- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
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- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
Missed by amateur Michelle Wie, 15, the cut at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Wie, who came within a shot of reaching the third round at the 2004 Sony, her PGA Tour debut, was nine over in her first two rounds, missing the cut by seven strokes. With the largest galleries of the tournament watching, the Honolulu native was undone by blustery conditions and a second-round triple bogey on the par-4 6th. "After coming so close last year, I almost took it for granted that I was going to play better," she said. "I think I tried too hard." Still, by displaying an improved bunker game and several impressive tee shots, the Big Wiesy did nothing to dampen anticipation of the day she turns pro. "What would I have shot here when I was 15 years old?" said Tom Lehman. "I can promise you it would not have been 75."
Stripped of their practice jerseys, Tennessee basketball players, as punishment for a 25-point loss to Vanderbilt on Jan. 8. Saying they didn't deserve to wear the Vols' uniform, coach Buzz Peterson made players use their own clothes for practice last week--then refused to let team managers launder the garments because he didn't want to waste the school's soap and hot water. "The smell in the team meeting was awful," said Peterson, who restored the Vols' uniform privileges after they upset No. 11 Mississippi State last week.
Expatriating Orioles pitcher and Aruba native Sidney Ponson, who has grown weary of being a celebrity in his homeland. Ponson, who was made a knight in the Order of the Dutch Royal House in 2003, spent 11 days in jail on the Dutch Caribbean island for allegedly punching a judge on a beach on Christmas Day. Last week he said he attracts too much attention when he returns home and henceforth will spend the off-season in Fort Lauderdale--even if it means sacrificing his knighthood. "They can take it away," Ponson, 28, said. "After what happened, I realize a lot of people don't like me there."
Sought by Don King, $2.5 billion in damages in a defamation lawsuit against ESPN. The boxing promoter was angered by a 2004 SportsCentury documentary that claimed King underpaid Muhammad Ali by more than $1 million and accused him of being a "snake oil salesman, a shameless huckster and worse." Said King, "I just felt that this was the straw that broke the camel's back and I can't take it anymore."
Ejected from a practice scrimmage, Celtics forward Ricky Davis, who was sent home by coach Doc Rivers on Sunday for complaining about the way the coaching staff was officiating the game. With a group of Boston high school students who had been invited to watch practice sitting in the stands, Davis loudly--and profanely--protested a call. At first Rivers motioned for him to leave the court for the trainer's room; when Davis continued to argue, Rivers told him to go home. "I didn't like the tone of his talk," the coach said. "And there were kids in the gym."
Hired as basketball coach at USC, former Bulls and Hornets coach Tim Floyd. Less than a month after Rick Majerus abruptly withdrew after accepting the job, Floyd agreed to take over the program at the conclusion of the 2004--05 season. The twice-fired Floyd said he has no reservations about being the school's second choice, noting that he was the first choice for both his NBA jobs. "And that didn't work out too well," he said.
Returned to its rightful owner, the sweater worn by Sidney Crosby in Canada's 6--1 win over Russia at hockey's World Junior Championship on Jan. 4. After the tournament the 17-year-old phenom (SI, Jan. 10) flew from Grand Forks, N.Dak., via Montreal, to join his junior team in Mont-Joli, Que. When he landed, his champagne-soaked jersey was missing from his luggage, prompting a tearful press conference by Crosby. On Jan. 10 a postal worker found the sweater in a mailbox in Lachute, Que., 50 miles west of Montreal. Two days later an Air Canada baggage handler was arrested and charged with theft.