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Bird files lawsuit alleging couple improperly used his name

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Associated Press / May 14, 2008

Ex-Celtics great Larry Bird has filed a lawsuit alleging a couple who bought his former home in southern Indiana are improperly using his name to promote a bed-and-breakfast.

The lawsuit, filed in US District Court in Evansville, claims Georgianna Lincoln and Christopher Cooke did not have permission to use the Hall of Famer's name with the property and are profiting off his trademark by stating the home belonged to him.

"Everybody in French Lick calls it Larry Bird's home," Cooke said. "All I know is they told us certain things when we were considering purchasing the property, and after we bought it they had a different story."

Bird, now president of the Indiana Pacers, has trademarked his name and likeness.

Rookie team named

Al Horford and Kevin Durant headlined the All-Rookie team.

Atlanta's Horford was the only unanimous choice with 58 votes, followed by Seattle's Durant, the Rookie of the Year, with 57 in balloting by the league's coaches.

Houston's Luis Scola, Los Angeles Clippers forward Al Thornton, and Seattle's Jeff Green also made the first team.

The second team was Toronto's Jamario Moon, Memphis's Juan Carlos Navarro, Philadelphia's Thaddeus Young, Detroit's Rodney Stuckey, and Houston's Carl Landry.

Bryant a go

Lakers star Kobe Bryant said his sore lower back was much better and that he'll play tonight in Game 5 of Los Angeles' playoff series against the Jazz at Staples Center. Bryant tweaked his back in the opening minutes of Sunday's 123-115 overtime loss at Utah that tied the Western Conference semifinals at 2-2 . . . Mike D'Antoni is bringing his high-scoring brand of basketball to a Knicks team that seems ill-suited to run it. No matter. The former Phoenix Suns coach figures he'll come up with something. "Obviously you're going to be a little slower than [the Suns], but at the same time there's no reason why you can't run, be exciting, and have good ball movement," D'Antoni said. The Knicks have had seven straight losing seasons. D'Antoni, 57, was introduced as their 24th coach at Madison Square Garden, four days after agreeing to leave the Suns for a $24 million, four-year contract. Knicks president Donnie Walsh referred to his new coach as Mike "D'Antonio," before quickly correcting himself. "I thought that Mike was the best guy to choose because I think he's been in situations like we have right now and he did a good job with those situations," Walsh said.

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