NBA Kings co-Owner Gavin Maloof said that any "reports the team is considering replacing basketball president Geoff Petrie are 'totally false.'" Maloof said, "Geoff's always been a part of the family. We're in a rough stretch, but so what? Things will turn around." He added, "We love the direction we're going. I know it's not translating into wins, but eventually it will" (SACBEE.com, 2/1).
READY TO WEAR: NFL Panthers PR Dir Charlie Dayton yesterday said despite slight alterations to the team's logo, "I don't anticipate any changes at all in the uniforms." In Charlotte, Scott Fowler noted the logo "will be incorporated into the helmets and jerseys, of course," but that is "about all" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 1/31). Meanwhile, Dolphins CEO Mike Dee said that the team is "not planning on changes" to its logo or uniform in '12. He added that teams "have been instructed to not disclose specifics of the Nike gear until after the Super Bowl, the last NFL game in Reebok attire" (South Florida SUN-SENTINEL, 2/1).
BIRD'S THE WORD: In Indianapolis, Mike Wells noted Pacers President of Basketball Operations Larry Bird's "patience is finally paying off." He has "slowly rebuilt the roster the way he wants it, and in turn, the Pacers are off to their best start in eight years." The Pacers will be "about $20 million under the salary cap next summer before they try to re-sign soon-to-be restricted free agents George Hill and Roy Hibbert." Wells noted the team has a "bright future, but it's uncertain if Bird will be making the decisions from his office at Bankers Life Fieldhouse." As was the case "last season, Bird is not sure if he will remain team president beyond this season." Bird and Pacers Owner Herb Simon "have a year-to-year handshake agreement," though Simon has said that Bird "can stay in the organization as long as he wants." Bird: "I will decide that in July" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 1/27).
SETTING THE PACE: The Bobcats are "averaging close to 17,000 fans per game at 19,000-seat Time Warner Cable Arena this season," though team execs acknowledged that the pace "could be difficult to maintain." Nineteen of the "remaining 24 home games are in March and April." The club last season averaged 15,846 fans per game (CHARLOTTE BUSINESS JOURNAL, 1/27 issue).