BRYANT BECOMES YOUNGEST TO REACH 30,000 POINTS: NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Kobe Bryant has become the youngest player in NBA history to eclipse 30,000 career points and only the fifth overall to hit that mark.
Bryant entered the elite scoring club during the first half of the Los Angeles Lakers' game against the New Orleans Hornets. He arrived in New Orleans 13 points short, and scored his 13th and 14th points on a short jumper with 1:16 to go in the first half.
Bryant is 34. Wilt Chamberlain was 35 when he hit the mark, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Karl Malone were each 36 and Michael Jordan was 38.
STERN: SPURS RESTED TOO MANY PLAYERS TOO EARLY: NEW ORLEANS (AP) — NBA Commissioner David Stern says his $250,000 fine of the San Antonio Spurs was justified because the club went beyond what league owners agreed was a reasonable approach to resting healthy players.
Stern says coaches should have the authority to rest players at the end of the season, but that teams should not rest four starters little more than a month into the season, and the team made matters worse by not notifying the league beforehand.
Last week, the Spurs sent home Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Danny Green before a game in Miami. Stern points out that Green is 26 and Parker 30, and that he doubted any of the players needed rest this early in the season in what was also their only visit to Miami.
CAL WR KEENAN ALLEN TO DECLARE FOR DRAFT: BERKELEY (AP) — California wide receiver Keenan Allen will skip his senior season to enter the NFL draft.
Allen said in an announcement through the school on Wednesday that he is grateful for his time at Cal and feels ready to take the next step to the NFL.
Allen finishes his career as the school's all-time leader with 205 receptions. He ranks third with 2,570 yards receiving and seventh with 17 touchdown catches.
Allen's best season came as a sophomore when he had 98 receptions for 1,343 yards and six touchdowns. He had 61 catches for 737 yards and six TDs this season before missing the final three games with a left knee injury.
LARKIN: DRUG CHEATS DO NOT BELONG IN HALL OF FAME: NEW YORK (AP) — Barry Larkin wants to keep baseball's most exclusive club clean.
Inducted into the Hall of Fame last summer after a 19-year career with the Cincinnati Reds, Larkin told The Associated Press in a phone interview Wednesday that players who cheat shouldn't receive baseball's highest individual honor.
"I think if you cheated, no, you don't deserve it because I know how difficult it was for me to get there and how difficult it was for me just to compete on an everyday basis," Larkin said. "I think if you cheated I think you made a decision and I don't think you belong."
Larkin was in New York to sign items that will be auctioned off as part of Steiner Sports' 25th anniversary. All the proceeds of the online auction will go to charities that are supporting families affected by Superstorm Sandy.
The 1995 NL MVP was speaking about a month ahead of the voting results for next year's Hall class. Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and Sammy Sosa are all up for selection for the first time.
CHIEFS PLAYERS PAY RESPECTS TO BELCHER AT SERVICE: KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Heads bowed, somber past and present Kansas City Chiefs players turned out Wednesday for a memorial service for teammate Jovan Belcher, who killed his girlfriend and then himself over the weekend.
Belcher fatally shot 22-year-old Kasandra Perkins on Saturday at the Kansas City home they shared with their 3-month-old daughter, Zoey. He then drove to the Chiefs practice facility at Arrowhead Stadium, where coach Romeo Crennel, general manager Scott Pioli and defensive assistant Gary Gibbs witnessed Belcher commit suicide.
The team moved up its practice schedule so that players could attend Wednesday afternoon's service at the nearby Landmark International Deliverance and Worship Center, where Belcher and Perkins worshipped. The media wasn't allowed inside.