Bobby Jackson wins Sixth Man Award
NEW YORK, April 30 (UPI) -- Sacramento Kings guard Bobby Jackson, the best player on the deepest bench in the NBA, was named the winner of the Sixth Man Award on Tuesday.
Providing a spark on both offense and defense, Jackson became just the second point guard to win the award, joining Orlando's Darrell Armstrong, who was honored in 1999. He is the first member of the Kings to win the award.
Jackson began the season as a starter, was sidelined by an injury and returned to the rotation as a reserve. In 59 games, he averaged a career-high 15.1 points.
The 6-1 Jackson began the season in place of injured starter Mike Bibby and averaged 20.2 points in 26 games. He assumed his usual reserve role upon Bibby's return and suffered an injury himself, breaking his hand and missing 23 games in the middle of the season.
Upon his return, Jackson backed up Bibby, leading a bench that includes Jimmy Jackson, Keon Clark, Scot Pollard, Hedo Turkoglu. He helped the Kings win 59 games and their second straight Pacific Division title.
Rangers place Chan Ho Park on 15-day DL
TORONTO, April 30 (UPI) -- Texas Rangers righthander Chan Ho Park was placed on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday with a strained lower back.
Parks is just 1-3 with a 7.16 ERA in six startes this season.
It was one of a number of moves made by the Rangers, who purchased the contract of infielder Donnie Sadler from Class AAA Oklahoma of the Pacific Coast League and recalled infielder Mike Lamb from Oklahoma.
The Rangers also announced that catcher Chad Kreuter cleared waivers and has been offered an assignment at Oklahoma. Kreuter has 72 hours to accept or decline the Rangers' offer.
Park made his last start on Sunday, allowing five runs, four hits and five walks in just four innings without getting a decision against the New York Yankees. Park remained in Texas to undergo treatment and will be further evaluated in the coming days.
A major disappointment since signing a five-year, $60 million with Texas in December 2001, Park was 9-8 with a 5.75 ERA in 25 starts last season.
Kreuter made the Rangers as a non-roster invitee in spring training, but was just 2-for-18 in seven games, six starts.
Sadler, 27, batted .303 with a homer and six RBI in 19 games at Oklahoma. He was acquired from the Kansas City Royals midway through last season and batted just .100 in 38 contests for the Rangers. Sadler has a career average of .206 in 322 games with Boston, Cincinnati, Kansas City and the Rangers.
Lamb, also 27, hit .326 with a homer and six RBI in 12 games at Oklahoma. He started the season with the Rangers, going 1-for-7 in five games before being optioned to Oklahoma on April 12.
Lamb has spent his entire major league with the Rangers, batting .286 with 19 homers and 116 RBI in 334 games. Last season, he hit .283 with nine homers and 33 RBI in 115 contests.
Bears release safety Damon Moore
LAKE FOREST, Ill., April 30 (UPI) -- The Chicago Bears on Tuesday waived safety Damon Moore, who played six games last season after recovering from a torn left ACL.
Moore started every game for the Philadelphia Eagles in 2000 and 2001, but tore his ACL in the NFC championship game loss to St. Louis and was waived by the team.
While rehabbing the knee, Moore signed with the Bears last April, but started the season on the physically-unable-to-perform list. He returned to practice on Oct. 23 and was placed on the active roster on Nov. 1.
Moore started just once in six games for the Bears.
A fourth-round pick of Philadelphia in 1999, Moore led the Eagles in takeaways in 2001 with four fumble recoveries and two interceptions and had a career-high 105 tackles.
Rick Fox done for season
MINNEAPOLIS, April 30 (UPI) -- Veteran Los Angeles Lakers forward Rick Fox will miss the rest of the postseason after suffering a torn tendon in his left foot.
The injury occurred in Sunday's 102-97 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Fox will require surgery to repair the injury, which occurred early in the first quarter while he was chasing Minnesota forward Wally Szczerbiak.
An MRI revealed the extent of the injury.
"We won't know what that does to us," Jackson said of the absence. "That's an effect that we still have yet to understand."
Fox is sixth on the team in playoff scoring at 6.0 points per game on 44 percent shooting. He started every playoff game in the past two championship runs, was a key reserve when the Lakers won the title in 2000, and has been the most reliable member of the Lakers' supporting cast.
Coupled with, among other things, the sore shoulder of Kobe Bryant, puts heavy pressure on the Lakers to win their fourth straight NBA title.
"That's kind of the story of this year," said guard Brian Shaw, whose minutes likely will increase dramatically. "This has been a real struggle. I think that when it's all said and done, if we get to where we're trying to go, that will make it all more worth the while, having gone through what we've had to go through."
Fox averaged 8.0 points in the first three games of the best-of-seven series, which is tied at two wins apiece heading into Tuesday's game at the Target Center in Minneapolis.
Iverson officially named to Team USA
USA Basketball Tuesday announced that NBA All-Stars Iverson, Bryant, and O'Neal have been added to the United States Olympic team.
Jermaine, who plays for the Indiana Pacers, and is called the "other" O'Neal in a league with Shaquille (of the Los Angeles Lakers), was a member of the U.S. team that sullied the country's reputation with a sixth-place finish in the World Basketball Championships at Puerto Rico last summer.
"They have paid their dues in our league, and have made unbelievable contributions to their teams," said Philadelphia Coach Larry Brown, who was named on Nov. 26 as the USA's head mentor. "It is a great honor for them, and I am happy for all three of them. "From a personal standpoint, I am thrilled to death (about Iverson's selection). It just shows the respect that everyone in the league has for Allen and what he has done. He has made unbelievable contributions to our game. This is the culmination of a career that has gotten better every year, and he continues to learn the game and get better."
Brown also was happy for both Bryant and O'Neal.
"Kobe has had a remarkable career," said Brown. "He has won three championships so quickly. He is as good of an all around player that we have in our league. I hope this is one of many opportunities he gets to represent his county in this way because he is what our Olympic team is all about. Jermaine has gotten better every year. He is one of the main reasons Indiana has been an improving team. He is one of the best young players in our league."
Duncan, McGrady, Jason Kidd, Ray Allen, Karl Malone, and Mike Bibby already had been chosen for the team, which must qualify for the 2004 Olympics by finishing among the top three in the Tournament of the Americas in August in Puerto Rico.
NBA again disciplines Rasheed Wallace
PORTLAND, Ore., April 30 (UPI) -- Forward Rasheed Wallace of the Portland Trail Blazers has been fined $30,000 by the NBA for violating the NBA's media interview access policies.
The fines come from two separate incidents.
Wallace was docked $10,000 for "failing to cooperate" during the media interview session following Sunday's 98-79 win over the Dallas Mavericks in Game Four of their Western Conference first-round series.
He was fined an additional $20,000 for not participating in Monday's interview period following the Blazers' practice.
The 10,000 fine came after Wallace mocked reporters after Sunday's victory at the Rose Garden by giving the same answer, "Both teams played hard," to the five questions he was asked.
"I feel sorry for the people asking the questions, and I feel sorry for him," Portland Coach Maurice Cheeks told the Portland Oregonian after Monday's practice. "Maybe we just don't put him in that position again. He doesn't really want to talk to the press, for whatever reason. I don't condone his actions, and I'm not saying it's right or wrong, but if you've got questions to ask, just ask me, and I'll try to relay his message as best as I can."
The team also was fined $50,000, $25,000 for each incident, for failing to ensure that its players complied with NBA media interview rules.
Paper calls for ouster of Eustachy
DES MOINES, Iowa, April 30 (UPI) -- The Des Moines Register Tuesday called for the ouster of Iowa State men's basketball coach Larry Eustachy, whose escapades have been made public.
In an editorial Tuesday, the paper said Eustachy was "the coach who let ISU down," and added "only one outcome is possible. Eustachy let the university down and undermined the basketball program. The question is whether it is possible to repair the damage. Can parents and student athletes still trust him to be a leader? Not likely. He has to go."
Eustachy spent all day Monday trying to deflect his behavior earlier this year at a student party.
The "after-hours" party took place at an apartment near the University of Missouri campus.
The Des Moines Register reported Monday that Eustachy went to the party with Josh Kroenke, a member of the Missouri squad, shortly after the Cyclones' 64-59 loss to the Tigers on Jan. 23. The paper said that at his news conference after the game, Eustachy had described himself as "as disappointed as I've been in a long time," and criticized his players, saying: "This is the real world. Our guys have to get tougher."
The paper Monday printed 12 photographs showing Eustachy during the early hours of Jan. 23, with beer, and in several photos embracing and kissing women on the cheek or being kissed on the cheek.
The paper said Eustachy issued a statement to the Register Thursday in which he confirmed meeting with President Gregory Geoffroy and Iowa State Athletics Director Bruce Van De Velde about the incident, which the Register said was not the first.
"In the past, I have made some poor decisions that I regret," Eustachy, who is married and has two children, said in his statement. "I talked with President Geoffroy and Bruce Van De Velde last week about a variety of issues. I love Iowa State University and all the people who support our team. It's important to represent ISU in a manner that sheds a positive light on the university and the Cyclone men's basketball team."
The paper also reported that in January 2002, the coach was at an early-morning fraternity party in Manhattan, Kan., hours after his team lost a game to Kansas State. On that occasion, a fraternity member said he wound up in an argument with Eustachy because he found the coach's arm around his 19-year-old sister.
The woman told the Register that Eustachy walked into the house and complimented her on her appearance, saying that she should be attending the University of Kansas, where the girls are "much hotter."
There was no word from Van De Velde or Geoffroy on whether Eustachy would be disciplined or otherwise.
"I wouldn't discuss that at this point," Van De Velde told the paper. "No comment. Larry understands that he has made a poor decision and not used good judgment. He understands, and we have made it clear to him, the importance of his public image and the obligations he has for the institution, and he has expressed remorse to our university administration and to me. Coach Eustachy has been forthcoming since and has expressed remorse. He has told us he has used bad judgment and that he made bad decisions. He has admitted that."
Eustachy is the highest-paid state employee in Iowa, making upwards of $1 million annually.
He has been the head coach at Iowa State the past five years, won back-to-back Big 12 Conference championships in 2000 and 2001, and advanced to the NCAA Tournament's Elite Eight in 2000, when Eustachy was named national coach of the year.
Empire Maker has bruised foot
LOUISVILLE, Ky., April 30 (UPI) -- Empire Maker, the favorite for Saturday's 129th Kentucky Derby, reportedly has a bruised foot that needed attention Tuesday morning.
The horse got that attention from a veterinarian and farrier at Churchill Downs.
According to the Daily Racing Form, Empire Maker jogged Tuesday, but trainer Bobby Frankel later had veterinarian Dr. Ken Reed examine the right front foot. Steve Norman, a local blacksmith, also worked on it.
Despite the injury, Frankel did not seem to think the star colt would miss the first leg of the Triple Crown.
"Don't worry, he's going to be fine," Frankel told the Daily Racing Form. "Put it this way -- if he's not right, he's not going to run."
Frankel told the Daily Racing Form that Empire Maker's shoe was filed and trimmed to relieve pressure on the bruise. He said the colt would have the foot soaked in hot water and Epsom salts Tuesday before galloping Wednesday.
Norman has had success with such situations.
He constructed the egg bar shoes that allowed Unbridled's Song to run in the 1996 Derby.
The Daily Racing Form also reported Tuesday that Kafwain, the third-place finisher in the Santa Anita Derby, was pulled out of the race with an apparent injury to the right foreleg.
Changes made at Wimbledon
LONDON, April 30 (UPI) -- Participants in this year's singles tournament at Wimbledon will receive a 9.5 percent pay increase.
Also, the players won't have to bow or curtsy to the Royal Box on their way to collecting it.
Prize money increases for the singles event only, and the abolition of the time-honored tradition were revealed Tuesday by the All-England Club.
This year's men's champion will walk away with more than $910,000, an increase of nearly $80,000. The women's winner will collect over $850,000, up more than $77,000 from last season.
Doubles prize money was frozen at last year's level, with women again being declined equal pay. All-England Chairman Tim Phillips defended both moves.
"We try to follow the market," he said. "If you look at the prize money split at ATP Tour events, it is 17 percent doubles and 83 percent singles. We will be paying 23 percent doubles and 77 percent singles. We feel that doubles has perhaps been overrewarded in relation to singles."
On the subject of equal pay, Phillips added, "We like to think our prize money is driven by market data and fairness."
He pointed out that last year's women's champion, Serena Williams, actually left Wimbledon with more money than men's winner Lleyton Hewitt because she also played doubles.
"The situation is that the women play much shorter matches while the men feel they cannot succeed in both singles and doubles," Phillips said. "Serena Williams earned 11 percent more than Lleyton Hewitt last year. She played 27 sets and Lleyton played 23 sets. She made more appearances, which lasted less time, and collected more money. The top-10 women earn three percent more than the top-10 men. The men made 609 pounds (approximately $969) per game, and the women 815 pounds ($1,300). We feel we are not far away in terms of fairness with what we do."
The male players also have stated their case for an increase, but Phillips pointed out "the more money that goes into prize money, the less goes back into the development of the game. You could say, 'Let's take a whole great wallop and put it into these people's pockets,' but if you suddenly do that, then obviously you lessen the capability to make the contribution for the benefit of the grass roots."
Last year, Wimbledon's contribution to the Lawn Tennis Association, which largely funds the development of the game in Britain, fell.
"We do the best we can," Phillips said. "The sports' rights market took a dip in recent years, and nobody knows what it will do over the next three or four years."
The All-England Club has agreed to a new four-year deal with NBC Sports, which will network the championships in the USA for the 35th consecutive year, and also has signed a four-year agreement with ESPN.
Grant named at Southern University
BATON ROUGE, La., April 30 (UPI) -- Southern University has named Michael Grant the school's new men's basketball coach.
He replaces Ben Jobe, who retired in March after the Jaguars went just 9-20 overall this past season.
Grant comes to the Southwestern Athletic Conference school after a seven-year stint at Central (Ohio) State, where he went 126-94 after serving as an assistant at Cleveland State, Kentucky State, Allegheny College, Michigan, and Malone College, where he started in 1983-84.
"I'm just thankful (Chancellor) Dr. (Edward) Jackson, President (Leon) Tarver, and (Athletic Director) Floyd Kerr had the confidence in me," said Grant, who has to be approved by the school's Board of Supervisors on May 16. "Southern is one of the elite black-college athletic programs in the country, and I think it's an honor and a privilege for me to even be considered."
According to the Baton Rouge (La.) Advocate, Grant has yet to discuss contract details with the school.
Southern's basketball program last went to the NCAA Tournament in 1993. The Jaguars have suffered through three losing seasons, including two 20-loss seasons under Jobe.
Mercury trade for Brown, Williams
PHOENIX, April 30 (UPI) -- The Phoenix Mercury have acquired veteran guard Edwina Brown and second-year forward Lenae Williams from the Detroit Shock.
They sent Detroit two players taken in last week's WNBA draft, center Petra Ujhelyi, their second-round choice, and guard Telisha Quarles, a third-round pick.
"I'm thrilled to add Edwina Brown and Lenae Williams to this Mercury team," said first-year Phoenix Coach John Shumate. "Edwina brings three years of experience and athleticism to this team while Lenae will add another scoring weapon to the mix."
In another deal, the Shock acquired the draft rights to guard Allison Curtin from the Houston Comets for guard Dominique Canty.
Brown was the third overall pick in the 2000 WNBA Draft after a stellar college career at Texas. In 92 games with Detroit, the 5-9 guard averaged 5.9 points and 2.4 assists per game.
At Texas, Brown, 24, averaged 21.2 points, 8.2 rebounds, 6.0 assists, and 2.9 steals per contest, and won the 2000 Wade Trophy, given to the best women's player in the nation.
Williams averaged 2.7 points in 27 games in her rookie season with the Shock, who selected Williams in the second round of last year's draft.
The 6-4 Ujhelyi was the 16th overall pick in last Friday's draft. She averaged 8.2 points, 9.3 rebounds, and 3.3 assists last season at South Carolina.
Quarles, selected 31st overall, averaged 15.7 points last year at Virginia. The 5-8 guard led the Cavaliers in scoring, and recorded double-digit scoring efforts 27 out of 30 games.
Canty averages 7.6 points and 2.7 rebounds in 114 games for the Shock.
Twins place IF Hocking on 15-day DL
MINNEAPOLIS, April 30 (UPI) -- The Minnesota Twins placed infielder Denny Hocking on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday, retroactive to April 22, with a bone spur in his right elbow.
Hocking is batting just .133 this season with only two hits in 15 at-bats. He has not appeared in a game since April 21, when he was used as a pinch hitter in a 15-1 loss to the New York Yankees.
It is Hocking's fourth career appearance on the DL but his first trip since 1996, when he was disabled three times.
To take his roster spot, the Twins recalled first baseman Todd Sears from Class AAA Rochester of the International League. Sears, 27, was batting .317 with two home runs and 19 RBI in 22 games for the Red Wings.