of the six men kicked out had said during the match that Siraj was upset after being hit for two sixes in an over and had gone to umpires when a crowd member said “Welcome to Sydney, Siraj”.

In its complaint, the BCCI had alleged that Siraj and his senior pace partner Jasprit Bumrah were abused racially for two consecutive days during the match in Sydney.

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