SAO PAULO, Brazil -- Former Germany great Franz Beckenbauer was banned from football for 90 days by FIFA on Friday for not co-operating with an investigation into the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids. FIFA said the suspension was requested by ethics prosecutor Michael Garcia, making Beckenbauer the first person to be punished as a result of the case. Beckenbauer refused "repeated requests for his assistance, including requests that he provide information during an in-person interview or in response to written questions provided in both English and German," FIFA said in a statement. It was unclear whether the FIFA suspension would prevent Beckenbauer -- who won the World Cup as both a player and coach -- from attending the tournament in Brazil. FIFA suspensions relating to "any football-related activity, at any level" typically include attending matches and meeting other football officials. Beckenbauer was a voting member of FIFAs executive committee in December 2010 when it chose Qatar, and Russia as 2018 World Cup host. He said last week that he rejected two attempts by Garcia to speak with him, claiming he was no longer active in football. Beckenbauer still holds top-level positions in world football, after serving on FIFAs board from 2007-11. He joined after leading Germanys organization of the 2006 World Cup. He is an adviser to FIFAs football committee and a global ambassador for German champion Bayern Munich. Garcia, a former U.S. Attorney has said that next month he will deliver a dossier on the World Cup case, which FIFA critics hope will order a redo of the votes. Beckenbauer was named in reports this past weekend by The Sunday Times, which has alleged widespread corruption linked to Qatari official Mohamed bin Hammam and the 2022 bidding campaign. The newspaper said Beckenbauer took paid consultancies in 2011 with German firms seeking contracts for World Cup related projects in the gas-rich emirate. Like most FIFA board members, Beckenbauer has not publicly revealed who he voted for. Qatar defeated the United States 14-8 in the fourth round of voting, FIFA President Sepp Blatter has previously said German and French business and political interests influenced the FIFA vote. FIFA said its independent ethics judge, Munich-based Joachim Eckert, was not involved in the decision to suspend Beckenbauer, who faces further sanctions. "The case is now the subject of formal investigation proceedings being conducted by investigatory chamber member Vanessa Allard as chief of the investigation," FIFA said. Garcia could still seek to interview Beckenbauer, though he closed the investigation phase of his probe on Monday. On Wednesday, Garcia addressed FIFAs 209 member countries in Sao Paulo and stressed that football officials are obligated to co-operate with his work. "And it makes real penalties available to all those who fail," the American lawyer said then. Chad Thomas Jersey
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.Y. - Terry and Kim Pegula have no immediate plans to tinker with their new NFL team.Charlotte, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - Kemba Walker 15 points, Al Jefferson and Bismack Biyombo both had 12 and the Charlotte Hornets held off the Miami Heat, 78-76, for their eighth win in nine games. Walker returned from a two-game absence and overcame a 4-for-17 shooting night, hitting 5-of-6 free throws in the final 1:14 of the game to help Charlotte hold its lead, which it owned most of the game. Wade and Bosh both scored 17 points for the Heat, losers in three of four. Final Score: Cleveland 106, Utah 92 Cleveland, OH (SportsNetwork.com) - LeBron James scored 26 points one day after missing practice with flu-like symptoms and the Cleveland Cavaliers easily picked up their fourth consecutive win, rolling past the Utah Jazz 106-92 on Wednesday night. All five Cleveland starters scored in double digits in a game that was a rout from the second quarter on. Kevin Love had 19 points and 13 rebounds and Kyrie Irving scored 18 after missing the teams shootaround because he felt sick. Timofey Mozgov added 16 points and 11 rebounds and fellow new addition J.R. Smith scored 15 in the win. The Cavaliers have scored at least 106 points in all four of their recent wins, which came on the heels of six consecutive losses, the first five without James while he missed two weeks because of back and knee injuries. James said he started feeling sick Monday and sat out Tuesdays practice with flu-like symptoms. He participated in the teams shootaround Wednesday and was 8-of-16 from the field against Utah, also contributing nine assists and seven rebounds. Enes Kanter had 24 points and 17 rebounds to lead the Jazz, who have dropped five of their last six. Final Score: New York 98, Philadelphia 91 Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Carmelo Anthonys 27 points and 11 rebounds propelled the New York Knicks to their first winning streak in over two months by virtue of Wednesdays 98-91 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers. Jose Calderon contributed 15 points and Tim Hardaway Jr. finished with 13 in New Yorks second consecutive triumph. The Knicks ended a franchise-record 16- game skid with Mondays 99-92 decision over New Orleans. Its only the second time this season the Knicks, who entered this matchup between the Eastern Conferences bottom two teams with a league-worst 6-36 record, have won back-to-back games. The other time came from Oct. 30-Nov. 2 in the clubs second and third outings of the season. The Sixers received 27 points, seven assists and five steals from Michael Carter-Williams, but shot just 36.7 percent from the field in their third consecutive loss. Robert Covington added 17 points for Philadelphia and Henry Sims posted 11 points and 12 rebounds in defeat. Final Score: Atlanta 110, Indiana 91 Atlanta, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Jeff Teague and DeMarre Carroll led a third- quarter onslaught on Wednesday night to help the Atlanta Hawks match their longest winning streak in franchise history. Teague finished with 17 points and 11 assists, while Carroll added 17 points and four steals as the Hawks routed the struggling Indiana Pacers 110-91 for their 14th consecutive win. The Hawks outscored Indiana 36-23 in the third to create an insurmountable advantage heading into the fourth. They shot 66.7 percent (14-of-21) from the floor in the period and knocked down 6-of-9 attempts from beyond the arc. Teague and Carroll netted 10 points apiece during the frame. Atlantas current 14-game run tied the 1993-94 Hawks for the longest winning streak in franchise history. Al Horford posted 14 points, seven rebounds and five assists and Paul Millsap supplied 12 points and nine boards for the Hawks, who had six players reach double figures in scoring. C.J. Miles poured in 18 points off the bench to lead Indiana, which has dropped six consecutive contests.dddddddddddd Final Score: Detroit 128, Orlando 118 Auburn Hills, MI (SportsNetwork.com) - Brandon Jennings scored 24 points and handed out a career-high 21 assists in the Detroit Pistons 128-118 win over the Orlando Magic on Wednesday. Detroits frontcourt benefited from Jennings effective passing as it won for the third time in four games. Andre Drummond led the Pistons with 26 points, and Greg Monroe was not far behind with 24 of his own. Drummond and Monroe had 17 and 10 rebounds, respectively. The Magic saw their losing streak reach three games despite shooting 49.5 percent. Nikola Vucevic paced Orlando with 26 points and 13 rebounds, and Victor Oladipo added 23. Tobias Harris returned from a five- game absence due to an ankle injury with 19 points. Final Score: Memphis 92, Toronto 86 Memphis, TN (SportsNetwork.com) - Zach Randolph finished with 19 points and 13 rebounds and Marc Gasol scored a game-high 26 points as the Memphis Grizzlies downed the Toronto Raptors 92-86 in a battle of division leaders. Gasol added seven boards and five assists, while Mike Conley netted 12 points, including Memphis only 3-pointer during a late run that put the game away. The Southwest Division leaders rebounded from Mondays home loss to the Mavericks and have won five of six overall. Lou Williams and Kyle Lowry scored 21 and 20 points, respectively, while Jonas Valanciunas chipped in with 12 points and 10 rebounds for Toronto, which still holds a healthy lead atop the Atlantic Division but has gone just 3-8 over the last 11 games. Final Score: Dallas 98, Minnesota 75 Minneapolis, MN (SportsNetwork.com) - Chandler Parsons poured in 22 points in only 26 minutes and the Dallas Mavericks had little trouble with the lowly Minnesota Timberwolves, rolling to a 98-75 win at Target Center. Parsons finished 9-of-13 from the floor and 4-of-6 from 3-point range, while the Mavericks hit on 11-of-27 shots from beyond the arc in handing the Timberwolves a ninth straight loss on their home court. Minnesota, in contrast, went a poor 2-of-15 on 3-point tries and shot just 34.8 percent overall. Dirk Nowitzki added 16 points and nine rebounds in Dallas third consecutive victory. Andrew Wiggins paced the Timberwolves with 18 points, with Thaddeus Young tallying 14 points, 11 rebounds and six assists in defeat. Nikola Pekovic, playing his first game since Minnesotas loss in Dallas on Nov. 15, had 14 points in 23 minutes in his return. Final Score: New Orleans 96, LA Lakers 80 New Orleans, LA (SportsNetwork.com) - Anthony Davis had 29 points and eight rebounds as the New Orleans Pelicans pulled away in the fourth quarter to defeat the Los Angeles Lakers 96-80 on Wednesday night. Eric Gordon posted 17 points, 10 assists and five rebounds, while Tyreke Evans added 19 points for the Pelicans, who outscored the Lakers 27-12 in the fourth to turn the game into a rout. Jordan Hill tallied 15 points and 13 boards and Kobe Bryant netted 14 points for Los Angeles, which has dropped six straight games. Final Score: Oklahoma City 105, Washington 103 (OT) Washington, DC (SportsNetwork.com) - Russell Westbrook finished with 32 points and his layup in the final seconds of overtime lifted the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 105-103 win over the Washington Wizards on Wednesday night. Westbrook also tallied eight assists and eight rebounds, while Kevin Durant paced the Thunder with 34 points. 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