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In Sports from United Press International

Aug. 6, 2002 at 12:03 AM   |   Comments

Laker broadcaster Chick Hearn dies at 85

NORTHRIDGE, Calif., Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Legendary play-by-play announcer Chick Hearn, who made phrases like "slam dunk" and "air ball" common basketball expression during his 42-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers, died Monday. He was 85.

Hearn was pronounced dead at 6:30 p.m. at Northridge Hospital Medical Center, three days after suffering a brain injury in a fall at his home, Bob Steiner of the Lakers said.

The Hall of Fame broadcaster underwent a pair of surgeries Saturday to alleviate brain hemorrhaging but he remained in coma and doctors termed his condition "beyond critical" earlier Monday.

"His neurological functioning has deteriorated overnight," neurosurgeon Asher Taban said at a news conference Monday morning. "We have examined him frequently and unfortunately we haven't seen any sign of recovery. I would say he is beyond critical (condition). I'm not sure the terminology you would use. You could call it grave."

Hearn underwent surgery Saturday to relieve intercranial bleeding in his cranium. The second alleviated a blood clot in his brain. Taban said at that time that Hearn's prognosis was "not good."

Paramedics rushed to Hearn's home in Encino shortly before 8 p.m. EDT on Friday after his wife, Marge, and neighbors saw him fall in his yard. That was the latest in a series of health problems Hearn has suffered in recent months. He underwent heart surgery last December and hip surgery in March, but returned in time to broadcast the Lakers' playoff run to their third straight NBA title.

Hearn's streak of broadcasting 3,338 games over 36 years ended when he missed a contest against the Houston Rockets on Dec. 20 to undergo heart surgery to repair a blocked aortic valve. In his 42nd year behind the microphone, Hearn became just the third broadcaster inducted to the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1991. His streak of Lakers' games began on Nov. 20, 1965.


Safin, Kafelnikov, Federer upset

CINCINNATI, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Andre Agassi advanced but fellow seeds Marat Safin, Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Roger Federer were eliminated Monday from the first round of the $2.95 million hardcourt Tennis Masters Series - Cincinnati.

The sixth-seeded Agassi, who won the Mercedes-Benz Cup on July 28 but withdrew prior to the Tennis Masters Series - Toronto last week, edged Morocco's Younes El Aynaoui, 6-4, 4-6, 6-4. Agassi a Las Vegas native, has won 11 hardcourt Tennis Masters Series events since 1990, including this one in 1995 and 1996.

In a matchup of hard servers, the Russian Safin, the No. 2 seed, was upset by unseeded Greg Rusedski of Britain, 7-6 (9-7), 6-2. Safin's compatriot Kafelnikov, the fifth seed, was easily knocked off by Rainer Schuettler of Germany, 6-3, 6-2. Federer, the 10th seed from Switzerland, was felled in three sets by Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia, 2-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Among the players joining Agassi in the second round were No. 7 seed Albert Costa of Spain, the 2002 French Open champion, who narrowly defeated Nicolas Lapentti of Ecuador, 4-6, 7-6 (7-4), 6-4; American James Blake, who beat Andrei Pavel of Romania, 6-4, 7-6 (11-9); and American wild card Jan-Michael Gambill, who downed Magnus Norman of Sweden, 6-4, 6-2.

Todd Martin will not be joining his former U.S. Davis Cup teammates Blake and Gambill in the second round. The veteran was edged by Tommy Robredo of Spain, 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7-1).

Tuesday, Australian Lleyton Hewitt, the world No. 1 and top seed here, faces American qualifier Robby Ginepri. Third seed Tommy Haas of Germany and fourth-seeded Englishman Tim Henman also play Tuesday. Haas, who is seeking his first title this year, plays American wild card Michael Chang and Henman takes on Brazilian claycourt specialist Gustavo Kuerten.


Georgia Tech forward quits team

ATLANTA, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Forward Clarence Moore, one of the most experienced players on an otherwise young club, has quit the men's basketball at Georgia Tech.

Moore, a 6-foot-5 redshirt junior, averaged 9.4 points and 5.4 rebounds last year while starting 29 of Tech's 31 games. He told Coach Paul Hewitt that he lacked the motivation to compete another season.

"He just lost interest in playing," Hewitt told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Moore's decision did not come as a big surprise to Hewitt, who apparently saw it coming.

In December, Moore told Hewitt he was considering giving up the sport. Hewitt talked him into staying, and his play helped fuel a late season turnaround by the Yellow Jackets, who rebounded from an 0-7 start in the highly-competitive Atlantic Coast Conference to finish at 15-16 overall.

After the season, Moore again informed Hewitt that he was unsure about continuing. When Moore went home to Louisiana for the summer, Hewitt hoped he might have a change of heart and come back rededicated, but that did not happen.

Hewitt once called Moore his team's "most important player" because of his excellent one-on-one defensive skills, scoring ability and rebounding. Moore's loss comes as a blow to an already young Tech team.

Moore's decision was the latest negative news for the program. Michael Isenhour passed away on June 14 following a nine-month battle to overcome acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Isenhour, 23, who was originally diagnosed with the illness last October, died at Emory Hospital, nine days after undergoing a bone marrow transplant.


WR Keenan McCardell has knee sprain

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Veteran wide receiver Keenan McCardell, whom the Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed recently as a free agent to help shore up an anemic passing attack, went down Monday morning with a knee injury that was later diagnosed as a knee sprain.

An MRI examination confirmed the team's initial guess that McCardell's left knee was sprained, but lacking any significant structural damage. McCardell indicated that he wants the injury to be a temporary setback.

McCardell, 32, who played for several years in Jacksonville, is coming off another strong season in 2001. He caught 93 passes for the Jaguars and scored six touchdowns. The 10-year veteran has 579 catches for 7,526 yards and 38 touchdowns during his career.


Blazers acquire Daniels from Spurs

PORTLAND, Ore., Aug. 6 (UPI) -- The Portland Trail Blazers and San Antonio Spurs completed a trade for the second straight offseason Monday as the Blazers received guard Antonio Daniels and two other players in exchange for guards Steve Kerr and Erick Barkley.

In addition to Daniels, the Blazers acquired center Amal McCaskill and guard Charles Smith. Last summer, Portland acquired Derek Anderson and Kerr from the Spurs in exchange for veteran guard Steve Smith.

Daniels was the fourth overall selection by the Vancouver Grizzlies in the 1997 NBA Draft. He was traded after his rookie season to San Antonio, where he spent four seasons mostly as a reserve.

Kerr was a member of the Spurs' championship team in 1999 and is the last NBA player to win four straight titles. Barkley was a first-round selection in the 2000 NBA Draft by Portland and has appeared in just 27 games.


Blue Jays give ex-NBA center a shot

TORONTO, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Pitcher Mark Hendrickson, who played in the NBA from 1996 to 2000, will get his chance to play major league baseball.

The Toronto Blue Jays Monday purchased the contract of the 6-9 lefthander from Class AAA Syracuse of the International League and designated reliever Scott Eyre for assignment.

The tallest player in team history, Hendrickson was 7-5 with a 3.52 ERA in 19 games, including 14 starts, for Syracuse. He will be used out of the bullpen by the Blue Jays.

Hendrickson played in the NBA as a reserve power forward and center with the Philadelphia 76ers, Sacramento Kings, New Jersey Nets and Cleveland Cavaliers. In college, Hendrickson was a two-time All-Pac-10 selection at Washington.


Pistons sever ties with Moore

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Aug. 6 (UPI) -- The Detroit Pistons finalized a buyout agreement on center Mikki Moore's contract, making him a free agent for the 2002-03 season, it was announced Monday by Joe Dumars, president of basketball operations.

Moore, 27, played in just 30 games last season as a reserve and averaged 2.6 points and 1.8 rebounds in 7.2 minutes. In 142 NBA games, all with Detroit, the 7-foot Moore averaged 4.7 points and 3.4 rebounds in 13.1 minutes.


Injured Kidd skips U.S. World team

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., Aug.6 (UPI) -- USA Basketball announced Monday that All-Star point guard Jason Kidd has withdrawn from the 2002 World Championship Team. Baron Davis was named to replace him.

Kidd, who led the New Jersey Nets to the NBA Finals last season, was injured recently during some preseason conditioning and decided to pull out with training scheduled to begin on Aug. 16 in San Francisco.

Davis' selection was made by the USA Basketball Men's Senior National Team Committee. Regarded as one of the NBA's top young point guards, the 23-year-old Davis recently re-signed a multi-year contract with the New Orleans Hornets.


Serena Williams returns to action

MANHATTAN BEACH, Calif., Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Top-seeded Serena Williams tries to keep pace with her sizzling sister when she faces Russian Lina Krasnoroutskaya Tuesday in the second round of the $585,000 JP Morgan Chase Open at the Manhattan Country Club.

Williams carries a 19-match winning streak into this hardcourt event as she seeks her fourth consecutive tournament title. She has not played since winning her second straight Grand Slam, beating older sister Venus at Wimbledon. Serena Williams won this event in 1999 and 2000.

Venus Williams made it two titles in as many weeks Sunday with a straight-sets triumph over Jelena Dokic at the Acura Classic, but is not playing in this event.

Serena Williams, second seed Jennifer Capriati and defending champion Lindsay Davenport, who is seeded third, all received byes in the first round.


Hingis rejoining tour next week

WASHINGTON, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Martina Hingis, who underwent left ankle surgery two-and-a-half months ago, will return to the WTA Tour next week, Hingis' management firm Octagon announced Monday.

The former world No. 1 from Switzerland has been entered into the Rogers AT&T Canada Cup, which is scheduled to begin Aug. 12, and the Pilot Pen Tennis event the following week.

Hingis has also requested a wild card entry into the U.S. Open, the year's final Grand Slam event. The 1997 U.S. Open champion and five-time Grand Slam champion has missed each major in 2002.


Schnyder escapes Nordic upset

HELSINKI, Finland, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- No. 3 Patty Schnyder of Switzerland had to rally to avoid first-round elimination Monday at the $140,000 Nordea Nordic Light Open.

The 23-year-old Schnyder trailed unseeded Croatian Silvija Talaja, 5-2 in the decisive third set before she ran off five straight games for a 5-7, 6-2, 7-5 victory.

Schnyder reached just one final this year at the Family Circle Cup at Charleston, South Carolina in April when she lost to Iva Majoli.

Majoli is seeded second here this week behind No. Silvia Farina Elia. Both will be in action Tuesday, with Farina Elia matched against Ludmila Cervanova and Majoli to face Gala Leon Garcia.

No. 7 Martina Muller of Germany, the only other seed in action Monday, dropped a 3-6, 6-2, 2-6 decision to Mgadalena Grzybowska of Poland.


Jones named NL Player of Week

NEW YORK, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- Atlanta Braves left fielder Chipper Jones, who batted .526 with four home runs and 11 RBI, on Monday was named National League Player of the Week.

Jones, who was honored for the first time since April, 1998, was 10-for-19 with six runs scored over the past seven days, including a pair of two-run homers in Saturday's 6-1 victory over St. Louis. It was Jones' 24th multi-homer contest and first of the season.

The eight-year veteran fashioned a 1.158 slugging percentage and recorded 22 total bases during the week.

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