Bobby Hansen's troubled start to 1989 continued Friday, when the Jazz fined him and Coach Jerry Sloan changed his mind about having him dress for a home game with New Jersey. Hansen was activated from the injured list, but will not play at least until Monday at Phoenix.
Jazz general manager David Checketts announced that Hansen was fined an undisclosed amount for his involvement in a Jan. 1 fight with former teammate Bart Kofoed that left Hansen with a fractured cheekbone. "I'm not going to complain, and Bobby's not, either," Hansen's agent, John Sandquist, said about the fine. "How do you put a number on something like that?"Jazz president Frank Layden said the fine was for more money than the NBA-assessed fines to Portland's Jerome Kersey ($3,500) and the Clippers' Ken Norman ($2,500) for an on-court fight. "The important thing is we're not establishing guilt or who's to blame, but a fine seemed to be appropriate," said Layden, noting the incident came at a late hour with a team practice scheduled the next morning.
"It was a decision they had to make; I can live with it," Hansen said. "Being a non-basketball injury, (the amount) could have been a lot worse."
Sandquist also confirmed that Hansen successfully competed a psychological evaluation. "Everybody's satisfied," Sandquist said.
Hansen received medical clearance to play this week from Dr. Wirt Hines, who surgically repaired his cheekbone Jan. 4. Sloan decided to have Hansen dress Friday, but changed his mind after the morning shootaround, saying he wanted Hansen to have a full-scale practice first.
"I don't want guys to dress unless they can go on the floor and play," Sloan said. "I've always told players if you're dressed and on the bench, you should be ready to play."
Sloan may try to arrange an off-day practice in Phoenix Sunday. "I'd just feel better if I can have him practice with contact before he plays, so I know what to expect from him. We've been in(game) situations where experimentation is not a good thing to do," he said.
Hansen will still have about 37 games to salvage something of the season.