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Robinson out for Monday night; is honored

April 21, 2003 at 3:12 PM   |   Comments

SAN ANTONIO, April 21 (UPI) -- San Antonio center David Robinson, in the twilight of his career, will not play against the Phoenix Suns Monday night in Game Two of their NBA playoff series.

Robinson has been sidelined with a medial meniscus tear in his left knee. He is listed as day-to-day with the injury.

The 7-1 Robinson, who is retiring at season's end, scored 18 points Saturday when eighth-seeded Phoenix surprised the Spurs, 96-95, in Game One.

Robinson, who has endured back problems all season, averaged a career-low 8.5 points and 7.9 rebounds in 64 games this season. San Antonio did go 60-22 this season, the best record in the NBA.

Malik Rose is expected to start at center in Robinson's place.

Robinson's absence leaves the Spurs shorthanded. Already, veteran backup Kevin Willis will sit out Monday's contest to serve a one-game suspension for committing a flagrant-2 foul by elbowing Phoenix center Scott Williams with 29.3 seconds left in the second quarter Saturday.

He also was named recipient of the J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship award, presented annually by the Professional Basketball Writers Association.

The Kennedy Citizenship award is the oldest citizenship and community service award in the NBA and is named for the second commissioner of the NBA. The award honors an NBA player or coach for outstanding community service, and commitment to serve and give of his time outside the arena.

David Robinson already has donated $9 million of his own money to create the independent Carver Academy, serving primarily low-income African-American and Hispanic families in San Antonio. He also leads fundraising efforts for the school, and is Board Chairman of Carver, which is named for noted African-American George Washington Carver.

"The PBWA is proud to present David Robinson the J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship award for 2003," said PBWA President Sam Smith. "David is one of the most deserving winners we've ever had. He may be the best combination of citizen and athlete in the history of American professional sports. His feats on the basketball court undoubtedly will earn him inclusion in the Basketball Hall of Fame. His contributions off the basketball court may be even more significant and impressive. He is the ideal in what we seek in a professional athlete."

Past winners include ulius Erving, Joe Dumars, Bob Lanier, Dave Bing, Joe Dumars, Alex English, Steve Smith, Brian Grant, Dikembe Mutombo, and Alonzo Mourning.

© 2003 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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