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BASKETBALL BRIEFS

Published: Saturday, Aug. 24 1996 12:00 a.m. MDT

MAVS SIGN WALKER: First-round draft pick Samaki Walker signed a three-year, $4.3 million deal with Dallas on Friday, continuing new coach Jim Cleamons' offseason tinkering to polish the Mavericks.

"Basically, he's got the right attitude. He's a great athlete, a great basketball player," said owner Ross Perot Jr. "It's another critical piece of the puzzle."Walker, 20, will be the youngest player in franchise history when the season opens. He said he's looking forward to making the transition to the pros.

The Mavericks gave Boston the No. 6 pick in the draft in exchange for center Eric Montross and the No. 9 pick, which they used for Walker.

Walker, 6-foot-9 and 247 pounds, became a natural first choice of the Cleamons Era when he demonstrated during a pre-draft workout that he could do more than play with his back to the basket, as he was forced to do at Louisville.

DYE TO COACH IN CBA: Bobby Dye, who won more Big Sky Conference basketball games than any other coach, has been named head coach and general manager of basketball operations for the new Continental Basketball Association team.

Dye's appointment was announced Friday by William Ilett, managing investor in the partnership that received the CBA's only expansion franchise this year. The announcement came at groundbreaking ceremonies for The Idaho Center at Nampa, a 13,000-seat multipurpose arena.

Ilett said the new team will be called the Idaho Stampede. Nampa is host to the annual Snake River Stampede rodeo, which will be held in the new arena.

Dye was head coach at Boise State for 12 seasons before resigning last year. His record was 213-133 and his teams won two Big Sky regular season championships and three tournament championships.

X-MAN CHARGED WITH ASSAULT: Xavier McDaniel, a former Seattle SuperSonics forward, has been charged with domestic-violence assault against his girlfriend, the King County prosecutor's office said.

McDaniel, 33, pleaded innocent to the charge in King County District Court on Wednesday. He was released on $10,000 bond.

The 6-foot-7, 215-pound McDaniel is accused of choking Michelle Anderson during a fight at their south Seattle home on Monday and preventing her from calling 911, court records show.

A protection order also has been issued to prevent McDaniel from contacting Anderson, 30, or entering their home. The couple has a 22-month-old daughter.

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