Thursday, September 18, 2003

Even Riley among Heat staff taking pay cut


Digest

Enquirer staff, wire reports

The salaries of Miami Heat employees will be cut 10 percent this season, a reduction that excludes the players but includes president and coach Pat Riley.

The reductions will allow the organization to avoid further layoffs; a few employees were let go after last season.

Riley's annual salary is estimated at $5 million, which means his pay cut could amount to $500,000 for 2003-04. The reductions include the business operation and the management of AmericanAirlines Arena.

The Heat say they've to been losing up to $30 million annually.

RAPTORS: Toronto signed free agent center Ken Johnson.

Johnson, out of Ohio State, appeared in 16 games with the Heat last season, averaging two points, two rebounds and 9.8 minutes a game.

KNICKS: Forward Othella Harrington sprained a ligament in his right knee and will need four to eight weeks to recover.

The Knicks open the regular season Oct. 29 at home against Orlando.

College basketball

XAVIER: Athlon Sports College Basketball magazine named senior Romain Sato to its All-American first team in its annual men's basketball preview issue.

Sato, who averaged 18.1 points and 7.1 rebounds last season, is Xavier's top returning player in both categories.

Last month, he was named to the John R. Wooden preseason All-American team, which lists the top 50 candidates for the postseason award.

UC WOMEN: Twelve games against teams that appeared in the postseason last season highlight the 2003-04 schedule.

UC will open its season by hosting Liberty on Nov. 14 in the first round of the Preseason WNIT. UC could face Miami University in the second round, with possible semifinal and final matchups against five teams that reached the NCAA Tournament last season.

The Bearcats close the nonconference schedule with five of six at home, including postseason qualifiers UC Santa Barbara (Dec. 16) and Oregon State (Dec. 19).

Conference USA play opens with UC facing five of the first seven games on the road, including TV games at DePaul (ESPN2, Jan. 11) and TCU (C-USA TV, Jan. 25), as well as rival Louisville on Jan. 31.

Auto racing

NASCAR: Long-awaited escape hatches NASCAR has developed to give drivers a quicker exit from wrecked cars can be used in races by Winston Cup teams starting Sept. 28.

The roof hatch, which will allow drivers another route of escape in case fire or crash damage blocks their traditional window exit, was developed over a 13-month period.

The sanctioning body said use of the hatch will be optional for Winston Cup teams beginning with the EA Sports 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. Busch series teams, idle that week, can begin using what NASCAR calls the "alternate exit" Oct. 4 at Kansas Speedway.

Tennis

DAVIS CUP: Australia's Lleyton Hewitt will face Switzerland's Michel Kratochvil in the opening singles match of the semifinals Friday.

In a Wimbledon final rematch, Mark Philippoussis of Australia will play champion Roger Federer in the second singles match at Rod Laver Arena.

On Saturday, Federer and Marc Rosset, Switzerland's playing captain, will face Wayne Arthurs and Todd Woodbridge in a doubles match.

The winning team will play the winner of the Argentina-Spain semifinal.




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