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Volume 24 No. 135
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Names In The News

In N.Y., Nate Taylor notes TNT cameras during last Monday's Heat-Pacers Eastern Conference Finals Game 7 focused on rapper FLO RIDA and PHYLLIS KATZ, the wife of Heat limited partner RAANAN KATZ. The shot "captured the atmosphere at Heat games during the playoffs: the celebrity fan who wants to be seen and the noncelebrity fan who is there to watch the game" (N.Y. TIMES, 6/10)....Actor JESSE WILLIAMS, who bears a resemblance to Spurs G TONY PARKER, tweeted during last night's Spurs-Heat NBA Finals Game 2, "Sitting behind the Spurs bench, in black. Coach Pop just told me to stretch it out for 3rd quarter." Also attending last night's game were musicians LENNY KRAVITZ and GLORIA ESTEFAN, U.S. Sen. MARCO RUBIO (R-Fla.), Pro Football HOFer SHANNON SHARPE, TNT's SHAQUILLE O'NEAL and Univ. of Florida men's basketball coach BILLY DONOVAN (South Florida SUN-SENTINEL, 6/10)....In Montreal, Suzanne Wexler wrote hockey players, athletes and Quebec celebrities were "out in droves this weekend" at Sunday's F1 Canadian Grand Prix. But Hollywood actors were "greatly missed." Other than actors HUGH GRANT and PAUL WALKER, and ESPN's JESSE PALMER, Montreal's "hot spot restaurants saw few Hollywood stars this year" (Montreal GAZETTE, 6/9)....Actor JOHN KRASINSKI was in attendance at Friday's Bruins-Penguins Eastern Conference Finals Game 4 at TD Garden in Boston (BOSTON GLOBE, 6/10).

BIG EVENTS TOWN: In Tampa, Greg Auman profiled Tampa Bay Sports Commission Exec Dir ROB HIGGINS, who since taking over in '04, has "brought the ACC and SEC men's basketball tournaments, ACC football championship, Frozen Four and Women's Final Four to Tampa Bay." Higgins currently is "stalking the new College Football Playoff championship game." He is "creative and deft at recruiting the right allies." Among his "signature moves is the power cameo, a surprise guest from the local sports scene to underscore his message." Former NFLer RONDE BARBER said, "He certainly has creativity, but he also has a lot of initiative. ... He's a very likeable guy who has some really good ideas" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 6/8).

CHARITY STRIPE: Bucs GM MARK DOMINIK and more than a dozen players on Saturday “had their heads shaved as part of the Pediatric Cancer Foundation’s Fourth Annual Bright House Networks Cut for a Cure Charity Challenge” (, 6/8)….Patriots TE ROB GRONKOWSKI yesterday “continued his support for One Mission’s fourth annual ‘Kid’s Cancer Buzz-Off’ at Gillette Stadium, where he shaved his head before turning the electric razor on others as 867 men, women and children raised money and awareness for the fight against pediatric cancer." The charity “hopes to generate” $1M this year (BOSTON HERALD, 6/10)....Nike on Saturday announced that kids in Chicago will be “able to attend free basketball clinics around the city every weekend this summer” at parks. The clinics will be “held at a different park each Saturday beginning next weekend” (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 6/9).

Ward finished the Oread Ironman 70.3
in under six hours

NAMES: The NBA yesterday announced that an annual league award that recognizes the ideal teammate is being named for Basketball HOFers JACK TWYMAN and MAURICE STOKES. The award recognizes friendship and selflessness among teammates. NBAers have selected Clippers G CHAUNCEY BILLUPS as the recipient of the inaugural Twyman-Stokes Teammate of the Year Award (NBA)....Univ. of Hartford coach JENNIFER RIZZOTTI, Texas A&M coach GARY BLAIR, Univ. of Tennessee-Chattanooga coach JIM FOSTER, former Ole Miss player PEGGIE GILLOM-GRANDERSON, former Texas player ANNETTE SMITH-KNIGHT and former Rutgers player SUE WICKS on Saturday were inducted into the Women's Basketball HOF (AP, 6/8)....The Int’l Boxing HOF this weekend inducted its ’13 class, which featured announcer JIMMY LENNON JR., referee MILLS LANE, writer COLIN HART and former boxer MYUNG-WOO YUH (ONEIDA DISPATCH, 6/9)....Boxer PETER QUILLIN was seen with Barclays Center and Nets CEO BRETT YORMARK at Peter Luger Steakhouse in Brooklyn “discussing Yormark and BRUCE RATNER's plans to renovate the Nassau Coliseum” (N.Y. POST, 6/10)....Hockey HOFer GORDIE HOWE’s attorney STEVEN MATTA on Friday said that Howe, his son, MARK, and their Power Play Int’l Co. have “suffered well into ‘seven figure’ damages in the destruction of their personal property that had been ordered returned to Howe” by defendants DEL REDDY and AARON HOWARD, their former business managers. Reddy’s father, MICHAEL REDDY, and their Immortal Investments Co. also are “named as defendants” (DETROIT NEWS, 6/9)....Former NFLer HINES WARD yesterday competed in The Oread Ironman 70.3 and finished in 5:53:18. Ward is training to compete at the Ironman World Championship (THE DAILY)....Former NBA coach AVERY JOHNSON is selling his Houston-area estate for $8.9M. The home “comes with seven bedrooms and eight bathrooms” (, 6/9)....Bears QB JAY CUTLER has “married his reality TV star fiancée, KRISTIN CAVALLARI” (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 6/10).