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NBA roundup: Pacers extend Vogel’s contract

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Indiana Pacers coach Frank Vogel signed a multiyear contract extension on Wednesday after a disastrous finish to the 2013-14 season.

Terms of the contact were not released.

Last season, the Pacers earned the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference but lost in the conference finals to the Miami Heat. The Pacers struggled during the second half of last season after the trade deadline and some were calling for Vogel to be fired, but president of basketball operations Larry Bird stood by his coach.

The 41-year-old Vogel is entering his fourth full season as coach after taking over on an interim basis in January 2011 when Jim O’Brien was fired. The Pacers finished that season 20-18 and reached the NBA playoffs for the first time in four seasons. In July, 2011, the interim tag was removed and in the three seasons since, the Pacers have reached the Eastern Conference finals twice and Eastern Conference semifinals once with a record of 147-82 (.641 winning percentage).

—Point guard Kyrie Irving suffered a right ankle injury during practice before the Cleveland Cavaliers traveled to Brazil for their preseason game with the Miami Heat, ESPN.com reported Wednesday.

Irving was wearing a walking boot on his right foot while sightseeing with teammates in Rio de Janeiro on Wednesday. According to ESPN, Irving had X-rays taken and underwent an MRI on Tuesday before the team charter left. Both tests were negative. He is considered day to day and his status for Saturday’s preseason game is uncertain.

—DeJuan Blair, Nene, Daniel Orton and Xavier Silas of the Washington Wizards were suspended one game on Wednesday by the NBA for leaving the bench during a confrontation between Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah and Wizards forward Paul Pierce during a preseason game.

Noah was $15,000 for starting the incident with Pierce by pushing him in the chest. Pierce was fined the same amount for hitting Noah in the forehead with his left index finger. NBA president of basketball operations Rod Thorn announced the NBA’s disciplinary action that resulted from the incident, which occurred on Monday night with 8:57 left in the first quarter of the Wizards’ 85-81 win over the Bulls at United Center.

The suspensions are effective with the first regular-season game for each player.

—Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James moved past golfer Tiger Woods as the most valuable brand in sports this year, according to Forbes.

The magazine listed James’ brand worth at $37 million, up from $27 million in 2013, compared with Woods’ $36 million.

Woods experienced a down year. Not only was he injured twice, but his worth dropped from $46 million, mostly as a result of EA Sports longer making the Tiger Woods video game.

Third on the list was tennis player Roger Federer at $32 million and No. 4 was golfer Phil Mickelson at $29 million.

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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