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Mashburn Activated; Hardaway to Be Ready for Heat in Playoffs

<i> Associated Press</i>

The Miami Heat activated forward Jamal Mashburn on Saturday and put Tim Hardaway on the injured list because of inflammation of his right knee.

Hardaway, who is averaging 18.9 points, 8.3 assists and 3.7 rebounds, will be available for the playoffs. The Heat, the second-seeded team in the Eastern Conference, opens the best-of-five first-round series against the New York Knicks at home Friday night.

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The Phoenix Suns put Rex Chapman, their leading scorer, on the injured list because of a hamstring pull and signed veteran center Mike Brown for their last regular-season game and the playoffs.

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George Karl has talked to his team about the NBA playoffs and about the questions he knows the SuperSonics will be asked time and again about the coach’s uncertain future in Seattle.

“It’s not a distraction to me,” Karl said. “I hope it’s not a distraction to them.”

On July 1, Karl becomes a free agent who could sign with another team for more money than the $3.2 million he earned this season.

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