Jackson fined for tweet
The National Basketball Association (NBA) fined San Antonio’s Stephen Jackson US$25,000 on Sunday for a “hostile statement” directed toward Oklahoma City’s Serge Ibaka on Twitter. The fine came after Jackson posted a message on the social networking site that said of Ibaka: “Next time he run up on me im goin in his mouth. That’s a promise. He doin 2 much.” Jackson later apologized and deleted the message, which was widely interpreted as a defense of his friend and former teammate Metta World Peace, who had a brief tussle with Ibaka in a game on Friday. “I apologize to Serge Ibaka, the NBA and to all my fans for the comments I made,” Jackson tweeted. The Spurs have been quick to respond, with general manager RC Buford calling Jackson’s original comments “absolutely unacceptable” and vowing to coordinate with the league on a suitable punishment.
Player-owner spat continues
National Hockey League (NHL) owners and players are hoping to get negotiations on how to divide the league’s US$3.3 billion in annual revenue back on track this week after talks broke down on Thursday, deputy NHL commissioner Bill Daly said on Sunday. The dispute is costing the league between US$18 million and $20 million a day, the NHL has said. Players have been locked out since mid-September and more than 400 regular season games, plus the All-Star Game, have been canceled. The work stoppage is the league’s fourth in 20 years. While both sides have agreed in principle to a 50-50 revenue split, they are still at odds over how to reach the target, with owners demanding an immediate reduction from the 57 percent players receive under the previous agreement, while the player’s union sought to see cuts brought in gradually.
Cech to test goal technology
Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech yesterday said he was delighted to be featuring in a FIFA trial of goal-line technology. Cech was between the posts during Luis Garcia’s infamous “ghost goal” for Liverpool against the London club in the Champions League 2004 and 2005 semi-final. “I’m very happy with the decision and the trial,” Cech said, referring to FIFA’s use of two technologies at the Club World Cup in Japan. “I’ve been saying for the last 10 years that the game needed it. You can see with history that results in certain competitions could have been different.” FIFA are testing two goal-line technologies at the Japan showpiece: the camera-based Hawk-Eye and GoalRef, a system that uses magnetic fields and a ball with a special chip to determine its trajectory and position. GoalRef will be available to the referee when Chelsea take on Mexican side Monterrey in the semi-finals at Yokohama International Stadium on Thursday.
Thailand gets new tour event
Thailand’s reputation as a hub for golf was burnished yesterday after Asian Tour organizers said they will add the new Chiang Mai Golf Classic to the schedule next year, a fourth event for the kingdom. The inaugural tournament will star some of Asia’s best players, including Thai heroes Thongchai Jaidee and Thaworn Wiratchant — the tour’s current Order of Merit leader — the Asian Tour said. Thongchai hailed the Chiang Mai event as “a wonderful development for the game” showing “the growing strength of the Asian Tour.” The event will have a US$750,000 purse and will be held between March 28 and March 31 at the Alpine Golf Resort-Chiang Mai.