Paul Hamm had the best medical care there is, and the drive and determination to make yet another spectacular comeback. What he didn't have was enough time.
With only about a week of training time left, the reigning gold medalist withdrew from the Beijing Olympics on Monday because he won't be healthy enough to compete. Besides persistent pain from the right hand he broke two months ago, he strained his left rotator cuff in his accelerated recovery effort.
"There came a point in the gym where I almost threw my arms in the air and just knew this wasn't working," the 25-year-old Hamm said. "It was a really tough decision for me to make. I feel like if I had another month, I would have been able to get the job done."
The American men leave for China on Wednesday. Podium training the one opportunity gymnasts have to train on the competition floor and in front of judges before the meet begins is Aug. 6. The men's competition begins Aug. 9.
USAC fines Stewart $10,000 for outburst
Tony Stewart was fined $10,000 Monday for what the U.S. Auto Club deemed unsportsmanlike conduct during a midget race last week at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Indianapolis. Tony Stewart Racing also was placed on probation for the remainder of the USAC season. Stewart reportedly knocked a radio headset off the head of one USAC official and shoved another following a ruling Thursday involving Stewart's car, driven by Tracy Hines. Hines scraped the wall and pitted for a tire change, but his car was not deemed ready to re-enter the race in time to rejoin the field for the restart.
Clippers sign Davis as other teams deal, too
The Clippers continued their offseason makeover Monday, signing veteran swingman Ricky Davis to a multiyear contract. Terms were not announced. Davis, an unrestricted free agent who turns 29 in September, averaged 13.8 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.4 assists while playing in all 82 games for the Miami Heat last season. Others signing contracts Monday include Ryan Gomes agreeing in principle on a five-year contract with Minnesota; Sasha Vujacic signed a three-year, $15 million contract to return to the Lakers; Golden State re-signed center Andris Biedrins to a six-year contract worth more than $62 million; and Toronto signed free agent guard Will Solomon, who played the last two seasons in Turkey.
Norman turns down invite to play in PGA
Greg Norman turned down an invitation Monday to play in the PGA Championship, deciding to stick to a previous commitment instead of competing for the fourth straight week.
The PGA of America offered Norman an exemption after he had the 54-hole lead in the British Open and finished third. Norman tied for fifth last week at the Senior British Open, and will play this week in the U.S. Senior Open at The Broadmoor in Colorado.
"While I truly appreciate the PGA extending me an exemption for this year's PGA Championship, I have elected to decline in favor of adhering to the professional and personal commitments I made prior to The Open Championship at Royal Birkdale," Norman said on his Web site. "I wish the PGA and Oakland Hills all the very best for what I'm sure will be a great week for golf."
The PGA Championship will be played Aug. 7-10 at Oakland Hills in Bloomfield Township, Mich.
Norman, who played the British Open while on his honeymoon with tennis great Chris Evert, said he would return to work next week as CEO of Great White Shark Enterprises.
Still to be determined is whether he will accept his invitation to the Masters for finishing among the top four in the British Open.
Dance tryouts Aug. 9 for Utah Flash squad
Auditions for the 2008-09 Utah Flash dancers are scheduled for Aug. 9 at the Pinnacle Security Gymnasium at 1290 Sandhill Road in Orem. Clinics led by Utah Jazz dancer and Flash choreographer Brindie McCleary will be conducted on Aug. 7 and 8, at 6:30 p.m. The cost of the clinic is $10 for each session. The audition judging fee of $15 will be waived for those who attend either clinic session. Dancers will perform at all 26 Utah Flash home games and at a number of special community and sponsorship events. Additional information is on the Utah Flash Web site.
Combined wire, staff reports