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CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Michael Jordan, part-owner of the Charlotte Bobcats, said Tuesday that Bernie Bickerstaff will not return as coach next season, although he will complete this one. Bickerstaff will be invited to stay with the team and remains an "integral part" of the franchise, Jordan said. The third-year expansion team is 23-41 and last in the Southeast Division. Bickerstaff, also the general manager, has been credited with assembling a core of skilled players. "I want him involved," Jordan said. "We just haven't decided if that's as general manager or president of basketball operations. I see him staying with the organization." Bickerstaff is 67-161 in three seasons.

Mets' Martinez staying patient during rehab

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PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. - Pedro Martinez is staying patient with his rehabilitation from shoulder surgery. The New York Mets' ace made 50 throws from about 60 feet on flat ground Tuesday and said he's on schedule to throw four times a week. "Everything feels better," the three-time Cy Young Award winner said. "Sleeping feels better. I can roll onto my arm, lay on my side." Still, he won't predict when he'll be back on the mound. "I'm working to get ready for that day," said Martinez, 35. "I am doing what I am told to do so I don't mess anything up."

Penguins will get new arena in Pittsburgh

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PITTSBURGH - The Pittsburgh Penguins reached a financing deal for a new arena that will keep the NHL team in the city where it has played since 1967. Gov. Ed Rendell announced the agreement Tuesday at the Pennsylvania Gaming Congress. He said money from the state's new slot machine parlors would help fund the arena. The Penguins had threatened to leave Pittsburgh if they couldn't secure a new rink. Their lease at 46-year-old Mellon Arena expires June 30.

Bucks' Bogut apologizes for obscene gesture

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MILWAUKEE - Milwaukee Bucks center Andrew Bogut apologized Tuesday for getting "caught up in the heat of the moment" and making an obscene gesture toward the home crowd while leaving the court. Bogut may face disciplinary action from the NBA for the outburst, which came near the end of Milwaukee's 108-93 loss to Toronto on Monday night. Bogut was ejected after committing a flagrant foul against Toronto's Chris Bosh with 49 seconds remaining. Milwaukee television station WTMJ showed video footage of Bogut making a gesture toward the grandstands as he left the court.

CollegeInsider.com honors Pigram, Smith

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JOHNSON CITY - East Tennessee State sophomore guard Courtney Pigram has been named the CollegeInsider.com Atlantic Sun Conference Player of the Year. Pigram averaged 17.8 points and 3.7 assists per game this season. Also, the Bucs' Mike Smith made the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Freshman All-America team. Smith averaged 11.1 points a game.

Board defers changes on Veterans Committee

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COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. - Baseball's Hall of Fame wants more time before making any changes in the voting format of its Veterans Committee. The latest vote by the Veterans Committee produced no inductees - the third straight time the reconstituted committee failed to elect anyone. "The board feels strongly that we need to take our time out of respect for this important process, and we plan to meet again in the upcoming months to continue these discussions," Hall chairman Jane Forbes Clark said Tuesday. The next board meeting is scheduled for July 27-30.

Sharapova to lose ranking after defeat

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INDIAN WELLS, Calif. - Defending champion Maria Sharapova was knocked out of the Pacific Life Open on Tuesday, a 4-6, 7-5, 6-1 fourth-round loss to Vera Zvonareva that will cost her the No. 1 ranking. Sharapova needed to reach the semifinals to remain No. 1. She will be supplanted by Justine Henin when the rankings are released Monday.

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