Jun 30, 2004 11:06 PM EDT
The $401 million sale of the Phoenix Suns to San Diego banking executive Robert Sarver was completed Wednesday.
NBA owners unanimously approved the transaction.
Sarver owns about one-third of the franchise, with the remainder split among a group of investors including former NBA player Steve Kerr and Suns' president Bryan Colangelo.
In 1987, Jerry Colangelo put together an investment group that bought the franchise for $44.5 million. He will remain as Suns' chairman and chief executive.
Jun 30, 2004 11:03 PM EDT
The lead prosecutor in the sexual assault case against Kobe Bryant said he will not take a prominent role in the NBA star's trial.
District Attorney Mark Hurlbert said he would provide general oversight while Gregg Crittenden, and prosecutors Dana Easter and Ingrid Bakke will handle most of the trial duties.
Hurlbert said in a statement that he would be neglecting other duties to take a major role in the Bryant trial.
"I have a duty to every citizen in the 5th Judicial District -- Clear Creek, Eagle, Lake and Summit counties," Hurlbert said.
Jun 30, 2004 10:58 PM EDT
Shaquille O'Neal's wife, Shaunie, has told the entertainment magazine show "Extra" that a trade to Dallas Mavericks is fine by her.
"Right now, I'd love to go to Dallas," she said during an interview that will air Thursday night. "Love to go! ... Hint, hint, so [Mavericks owner] Mark [Cuban], if you're listening ...."
Shaunie O'Neal was giving a TV tour of the family's 18-bedroom Los Angeles mansion, which is now on the market for $7.5 million.
Selling the mansion was planned whether Shaq remained with the Lakers or not.
"Now it just seems more dramatic than it is, but whatever works. ... If this means business, then hey, we mean business!" Shaunie O'Neal said.
"We'll have to take a look at [a trade for Shaq]," Cuban told the Star-Telegram. "But it just depends on which players [are involved]. Anything is possible, but we really like the group of guys that we have now. We've got a young nucleus and an experienced nucleus, and that's a great combination."
"It's a different world financially right now, but there's only one Shaq, and there's only one Tracy McGrady, and there's only one Dirk," Cuban said. "Those are very, very special top-five, top-tier players."
On paying O'Neal's bulky remaining contract dollar amount: "I'm willing to accept the salary. It's not going to be cheap in either case, but those are the type of players that I said that I'm willing to pay for."
Jun 30, 2004 10:50 PM EDT
Orlando Magic GM John Weisbrod believes the Magic will be better off without Tracy McGrady because the superstar talent and NBA leading scorer did not rise to the occasion of leading his team to victories.
Meanwhile, Steve Francis said Orlando's acquisition of him, Cuttino Mobley and Kelvin Kato will turn the tide on the Magic's abysmal record this past season.
Weisbrod implied that McGrady does not have the leadership qualities to take a team to the top.
"It starts with how you define a superstar," Weisbrod said. "I think a superstar is defined by wins, by making the players around him better and by making the team better. On that part, my perception is a little different than most."
While an All-Star in each of his four years in Orlando and the Magic's most popular player, the behavior of McGrady during last season's 61-loss season convinced Weisbrod that McGrady was part of the problem.
Francis, for one, believes he and his fellow former Rockets will change the Magic into a team on the upswing starting next season.
"We're here to fill voids the Magic know they have lacked in the last couple of seasons," said Francis. "You're going to get a gutsy effort every single night from all three of us. There's no trying to be too cute or trying to be too cool basketball from us."
Weisbrod told the media that by the All-Star break, it was clear McGrady wanted out. Then McGrady told team owner Rich DeVos two weeks ago that he wanted to be traded to a contender.
"We just came to the conclusion that if he wanted to leave, we thought that could very well be best for our basketball team," Weisbrod said.
Jun 30, 2004 4:09 PM EDT
Jason Kidd played many of his high school basketball games at the Oakland Coliseum and with the Nets looking to move the point guard, the Golden State Warriors are one franchise, which may be willing to take on his gigantic contract. He would make the Warriors good youthful nucleus that much better and could possibly end their decade long playoff drought.
Jun 30, 2004 2:23 PM EDT
Denver Nuggets forward Carmelo Anthony asked actress Gabrielle Union if she would give him a kiss if he made a jumper Tuesday at the BET Awards in Los Angelas. After Union agreed, 'Melo missed the shot at a makeshift basket put on the awards stage.
After Anthony missed, Union responded by saying: "He's a rookie. What are you going to say?"
Anthony and Union presented the award for best actor to Denzel Washington.
Jun 30, 2004 2:14 PM EDT
The Miami Heat have decided to preclude the free agency fest that begins tomorrow by extending their head coach Stan Van Gundy.
Terms weren't disclosed but Heat President Pat Riley said he is waiting for approval from Van Gundy's attorney.
"As far as I'm concerned, it's done," Riley said.
Van Gundy, the longtime Heat assistant coach who took over four days before the start of the season after Riley resigned, was one of the best coaching success stories of last season. He took a team that was 25-57 in 2002-03 and led it to a 42-40 regular-season record and the second round of the playoffs.
Jun 30, 2004 2:11 PM EDT
Looks like other teams have to try harder if they want to pry away Eddy Curry, Tyson Chandler, or Jamal Crawford from the Chicago Bulls as GM Paxson shoots down rumors right and left.
''There is no truth to those rumors whatsoever,'' Paxson said Tuesday of talk that Curry was on the trading block. ''That's a bunch of nonsense. I've always said that we want to improve our team and we're doing that, and we always listen when people have something to say. We have received offers for Curry, [Tyson] Chandler and Jamal [Crawford]. But we have received nothing worth paying much attention to. We have no intention of trading them and we are not shopping them.
''In fact, since the draft I have not received one phone call from any general managers about any of our players. If somebody wanted to acquire Curry, they would have to make an offer that makes total sense because there aren't that many guys coming along with his size and his skill level. If we got to the point where we felt he couldn't become the kind of center we feel he can become, we would be interested in trading him. But we haven't gotten anywhere even close to that.''
Paxson made it clear that he will not let rampant speculation force his hand in trades.
''The easiest thing to do is get players' names and salaries and sit down and say the Bulls should get this guy or the guys should get that guy,'' Paxson said. ''There is more to doing a deal than that. It's not that easy at all. I got blasted by a lot of people and e-mails on draft day because I did not do the deal for [Indiana Pacers forward] Al Harrington. Well, the truth of the matter is that we tried. But they wouldn't do the deal. And we certainly are not going to give away players or do deals that help other teams but hurt us.''
Paxson said the drafting of guards Gordon and Duhon doesn't mean Crawford is history.
''That is a great misconception that I tried my best to put to rest on the night of the draft,'' Paxson said. ''Obviously, there are only two guards out on the floor at any given time. But you have to have a guard rotation and that's one of the things I thought we are able to build up in the draft. There is the belief that we will not match Jamal's contract offer.
''Well, we are going to talk with Jamal and his agent, Aaron Goodwin, on Thursday and see where they are coming from, and we will start that conversation. We have every intention of bringing him back. He's in our long-range budget proposals. We are going to see where the market is with Jamal and we will act on that. As long as I feel a player is signed to a tradeable contract, we will do everything we can to sign that player.''
Jun 30, 2004 2:06 PM EDT
New Jersey Nets Owner Bruce Ratner's penny-pinching wishes may cost the Nets one of their two stars in Kenyon Martin or Jason Kidd this summer.
Thorn, the man perhaps most responsible for turning around a woeful Nets franchise, has one season left (2004-2005) on his contract, and some players have expressed concern about whether the extremely popular CEO will want to return if in fact new ownership is not committed to winning like the previous regime was.
Thorn politely declined to discuss his future.
"I'm under contract and I expect to honor my contract," Thorn said.
Jun 30, 2004 | NY Daily News
Jun 30, 2004 | FoxSports.com
Jun 30, 2004 | Chicago Tribune
Jun 30, 2004 | New York Times
Jun 29, 2004 | NY Daily News
Jun 29, 2004 | Star Telegram
Jun 29, 2004 | Denver Post
Jun 29, 2004 | PittsburghLive
Jun 29, 2004 | SportsLine.com
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