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Sports

Morning Briefing: Stealing home is easier than you think

Soccer
The Poway home where the late Tony Gwynn lived until his death in 2014.
(K.C. Alfred / San Diego Union-Tribune)

The former Poway home of San Diego Padres great Tony Gwynn, who died five years ago, has an unexpected visitor.

The Gwynn family lost the home to foreclosure last summer and it had remained vacant. In December, neighbors noticed people at the house, including one man who seemed to spend a lot of time there.

Turns out an unidentified squatter is living there, officials with the property management firm responsible for the bank-owned property told the San Diego Union-Tribune. Efforts to evict him reportedly were complicated by California’s complex “squatter’s rights” laws, but civil proceedings were started to evict the man.

“We want to address the neighbor’s concerns, but we can’t just knock down the doors,” Poway Sheriff’s Lt. Christopher Collier told the newspaper. “There are laws that we have to abide by and facts that have to be checked out.”

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The sad part is that the home, valued at $2.3 million, is in foreclosure. A street named after Gwynn is nearby, as well as a statue. There were no reports I could find as to where his family members are living now, but let’s hope they landed on their feet somewhere.

Healthy living

If you ever hoped to be invited to dinner at the White House, you may want to put that on hold for a while.

Clemson’s football team went to the White House to be honored for winning the national title, and President Trump had an elaborate feast ready for them:

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“The Clemson national championship team will be coming tonight. It will be exciting,” Trump said. “Very great team. An unbelievable team. I think we’re going to serve McDonald’s, Wendy’s and Burger King with some pizza. I really mean it. It will be interesting. I would think that’s their favorite food.”

With much of the government shut down, the president paid for the food himself.

Rumor has it that Trump wanted to serve churros for dessert, but couldn’t get funding for a wall to surround the churros to keep them confined to their part of the table.

Vote in our poll

So it will be the Rams vs. the New Orleans Saints for the NFC title and the New England Patriots vs. the Kansas City Chiefs for the AFC title. Who do you think will advance to the Super Bowl? Vote in our polls and the results will be revealed at the end of the week.

The Rams-Saints poll can be found at poll.fm/10212866.

The Patriots-Chiefs poll is at poll.fm/10212867.

Big mistake

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Chicago Bears kicker Cody Parkey appeared on the “Today” show last week in a bid for sympathy after he had a potential game-winning field-goal attempt blocked in Chicago’s 16-15 loss to Philadelphia.

On Monday, Bears coach Matt Nagy let the world know he wasn’t too pleased.

“For me, you understand that we always talk about a ‘we’ and not a ‘me’ thing,” Nagy said at the team’s season-ending news conference. “We always talk as a team, we win as a team, we lose as a team. You know, I just, I didn’t necessarily think that that was too much of a ‘we’ thing.”

If your favorite team is in need of a kicker, here’s guessing Parkey will be available pretty soon.

Oh, Kyrie

Kyrie Irving, who has been openly critical of teammates this season, said he realized going public with his criticisms was a mistake.

“I never want to come from a place where I don’t want to sound like, or make it feel like, I don’t want to win a championship,” the Boston Celtics guard told ESPN. “Sometimes I may come off and say things, never want to question my teammates in public like that ever again. I just want to win so bad.”

After Saturday’s 105-103 loss to Orlando, Irving said: “It doesn’t matter who you’re going against. It matters the type of preparation you have [and] what you’re going out and trying to accomplish. What’s the big picture? What are we doing here? These are things I don’t think some of my teammates have faced every single day.”

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