SHORT TAKES : Paula Abdul on Line for L.A. Gear

<i> From Times staff and wire service reports</i>

Singer Paula Abdul is the latest star to hoof it into L.A. Gear’s stable of celebrity sneaker promoters, joining Michael Jackson and Joe Montana with her own line of footwear.

The endorsement, announced today, is the latest example of manufacturers betting on celebrities rather than technical features to sell athletic shoes. Abdul, the Laker cheerleader-turned-video-choreographer-turned-pop-star, used to pitch Reeboks. Not to be left in the dust, Reebok is now in negotiations with Madonna.