- The Washington Times - Monday, September 17, 2001

District promotions and marketing man Pat Malone, co-founder of the 17-year-old Washington Senators Fan Club, chose a dramatic, expensive way recently to call attention to the city's lack of a baseball team.
During a game between the Minnesota Twins and Texas Rangers the franchises that forsook our fair town in 1960 and 1971, respectively Malone hired a small plane to fly over the Ballpark in Arlington trailing a banner that read, "Come home, play ball in Washington, D.C."
"I didn't do it for me," said Malone, who lives in Reston. "I did it for everybody [who wants to see the national pastime to return to the nation's capital."
Earlier, Malone hired planes to display the same message during the All-Star Game in Seattle and the Hall of Fame Game in Cooperstown, N.Y. To which we can only add, "Go, Expos."

Iverson's the one
Who is America's best athlete? The subject could provoke untold debate in untold saloons for the rest of the year, but Time magazine as usual has no doubt.
Hint: He used to play basketball for Georgetown University, and his name is not Patrick Ewing.
Citing his toughness, speed and coordination, Time magazine anointed Allen Iverson, whose skills led the Philadelphia 76ers to the NBA Finals and earned him the league's Most Valuable Player Award last season.
"Iverson spends his nights jackknifing to the hoop, a tiny salmon challenging grizzlies twice his weight," the magazine said. "By season's end, he looks like a man made out of adhesive tape."
Time said athletes like Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong have won more than Iverson, but both are specialists, while basketball requires a greater range of skills. It also honored Mike Krzyzewski of Duke as best coach and Northern Virginia miler Alan Webb as best amateur athlete.

Elway passes
John Elway, NFL owner?
It could have happened. The Rocky Mountain News reported that Elway passed up a chance to buy a 10 percent stake in the Denver Broncos shortly after he retired in 1999.
Elway allowed the $30 million purchase option to lapse in June of that year, according to documents filed in a lawsuit against Broncos owner Pat Bowlen. Had Elway accepted the deal, he would have become special assistant to Bowlen and eventually chief operating officer.
The purchase option, dated Sept. 23, 1998, was entered as evidence into the U.S. District Court lawsuit brought by former Broncos owner Edgar Kaiser. He claims Bowlen restructured the ownership makeup of the Broncos without providing Kaiser with a right of first refusal as agreed upon in the team's 1984 sale to Bowlen.
Maybe it's just as well Elway didn't move from the huddle to the board room. That would have made him the owner with the biggest teeth in football.

Ivanisevic gets the call
Tennis star Goran Ivanisevic has been drafted for compulsory duty in the Croatian military. But the call-up, which came on the Wimbledon champion's 30th birthday, will not disrupt his career.
Top athletes in Croatia are exempt from regular service, which normally requires conscripts to be lodged at a military base for a year. Instead, Ivanisevic will have to report to military officials when he is in the country and receive the most basic military training over a six-month period starting Nov. 27.
When asked which unit of the army he would most prefer, Ivanisevic said whichever unit doesn't require 20-20 vision [his is slightly impaired].
"Artillery is fine, but I shouldn't be shooting," he said. "I'd totally miss even something the size of a house."

Eminently quotable
Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney, on NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue's decision to cancel the weekend's games: "Not to be overly dramatic, but the National Football League is representative of this country. It's one of the real institutions in this country that we look to, so it's very important that the right decisions are made." …
Memphis Grizzlies coach Sidney Lowe, on the chances of Michael Jordan returning to the court with the Washington Wizards: "He can get satisfaction out of helping the young guys. I don't know how long he can go without winning games. At some point, it would get to him. He's accustomed to winning so much. But mentally, he's as tough as anyone I've ever been around."

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