Other Sports

Sports briefs: Feb. 28


Jordan reaches agreement to take over as Bobcats' owner

NBA commissioner David Stern said Saturday he expects Michael Jordan to be approved as majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats by the end of next month. Minutes before his exclusive negotiating window expired late Friday night, Jordan struck a deal with owner Bob Johnson to take over the money-losing team in his home state. It puts the biggest basketball star of his generation in charge of a 6-year-old team that's never made the playoffs, has struggled to win over fans and has more than $150 million in debt.

Can Jordan's streak of business success continue?

"If he's going to be an absentee owner, just like Bob was, it's not going to work," said Felix Sabates, a NASCAR team owner who also holds a minority stake in the Bobcats. "I think if Michael makes a commitment and shows dedication, he can be very successful. He's a big icon in this part of the country."

An icon that has been rarely seen. He's been a part-owner of the Bobcats with the final say on all basketball decisions since 2006. But Jordan has kept a low profile, rarely attending practices or games, taking no role in marketing and leaving the day-to-day operations to a team of assistants.

Jordan wasn't available for comment on Saturday.

Nets surprise Celtics for sixth win

The Celtics haven't found a way to fix their defensive woes.

Center Brook Lopez scored 25 points and guards Devin Harris and Courtney Lee added 23 and 21 points and the New Jersey Nets topped host Boston 104-96 Saturday.

The Nets, who entered the game 5-52 and 2-27 on the road, took a 29-27 lead on Keyon Dooling's jumper at the end of the first quarter and never trailed again.

"Any win for us is big. There's no question," Nets Coach Kiki Vandeweghe said. "But to get a win on the road, and this is one of the toughest places to play in the NBA just shows that — it should demonstrate to our guys that if they play with effort, they can compete against anybody."

Kevin Garnett had 26 points and Marquis Daniels had 16 for the Celtics, playing their third straight game without Paul Pierce.

Garnett said he was "disgusted" at the loss and said it came down to defense. "In this league you have to get stops, it's that simple. A team gets into a rhythm, and it's hard to turn it off."

■ The Milwaukee Bucks gave the Miami Heat another thumping Saturday, this time with Dwyane Wade watching from the bench. John Salmons scored 18 points and the visiting Bucks took advantage of the injured Wade's absence to win their sixth game in a row, 94-71. Milwaukee improved to 3-0 this season against Miami.

Danny Granger had 30 points and eight rebounds to help the Indiana Pacers beat the visiting Chicago Bulls 100-90. The Pacers snapped a three-game losing streak and won for just the second time in nine games to improve to 20-39.

UK Sports

Softball team splits doubleheader

Kentucky's softball team defeated Chattanooga 3-1 and lost to Lipscomb 3-0 in the Frost Classic at Chattanooga on Saturday.

Senior Molly Johnson hit a pair of home runs in the victory against the Lady Mocs to provide all of the scoring for the Wildcats (11-3). Chanda Bell earned her sixth win of the season, going the distance with seven strikeouts.

■ The 12th-ranked Kentucky gymnastics team lost to No. 2 Alabama 197.225-195.650 on Friday night at Memorial Coliseum.


NFL considers change to OT in playoffs

An NFL spokesman said Saturday the league could change its overtime format for playoff games at a meeting next month.

Under the new format, both teams would get the ball at least once unless the first team to get the ball scores a touchdown, Greg Aiello said. If the first team to get the ball makes a field goal and the other team ties the game, action would continue until a team scores again.

Under the current rules, the first team to score wins.

"There have been various concepts that have been discussed in recent years, but this one has never been proposed," Aiello said.

The competition committee will discuss the new concept with teams and players at league meetings March 21-24 in Orlando, Fla., when it could come to a vote. At least two thirds of the teams would need to agree to the changes for new rules to be adopted.

Bills decline to offer T.O. a contract

Terrell Owens is on the market after the Buffalo Bills announced Saturday they do not plan to offer him a contract. Owens, who will turn 37 in December, caught 55 passes for 829 yards and five touchdowns in his only season in Buffalo. He also ran for a touchdown.


Djokovic ahead at finals in Dubai

Defending champion Novak Djokovic led Mikhail Youzhny 7-5, 2-0 Saturday before the Dubai Championship finals was postponed because of rain. The second-seeded Serb was serving at 30-15 in the third game of the second set when the second rain shower forced the finals to Sunday.

The last word

On the official fan-to-fan resale site run by the Vancouver Olympic Games Organizing Committee, seats to Sunday's gold medal men's hockey game between Canada and the United States were being offered for several thousand dollars apiece.

On Craigslist, many of the tickets on sale were going for more than $4,000, and one seller was offering two "awesome seats" for $14,999 — cash only.

Said Mark Adams, a spokesman for the International Olympic Committee:

"No one is being forced to buy tickets they don't want."