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In letters to judge, Sandusky, wife were defiant

In letters to judge, Sandusky, wife were defiant

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) Jerry and Dottie Sandusky wrote defiant letters to his judge before sentencing, attacking the motives of his victims, expressing a loss of faith in the judicial system and insisting he isn't a child molester.

The letters were released Thursday by Judge John Cleland, two days after he sentenced the former Penn State assistant coach to at least 30 years in prison for 45 counts of child sexual abuse.

Dottie Sandusky wrote July 9 that she never saw her husband do anything inappropriate to any child, a statement that echoed her trial testimony. She was deeply critical of her son Matt Sandusky, who had been expected to be a defense witness until the trial, when he claimed to investigators he also had been abused by Jerry Sandusky.

Matt Sandusky has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, ``but he refuses to take his medication,'' she wrote. ``He has had many run-ins with the law and stolen money and items from our family.''

Matt Sandusky's civil lawyer Joel Feller, who also represents at least five other victims or potential claimants, said the letters were part of a failed strategy to blame others for Jerry Sandusky's crimes.

``Matt is extremely disappointed that they have decided to attack him in what amounts to an effort to divert attention away from Jerry's heinous crimes,'' Feller said Thursday.

Jim Koval, director of communications for the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts, provided the letters on Cleland's behalf and said no other ones would be released.

``The letters from Jerry and Dottie Sandusky are the only letters the judge referred to in the sentencing hearing,'' Koval said. ``Other letters received had no bearing on the sentencing.''

Dottie Sandusky told Cleland she had lost faith in the legal system.

``To think that they can lie and get away with the lies,'' she wrote. ``The press has been unbelievable. People who have not met us are writing untruths.''

She did not return a phone message left by The Associated Press on Thursday. On Tuesday, she declined to comment when asked if she felt justice had been done.

Jerry Sandusky's three-page letter, dated Sept. 27, starts out by saying he did not expect leniency and was not asking for it. In many places, he used the same or similar language as the statement he read in court before sentencing and in a radio statement he released late Monday.

He began by saying his conviction had been orchestrated and then spoke of the victims and their families.

``They have been rewarded for forgetting, fabricating and exaggerating,'' he wrote. ``Maybe they will have a better place to live, a new car, access to more highs, but they won't change. Most of their rewards will be very temporary.''

He wrote of crying as he thought of separation from his family and friends, and reading inspirational books in a search for strength.

``My trust in people, systems and fairness has diminished,'' he wrote. ``My faith in God who sends light through darkness has remained. My heart has been broken but still works.''

Eight young men testified at trial that Sandusky had abused them as children, including grooming, fondling, oral sex and anal sex. Three of them spoke in court at the sentencing, while a written statement by a fourth was read into the record.

Three other victims who testified at trial - all currently represented by Feller's legal team - submitted a joint statement to Cleland, which has not been released publicly.

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Michigan's Moritz Wagner could be Wizards' solution for a stretch-five

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Michigan's Moritz Wagner could be Wizards' solution for a stretch-five

The pre-draft workout process can be an exhausting journey for players, with so many flights, hotel rooms and NBA arenas that they can all blend in together. Michigan big man Moritz Wagner, though, may have felt a sense of comfort in Washington for his pre-draft workout for the Wizards on Wednesday.

It was just over a year ago that his Michigan Wolverines cut down the nets at Capital One Arena as champions of the Big Ten conference.

"It was good memories, man. Never gets old," he said while glancing around the stadium.

Wagner, 21, will be seeing a lot more of Capital One Arena once he joins the NBA ranks and it is conceivable he ends up in Washington. They hold the 15th pick in the first round and the 44th pick in the second round and Wagner could be within their reach.

Wagner had an impressive workout in Washington and could provide what the Wizards need. He is a big, mobile and can spread the floor. Wagner was terrific at stepping out to hit threes off pick-and-rolls at Michigan and that ability would work well with Wizards All-Star point guard John Wall.

Wagner measured in at just under 7-feet at this month's NBA Combine, fifth-tallest among those who attended. He averaged 14.6 points as a junior this past season and made 39.4 percent of his threes on 4.1 attempts per game.

With three years of college experience and an NBA-ready jumper, Wagner believes he can step right in and help the Wizards.

"I think what we did at Michigan, sharing the ball and playing as a team, very organized basketball, that can help big-time," he said. "It's basically pro basketball I was playing on a different level."

As Wagner will tell you, he is very confident in his abilities. He is comfortable in his own skin and that includes openly discussing his faults. He feels good about his ability to score at the next level. Defense is where he needs to prove himself.

Despite his size, Wagner wasn't much of a rim protector in college. He averaged just a half-block a game as a junior. The Wizards need rim protection badly and he likely would not provide that.

Wagner, though, believes he can bring more to the table defensively than the numbers would suggest.

"I think I've been an offensive guy all of my life, but the more that you mature as a player, you understand that both sides are important. Without defense, you aren't going to play at any level," he said.

"I think the most important thing that I wasn't able to show in college is that I'm able to switch the ball-screen, especially with the way the league is going. Switch on everything and stay in front of guards as a big guy."

Wagner is from Germany and looks up to Mavs legend Dirk Nowitzki, who is entering his 21st season and will be in the Hall of Fame someday. Nowitzki's game has always been built around shooting and, though he developed into a decent shot-blocker in his prime, was never an elite rim protector.

Wagner hopes to follow in his footsteps playing a similar style.

"He was my MJ. He kind of shows you 'okay, this is possible and this is doable.' It's just basketball," Wagner said. "It gives you a lot of hope. It gives you a lot of belief and motivation."

Hear more from Wagner in his one-on-one interview with Chris Miller in our latest Wizards Tipoff podcast. His interview can also be found in the video above:

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Believe it or not, this isn't the first D.C. vs. Vegas postseason matchup

Believe it or not, this isn't the first D.C. vs. Vegas postseason matchup

In what is perhaps the most unexpected Stanley Cup Final pairing in recent memory, the Washington Capitals and the Las Vegas Golden Knights are going to make history this year.

Either it is going to be the first expansion team to win a title in their first season, or it will be a team looking to end a 27-year title drought for one of the biggest cities in the United States.

But what it will not be is the first D.C. vs. Vegas postseason matchup.

Going even farther back than the Capitals last Stanley Cup appearance (1998), the Georgetown Hoyas and UNLV Rebels met in the 1991 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament.

Sin City took the first, and up until now, the only postseason bout between these two cities. The Larry Johnson-led University of Las Vegas squad powered right past the Hoyas in the Second Round of the NCAA Tournament.

[D.C. sports and Second Rounds, I know right?]

Coming fresh off the NCAA title in 1990, UNLV waltzed right to the Final Four before meeting their demise against Duke. It also ended up being the last game for Dikembe Mutombo in a Georgetown uniform.

While in all likely-hood this will not be the final game/ series for Alex Ovechkin rocking the red, it may be his last and only chance for him to play this far into a postseason.

In the past two seasons, Vegas has gone from zero professional teams to having a Stanley Cup contender, a WNBA franchise, and lined up to take over the Oakland Raiders in 2020. 

Now time for the Golden Knights' Cinderella story to come up a little bit short. 

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