Rodman Kicks Up Controversy While Bulls Win Eighth in Row

From Associated Press

Dennis Rodman kicked a courtside cameraman in the groin Wednesday night. And then implied that the man was faking it.

Rodman kicked in-house cameraman Eugene Amos with 3:46 left in the third quarter of the Chicago Bulls’ 112-102 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves at Minneapolis.

“It’s one thing to be hurt, but don’t pretend you’re more seriously hurt than you are,” Rodman said. “I wasn’t trying to hurt anybody.

“He got carried off on a stretcher? It was a little bit dramatic to me. Maybe I’ll send him some roses on the floor--Love, Dennis.”

Rodman was among several Bulls who believed Amos was feigning his injury, although Timberwolves physician Sheldon Burns said Amos had been kicked in the groin.


Chicago Coach Phil Jackson thought otherwise.

“It looked like he kicked him in the knee, and all of a sudden [Amos] came up with that falsetto,” Jackson said.

Amos disagreed when reached at the hospital.

“Yes I was” kicked in the groin, Amos said. “I’m on the X-ray table right now and I can’t talk right now.”

Amos was released from the hospital about three hours after the incident. Police officers interviewed Amos, but the department would not say whether a complaint had been filed.

The game was tied, 71-71, when Rodman stumbled out of bounds along the baseline while struggling with Kevin Garnett for a rebound. Rodman fell and Amos, sitting nearby, turned his camera on Rodman.

Still sitting on the floor, Rodman kicked out with the bottom of his foot and caught Amos high on the inside of his left thigh. Amos slumped over for about seven minutes before being carried off on a board.

“I think I’ll get some lawsuit papers next time I come up to Minnesota,” said Rodman, who had 15 rebounds.

Meanwhile, Scottie Pippen scored 17 of his game-high 29 points in a 33-10 run after Minnesota had led, 75-74, at 1:04 of the third quarter. Michael Jordan added 25 points in the Bulls’ eighth consecutive victory.

The Timberwolves had rallied from an 11-point deficit to tie the game when the cameraman was injured, and the delay appeared to cost them their momentum.

Garnett and Stephon Marbury had 21 points for Minnesota.

Orlando 78, Dallas 66--Penny Hardaway scored 26 points at Dallas and the Magic held the Mavericks to the lowest point total in franchise history.

“It was a breakthrough game for me,” Hardaway said after his best scoring effort since getting 29 against New Jersey on Nov. 9. “It was something I needed and something the team needed. But I feel like I won’t be back to 100% for about two more weeks.”

The Magic also won for the fourth time in five games.

Jim Jackson and Derek Harper had 12 points apiece for the Mavericks, who shot 38% from the field and missed nine of 16 free throws.

The Mavericks’ previous franchise low was 68 points on Feb. 4, 1981, against the Houston Rockets.

Seattle 122, Toronto 78--Sam Perkins tied an NBA record by going eight for eight from three-point range and the SuperSonics set a league record with 27 steals at Seattle.

Perkins, who had 26 points, tied the record for most three-point shots without a miss set by Jeff Hornacek of Utah on Nov. 23, 1994, against Seattle.

The SuperSonics set a club record with 15 three-point baskets.

Shawn Kemp had 25 points and 12 rebounds, Hersey Hawkins added 21 points, connecting on four three-point shots, and Gary Payton contributed 15 points, 10 assists and three steals as the SuperSonics won their sixth consecutive game in January after going 7-8 in December.

Golden State 128, Philadelphia 111--Latrell Sprewell scored 38 points and the Warriors held off a late rally to defeat the 76ers at Philadelphia.

It was Philadelphia’s 10th consecutive loss and the 76ers’ 20th in 21 games.

Clarence Weatherspoon had a season-high 34 points for the 76ers, who came back from a 24-point, third-quarter deficit to pull within six with 2:54 left.

Sprewell, who played all 48 minutes, answered with a jump shot and Chris Mullin made two free throws to stave off the rally.

New York 94, San Antonio 77--Allan Houston scored 20 points and the Knicks used a 9-0 run at the start of the fourth quarter to pull away at San Antonio.

Patrick Ewing added 18 points and 11 rebounds for New York, which bounced back from a 20-point loss a night earlier at Houston and won for the fifth time in six games.

San Antonio, which lost its sixth consecutive game, was led by Vernon Maxwell’s 22 points.

Charlotte 116, New Jersey 104--Glen Rice scored 13 of his 35 points in the final 10 minutes to rally the Hornets at Charlotte, N.C.

Vlade Divac added 25 points and 12 rebounds and Anthony Mason had 20 points and 17 rebounds for the Hornets, who overcame a 13-point deficit with a 14-0 run in the third quarter to snap a three-game losing streak against the Nets.

Former Hornet Kendall Gill had 30 points to lead the Nets, who lost their fourth in a row.

Detroit 103, Vancouver 79--Grant Hill scored 12 of his 31 points in the first quarter and fell one assist shy of a triple-double as the Pistons routed the Grizzlies at Vancouver.

The Pistons remained unbeaten in four meetings with the Grizzlies.

Hill added 11 rebounds and nine assists.

The Pistons took control with a 16-3 run for a 22-7 advantage with three minutes left in the opening quarter.

Shareef Abdur-Rahim scored 15 for Vancouver, which has lost four in a row and is a league-worst 7-32.