Sharman, Hall of Fame player and coach, dies
Bill Sharman, who was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame twice, died Friday at his home in Redondo Beach, Calif. He was 87.
Sharman was a guard who helped establish the Boston Celtics’ dynasty in the 1950s. As a coach, he guided the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers to a record 33-game winning streak and the league title.
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Sharman became the third person to be voted into the Hall as a player and a coach, joining John Wooden and ex-Sonics guard and coach Lenny Wilkens.
Sharman started his career with the Washington Capitols in 1950 and spent one season there before playing his 10 other seasons for Boston. The eight-time All-Star shot 88.3 percent from the free-throw line in his career and led the NBA in free-throw percentage a record seven times.
Sharman had a stroke about a week before his death, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Wizards acquire Gortat
The Washington Wizards got center Marcin Gortat from the Phoenix Suns in a multiplayer trade.
Phoenix received injured center Emeka Okafor and a top-12-protected first-round draft pick in 2014 — giving the rebuilding Suns potentially four choices in the opening round.
The Suns sent guards Kendall Marshall, Shannon Brown and Malcolm Lee to Washington so the deal will work financially. The Wizards are expected to waive all three.
Gortat, 6 feet 11, averaged 11.1 points and 8.5 rebounds last season.
Officials called off an exhibition game between the host Milwaukee Bucks and Toronto Raptors because of concerns about the condition of the floor. The final exhibition of the year for both teams was stopped with 5:58 left in the first quarter after several players slipped in the opening minutes; Milwaukee was ahead 14-9.
In other exhibition action, ex-Washington Huskies guard Isaiah Thomas scored a game-high 27 points as visiting Sacramento beat the Los Angeles Clippers 110-100.
Houston guard James Harden had a bruised knee after being fouled by Memphis’ Quincy Pondexter, a former UW Husky. Harden left the court shortly after the foul in Houston’s 92-73 victory.
Charlotte beat the New York Knicks 85-83 in the first game since the renovation of Madison Square Garden was completed.
Zags win exhibition
Senior center Sam Dower Jr. had game-high totals of 20 points and 12 rebounds to lead host Gonzaga to a 103-68 exhibition victory over Simon Fraser University of Burnaby, B.C.
Simon Fraser’s David Gebru, a former player for Rainier Beach High School in Seattle, scored 14 points on 5-for-17 shooting before fouling out.
Li, Kvitova advance
Li Na of China and Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic advanced to the semifinals of the WTA Championships in Istanbul, Turkey.
Defending champion Serena Williams of the United States secured her berth in the semis of the season-ending tournament Thursday. Williams, ranked No. 1 in the world, will play Jelena Jankovic of Serbia on Saturday.
Cilic’s ban is reduced
Marin Cilic had his ban for doping reduced from a “too severe” nine months to four months by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, clearing the 25-year-old from Croatia to play at the Paris Masters next week.
Call is good for a laugh
Conan O’Brien brought his humor to the announcing booth when he called Friday’s second race at Santa Anita in Arcadia, Calif.
The late-night TV host and comedian described the starting gate as “the white thing,” termed the jockeys’ silks “costumes” and said, “I’m seeing a bunch of horses following Blue Collar Boy. All horses look alike when you’re not around horses a lot.”
Later, he told the crowd, “I’m not seeing too well because my eyelashes are up against the binoculars and it’s blocking my view.”
O’Brien taped the race, won by 8-1 shot Knucklebuster, to air later on his TBS show.
• Defending overall World Cup champion Tina Maze of Slovenia was voted skier of the year by journalists.
Maze, 30, is the defending World Cup overall champion.
The 2013-14 World Cup season starts Saturday in Soelden, Austria.
• Sochi Winter Games organizers say the Olympic flame traveled to the North Pole aboard a Russian nuclear-powered icebreaker last weekend.
Seattle Times news services