Reuters U.S. Sports Schedule at 2 p.m. EDT on Friday, Dec. 21

Reuters Middle East

Dec. 21 (Reuters) - Reuters U.S. sports schedule at 2 p.m. EST on Friday:

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The duty editor is Steve Ginsburg, 202-898-8427

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National Football League

Battle in Seattle

The fabled "12th Man" isn't all Seattle has going for it in front of a raucous crowd for the Sunday primetime grudge match with the San Francisco 49ers. This game has a lot to like for purists and neophytes alike in what is shaping up as one of the NFL's best active rivalries. (FBN-SEAHAWKS-49ERS-NEWS/ PREVIEW), expect by 0100 GMT/8 PM ET, The Sports Xchange, by Frank Cooney, 900 words)

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Bills to remain at The Ralph

The Bills reached agreement Friday with the state on a 10-year lease for Ralph Wilson Stadium that will keep the NFL team in Buffalo. (FBN-BILLS-NEWS/, moved, The Sports Xchange, 500 words)

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Viking battle? Harvin, Frazier reportedly at odds

Minnesota Vikings receiver Percy Harvin had a heated exchange with head coach Leslie Frazier just a few weeks after television cameras caught Harvin shouting at him on the sideline at Seattle on Nov. 4. (FBN-VIKINGS-NEWS/, moved, The Sports Xchange, 500 words)

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Vick: 'I'm still a starter'

The Philadelphia Eagles have relegated Michael Vick to a third-string role for the rest of this season, but the veteran quarterback says he's looking to the future and a new opportunity with another team. (FBN-EAGLES-NEWS/, moved, The Sports Xchange, 500 words)

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Pryor to get playing time vs. Panthers

How can the Oakland Raiders, a team with defensive difficulties against both the run and pass, possibly prepare for the Carolina Panthers' Cam Newton? (FBN-PANTHERS-NEWS/, moved, The Sports Xchange, 550 words)

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Playoff picture taking shape

We preview the penultimate weekend of play in the NFL's regular season where a number of teams will be looking to inch closer to securing a spot in the playoffs. (NFL/ (PREVIEW), expect by 2200 GMT/5 PM ET, by Simon Evans, 500 words)

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NFL Notebook

The latest news and notes from around the league. (FBN-NOTES/, expect by 0000 GMT/7 PM ET, The Sports Xchange, 500 words)

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College Football

Here's the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Ball State is still chasing its first bowl victory (0-5), but won six in a row to get to the postseason. UCF might not be able to match the Cardinals' scoring punch, who are hopeful QB Keith Wenning (fractured ankle) is at full strength. (FBC-BALLSTATE-UCF-WRITETHRU/, expect by 0330 GMT/10:30 PM ET, The Sports Xchange, by Tom Layberger, 700 words)

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National Basketball Association

Bulls eye East-leading Knicks

NEW YORK - The Chicago Bulls scored a win over the New York Knicks two weeks ago when Carmelo Anthony was sidelined by a finger injury, but all signs point to the All-Star forward returning tonight for the rematch. (BBO-KNICKS-BULLS-WRITETHRU/ (PIX), expect by 0400 GMT/11 PM ET, The Sports Xchange, 700 words)

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Pierce seeks encore vs. cool-shooting Milwaukee

BOSTON - Hold the changing of the guard with the Celtics for at least another season. Paul Pierce showed in his 40-point outburst Wednesday that he's still got it, while visiting Milwaukee has been ice cold. (BBO-CELTICS-BUCKS-WRITETHRU/ (PIX), expect by 0400 GMT/11 PM ET, The Sports Xchange, 700 words)

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Nash could play Tuesday

Point guard Steve Nash is what the Lakers' offense is missing, according to coach Mike D'Antoni. He could get his Christmas wish Tuesday with Nash saying he could return when Los Angeles hosts the New York Knicks. (BBO-LAKERS-NEWS/, moved, The Sports Xchange, 400 words)

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NBA notebook

The latest news and notes from around the league. (BKN-NOTES/, expect by 1245 GMT/7:45 PM ET, The Sports Xchange, 400 words)

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Europe's Ryder Cup hero Martin Kaymer has a nightmare in which the five-foot putt he sank to beat Steve Stricker on Medina's 18th green slides agonizingly past the hole and his career spirals into decline. (GOLF-KAYMER/, moved, 350 words)

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Major League Baseball

Ship has landed: Liriano picks Pirates

Enigmatic left-handed starter Francisco Liriano agrees to a two-year, $14 million deal with the Pittsburgh Pirates. (BBO-PIRATES-NEWS/, moved, The Sports Xchange, 375 words)

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Pierzynski inks with Rangers

Coming off of a career-high 27 home runs with the Chicago White Sox, A.J. Pierzynski relocates to the Texas Rangers. (BBO-RANGERS-NEWS/, moved, The Sports Xchange, 350 words)

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MLB notebook

The latest from around the league. (BBO-NOTES/, expect by 0000 GMT/7 PM ET, The Sports Xchange, 400 words)

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