After many attempts to cut star right wing Ziggy Palffy's salary from their dwindling payroll, the New York Islanders were finally successful last night, sending Palffy to the Los Angeles Kings as part of an eight-player trade.
In addition to Palffy, the Islanders sent center Bryan Smolinski, goaltender Marcel Cousineau and a fourth-round pick in the 1999 entry draft to the Kings. In return, New York gets center Olli Jokinen, left wing Josh Green, defenseman Mathieu Biron and the Kings' first pick (eighth overall) in the entry draft.
Palffy, who was the Islanders' leading scorer last season with 22 goals and 28 assists in 50 games, was deemed expendable with a contract that has four more years and $24 million to be paid. He signed the contract Dec. 17 and missed 32 games as a restricted free agent. In his last three full seasons, Palffy scored 136 goals. . . .
The St. Louis Blues acquired Dallas Stars backup goalie Roman Turek in hopes that he will challenge 37-year-old Grant Fuhr for the starting job. Turek, 29, cost the Blues a third-round pick in the entry draft.
Knicks, Johnson Fined
Larry Johnson and the New York Knicks each were fined $25,000 by the NBA because Johnson directed obscenities at the media earlier in the day and failed to make himself available for an entire 30-minute mandatory media session. . . .
Rookie Tamika Whitmore scored a season-high 16 points, and the New York Liberty held off a late rally for a 69-62 victory over the visiting Detroit Shock in a WNBA game.
Vickie Johnson scored 10 of her 12 points in the second half for New York, which moved into first place in the Eastern Conference.
The Liberty (4-1) avenged last year's regular season-ending loss to Detroit that knocked it out of the playoffs.
Sandy Brondello had 16 points for the Shock (3-2), which went on a 10-0 run to get within 64-59 with 1 minute 53 seconds left. Jennifer Azzi made 3 of 4 free throws as Detroit was within 66-62 with 34 seconds left. But Teresa Weatherspoon then went 3 of 4 from the line to secure the victory.
Patrick Rafter waited through a five-hour rain delay before beating Andrei Pavel to retain the ATP Heineken Trophy in Den Bosch, Netherlands. Rafter, ranked second in the world, lost the first set before going on to a 3-6, 7-6 (9-7), 6-4 victory over the unseeded Romanian.
Capital City Open
Chuck Thorpe, who shot a 2-under-par 69 Saturday in the first round of the 39th Capital City Open at Lake Arbor Country Club, was declared the winner of the tournament after yesterday's final round was rained out. It was the fourth time the 56-year-old Thorpe, from Bradenton, Fla., has won the event. . . .
Washington Mystics forward Chamique Holdsclaw will hold a basketball clinic for girls ages 8-15 today from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at the Fort Davis Recreation Center at 1400 41st St. SE.
Phillips Leads Dragons
Lawrence Phillips ran for two touchdowns and became the first player in NFL Europe history to rush for 1,000 yards as the Barcelona Dragons earned a berth in the World Bowl with a 28-26 victory over the Frankfurt Galaxy in Berlin. The Dragons play the Galaxy again Sunday for the league championship.
Track and Field
South Florida Out
South Florida has been forced to withdraw as host of next month's Junior Pan American Games track and field championships in a dispute with local officials over the inclusion of Cuban athletes. The meet, scheduled for July 9-11, instead may wind up in Tampa.
CAPTION: Shock's Claudia Maria das Neves tries to strip ball from Becky Hammon of Liberty, which got a season-high 16 points from rookie Tamika Whitmore.