Pirates sign first player under new affiliation

Forward Wade Megan, who split the last two seasons between the American Hockey League and the lower ECHL, signed Tuesday with the Portland Pirates, becoming the first player to reach a deal under the new affiliation with the Florida Panthers.

Megan, who played four years with Boston University before being drafted by the Panthers in the fifth round in 2009, had eight goals and five assists in 59 games last season for San Antonio of the AHL – the previous Florida affiliate. He also had four goals and five assists in five games with Cincinnati of the ECHL.

NHL: Jeff Blashill was hired by Detroit, ending a fairly un-suspenseful coaching search that began when Mike Babcock left to take over in Toronto.

Blashill coached Detroit’s minor league affiliate in Grand Rapids for the past three seasons and was an obvious candidate for the Red Wings once Babcock left.

BROADCASTING: Mike Emrick, the original voice of the Maine Mariners hockey team and the voice of hockey in the United States, will receive the Vin Scully Award for lifetime achievement.

Being chosen for the award left Emrick “speechless, and that’s rare for me.”


NFL: As expected, Denver wide receiver Demaryius Thomas and defensive end Antonio Smith didn’t attend a mandatory minicamp.

Thomas is boycotting the offseason program after the team placed its $12.8 million franchise tag on him. Smith was absent while prosecutors in Texas investigate a criminal complaint against him. The Broncos and Smith decided it would be best for him to skip organized team activities.

n Seattle is bringing back its backup quarterback after agreeing to terms with veteran Tarvaris Jackson.


NOTTINGHAM OPEN: Top-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska dropped just three games in advancing to the second round of the grass-court event in England – a Wimbledon warm-up event.

The 13th-ranked Radwanska from Poland beat Alla Kudryavtseva of Russia 6-0, 6-3 in her first match since losing in the first round of the French Open.


IRISH CRASH: Five members of Ireland’s coaching staff, including Manager Martin O’Neill and assistant coach Roy Keane, were involved in a road traffic accident outside Dublin.

Britain’s Press Association said none of the five were seriously hurt.


SPRINT CUP: Michael Waltrip Racing, seeking a solution for its season-long slump, swapped crew chiefs for Clint Bowyer and David Ragan.

Brian Pattie had been with Bowyer since the team was formed in 2012, but he will now move to Ragan’s car. Billy Scott had been crew chief for the No. 55 Toyota since late 2013, but he will now crew chief Bowyer.


NCBL: Bill Creighton broke a 1-1 tie with a solo home run in the sixth inning and the visiting Watertown Bucks (6-4) went on to edge the Old Orchard Beach Surge 2-1 in a North Country Baseball League game at The Ballpark.

Tyler Levine struck out three and walked one in seven innings for Old Orchard (3-5).

Jacob Fabry scored on a sacrifice by Sam DiMatteo in the fourth for the Surge, who left the bases loaded in both the seventh and eighth innings.

– From staff and news services