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Names In The Game

July 25, 1997

CHICAGO (AP) _ Chicago Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf thought about reminding Michael Jordan who runs the show, but then thought better of it.

Reinsdorf conceded he was angered when Jordan warned he wouldn’t return to the Bulls next season unless Phil Jackson was rehired as coach.

``My initial reaction when Michael made what I consider to be inappropriate comments was to say `The heck with him, I’m in charge,‴ Reinsdorf told Chicago’s WBBM-TV.

``Because after all, no player is going to tell me who has to coach the ball club,″ Reinsdorf said. ``But at the same time, it would have been pretty dumb on my part to say `Well, I’m going to show him who the boss is.‴

Reinsdorf signed Jackson to a one-year deal this week.

Jordan, who is still unsigned, earned $30.14 million from a one-year contract he signed last summer.


DALLAS (AP) _ Cowboys’ wide receiver Michael Irvin has reached a deal to endorse Logo Athletic products.

His batterymate, quarterback Troy Aikman, put in a good word for him.

``I view the Logo Athletic deal as a sign that some people are telling me they believe in people. They’re saying they believe things happen in life and things go wrong off the field but that some companies will still take a chance on you, and I truly appreciate it,″ Irvin said.

Irvin lost several lucrative endorsement deals following his no-contest plea last April to a cocaine possession charge and his subsequent five-game suspension by the NFL.

He also was the target of a murder-for-hire plot and was accused of sexual assault by a topless dancer who later recanted the accusation.

Aikman, one of the leading spokesmen for the sports apparel company, is involved in its advertising and marketing.

Aikman declined to comment on Irvin’s deal, but a spokesman for the company said the quarterback also has personal relationships with several of Logo Athletic’s top officials.

``Troy Aikman means a lot to this company, and when he talks, we listen,″ Eddie White said. ``Troy said he had a friend who was looking for something, and we decided to look into the situation.″


SYDNEY, Australia (AP) _ Art teacher John Skillington tossed away his chance of becoming an instant millionaire when he missed the basket in a halftime promotion Friday.

Skillington won the chance to shoot for the million Australian dollars, $750,000 in U.S. money, in a poster design competition and was coached by Australian national team captain and former Seton Hall standout Andrew Gaze.

Skillington’s shot cleared the backboard and went into the crowd.

``My coach has been trying very hard over the past week to create a miracle with me,″ Skillington said.

It was the first time a $1 million shot promotion had been held in Austrlia.


ANCASTER, Ont. (AP) _ Canadian Tour player Frank Edmonds lost his caddie on the sixth hole.

Edmonds, who has a history of on-course confrontations with other players and caddies, verbally abused volunteer caddie Andy Kirkland, a retired Hamilton police officer, at the Canadian Masters Thursday.

By the time the pair reached the sixth tee, Kirkland had enough. He dropped Edmonds’ bag and walked in.

A spectator carried the clubs for the rest of the round.

``I have never got so much abuse without taking a guy down,″ Kirkland said.

Kirkland said his crime was saying ``nice shot.″ Edmonds said Kirkland was getting too involved. Edmonds, who shot a 6-over 77, was suspended for the first five events on the Canadian Tour this season for an undisclosed reason.


ALBUQUERQUE (AP) _ Junior bantamweight Danny Romero wants a rematch with Johnny Tapia.

Romero lost his IBF super flyweight title to WBO super flyweight champion Tapia by a unanimous decision last Friday in Las Vegas, Nev. Both are from Albuquerque.

Despite losing, Romero said he would not have done anything differently.

``I gave everything I had, and what’s more important,″ he said.

But Romero said he needs to redeem the loss to Tapia.

``Of course I’d love a rematch,″ Romero said. ``I don’t care if it’s not for a title. For me, it would be trying to redeem myself. You always want to redeem what you lose.″

Tapia has said he does not want a rematch.

``Going in, everyone expected a knockout,″ Romero said. ``In a sense, being the hardest puncher pound-for-pound means that people are watching for a left hook or a big right hand. I wanted to outbox him. I wanted to get a decision over him.″

When asked about his future, Romero won’t commit to anything. He said he might move up to bantamweight, with a 118-pound limit or the 122-pound super bantamweight.

``My goal now is to be champion in a different weight class,″ he said.

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