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Bad Knee Forces Nance to Quit

From Staff and Wire Reports

Robbed of the spring in his legs by age and arthroscopic surgery, three-time all-star forward Larry Nance retired from basketball Tuesday.

Nance, 35, spent his 13 NBA seasons with the Phoenix Suns and Cleveland Cavaliers, and became the league’s all-time shot-blocking leader among forwards with 2,027.

The winner of the NBA’s first slam-dunk competition at the All-Star game in 1984, he averaged 17.1 points and eight rebounds, and twice was voted to the league’s all-defensive team.

Nance had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee twice last season and was unable to play in the playoffs.

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Charles Grantham, head of the NBA players’ union, says he would not be surprised if the league staged a lockout because of the salary cap. He said players would be prepared to stage “alternative” games.

There is no current labor contract in the NBA, and owners reportedly are considering a lockout if none is reached by Thanksgiving.

College Basketball

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Coastal Carolina’s athletic program was put on four years’ probation by the NCAA for violations in its men’s basketball program that included academic fraud.

The Chanticleers also were banned from postseason play for a season, won’t be allowed on television this season and will have fewer basketball scholarships the next three seasons.

Tickets allotted to the public for the 1995 NCAA women’s Final Four in Minneapolis have sold out, the NCAA announced.

Missouri forward Kelly Thames, the Big Eight’s freshman of the year last season, will sit out the 1994-95 season because of a knee injury.

Hockey

As expected, rookie defenseman Nikolai Tsulygin of the Mighty Ducks will return to Russia to begin the season with the Central Red Army team, General Manager Jack Ferreira said. Tsulygin, 19, will be the first Duck to play for the Central Red Army team since a joint operating agreement with the Pittsburgh Penguins was announced last summer.

The Ducks also assigned surprising center Steve Rucchin and veteran goaltender Allan Bester to San Diego.

Adam Graves, who set a New York Ranger single-season record with 52 goals last season, will be sidelined for two weeks because of a sore lower back.

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Dominik Hasek, the top goalie in the NHL last season, ended his five-day holdout and returned to the Buffalo Sabres’ training camp.

Baseball

The Dodgers have granted Manager Rick Dempsey of the Albuquerque Dukes permission to speak with the Baltimore Orioles about the team’s vacant managerial position.

Dempsey, a former Oriole catcher, managed the Dodgers’ triple-A affiliate to the Pacific Coast League championship last summer. The Orioles fired manager Johnny Oates on Monday.

The Milwaukee Brewers fired batting coach Gene Clines after the young team batted a collective .263 in the shortened season.

Howard Johnson, who batted only .211 with 10 homers in the strike-shortened season, became eligible for free agency when the Colorado Rockies decided not to exercise a $2.95-million option.

Jurisprudence

A motorist was driving with his headlights off when he collided with Sacramento King starter Bobby Hurley, nearly killing the rookie point guard, a prosecutor said.

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Daniel Wieland’s lawyer countered that Hurley had rolled through a stop sign into Wieland’s path, and said Sacramento police destroyed evidence that could have exonerated his client.

Otis Wilson, a linebacker who played on the Chicago Bear team that won the 1986 Super Bowl, has pleaded guilty to beating his estranged wife last spring. He was fined $500 and must attend counseling for 10 weeks to a year.

A judge in San Juan, Puerto Rico, has dismissed criminal charges against former major league outfielder Ivan Calderon, accused of hitting his pregnant girlfriend in the face and choking her.

Miscellany

Chad Hundeby of Irvine cut 23 minutes off the 16-year-old English Channel swimming record. Hundeby, a former world champion at 25 kilometers, swam from Dover, England, to Cap Gris-Nez, France--about 20 miles--in 7 hours 17 minutes. The record of 7:40 was set by Penny Lee Dean in 1978.

Race driver Page Jones remained unconscious in the intensive care unit of Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, Ohio. He is in a coma after suffering a skull fracture in an accident Sunday during a sprint car race at Eldora Speedway.

Fourth-seeded Andrea Gaudenzi of Italy lost to Francisco Clavet of Spain, 6-2, 0-6, 6-4, and American qualifier Vince Spadea upset seventh-seeded Javier Sanchez of Spain, 7-5, 7-5, in the first round of the ATP’s Sicilian Open clay court tennis tournament in Palermo.

Blackburn, an English club with one of the highest-priced lineups in European soccer, was knocked out of the UEFA Cup by a team of part-time players from Sweden. Joachim Karlsson scored two goals to give Trelleborgs a 2-2 draw at home and a 3-2 total-goals victory in the first-round, second-leg game.


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