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National Sports Briefs: Big Brown out

Associated Press
Big Brown’s racing career ended Monday when the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner injured his right front foot during a workout at Aqueduct Race Course in New York.
Michael Iavarone of IEAH Stables, co-owners of Big Brown, said the 3-year-old colt tore a three-inch piece of flesh off the foot after it collided with his right rear foot while working over Aqueduct’s turf course with stablemate Kip Deville.
“This was a complete fluke,” Iavarone said. “He hadn’t had issues with his feet for awhile and to have him come up just like this was a shock to all of us.”
Iavarone said the injury would take around two months to heal, making it impossible for Big Brown to run in The Breeders’ Cup Classic on Oct. 25 at Santa Anita. With the strapping bay due at Three Chimneys Farm in Midway, Ky. by the end of the year to begin his stud career, Iavarone said there simply isn’t enough time to get Big Brown back on the track one last time.
“We don’t have a choice but to retire him,” Iavarone said. “It’s gut-wrenching.”
The injury itself isn’t life-threatening, Iavarone said, but added it’s important to make sure infection doesn’t set in while he recovers.
“I expect the next few days to be pretty rough on him,” Iavarone said. “We’ve got to take care of him.”
NBA IN CHINA
LONDON ó The NBA has formed a joint venture with Anschutz Entertainment Group to design and develop about 12 multipurpose arenas in major Chinese cities.
The project was announced at the O2 Arena in London, where the New Jersey Nets and Miami Heat played a preseason game. AEG runs the O2, and the venture will be equally owned by the two parties.
NBA commissioner David Stern did not say when the plan would be starting, or where the buildings would be located.
CYCLING
ROME ó Lance Armstrong agreed Monday to ride in next year’s Giro d’Italia and suggested the Italian race ó not the Tour de France ó will be the main target in his comeback season.
The American has never competed in the three-week Giro, considered the most prestigious stage race after the Tour.
“Everyone is saying that the Giro will serve to prepare for the Tour,” Armstrong said in a written statement released by organizers in Italian. “Actually, it could be that I come to Italy to win and the Giro will actually be my real three-week stage race of the year.”
Winning both the Giro and the Tour in the same year after more than three years away from the sport would be an unprecedented challenge for someone of Armstrong’s age.
The 37-year-old Armstrong announced last month that he is returning to cycling after three years in retirement and hoped to win the Tour for an eighth time.
– PARIS ó The head of France’s anti-doping agency says Austrian cyclist Bernhard Kohl tested positive for a banned blood booster at the Tour de France, where he finished third.
NHL
TORONTO ó Andy McDonald and Brad Boyes scored in a shootout to give the Blues a 5-4 comeback win over the Maple Leafs on Monday.
Storming back from an early 3-0 deficit, the Blues tied it at 4 at 4:21 of the third period on Paul Kariya’s backhander to set up the dramatic finish.
Sabres 7, Islanders 1
UNIONDALE, N.Y. ó Thomas Vanek scored twice and Ales Kotalik and Jason Pominville each added a goal and two assists and the Buffalo Sabres beat the New York Islanders 7-1.
Jochen Hecht, Adam Mair and Clarke MacArthur also scored for the Sabres, who are 2-0-0.

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