Barkley, Katz agree on 76ers' future
Charles Barkley and Philadelphia 76ers owner Harold Katz see eye to eye after all. With coach Jim Lynam also in attendance, the trio met yesterday for two hours at the team's Veterans Stadium offices and agreed they're all on the same page.
Katz meets individually with all his players after every season. But Barkley raised expectations for the importance of yesterday's meeting when, after the Sixers were eliminated from the playoffs, he covered his feelings about the future with a cone of silence, promising to reveal a secret plan only after having a sit-down discussion with the owner.
When he emerged from the team's offices, ready to embark on a "fun summer," Barkley set about smoothing over all real and perceived differences between himself and team management.
"I just wanted to know if he felt we're capable of winning a championship the way this team is constructed," Barkley said. "We all agreed that it is not. Based on our conversation, I know they want to do whatever it takes to make this team win. I just want to win, and I'm very satisfied with the meeting. As for what they do, that's their job. I can't draft players and make trades. Those aren't my decisions."
Katz wouldn't rule out a trade for Barkley, but said he has no desire to trade his superstar forward.
* The New York Knicks have prepared a coaching offer for Pat Riley, and they could present it to him as early as today, Newsday reported.
Knicks president Dave Checketts said, "We have decided to make an offer to one candidate. I plan to do that in the next couple of days. And we hope to have an answer next week."
Victor Kiam says he has put on hold his attempts to move the New England Patriots out of the area.
"When I talked to the governor in March," Kiam said, "the word got out that I was talking with Baltimore, and that was as a favor to an old friend. Other cities started to call. I talked with several of them. But then about three or four weeks ago, I decided to stop and do everything I could to try to make a success of what we are doing here. And that's the way it will be."
* Former Los Angeles Raider Lyle Alzado, suffering from brain cancer, is unlikely to be able to appear in court to face a charge of assaulting a county deputy marshal, an attorney representing him said yesterday.
Alzado was scheduled for arraignment in Culver City, Calif., yesterday morning but was granted a continuance to June 14. Attorney Robert Shapiro, however, said afterward that he doubted his client, who is receiving treatment for the cancer, would ever be physically able to make a court appearance.
"He does not look very good," Shapiro said. "He's in serious medical condition. He's lost weight. He's lost his hair. This is a terrible thing."
* The Raleigh-Durham Skyhawks of the World League of American Football, hindered by an unsuccessful season on the field and at the gate, may fold or move to another location after this season, owner George Shinn says.
The Skyhawks, last in the league in attendance, drew a league-low 4,207 fans against the Orlando Thunder on Monday night. The Thunder won, 20-14, dropping Raleigh-Durham to 0-9.
"We just failed," Shinn told The News and Observer of Raleigh. "I take pride in my ability, as an individual, to understand marketing. It just hasn't worked."
French hero and 1983 champion Yannick Noah has pulled out of the French Open, saying he is not fit enough for the two-week Grand Slam event.
Noah, ranked 116th in the world, was expected to ask the organizers for a wild card to enter the tournament, which starts Monday in Paris.
"I'm not playing because I'm not fit enough to stand five sets at Roland Garros," Noah told a French radio station.
The Washington group hoping to bring the 1994 World Cup to RFK Stadium ended its formal bidding process with a one-hour oral presentation to the World Cup organizing committee in Los Angeles.
The D.C. group is headed by Maryland Bays chairman John Koskinen and will enter the waiting period that will culminate in December with the selection of as many as 12 stadiums out of 31 applicants for the monthlong tournament.
Koskinen said: "Our bid is one of the best, most comprehensive of all those submitted. Today we got the chance to bring our bid to life, to summarize it and to focus the organizers on all the factors that make the Washington region a natural place to hold the World Cup."
Only a favorable review of promoter Murad Muhammad's suspension seemed to be in the way of putting the June 28 Mike Tyson-Donovan "Razor" Ruddock rematch back together, Las Vegas sources agreed yesterday.
On May 8, Muhammad, Ruddock's promoter, was fined $25,000 and suspended for one year by the Nevada Athletic Commission for his role in a melee after the Tyson-Ruddock fight March 18. Video cameras caught him kicking Tyson trainer Richie Giachetti, who had been knocked to the floor.