That Raptors center Hakeem Olajuwon, a 12-time NBA All-Star, will announce his retirement before the Rockets-Golden State game in Houston on Nov. 9, effective immediately. The Nigerian-born 7-footer played 17 of his 18 seasons in Houston and led the Rockets to championships in 1994 and '95. Named one of the NBAs 50 Greatest Players, Olajuwon finishes as the league's blocks leader (3,830) and the Rockets' leader in points (26,511), rebounds (13,382) and steals (2,088). He also took the University of Houston to the NCAA title game in 1983 and '84.
By the New York State Racing and Wagering Board, an investigation into the legality of the six winning tickets at last Saturday's Breeders' Cup Pick 6 wager. All six tickets were purchased by phone by a 29-year-old Maryland resident through an off-track betting service in Catskill, N.Y., the Daily Racing Form reported. The investigation will focus on whether the bettor submitted the tickets after four of the six races on the Arlington Park Pick 6 card had been completed. Each winning ticket is worth $428,392.
Robbed and Suspended
All in one day, Nets point guard Chris Childs. At 1:30 a.m. on Oct. 22 Childs was held up at gunpoint by three men outside a Manhattan restaurant owned by Sean (P. Diddy) Combs; police say the alleged thieves made off with $30,000 in cash and jewelry, including a diamond-encrusted watch worth $20,000. Hours later Nets president Rod Thorn suspended Childs indefinitely for not being in playing shape. The guard, who signed a two-year, $3.6 million deal with the Nets on Aug. 1, is about 25 pounds over last year's playing weight of 205.
By Uzbekistan, the game of billiards and the nation's billiards federation. According to government spokesman Dilshod Nazirov, billiard halls, which have greatly multiplied since the country's 1991 independence from the Soviet Union, are hangouts for drug users and heavy drinkers. "When you go to a billiard club, there is thick cigarette smoke, the smell of alcohol—is this a sport?" he said.
After months of failing health, Al Lerner, 69, a self-made billionaire who brought football back to Cleveland. On Sept. 8, 1998, three years after Art Modell moved the Browns to Baltimore and named them the Ravens, Lerner, a banking and real estate kingpin, outbid five others and was awarded the Browns expansion franchise for $530 million. It was the most ever paid for a sports franchise at the time. "He was a remarkable man," said coach Butch Davis. "He had a love affair with this team since early childhood."
By the American Bowling Congress, two 300 games by the father-and-son tandem of Pat and Joey Dineen, ages 49 and 21, respectively, who bowled perfectly on April 25 at Indian River Lanes in Virginia Beach. The Dineens are the third father-son tandem to bowl 300 in the same league game.