Burress’ season is over as Giants suspend him
The New York Giants fined and suspended Plaxico Burress on Tuesday for four games -- the rest of the regular season -- after he accidentally shot himself in the right thigh over the weekend at a Manhattan nightclub. The team also placed him on the reserve non-football injury list, which means the wide receiver couldn’t come back for the playoffs.
The team punished Burress a day after he was charged with illegal weapons possession, which carries a penalty of 3 1/2 to 15 years in prison.
Dr. Scott Rodeo, a team physician, examined Burress and told the Giants that the gunshot wound would have sidelined him for four to six weeks.
Six players, including the heart of the Minnesota Vikings’ defensive line, were suspended for four games without pay by the NFL for violating the league’s anti-doping policy.
All six were punished for using a diuretic, which can serve as a masking agent for steroids.
The players were running back Deuce McAllister and defensive linemen Charles Grant and Will Smith of the New Orleans Saints; defensive linemen Kevin Williams and Pat Williams of the Vikings; and long snapper Bryan Pittman of the Houston Texans.
Mumme fired by New Mexico St.
New Mexico State fired Coach Hal Mumme after four years. The Aggies lost seven consecutive games to end the season at 3-9, 1-7 in the Western Athletic Conference.
Oregon has picked offensive coordinator Chip Kelly to be Coach Mike Bellotti’s eventual successor. Bellotti will become the school’s athletic director when Pat Kilkenny steps down. Asked if that would happen after this season, Bellotti told reporters he didn’t believe so. . . . Coach Charlie Weis will return for a fifth season at Notre Dame despite another disappointing year, several media outlets reported. . . . Cincinnati Coach Brian Kelly said he plans to stay at the school after acknowledging that other schools had expressed an interest in him.
Vazquez appears headed to Braves
Javier Vazquez is likely headed from the Chicago White Sox to the Atlanta Braves in a multiplayer trade.
The teams reached a tentative agreement that would send the 32-year-old pitcher to Atlanta, two people familiar with the deal said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the trade had not been finalized.
A source told ESPN that the deal will include four other players, including reliever Boone Logan, who would also go from the White Sox to the Braves.
Fairfax’s Hill commits to USC
Los Angeles Fairfax High senior forward Solomon Hill, who had committed to Arizona before Lute Olson retired as coach because of health concerns, confirmed that he has switched his commitment to USC.
The 6-foot-6 standout said there was a breakdown in communication between Arizona’s new coaching staff and recruits. Hill also said he believed Wildcats assistant Mike Dunlap should have been awarded the job that went to Russ Pennell on an interim basis.
“There was no communication,” said Hill, who averaged 15.8 points, 7.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists last season. “We heard everything through the media. That was kind of bad on their part.”
Hill said USC was always his second choice and that he liked the idea of playing for an up-tempo team that keeps improving under Coach Tim Floyd.
-- Ben Bolch
The NHL has suspended Dallas Stars forward Sean Avery indefinitely pending a hearing with Commissioner Gary Bettman.
The league says the suspension was imposed after Avery made “inappropriate public comments, not pertaining to the game.”
Swimmer Michael Phelps was named Sports Illustrated’s Sportsman of the Year after winning a record eight gold medals at the Beijing Olympics. He is the first swimmer to receive the honor. . . . Police divers in Quebec, Canada, recovered the body of Hubert “Pit” Martin, 64, a four-time NHL All-Star in the 1960s and ‘70s, who drowned after the snowmobile he was driving plunged into an icy lake near his home. . . . Golf great Seve Ballesteros underwent more surgery, this time to drain fluid from his brain. . . . The postseason bonus pool shares for the World Series champion Philadelphia Phillies was $351,504, and a full share for the Tampa Bay Rays was $223,390.
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