Richmond Times-Dispatch Weekend - - SUNDAY PUNCH - — Eric Kolenich

1. Harper, Machado

The shut­down has lasted longer than any­one ex­pected. No, not the fed­eral gov­ern­ment shut­down, the dearth of devel­op­ments from base­ball’s big­gest free agents, Bryce Harper and Manny Machado. Nei­ther has signed with a team, even though spring train­ing is clos­ing in. The clock is tick­ing, and peo­ple are wait­ing.

2. Red­skins coach­ing tree

The Pack­ers this week hired Matt LaFleur, a for­mer Red­skins as­sis­tant, as its head coach. He’s the third for­mer as­sis­tant to for­mer Red­skins coach Mike Shana­han to land a head coach­ing job. While the Red­skins have been crit­i­cized for let­ting an­other tal­ented mind get away, think of the pos­i­tives: Bruce Allen has pro­duced the third best coach­ing tree in the NFL af­ter Bill Walsh and Bill Par­cells.

3. Bos­ton Bru­ins

The Bru­ins have lost 14 straight games to the Wash­ing­ton Cap­i­tals, in­clud­ing a 4-2 de­feat on Thurs­day and a 7-0 sea­son-open­ing loss in Oc­to­ber. Imag­ine that, a Bos­ton team con­sis­tently strug­gling against a Wash­ing­ton team. You don’t see that of­ten.

4. Andy Mur­ray

The 31-year-old ten­nis player will re­tire, cit­ing pro­longed pain in his hip. He hopes to play in Wim­ble­don but con­ceded he may not make it that far. “I’ve been in a lot of pain for prob­a­bly 20 months now,” he said.

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