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Sports Briefs

Man pleads guilty

to hiding clothes

FLEMINGTON, N.J. (AP) — A man who admitted hiding former NBA star Jayson Williams’ bloody clothes after a hired driver was killed at the basketball player’s New Jersey mansion has been sentenced to a year of probation.

Rochelle Park resident John Gordnick was at Williams’ house in February 2002 when a shotgun held by Williams fired, striking Costas “Gus” Christofi in the chest.

Gordnick pleaded guilty to evidence tampering and testified Williams gave him his clothes. Gordnick put the clothes in his car.

Gordnick already is serving a separate probationary sentence after pleading guilty to illegal gambling.

Williams was convicted of covering up the shooting but acquitted of aggravated manslaughter. On the eve of a retrial on a reckless manslaughter count the former New Jersey Nets player pleaded guilty to aggravated assault and was sentenced to five years.

T-Wolves deal

Jefferson to Jazz

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Timberwolves have agreed to send power forward Al Jefferson to the Utah Jazz for center Kosta Koufos and two future first-round draft picks.

The teams confirmed the trade Tuesday evening.

Timberwolves president David Kahn says the first-round picks and the added flexibility under the salary cap made it the right time to trade Jefferson.

Jefferson averaged 17.1 points and 9.3 rebounds last season in his first year back from a major knee injury in February 2009. He will help fill a void in Utah after Carlos Boozer went to Chicago.

Negro Leagues’

stamps on sale

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Negro Leagues take the baseball field again on Thursday as the Postal Service honors the organizations that gave black players a chance to show their talents before the major leagues were integrated.

A pair of 44-cent commemorative stamps will be dedicated in ceremonies at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, Mo.

One stamp shows a close play at home plate, while the other commemorates Andrew “Rube” Foster, founder of the leagues that operated from 1920 to 1960.

Legendary stars who played in the leagues included Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson, James “Cool Papa” Bell, Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, Ernie Banks and Jackie Robinson, who broke the color barrier in Major League Baseball in 1947.

Ilgauskas will ink

deal with Heat

MIAMI (AP) — Zydrunas Ilgauskas is following LeBron James to the Miami Heat.

The veteran center, who started playing for Cleveland in 1997 and has never suited up for another NBA team, expects to sign a two-year contract with the Heat later this week, agent Herb Rudoy said Tuesday. The two-year deal would come with a player option for the second season, Rudoy said.

Ilgauskas is the Cavs’ career leader in games played, blocked shots and rebounds. The 7-foot-3 Lithuanian was drafted by the club in 1996 and overcame serious foot injuries that nearly ended his career.

LT enters innocent

plea in rape case

NEW CITY, N.Y. (AP) — Hall of Fame linebacker Lawrence Taylor pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to an indictment that alleges he had sex with a 16-year-old girl in a New York hotel room.

The former NFL star allegedly paid $300 to the girl, a Bronx runaway, for their encounter in May. Taylor pleaded not guilty through his lawyer to third-degree rape, patronizing a prostitute, sexual abuse and endangering a child.

‘Troublemaker’ tag

concerns Owens

NEW YORK (AP) — Terrell Owens says he’s concerned teams are swayed by the perception that he’s a troublemaker and that’s why none have signed the free-agent receiver.

Owens told The Associated Press on Tuesday that his season in Buffalo proved he won’t be a distraction. Owens insists his statistics from 2009 are deceiving because the Bills dealt with coaching upheaval and offensive line injuries. The 36-year-old believes he can still be an elite NFL receiver.