Bird returning as Pacers president
NBA: Larry Bird will be reintroduced to the media today as the Pacers’ president of basketball operations.
Bird constructed the team that pushed Miami to seven games in the Eastern Conference finals this month, but left the franchise last summer. He says he has now had time to reflect, rest and take care of some health issues.
Donnie Walsh, who succeeded Bird in that role, will become a consultant to the team.
• Colangelo quits: Bryan Colangelo is stepping down as president of the Toronto Raptors, just weeks after taking a reassigned position with the team.
• Sacre extended qualifying offer: The Los Angeles Lakers have exercised their contract option on guard Jodie Meeks and extended a qualifying offer to center Robert Sacre.
Meeks averaged 7.9 points, 2.2 rebounds and 0.9 assists in 78 games primarily as Kobe Bryant’s backup last season.
Sacre is a restricted free agent after the Lakers made their qualifying offer. The 7-foot Canadian from Gonzaga was the final pick in last summer’s draft, and he averaged 1.3 points and 1.1 rebounds in 32 games for Los Angeles last season..
• Landry becomes free agent: Power forward Carl Landry has opted out of the final year of his two-year, $8 million deal with the Golden State Warriors to become a free agent.
• Miami keeps Chalmers: The Miami Heat have decided to exercise their team option to keep starting point guard Mario Chalmers for the 2013-14 season.
Lochte, Franklin win twice
Swimming: Ryan Lochte and Missy Franklin each won two U.S. national titles at Indianapolis with times that ranked among the top five in the world this year.
The two star American swimmers took a similar tack.
They each won in the 200 freestyle, then returned to the pool less than 90 minutes later and each won in the 200 backstroke.
Lochte won the 200 free in 1 minute, 45.97 seconds, fifth-fastest in the world this year, and took the 200 back in 1:55.16, third-fastest in 2013.
Franklin’s time of 1:55.63 in the 200 free was 0.08 seconds off the world’s best this season. The Olympic champion and world-record holder in the 200 back then set a U.S. Open record in that race at 2:05.68, the world’s best time this season.
In the 200 breaststroke, Kevin Cordes posted this season’s world best time in the event: 2:08.34. Olympic gold medalist Breeja Larson won the women’s 200 breast in 2:23.44. Christine Magnuson won the women’s 50 butterfly in 26.08 and Eugene Godsoe won the men’s 50 fly in 23.29.
Delle Donne leads Sky
WNBA: Elena Delle Donne scored a career-high 26 points and Sylvia Fowles added 19 points and 14 rebounds as the host Chicago Sky rallied from an early deficit on the way to a 87-74 victory.