NBA Commissioner David Stern says the NBA could soon start testing its players… (Bebeto Matthews / Associated…)
With one more procedural move, the Sacramento Kings took another step toward Seattle.
NBA Commissioner David Stern said Wednesday night that the Seattle group led by Chris Hansen and Steve Ballmer, which recently reached an agreement to purchase the Kings, has filed for relocation with the league.
Stern spoke in Minneapolis before the Timberwolves hosted San Antonio. He called the Seattle group "very strong," and said the appropriate committees have been convened to look over the proposed sale of the Kings and the prospective move.
Stern said the relocation proposal calls for the team to play in KeyArena for "two years, possibly three," while a new arena in Seattle is being built.
"We have had submitted a signed agreement to have the team sold to a very strong
The Kings' sale price of $525 million would surpass the NBA-record $450 million the Golden State Warriors sold for in 2010.
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson has been trying to find investors with the financial means to match the sale price, keep the Kings in Sacramento and help on the construction of a new arena in California's capital city.
Johnson responded on Twitter on Wednesday night, saying again that Sacramento "is playing to win."
The NBA for the most part has managed to avoid the major performance-enhancing drug scandals that have plagued the NFL and Major League Baseball over the last decade. Stern is hoping to keep it that way.
Stern said he thinks the NBA is on track to begin testing its players for human growth hormone, perhaps as early as next season. Although the issue of PEDs, and HGH in particular, has not been perceived as a big problem in basketball, Stern said the league and players' union is trying to remain proactive to send a message that they have no place in their game.
"It's not a commitment, not a promise," Stern said on Wednesday before the Minnesota Timberwolves hosted the San Antonio Spurs. "It's an expectation. It might slide a little bit, but I think we're well on our way."
Packers' Driver says goodbye
Donald Driver found a way to retire in style.
On Wednesday, the popular Green Bay Packers wide receiver celebrated his 14-year career during an event at Lambeau Field with family, friends, a handful of teammates and 1,500 fans who filled the atrium and lined balconies to get a glimpse of him.
"I told myself I wasn't going to cry today, so I'm going to hold the emotion back as much as possible. I love you all so much," said Driver, who retired after catching 743 passes for 10,137 yards after making the team as a seventh-round draft pick out of Alcorn State in 1999.
The Bengals have moved assistant coach Hue Jackson into a new role, giving him the job of replacing the retired Jim Anderson as running backs coach.
Jackson was an assistant defensive backs coach last season. The Bengals hired Adam Zimmer — son of defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer — to fill that role on Tuesday.
Jackson was Oakland's head coach in 2011, but was fired after an 8-8 finish.
The Oakland Raiders are tarping off about 10,000 seats at the Coliseum to reduce capacity to about 53,250 next season.
Raiders Chief Executive Amy Trask announced that tarps will be put over the third deck on the East side of the stadium to make it easier to sell games out and to create a better game-day environment.
About 4,850 fans will be relocated with the price of their season tickets cut from $260 to $250. Other season-ticket holders on the west side will see the price of their season tickets drop by as much as $360.
Reliever Sergio Romo and the San Francisco Giants have agreed to a $9-million, two-year contract, avoiding salary arbitration. The deal means the Giants have settled all of their potential arbitration cases before hearings.
Romo went 4-2 with 14 saves and a 1.79 ERA last season. He was the team's primary closer in the postseason, when he had one win, four saves and a 0.84 ERA in 10 appearances.
The Colorado Rockies said first baseman Todd Helton was arrested on a charge of driving under the influence Wednesday morning in the Denver suburb of Thornton
Ted Ligety showed off his improvement in the speed events on the biggest of stages.
Building on his giant slalom skills, the American won his first super-G title Wednesday in the world championships at Schladming, Austria. In front of a crowd of 24,000, Ligety took a lot of risks in the turning final section and mastered the Planai course in 1 minute 23.96 seconds.
Lindsey Vonn will head home from Austria for surgery in Colorado next week after tearing two ligaments in her right knee and breaking a bone in her lower leg in a crash at the world championships.
Vonn said Wednesday that she plans to compete in the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, which start in 12 months. She was released from the hospital late Tuesday and returned to the team hotel.
Kyle Larson, a highly touted 20-year-old driver from Elk Grove, Calif., will race full time this season in NASCAR's second-level Nationwide Series. Larson will drive the No. 32 Chevrolet for the Turner Scott Motorsports team.
Larson mainly has driven midget cars, sprints and other open-wheel cars, but last year he drove stock cars for the first time and promptly won the championship in NASCAR's lower-level K&N Pro Series East. He also drove four races in NASCAR's truck series last year, finishing in the top 10 in three of those events.
The Nationwide series' season opens Feb. 23 at Daytona International Speedway.
— Jim Peltz