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Nadal keeps expectations low before comeback

Nadal keeps expectations low before comeback

VINA DEL MAR, Chile (AP) Rafael Nadal says he's not focused on winning his first match in eight months when he returns next week at the Chile Open.

Nadal said Saturday that results aren't as important for now as reaching ``an acceptable level,'' after a left knee injury forced him to take the longest break of his career.

``After spending more than six months without competing, I'm not thinking about become No. 1,'' Nadal said at a news conference. ``It's something that even when I'm in good shape and starting the year, I don't plan, so I'm not going to plan it now. My objective now is to go week by week and do the best I can in every game I play.''

The 11-time Grand Slam champion said his knee has improved but it still hurt sometimes and he's going to remain ``humble and patient'' in his comeback. He's also scheduled to play in the Brazil Open in Sao Paulo starting Feb. 11 and the Mexico Open in Acapulco beginning Feb. 25.

Nadal is one of the best clay-court players in the history of the game, but he began downplaying his performance in Latin America before he even stepped foot in Chile.

Nadal's first test in the Andean country comes Tuesday in doubles with Argentine Juan Monaco, followed by his opening singles Wednesday.

The clay tournament in Vina del Mar is expected to be safe ground in preparation for the French Open, the only one of the four Grand Slams that takes place on clay and which Nadal has won seven times - more than anyone in history.

Nadal hasn't played since losing in the second round to Czech Lukas Rosol at Wimbledon in June.

The 26-year-old Spaniard said he'd passed six blood and urine doping tests since then. In the wake of cyclist Lance Armstrong's doping admission, Nadal said he supports strict controls to keep tennis clean.

``Above all, the sport must be clean. We must have certainty that the rival in front is as clean as I am,'' he said. ``I don't have any problem with having controls every week to combat what has happened in other sports. Tennis continues to be a clean sport as it has been throughout its history.''

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Follow the AP's Luis Andres Henao on Twitter:https://twitter.com/

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The Capitals were mentioned on Jeopardy! and of course we're proud of it

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The Capitals were mentioned on Jeopardy! and of course we're proud of it

The Stanley Cup no longer resides in Washington, and all eyes have shifted toward the offseason as the Capitals look to retool for next season. But, that doesn't mean we can't stop and appreciate the magical 2018 season now and again.

A week after reminiscing about the championship run and ensuing parade, the famous game show "Jeopardy!" gave us one more moment of glory on Monday night.

One of the clues featured in the latest episode had the Capitals as the answer and even featured Alexander Ovechkin.

It appears that one of the contestants did answer it correctly. More importantly, according to the replies, it was also cleared up that no one brought up the Pittsburgh Penguins during that round. 

While it may be somewhat hard to cope with the fact that the Capitals will not be enjoying another offseason of championship partying in 2019 we can take pride in the fact that the question was about the Caps winning the Stanley Cup, and not centered around a dreaded title drought.

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In addition to being an NFL player, Bryce Love can now call himself a Stanford graduate

In addition to being an NFL player, Bryce Love can now call himself a Stanford graduate

Bryce Love hopes he'll have the opportunity to carry many footballs in his NFL career. But this past weekend, the running back picked up something that'll be just as, if not more, valuable than the attempts he'll be getting on Sundays.

How's a college diploma from Stanford sound? Pretty solid, right?

Oh, how about a college diploma from Stanford in human biology? Yeah, probably something worth hanging up on the ol' fridge, huh?

Well, that very hard-earned and impressive degree is what Love is now in possession of:

Drafted by the Redskins in late-April and walking across the stage at Stanford in mid-June, Love is doing well for himself recently. He passed up the chance to enter the draft early to ensure he graduated, and now he has.

His college GPA isn't known, but once you find out his high school GPA was 4.5 (that's apparently possible) and add that to the fact that he was able to finish up school out west while also churning up yards for the Cardinal, you can imagine it was very, very good. And if his yards-per-carry average as a pro matches or exceeds it, then the Redskins will be thrilled.

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