Manager: Without NBA offers, Iverson may play in China
Unwanted by the NBA, Allen Iverson is considering playing in China. Gary Moore, Iverson's personal manager, said Iverson has not been contacted by any NBA team with training camps set to open in less than two weeks. Moore said there is "legitimate interest" between Iverson and a team in China to work out a deal. Moore did not know the team's name and was vague on details. "We're very astonished, to say the least, that not one team has contacted us with any interest," Moore said. "I just don't understand it."
Iverson played three games for Memphis last season before he returned for a second stint with the Philadelphia 76ers. He averaged 13.9 points for the Sixers before he took a leave of absence in March because of family issues.
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In his prime, Iverson boasted top-selling jerseys and sneakers and was a global superstar. His popularity never waned even as his production dipped — Iverson was voted an Eastern Conference All-Star starter last season. Iverson would be a drawing card overseas, and might see a familiar face in former NBA All-Star Stephon Marbury. Also discarded by the NBA, Marbury played last season for Shanxi Zhongyu in the Chinese Basketball Association.
Iverson is 17th on the NBA's career scoring list with 24,368 points over a 14-year career with Philadelphia, Denver, Detroit and Memphis. He won the MVP in 2001 when he led the Sixers to the finals.
Moore said Iverson is healthy and works out in Atlanta prepping for a comeback. "I don't think he's done," Moore said.
■ Dismissed UCLA player J'mison Morgan has been granted an NCAA waiver that will allow him to play at Baylor without sitting out a season. Baylor Coach Scott Drew said the 6-foot-10 junior center from Dallas will be eligible to play once he completes the necessary NCAA compliance paperwork. Morgan is already enrolled in classes at Baylor and will have two seasons of eligibility remaining.
Morgan was dismissed from UCLA's team in March after being suspended a game for missing a team meeting and was held out of the Bruins' two Pac-10 Tournament games. Morgan transferred to Baylor to be closer to his ill grandmother, who's his legal guardian.
U.S. fires its track and field CEO
Doug Logan spent two years telling other leaders on the United States track scene things they didn't want to hear. On Monday, they drowned him out, firing him as CEO and going in another direction with less than two years remaining before the London Olympics.
Unswayed last weekend by Logan's 45-minute defense of his performance, the USA Track and Field board of directors voted to oust the outspoken, unconventional leader who proposed many uncomfortable changes after America's disappointing performance at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Logan's contract called for a payment of nearly $1.8 million if he was terminated without cause, though he is negotiating terms of his departure and may not end up receiving the full amount.
"I was given the opportunity to be the custodian of a wonderful sport for two years," Logan said. "I knew my agenda was going to make some uncomfortable and that it was not going to be popular. I knew there would be people that were going to be upset and uncomfortable with the changes we were trying to introduce. At the end of the day, the people who were upset over what I did prevailed."
Logan's biggest endeavor was the "Project 30" report — an unflinching account of the problems at USA Track and Field that contributed to winning 23 medals in Beijing, disappointing by U.S. standards. One of the most radical ideas from the report was a restructuring of the way the United States trains for relays.
Volleyball's Billings top SEC freshman
Kentucky's Whitney Billings was named the Southeastern Conference's Freshman of the Week after averaging 3.28 kills per set and earning UK Invitational All-Tournament team honors.
Billings, who has started nine of 10 matches this season, had a career high 23 kills against No. 17 Florida State this past weekend.
The Wildcats open conference play this week, first against No. 4 Florida at 7 p.m. Friday at Memorial Coliseum. Kentucky's will play visiting South Carolina at 1 p.m. Sunday, and the match will air live on CWKYT-5.
High school golf
Henry Clay sweeps city tournament
Henry Clay's boys' and girls' teams both finished first at the Fayette County Public Schools Golf Championship at Tates Creek Golf Course on Monday. Henry Clay's girls teamed to shoot 349 in the stroke-play tournament and finished well ahead of Lafayette at 375. But the Blue Devils' boys only edged Paul Dunbar by two shots, 307 to 309. Henry Clay almost swept the top spots individually in both tournaments with Shelby Grant (82), Leslie Ginter (87) and Allison Leigen (87) leading the girls. The Blue Devils' Preston French (73) won the boys' title, followed by teammate Matthew O'Brien and Dunbar's Trey Cox, both at 75.
Sports on TV
Strong ratings for Cowboys-Redskins
Sunday night's game between the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins drew the best overnight rating for a prime-time season opener in 13 years. NBC's audience was up 24 percent over the 2009 Sunday night opener, making it the top-rated Sunday night game since NBC took over the package in 2006.
The Redskins' 13-7 victory earned a 16.6 overnight rating and 26 share, the best numbers since Bears vs. Packers on Sept. 1, 1997.
The only primetime NFL broadcast with a higher overnight rating dating back to 1997 was last Thursday's Vikings-Saints game, which drew a 17.7 rating and 28 share overnight.
Sports in the courts
Mariotti to face 7 misdemeanor charges
Prosecutors say ESPN personality and AOL sports columnist Jay Mariotti will be charged in connection with an alleged domestic violence incident in Los Angeles. City attorney spokesman Frank Mateljan said Monday that seven misdemeanors are being filed against Mariotti, including domestic violence with injury, false imprisonment and grand theft. Each count carries a maximum of a year in jail. Mariotti was arrested last month on the city's west side.
Mariotti lives in Los Angeles. He is a panelist on the ESPN show Around the Horn and writes a regular column for the sports Web site Fanhouse.com, which is owned by AOL.
In an e-mail to The Associated Press, ESPN spokesman Josh Krulewitz said: "We have no plans to use him (Mariotti) at this time."
Devils fined $3 million, lose draft picks
The NHL harshly penalized the New Jersey Devils for signing Ilya Kovalchuk to 17-year, $102 million contract that circumvented the league's salary cap. Commissioner Gary Bettman fined the Devils $3 million and took away two draft picks, including a first-rounder of New Jersey's choice sometime in the next four years.
The Devils also will lose a third-round draft pick next year.
The last word
Talk of expanding NASCAR's "Chase for the Championship" to 15 drivers already has Dale Earnhardt Jr. ready to go on the defensive:
"We've put ourselves in the position to be the fall guy, the scapegoat for all that, and if they do extend the Chase to more cars, a lot of people will say it's because of me and trying to get me into the Chase. And we put ourselves in that position to be that joke, to be the punch line to that joke, to be honest."