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June 12, 2000
Forever LinkedA TV viewer finds that in odd ways Larry Bird and Magic Johnson remain entwined
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June 12, 2000


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Rhodes, in the final year of a contract that will pay him $2 million in 2000, recalls that three-homer day at Wrigley with pride but doesn't dwell on past glory. "No matter where you hit a home run," he says, "there's a feeling of accomplishment." Easy for him to say, but for beleaguered Cubs fans so used to seeing guys hit it big after leaving the North Side—Lou Brock, Joe Carter, Greg Maddux—those words cut like a Ginsu.

Setting a Sandy Trap?

When the PGA Tour applied on May 15 to the U.S. Supreme Court to extend the deadline for its appeal of the lower court decision that allows Casey Martin to use a golf cart during Tour events, it went to Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, who pushed back the deadline by 30 days to July 5. That gave the Tour extra time to ready its argument that the high court should hear the Martin case.

Did the Tour seek out O'Connor because it thought she'd be sympathetic to its cause? The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals judge who upheld a trial court's ruling that Martin could use a cart was a nongolfer. O'Connor, by contrast, is an avid golfer with extensive links connections:

?She's a member of the exclusive Chevy Chase (Md.) Club, where she has been known to outdrive male golfing partners.

?She and her husband, John, take annual golf outings, often outside the U.S.

?During a visit to Edinburgh last summer for the 50th anniversary of the Scottish Law Society, she found time for 18 holes at Dalmahoy.

?One of the PGA Tour's lawyers, Richard Taranto, is a former clerk of O'Connor's.

Martin's lawyer, Roy Reardon, sees O'Connor's golf connection as coincidence. "The PGA's lawyers are in Phoenix, and the Ninth Circuit includes Phoenix, and she's from Phoenix, so she was probably the appropriate justice to go to," he says. "If I were in Phoenix I'd go to her."

Still, Martin might have preferred that the Tour had appealed to Rudi Bader Ginsburg, a justice with not only more liberal leanings but also a less refined game. Ginsburg, Golf Digest once remarked, "has a game that mirrors her judicial style: She aims left, swings right and hits down the middle."

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