June 24, 2005 Friday
All Editions

SECTION: SPORTS; Pg. 4

LENGTH: 508 words

HEADLINE: Curry gets clean bill of health from Los Angeles cardiologist
BYLINE: Mike McGraw, Daily Herald Sports Writer

BODY:

The Bulls weren't sure what to think when informed Wednesday by Eddy Curry's
camp - now headed by veteran players agent Leon Rose - that Curry's heart had
been given a clean bill of health by renowned Los Angeles cardiologist Dr. David
Cannom.

According to a team source, Cannom examined the results of tests already
completed by Curry. The Bulls want to proceed with caution and had Cannom
discuss his conclusions with the Bulls' team of doctors, a process that may have
begun on Thursday.

The only official response from the Bulls was a short statement attributed to
general manager John Paxson.

"The Bulls have had the opportunity to review Dr. David Cannom's report on
Eddy Curry," the statement read. "His positive report is terrific news for Eddy.
The next step is to schedule a face-to-face meeting between Eddy and Dr. Cannom.
Our goal has not changed from Day One and that is to ensure Eddy's long-term
health as our number one priority."

The Bulls did not object to Curry seeking the opinion of his own doctor and
expected it to happen. Cannom is the director of cardiology at Good Samaritan
Hospital in Los Angeles. According to a biography on the Los Angeles Cardiology
Associates Web site, Cannom is an expert in the treatment of ventricular
arrhythmias.

Curry has avoided athletic activity since experiencing an irregular heartbeat
before a March 30 game at Charlotte. After a series of tests proved
inconclusive, the Bulls asked Curry to rest for six weeks to see if his slightly
enlarged heart would shrink, but it did not.

There was concern the enlarged heart could signal hypertrophic
cardiomyopathy, a potentially deadly disorder when combined with arrhythmia.
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy was blamed for the cardiac deaths of basketball
stars Reggie Lewis and Hank Gathers.

According to a team source, Cannom diagnosed Curry with "athlete's heart" - a
long-accepted belief that long-term athletic training can lead to an increase in
the wall thickness of the left ventricle.

One of the cardiologists that originally examined Curry is Dr. Barry Maron of
Minneapolis, director of the hypertrophic cardiomyopathy center at the Minnesota
Heart Institute Foundation. Maron has extensively studied the causes and
occurrences of sudden cardiac death in young athletes.

Rose did not return a phone message, and Curry was unavailable for comment
Thursday.

The Bulls are hoping to come to a mutual decision with Curry and his family
on the best way to proceed with this issue. But in reality, Curry will become a
restricted free agent next Friday and can do what he wants.

To ensure the right to match any offer Curry gets from another team, the
Bulls must make a one-year qualifying offer worth $5.139 million by Thursday. At
any point, Curry could sign that offer and then become an unrestricted free
agent next year.

If the Bulls decide not to risk an expensive long-term contract with Curry,
they would almost certainly look to do a sign-and-trade this summer, knowing
that several teams will remain interested in one of the NBA's few low-post
scorers.

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