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Week Ahead
Chris Mannix
June 26, 2006
What to watch and watch for
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June 26, 2006

Week Ahead

What to watch and watch for

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Launch Party

Houston, we have liftoff. The Roger Clemens sweepstakes ended last month when he spurned offers from the Red Sox and the Yankees and returned to the Astros for a prorated one-year, $22 million contract. (He'll pocket about $12.3 million for three months of work.) After dazzling with 22 strikeouts in three minor league tune-ups, including a win for the Triple A Round Rock Express last Friday (above), the Rocket, 43, makes his debut at home against the Twins. He'll be a welcome sight for a staff that ranks 10th in the NL in ERA--and an unwelcome one for the Twins, against whom he is 23--12 with a 3.01 ERA in his career.
Check listings


U.S. Outdoor Track and Field Championships
After spending 11 months away from competition and several years denying allegations that steroids helped her win five gold medals at the 2000 Olympics, Marion Jones might be returning to form. She's won all three 100-meter races she's entered this year, most recently at the Reebok Grand Prix in New York City earlier this month (above). The next step? This event in Indianapolis, where Jones will face reigning 100-meter world champion Lauryn Williams. ESPN2 6 p.m.

The Ultimate Fighter 3
The 12-episode martial arts smackdown--imagine an American Idol in which the slaps aren't verbal--comes down to a brawl between two guys named Spider and Short Fuse. Middleweights Kendall (Spider) Grove and Ed (Short Fuse) Herman (below left) are the last men standing in what began as a field of 16 fighters. The winner tonight walks away with a contract to compete in the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
SPIKE TV 9 p.m.


Chasing the Dream: A Quarterback's Story
Brett Elliott was Utah's starting quarterback in 2003--until he broke his wrist and was replaced by Alex Smith, who went on to be the top pick in the 2005 NFL draft. After he healed, Elliott (right) transferred and starred at Division III Linfield. This documentary follows him as he trains for the '05 draft--he wasn't picked--and then tries to win a roster spot with the Chargers as a free agent.
CSTV 8 p.m.


He grew up in Basel, Switzerland, but Roger Federer couldn't be more at home on the grass courts of southwest London. Federer has won at the All England Club for the last three years and carries a streak of 41 consecutive victories on grass--tying the record set by Bjorn Borg in 1981--into tennis's oldest championship, which begins today.
ESPN2 8 a.m.


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