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  • PRO BASKETBALL NOTE


    Sunday, August 20, 1:05 AM
    *Grizzlies sign G Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf*
    ------------------------------------- 
    
    VANCOUVER, British Columbia (Ticker) -- Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf is
    back in the NBA with the Vancouver Grizzlies. 
    
    The Grizzlies today announced the signing of the free agent
    guard, who has not played in the NBA since 1998.  He played in
    Turkey in the 1998-99 season but did not play anywhere last
    season, according to a team spokeswoman. 
    
    Terms were not disclosed.  The signing came after Abdul-Rauf met
    for two days with Grizzlies president of basketball operations
    Dick Versace. 
    
    Abdul-Rauf, 31, averaged 15.2 points and was an outstanding
    free-throw shooter in eight seasons with Denver and Sacramento
    from 1990-98.  He should serve as a backup to point guard Mike
    Bibby and shooting guard Michael Dickerson. 
    
    "I am extremely excited about adding to our guard core a player
    of Mahmoud's accomplishments," Versace said. "We've added
    significant firepower to our bench by signing a veteran who not
    long ago was one of the most electrifying players in the
    league." 
    
    In his most recent NBA season of 1997-98, Abdul-Rauf averaged
    7.3 points and shot 38 percent for the Kings.  He has excellent
    shooting range and good quickness. 
    
    Born Chris Jackson in Gulfport, Mississippi, Abdul-Rauf has
    played despite having Tourette's Syndrome.  He also caused
    controversy by refusing to stand for the national anthem for
    part of the 1995-96 season, when he was with the Nuggets. 
    
    Abdul-Rauf called the American flag "a symbol of oppression and
    tyranny."  The NBA cited a rule that calls for players to stand
    in an orderly fashion during the national anthem and suspended
    him.  The sides reached a compromise as Abdul-Rauf eventually
    agreed to say a Muslim prayer during the anthem. 
    
    A career 91 percent foul shooter, Abdul-Rauf had his best season 
    in 1995-96, when he averaged 19.2 points and 6.8 assists in 57 
    games. 
    
    The former college teammate of Shaquille O'Neal at LSU was
    traded to the Kings in June 1996 for Sarunas Marciulionis. 
    
    st 08-20-00 00:56 et
    
    


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