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South Korea no match for U.S. in tuneup
By ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published August 16, 2006
SEOUL, South Korea - A 53-point win over South Korea wrapped up a perfect Asian exhibition tour for a star-studded U.S. team on its way to the world championships.
LeBron James scored 23 Tuesday to lead the Americans to a 116-63 win over South Korea in their final tuneup for the world championships. The U.S. squad went 5-0 in exhibitions leading up to the worlds, which begin Saturday in Japan.
"We were a little sluggish at first, and I was able to pick up my energy level and the guys followed," James said. "We got better as the game went on and took care of business."
U.S. coach Mike Krzyzewski said he was pleased with the progress the team has made since its first exhibition game against Puerto Rico on Aug. 3, which the Americans won 114-69.
"We're proud of our team," Krzyzewski said. "We had two good games here in Korea and it's exciting the way we've played to get ready."
In other exhibition games leading up to the world championships, Vasilis Spanoulis scored 12 to help Greece defeat Germany 84-47 in the final of the Stankovic Cup in Kunshan, China. Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki was held to nine points for Germany.
Boris Diaw of the Phoenix Suns scored 15 to lead France to third place in the Stankovic Cup with an 86-74 victory over Brazil. Suns teammate Leandro Barbosa scored a game-high 29 for Brazil.
Yao Ming of the Houston Rockets scored the winner and had 21 points to lift China past Australia 63-61 to capture fifth place in the tournament. The Milwaukee Bucks' Andrew Bogut had 20 points for Australia.
Sonics reward Wilcox
Chris Wilcox took advantage of his chance to start on a regular basis in Seattle, and the SuperSonics rewarded him for his strong play.
The 6-foot-10 Wilcox and the Sonics reached agreement on a three-year, $24-million deal that gives Wilcox a chance to prove his impressive 29 games with Seattle last season were no fluke.
Wilcox averaged 14.1 points and 8.2 rebounds, shot 59 percent and averaged 30 minutes, all career bests, since being acquired in a Feb. 14 trade with the Clippers. His most impressive performance came April 4, when Wilcox had 26 points and 24 rebounds in a victory over Houston.
BOBCATS: Charlotte re-signed center Jake Voskuhl, who averaged 5.3 points and 3.6 rebounds in a reserve role last year, to a two-year, $4-million deal.
KINGS: Sacramento signed center Loren Woods, a five-year veteran who spent the past two seasons with Toronto.
NETS: New Jersey re-signed free agent Cliff Robinson two months after declining to pick up its option on the 17-year veteran forward for next season. Robinson averaged 6.9 points and 3.3 rebounds last season.