Denver, suffering through one of the worst seasons in NBA history, looked to their past for a solution by hiring former Nugget player and coach Dan Issel as general manager Wednesday.
Issel was given a three-year contract to fill the position left vacant since the Feb. 4 ouster of Allan Bristow.
Issel, forced out as the Nuggets' coach in January 1995, will try to rebuild a franchise that has posted an abysmal 8-62 record this season, challenging the NBA's all-time futility mark of 9-73 set by the 1972-73 Philadelphia 76ers.
Issel's first goal is to get the team to 10 wins.
"It is about winning. We're gonna go forward and I'm looking forward to the challenge," Issel said.
Washington Wizard guard Rod Strickland was fined $5,000 by the NBA for verbally abusing officials and failing to leave the court in a timely manner following his ejection in Portland on Tuesday.
Strickland was ejected with 2:39 left in the third quarter. The ejection carries an additional automatic $1,000 fine.
Thomas Christopher Davis, 23, of Rocky Mount, N.C., was charged with making harassing phone calls after allegedly calling the Target Center in Minneapolis during a Chicago Bulls-Minnesota Timberwolves game Dec. 30 claiming to be Michael Jordan's brother and saying Jordan's mother had been rushed to a hospital. Davis was released without bail and is due in court April 9.
Phoenix Sun guard Rex Chapman will be sidelined for at least one week because of a groin injury suffered in Tuesday's loss to the Utah Jazz, the team said. . . . The Portland Trail Blazers signed point guard Gary Grant to a contract for the rest of the season. Grant had signed two 10-day contracts. . . . Reggie Hanson, who played for Boston Coach Rick Pitino at Kentucky, signed a 10-day contract with the Celtics.