National Sports Briefs
CHARLOTTE ó Brian Vickers had a lot of questions when he suddenly found himself in the hospital last year. Doctors discovered blood clots in the driver’s left leg and near his lungs, then a hole in his heart.
He was able to overcome those health issues, but found himself facing another big question. And finding the answer to whether he wanted to resume his NASCAR Sprint Cup career wasn’t as easy as he expected.
“At first, my focus was on living. And then it immediately turned to racing, and how do I get back in the race car?” the 27-year-old Vickers said. “Then I had to stop and think, do I want to go back in the race car? It seems like a silly question, but when you’ve gone through all that, you start looking at your whole life from a different perspective.”
When Vickers was pondering his racing future, his first thought was that he wanted to come back because of the one goal he hadn’t accomplished ó to win a Sprint Cup championship.
“Then I realized it was more than that. If I came back it couldn’t just be about that. It had to be about something more,” he said. “I came back because I just love racing. I love going fast, I love being in race cars. I love what I do. If I never win a championship, I’ll still be happy that I came back. If I do win a championship, I’ll be even happier.”
DURHAM,ó Linebacker Tyree Glover has been kicked off the Duke football team.
Coach David Cutcliffe said Wednesday that the sophomore was dismissed for conduct unbecoming of a member of the program.
RALEIGH ó Shaw University has suspended two part-time assistant football coaches without pay after the school said they had been arrested.
The Division II school said Wednesday that wide receivers coach Torey Ross and quarterbacks coach Jermonty Kimbrough were suspended.
Raleigh Police Department spokesman Jim Sughrue said he didn’t immediately have arrest details.
Coach Darrell Asberry calls the arrests “a complete surprise” and says he was “disappointed and angry.”
SACRAMENTO, Calif. ó Business and political leaders in Sacramento have another chance to persuade the NBA that the Kings should stay in town, and theyíll put a full-court press on league officials this week.
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, a former NBA star, said that the city had feared the Kingsí move to Anaheim might be a done deal. But he said at least some of the NBA owners at last weekís league meetings appeared impressed when the city presented $7 million in commitments for new financial support from local businesses and other backers.
LOS ANGELES ó Lamar Odom won the NBAís Sixth Man award as the leagueís top reserve, easily outdistancing Dallasí Jason Terry to win the first significant award for individual achievement in a career mostly spent supporting others.
HOCKEY ON TV
NEW YORK ó The NHL is staying on NBC and Versus for the next 10 years with a deal Commissioner Gary Bettman calls the most significant in league history.
In a joint announcement, the NHL and the NBC Sports Group said the new deal will run through the 2020-21 season. The package is reportedly worth a total of $2 billion.
NBC will remain the exclusive network home for the NHL, and Versus retains cable rights.