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Sports in brief: Orlando Magic open doors to new arena

Cutting the ribbon to Amway Center, from left: Magic president Bob Vander Weide, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, Magic COO Alex Martins, Orange County Mayor Rich Crotty.

Associated Press

Cutting the ribbon to Amway Center, from left: Magic president Bob Vander Weide, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, Magic COO Alex Martins, Orange County Mayor Rich Crotty.

NBA

After sweep, Magic shows off arena

ORLANDO — Magic coach Stan Van Gundy joined about 200 team employees in cleaning the new 18,500-seat Amway Center arena right before Friday's public opening for about 3,000 fans. Then he later bought dinner for the workers.

"I live here, too," Van Gundy said. "It's home."

The arena has wine and beer bars, indoor restaurants, outdoor cafes and a nightclub. There's a play area for kids, retail outlets and the largest video screen in the NBA.

"This place is the best of the best," All-Star center Dwight Howard said.

All 60 suites have been sold along with more than 14,000 season tickets, a franchise record. The team would cap season tickets at 15,000 if necessary.

The $480 million arena hosts its first preseason game Oct. 10 against New Orleans.

More Basketball

U.S. women avoid upset bug at worlds

Angel McCoughtry and Maya Moore watched from the stands as top-seeded Russia was upset by Belarus. The young American stars wanted to make sure that wouldn't happen to them.

McCoughtry scored 17 and Moore added 15 as the United States routed South Korea 106-44 to advance to today's semifinals at the women's in the Czech Republic.

"The group I was sitting with was like, 'We're not going to have that happen to us,' " Moore said.

The United States (7-0) team plays Spain today. Belarus, which won 70-53, faces the host Czech Republic, which knocked off defending champ Australia 79-68.

More NBA: The league informed teams in a memo that fines for technicals will double from last season's amounts, the Associated Press reported. Players and coaches will be docked $2,000 for each of their first five technicals. The costs rise to $3,000 for the next five, then $4,000 for Nos. 11-15. Starting at 16, players are suspended one game for every two techs, along with $5,000 for each.

CYCLING

Contador denies blood transfusions

Three-time Tour de France winner Alberto Contador denies that his positive test for a banned drug stems from blood doping rather than contaminated steak, his spokesman said.

The French sports daily L'Equipe reported that the German lab that found a tiny amount of clenbuterol in Contador's urine sample also found plastic residues that might turn up after a transfusion of blood from a plastic bag.

Contador spokesman Jacinto Vidarte said the Spanish rider "categorically denies having a blood transfusion." Vidarte added that no one at the International Cycling Union, which announced a suspension, has told Contador that plastic residues were found.

ET CETERA

Horses: Zenyatta seeks to remain undefeated in her 19th start when she runs today in the $250,000 Lady's Secret Stakes at Hollywood Park, the final California start of her career. With a win, Zenyatta would own the career earnings record by a female horse. Ouija Board, who retired in 2006, holds the record with $6,334,296. Zenyatta has earned $6,254,580 with her 18-0 record. … Belmont Park canceled Friday's card due to rain, flooding and high winds in the New York area. Track officials hope to run today's $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup.

Tennis: Caroline Wozniacki fended off Victoria Azarenka 6-2, 6-7 (3-7), 6-4 to reach the Pan Pacific Open final in Tokyo. Wozniacki faces Elena Dementieva, who beat Francesca Schiavone 6-4, 7-5. Wozniacki could overtake Serena Williams as No. 1 in the world rankings if she wins in Tokyo and reaches the quarterfinals or better in Beijing next week. … Rafael Nadal rode a big serve to beat Mikhail Kukushkin 6-2, 6-3 to reach the Thailand Open semifinals.

Times wires

Sports in brief: Orlando Magic open doors to new arena 10/01/10 [Last modified: Friday, October 1, 2010 10:41pm]
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