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April 30, 2012 at 5:15 PM
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Silas out as Bobcats' coach

CHARLOTTE, N.C., April 30 (UPI) -- The Charlotte Bobcats, who finished the season with a 23-game losing streak, said Monday that Paul Silas won't return next season as coach.

Charlotte was 7-59 this past season, setting an NBA record for lowest winning percentage (.106). The team hasn't won since a 107-103 victory over Toronto on March 17 and didn't manage back-to-back wins all season.

"I would like to personally thank Paul for everything he has done for this team under some pretty unique circumstances," said Bobcats President of Basketball Operations Rod Higgins. "His basketball experience as a coach and a player speak for themselves.

"We have been fortunate to have someone of his character associated with this franchise and we hope he will continue to be a valuable resource to us in the future."

Silas coached in Charlotte for about 1 1/2 seasons. He was hired as interim head coach Dec. 22, 2010, replacing Larry Brown. The team was 32-88 under him.

Silas has coached parts of 12 seasons, starting in 1980-81 with the San Diego Clippers. He also coached the Hornets -- both in Charlotte and New Orleans -- and Cleveland Cavaliers. His overall coaching record is 387-488.

A three-time NBA champion and twice an all-star as a player, Silas is up for consideration this year to induction to the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.

Racetrack casino brings more horse deaths

NEW YORK, April 30 (UPI) -- Since a casino opened at a New York racetrack in 2011, twice as many horses have died racing at the track than in the same period a year earlier, records show.

The casino opened at Aqueduct in the borough of Queens in October, markedly increasing prize money in the horse races, and 30 horses have since died racing at the track, compared with 15 during the same period a year before, The New York Times reported.

Many of the horses that died since the casino opened had been repeatedly injected with pain mediation in the weeks before their fatal breakdowns, a Times review of veterinary records found.

The newspaper said the widespread use of the drugs indicates how the infusion of cash from the casino has led to incentives to race sore, tired or otherwise unfit horses in hopes of winning a big prize.

New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has ordered an investigation to "ensure against needless injuries to horses and to riders" and experts will look at drugs along with other issues, including track conditions and pre-race inspections.

The Times said more track owners have taken up the gambling industry's offers to increase racing purses through slot machine revenue.

Some experts say purses should be limited so potential winnings in a race don't rise above the value of the horses running.

Casino money at Aqueduct also has increased horse trading, the Times said. Nearly 500 horses and $10.7 million have changed hands since the casino opened, more than double the previous year, records indicated.

Chambers, Millar eligible for Olympics

LONDON, April 30 (UPI) -- A sports court Monday lifted lifetime bans on British sprinter Dwain Chambers and cyclist David Millar for drug offenses, making them eligible for the Olympics.

The Court of Arbitration in Sport, based in Lausanne, France, ruled the lifetime competition ban given Chambers after he failed a 2003 performance-enhancing drug test given by the British Olympic Association, the national Olympic committee of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, did not comply with the code of the World Anti-Doping Agency and is consequently unenforceable.

As a result, the British association is powerless to prevent Chambers from competing in July's Summer Games in London, if he is selected to represent Great Britain.

Millar, who was banned from eligibility under similar circumstances, can also compete for a position on the British team, The Daily Telegraph reported.

Under the terms of the anti-doping agency's code, which includes the British association as a signatory, doping penalties must be uniformly enforced around the world.

The sports court ruled against the British association on the grounds the lifetime bans handed Chambers and Millar were additional penalties imposed on top of two-year suspensions they were given earlier.

Millar was excluded from cycling in 2004 after he admitted using the outlawed drug EPO following a French police investigation.

Maryland point guard Howard arrested

COLLEGE PARK, Md., April 30 (UPI) -- Maryland Terrapins point guard Pe'Shon Howard was charged with disorderly conduct after police said he "taunted" someone outside a cafe near the university.

Capt. Marc Limansky, University or Maryland Police spokesman, said Howard was issued a citation about 2:25 a.m. Saturday outside the Shanghai Cafe in College Park, the university newspaper the Diamondback reported.

Police had responded to patrons who reported a fight outside the cafe but Limansky said he didn't know whether Howard was involved in the fight.

"We had the aggressor [in the fight] sit down outside to calm down, and at that point Mr. Howard began taunting the individual, trying to get him riled up again," Limansky said. "Officers told [Howard] to stop what he was doing, but he continued to do it, at which point we placed him into custody."

If convicted, Howard faces a maximum penalty of two months in jail and a $500 fine.

Howard said in a phone interview Sunday he did not provoke anyone or try to start a fight.

"They thought that I was instigating," said Howard, a Los Angeles native. "But people around me said I wasn't. I was speaking to the cops, and that was it."

Howard, a sophomore, averaged 6.5 points and 3.7 assists in 14 games this season.

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