James Sent Home from Shootaround, Wade Out Again
Written by Tim Reynolds, AP Sports Writer Thursday, 19 January 2012 13:46
LeBron James was sent home from Miami's game-day shootaround practice to rest Thursday morning, and the Heat say he will be a game-time decision for that night's matchup with the Los Angeles Lakers.
Meanwhile, the Lakers — and James' former coach — fully expect him to play.
"When you talk about great players like him, those guys even though they're sick or a little injured or whatever, they find a way to perform at a high level," Lakers coach Mike Brown, one of James' former coaches with the Cleveland Cavaliers, said Thursday afternoon. "I don't think it's any different for LeBron."
James has been battling flu-like symptoms for much of this week. He said it affected him in the early minutes of Miami's game against San Antonio on Tuesday, a contest where he started slowly and still finished with 33 points, 17 of those in a huge third-quarter run as the Heat turned a 14-point halftime deficit into a 22-point win.
James said he was feeling better Wednesday, though some symptoms apparently reappeared Wednesday night and into Thursday morning. Heat coach Erik Spoelstra indicated James was sent home only as a precaution.
"He's feeling under the weather still," Spoelstra said.
Miami will be without guard Dwyane Wade, whose sprained right ankle will keep him sidelined for the second straight game. It's the fifth game Wade will miss in Miami's first 14 this season because of injury, the first three of those caused by a sore left foot.
"The show still goes on," Heat forward Chris Bosh said. "We're still going to expect to win."
Whether James plays or not, the Heat plan to use Shane Battier and James Jones defensively on Lakers star Kobe Bryant, at least some of the time.
"It's always a luxury having such great players on your team," Bosh said. "But sometimes they're out. This is why we made moves this season, was to be a deeper team."
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Abdul-Jabbar Thrilled with Ambassador Appointment
Written by John Carucci, Associated Press Wednesday, 18 January 2012 14:28
In a move to engage young people worldwide, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has named Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as a global cultural ambassador.
The NBA Hall of Famer and all-time scoring leader will promote the importance of education, social and racial tolerance, cultural understanding and using sports as a means of empowerment.
His appointment was announced Wednesday by the State Department.
"It's a great honor and I'm thrilled that they see me as the person that could get this done," he said in a phone interview.
The 64-year-old said he remembers a similar program under President John F. Kennedy where speakers came to his school in Harlem.
"So now I get to follow in the footsteps of one my heroes," he said.
Ann Stock, assistant secretary of state for education and cultural affairs, said Abdul-Jabbar will travel the world to engage a generation of young people to help promote diplomacy.
Stock said Tuesday the appointment is part of Clinton's vision of "Smart Power" that combines diplomacy, defense and development to "bridge the gap in a tense world through young people."
Abdul-Jabbar said he will share his take on life in America, adding: "I'll be doing a few basketball clinics, too."
He will make his first official trip Sunday when he travels to Brazil for a number of events centering on education.
"I look forward to meeting with young people all over the world and discussing ways in which we can strengthen our understanding of one another through education, through sports and through greater cultural tolerance," he said.
Since his retirement in 1989, Abdul-Jabbar has been involved in projects focused on African-American history and socio-economic justice. His 2011 documentary, "On the Shoulders of Giants," sought to highlight these issues. He has also launched the Skyhook Foundation, which works to improve children's lives through education and sports.
Last year, he received the Lincoln Medal for his commitment to education, understanding and equality and his contributions that exemplify President Abraham Lincoln's legacy.
His latest book, "What Color Is My World?: The Lost History of African-American Inventors," was released earlier this month.
He says Clinton told him: "In Brazil, they would be shocked to find out black Americans were so much involved inventing so many useful items that we use today."
Abdul-Jabbar scored 38,387 points during his 20-year NBA career with the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers.Add a comment
NBA's Return Draws Big TV Ratings on Christmas
Written by Associated Press Tuesday, 27 December 2011 04:01
NEW YORK (AP) — NBA fans seem more excited about basketball's return than bitter about the lockout based on television ratings for the league's delayed openers.
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Clippers Open Preseason with Win Over Lakers
Written by Associated Press Tuesday, 20 December 2011 04:08
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Chris Paul had 17 points, nine assists and seven rebounds in his Los Angeles Clippers debut and Chauncey Billups made an equally impressive first impression with his new club, scoring 23 points in a 114-95 victory over the Lakers on Monday night.
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Jazz Center Jefferson's Girlfriend Arrested
Written by Paul Foy, Associated Press Friday, 09 December 2011 14:18
The live-in girlfriend of Utah Jazz center Al Jefferson was arrested in a domestic dispute after authorities say she bit the 6-foot-10, 265-pound player.
Shirley Lewis was booked into Salt Lake County jail late Thursday, records show. She was later released.
Prosecutors were reviewing possible separate charges against Jefferson, Cottonwood Heights police Sgt. Dan Bartlett said Friday.
Jefferson, 26, and Lewis, 38, were having an argument at about 8:45 p.m. Thursday "when she hit him and bit him on the back" in front of her two children, according to a police report. It offered no other details.
Lewis, who was described in jail records as 5-foot-7 and 170 pounds, was booked on one charge of domestic assault and a second charge of domestic violence in the presence of a child, both misdemeanors.
It wasn't clear if Lewis had an attorney, and she has no listed phone number.
Jefferson's agent didn't return a message Friday, and Jazz spokeswoman Linda Luchetti said the team had no information.
"It's a personal issue regarding a player, and our focus is on basketball. We don't comment on players' personal lives," she said.
Jefferson started all 82 games last season and led the team in scoring with 18.6 points a game. He was due to show up for the opening of Jazz training camp Friday afternoon.
Police said they responded to a call from Jefferson's mansion in the Salt Lake suburb of Cottonwood Heights. Bartlett wouldn't reveal who made the call but said police officers are obligated under Utah law to make at least one arrest in a domestic dispute that turns physical.
Cottonwood Heights prosecutor Mark Eddy didn't return a message Friday.
AP Sports Writer Lynn DeBruin contributed to this report.Add a comment
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