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Brady leads Patriots like Spurs

In this file photo from 2005, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady raises the Vince Lombardi Trophy over coach Bill Belichick and team owner Robert Kraft, right, after they beat the Philadelphia Eagles, 24-21, in Super Bowl XXXIX in Jacksonville, Florida. Brady and the Patriots are aiming for a fourth Super Bowl title. Tim Duncan and the San Antonio Spurs are defending the NBA championship for the fifth time. Different sports, but similar dynasties with solid ownership, demanding coaches and humble superstars.

Ohio State thriving a year early

Ohio State's Vonn Bell, left, celebrates with teammate Cam Burrows after intercepting a pass during the Big Ten Conference championship this month against Wisconsin in Indianapolis.

DeMarre Carroll leads Hawks

Atlanta forward DeMarre Carroll, a former Missouri star, reacts to hitting a 3-pointer in the final minutes of a 107-104 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers Monday in Atlanta.

Blues downed by Avalanche

St. Louis Blues center Maxim Lapierre (No. 40) and Colorado Avalanche defenseman Erik Johnson go after the puck during the first period of a hockey game Tuesday in Denver.

LeBron's return the No. 3 story

In this Oct. 30 photo, workers finish hanging a mural of Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James on a building in Cleveland. James' return to Cleveland was the third-ranked sports story of the year in an annual vote conducted by The Associated Press. The NFL's troubles with domestic violence was the top story of the year.

Aldon Smith says he didn't drink at house

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith sits on the bench during a game last month.

Stephanie Hunt drops off new earrings at Mustard Seed

Stephanie Hunt drops off new earrings at Mustard Seed on Wednesday. Hunt, a consigned artist for the store, makes jewelry at her home studio in Moberly, Missouri.

Earrings on display at Mustard Seed

A pair of homemade earrings sit on display Wednesday at Mustard Seed. They were made by Stephanie Hunt, who makes jewelry in her home studio in Moberly, Missouri.

Stephanie Hunt shops at Mustard Seed

Stephanie Hunt shops at Mustard Seed after dropping off some new earrings there Wednesday.

FROM READERS: AVID students get an early holiday gift

Damon Jennings helps unload computers at Battle High School. The computers will be heading home with AVID students at the school.

Texas troopers patrol Rio Grande

Texas Department of Safety Troopers patrol the Rio Grande along the U.S.-Mexico border in Mission, Texas, on July 24. Frustrated by an impasse in Congress, President Barack Obama took executive actions in November to curb deportations for many immigrants residing in the U.S. illegally.

President Obama answers media questions at news conference

President Barack Obama listens to a question during his 2013 end-of-the-year news conference in the Brady Press Room at the White House in Washington. Obama rang in 2014 promising a "year of action" in which he'd deploy the full extent of his executive powers to move areas, such as immigration, climate change and relations with Cuba, he found success.

Van drivers start early

Gary Powell sits in the van he drives to help veterans get to and from their appointments at Truman Veterans' Hospital. Powell starts as early as 5:30 a.m. to pick up veterans in the 45 counties the hospital serves.

Veterans depend on volunteers

Gary Powell volunteers as a driver for veterans who need to rides to Truman Veteran's Hospital for medical appointments. At the end of day, Powell says he's "helping people that need help."

GPS helps volunteer drivers find far-flung locations

Gary Powell uses GPS to help him navigate as he drives veterans from around mid-Missouri to their appointments at the Truman Veterans' Hospital. “Thank goodness for GPS,” he said. “We go some crazy places.”

Team celebrates basket

From left, Missouri Tigers forward Bri Porter, guard Lindsey Cunningham, forward Michelle Hudyn and guard Bree Fowler celebrate a basket during a game on Monday night. The Tigers won 74-65.

Pingeton reacts to call

Missouri Tigers head coach Robin Pingeton reacts to a call during a game Monday at Mizzou Arena. The Tigers won 74-65.

Porter hurt in left knee

Missouri Tigers forward Bri Porter shrieks in pain after apparently injuring her left knee during a game Monday. Porter was carried off the court but later returned to the bench. The Tigers won 74-65.

Porter goes on a drive

From left, Missouri Tigers forward Bri Porter drives around UT Martin Skyhawks forwards Ashia Jones and Haley Howard during a game on Monday at Mizzou Arena.

Players battle for the ball

UT Martin Skyhawks forward Ashia Jones, left, and Missouri Tigers guard/forward Jordan Frericks attempt to box each other out during a game on Monday at Mizzou Arena. The Tigers won 74-65.
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