Main Headline

Tennis

MIAMI — Martina Navratilova drew a parallel between Andre Agassi and Roger Clemens, saying she's shocked the eight-time Grand Slam champion lied about drug use.

Agassi's upcoming autobiography contains an admission he used crystal meth in 1997 and failed a drug test — a result he says was thrown out after he lied by saying he "unwittingly" took the substance.

Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner, repeatedly has denied using performance-enchancing drugs. His former personal trainer claimed he injected Clemens with steroids and human growth hormone in 1998, 2000 and 2001.

Navratilova won a record 167 singles titles, including 18 in Grand Slam tournaments. She retired from singles in 1994 and played her last doubles match in 2006.

Agassi retired in 2006. His autobiography will go on sale Nov. 9.

Pro Basketball

NEW YORK — The NBA will review accusations by former referee Tim Donaghy that were posted online — even though the publisher is blowing the whistle on the book they were to appear in.

Random House said Thursday it won't go forward with the tell-all Donaghy wrote in prison.

"After a close legal review of the final manuscript of "Blowing the Whistle" by Tim Donaghy, and our independent evaluation of some of the author's sources and statements, Triumph Books and Random House have decided not to go forward with the book's publication," spokesman Stuart Applebaum said in a statement. "Our decision is wholly our own and was made without consultation with any outside parties or individuals."

Still, the NBA said the allegations that appeared on the Web site deadspin.com will be forwarded to Lawrence B. Pedowitz, who conducted the review of the officiating program following the Donaghy gambling scandal that rocked the league in 2007.

"As with all allegations concerning the integrity of our officiating program, these latest assertions by Mr. Donaghy will be turned over to Mr. Pedowitz for a complete review," senior vice president of communications Elizabeth Ventura said.

The league also said it has been reassured that the Pedowitz investigation, which was completed last fall, found Donaghy to be the only official involved in criminal conduct.

College Basketball

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A federal judge has denied prosecutors' request for a psychiatric evaluation of the woman accused in a plot to extort $10 million from University of Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino.

U.S. District Judge Charles Simpson ruled this week that there was no "reasonable cause" to question Karen Cunagin Sypher's competency. Prosecutors had noted in asking for the exam that Sypher's former attorney was concerned about her mental state.

She has pleaded not guilty to federal charges of attempting to extort money from Pitino and lying to the FBI. Pitino has acknowledged a sexual encounter with her in 2003.

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Former Indiana coach Bob Knight will not attend next week's induction into the athletic department's hall of fame.

Athletic director Fred Glass said that Knight contacted him directly to decline the invitation. Glass said Knight was concerned that the interest in him would be a distraction from the other six inductees.

All living members of the 2009 Hall of Fame class, except Knight, are expected to attend in person. The General won a school-record 662 games and three national championships at Indiana before being fired by then university president Myles Brand in September 2000. Knight retired in 2008 with the most wins (902) of any coach in Division I men's basketball.

Pro Football

BEREA, Ohio — Tired of seeing their beloved Browns lose, some Cleveland fans are fighting back. Hoping to make a statement to protest the NFL team's abysmal record — this season and since the team returned in 1999 — some Browns backers are encouraging fans to walk in late to the Nov. 16 home game against Baltimore.

Two longtime season-ticket holders came up with the idea after Sunday's 31-3 loss to Green Bay.

They are hoping the temporarily empty seats for a nationally televised Monday night game will send a message to owner Randy Lerner that they want a better product on the field.

The Browns (1-6) are 55-113 since 1999.

Olympics

ATHENS, Greece — The IOC criticized Greek Olympic officials for allowing a hurdler serving a doping ban to participate in the Vancouver flame relay.

IOC spokeswoman Emmanuelle Moreau said it was "inappropriate and a regrettable mistake" for Greek officials to let disgraced hurdler Fani Halkia carry the flame.

Halkia won a gold medal in the 400-meter hurdles at the 2004 Athens Olympics. She was expelled from the 2008 Beijing Games after testing positive for the steroid methyltrienolone, and received a two-year suspension.

She denies any wrongdoing, and said tampered diet supplements triggered the positive test.

Soccer

ZURICH — FIFA and the World Anti-Doping Agency have agreed to work together on a new anti-doping program to test top-level soccer players. FIFA president Sepp Blatter and WADA president John Fahey met at FIFA headquarters to finalize the agreement. Fahey praised FIFA for its "robust and extensive" testing program, but said there was room for improvement. The new project will be modeled on the International Cycling Union's biological passport program, which monitors 850 professional riders.

The two organizations will work with WADA-accredited laboratories to design a research project that could start next year. FIFA has been consulting with the lab in Lausanne, Switzerland, which operates the cycling program.

Athletics

LONDON — Olympic champion Usain Bolt believes it will take a couple of years to convince some people he is breaking world records without doping.

The 23-year-old Bolt broke his own marks in the 100 and 200 meters in August at the Berlin world championships. He had originally set those two at last year's Beijing Olympics, along with the world record in the 400 relay with Jamaica.

What hasn't helped Bolt convince doubters are doping convictions in recent years for sprinters Marion Jones, Tim Montgomery and Justin Gatlin.

LONDON — Encouraged by the improving economy in the United States, the International Olympic Committee plans to begin negotiations on U.S. broadcast rights for the 2014 and 2016 Games next year.

IOC president Jacques Rogge told The Associated Press on Friday that the bidding could begin soon after the Feb. 12-28 Winter Games in Vancouver. "The economic climate seems to be reviving in the United States, so that's a good omen," Rogge said in a telephone interview. "Definitely, I think rather shortly after Vancouver we will start discussing. We're not going to negotiate during the Vancouver Games themselves. But I think second quarter, second half of next year, would definitely be possible."

— The Associated Press

The IOC earlier this year indefinitely postponed the U.S. rights negotiations due to the global economic downturn.

Share This Story