SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - Joe Pavelski scored two power-play goals, and the San Jose Sharks ended a four-game losing streak by beating the Minnesota Wild 3-1 last night. Jonas Brodin scored for the Wild, who lost their fifth straight on the road. Niklas Backstrom made 36 saves. Backstrom fell to 1-9-1 in San Jose, and his 3.68 goals-against-average there is his second worst in any arena.
LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) - Quarterback Jay Cutler is set to return to the Chicago Bears' lineup. Coach Marc Trestman says Cutler will start Sunday at Cleveland after missing the previous four games with a high left ankle sprain. Cutler went through a full practice on yesterday after working out with the receivers following a walkthrough, and got the green light to start this week. Josh McCown, who played well in his absence, goes back to a reserve role.
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) - Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers' checklist for playing Sunday has two primary items on it: taking the majority of first-team snaps in practice today, and getting good results from a scan on his healing left collarbone. If both those things happen, Rodgers could be back under center for the first time since breaking his collarbone Nov. 4 against Chicago. With Rodgers sidelined, the Packers have gone 1-4-1 and enter the final three weeks of the season at 6-6-1, a half-game back of the NFC North leading Detroit Lions and Chicago Bears, both of whom are 7-6.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) - No. 19 Wisconsin is looking to tune up its passing game as it prepares for a high-profile matchup against South Carolina in the Capital One Bowl. The Badgers (9-3) are getting over their regular season-ending loss to underdog Penn State, when the defense stacked the box to contain playmaking running backs Melvin Gordon and James White. Coach Gary Andersen says he wants to mix it up for the bowl game.
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