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January 10, 2000
Heat Seeker Anthony Carter was driven to become Miami's point guard
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January 10, 2000


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The Brand New Centurions
And the greatest athlete of the 20th century was...who cares? That's soooo over. It's time to turn to the athletes of Century 21. Here's how some notable performers of the new millennium—at least through Jan. 2—stack up against yesteryear's.



10-time NBA All-Star with Bulls; won NBA Finals six times; five MVP awards; named to all-defensive team nine times; NBA's highest career scoring average (33.4)

24 points in Heat's win over Magic on Jan 2 made him NBA's top scorer of 21st century; 75% marksman from field and 100% from line-but just one rebound!

Alltime leader in major championships (18); second alltime in career wins; PGA player of year five times; NCAA champion in 1961; oldest to win Masters, at 46

$1 million from Williams World Challenge makes him century's alltime top money winner (doubling total of No. 2 finisher); has won every tournament he entered in 2000

NFL player of year four times; led league in rushing eight times; 5.2 yards per carry is best average ever; never missed a game in nine seasons with Browns

Michigan senior threw for 369 yards and four TDs in 0T Orange Bowl win over Alabama; best performance by a quarterback—college or pro—this century

Missed last-second 47-yard field goal in Bills' 20-19 loss to Giants in Super Bowl XXV; "You don't get a second chance," said Norwood. "I let a lot of people down."

Missed OT extra-point try in 'Bama's Orange Bowl loss to Michigan. "It's a team game," said Pflugner. "Everyone probably could have done something to make it better."

Heat Seeker
Anthony Carter was driven to become Miami's point guard

The heat took over first place in the NBA's Atlantic Division on Nov. 12, and Pat Riley's team has stayed there, even with point guard Tim Hardaway shelved for six weeks with a bum knee. That's because Hardaway's understudy has been one of the season's biggest surprises. Rookie Anthony Carter, a high school dropout with a panther tattoo and a CBA r�sum�, has earned the favor of Coach Riley, who plays rookies as often as he buys suits off the rack. "This kid has some skills," he says of Carter, whose quickness and strength help offset an ugly jump shot.

After dropping out of Atlanta's Alonzo A. Crim High following his freshman year—"I was just tired of getting up early," he says—Carter played in adult leagues for three years. He passed a GED test, played a year at Saddleback Community College in Mission Viejo, Calif., and then transferred to Hawaii, where he averaged 18.4 points and 6.9 assists and led the Rainbows to back-to-back 20-win seasons. But he hurt his left shoulder in his senior season, and NBA scouts wrote him off. After a season of long bus rides and fast food with the CBA's Yakima Sun Kings, the 6'2", 185-pound Carter impressed Riley at a Heat summer tryout camp. "He's a tough kid," says Riley, "and he said something to me in the summertime. Not about wanting a job—what he said was, 'I need this. I need this.' " Carter was so happy to sign with Miami that he didn't even read his contract. He's probably the only guy in the league who doesn't know exactly how much he's getting paid.

Carter rode the bench early, but when Hardaway went down, the rookie went in. Carter was tentative at first, focusing on assists. "When he drove, he never looked at the rim," says Riley, who watched opponents foil Carter by refusing to come off other Heat players to pick him up. "He has now put his eyes on the rim, and if they're not coming, he's going to lay it up."

"You see him growing right before your eyes," says Miami forward P.J. Brown, who on Dec. 29 was supposed to get the ball with 22 seconds left and the Heat trailing the Magic 106-105. Instead Carter drove past Darrell Armstrong for a layup. Nineteen seconds later the rookie, who had nine assists and a career-best 21 points, made two free throws to cap a 109-106 win.

Carter will go back to the bench when Hardaway returns in a few weeks, but he may have played himself into some other team's lineup. Reliable point guards are as rare in the NBA as bluegrass music, and Carter will be a free agent at the end of the season. Miami has no cap room, but Riley may try to use the Heat's $2.25 million mid-level exception to re-sign him. That may not be enough, though, and Carter might wind up in Los Angeles or Toronto or Chicago, knowing precisely how many millions he's making.

Federation of Dunces

It seems the only people who weren't captivated by the World Cup-winning U.S. women's soccer team are the oafish and possibly sexist pooh-bahs of the U.S. Soccer Federation. On Sunday a roster of rookies and scabs left for Australia, where they'll represent the U.S. in the Australia Cup. Why? Because the real world champs spurned the federation's latest stopgap contract offer: the same paltry $3,150 a month (plus $250 per win per player) that team members have gotten since 1996. That's a big step down from the $5,000 per game each player earned during last fall's U.S. Women's Cup. "When you win a world championship, you're usually offered more money, not less," says Mia Hamm, who spent Sunday with her parents in Austin instead of flying Down Under.

This episode is merely the latest example of the soccer federation's ineptitude and/or bias. In July the federation announced a harebrained world tour (it never came off), then threatened to sue Hamm and company when they launched their own tour of America instead. Federation president Bob Contiguglia waited until three months after the team's World Cup triumph before grudgingly offering a new contract to coach Tony DiCicco. Hurt by the snub, DiCicco resigned.

The federation still hasn't hired DiCicco's replacement, though the 2000 Olympics are less than eight months away. This dithering is all the more astounding because the choice is a no-brainer: Lauren Gregg, DiCicco's top lieutenant She helped coach the U.S. women to victories at the 1996 Olympics and the '91 and '99 World Cups, and guided the under-20 U.S. women to two titles at the Nordic Cup, the world's top junior tournament.

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