Fri, Jul 30, 2004 - Page 22 News List

Cliff Floyd feels Williams' pain

AMERICAN SPORTS As an injury-plagued professional athlete, the Mets' left fielder says he may know why the former Miami Dolphins running back decided to retire

AP , NY TIMES NEWS, MONTREALAND MIAMI, FLORIDA

"The contract is not an issue," general manager Rick Spielman said. "The contract will eventually take care of itself. The focus has been on moving forward without Ricky and getting ready for training camp."

Williams stunned the Dolphins when he informed them of his retirement decision Friday, and they've had no contact with him since, Spielman said. Williams, who has been traveling for the past week, was in Boston on Tuesday and may return to South Florida by the end of the week, said his agent, Leigh Steinberg. Williams decided to retire aware of potential consequences, financial and otherwise, Steinberg said.

"He's very much at peace and excited about embarking on the next phase of his life," Steinberg said. "I don't anticipate him changing his mind, but history is replete with examples of athletes who had second thoughts at later dates."

Barring a change of heart, Williams' retirement at age 27 leaves the Dolphins with a huge void in their offense. They'll begin training camp workouts Saturday missing a player who rushed for 3,225 yards in two seasons with Miami.

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