Bonds' ex-girlfriend tells of threats, steroid use

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Bonds' ex-girlfriend tells of threats, steroid use

March 28, 2011

Editor's note: Follow all the developments at the trial with Henry Wofford's Twitter feed (@HenryWoffordCSN) from the courtroom. We'll have comprehensive analysis on SportsNet Central tonight.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Kimberly Bell, her voice cracking, looked out at the court room and talked about the final stretch of her nine-year relationship with Barry Bonds.The greatest hitter of his era threatened "to cut my head off and leave me in a ditch," she said. "More than once."She said Bonds told her "he would cut out my breast implants because he paid for them."As for the Arizona house he had helped pay for, "he told me he would burn it down."Bonds' federal trial resumed Monday with nearly daylong testimony from his former mistress, who said the slugger attributed a 1999 elbow injury to steroids use. She also discussed how Bonds became verbally abusive and said that his physique changed, offering a lurid description of his shrinking testicles, back acne, scalp hair that fell out and chest hair that turned gray. Such mental and physical symptoms are associated with steroid use.Prosecutors allege Bonds lied when he told a federal grand jury in 2003 that he never knowingly used performance-enhancing drugs.Bell met Bonds in 1994 and testified that from 1999 to 2001, "he was just increasingly aggressive, irritable, agitated, very impatient."MOSKOWITZ: Excitement ahead in Week 2 of Bonds trial
In testimony similar to that of former Bonds business partner Steve Hoskins last week, she said that in at least two different years at spring training, she saw Bonds and personal trainer Greg Anderson "go into a bedroom off the kitchen and close and lock the door."She said Anderson "would always have a little satchel with him." She saw those scenes played out multiple times.Prosecutors claim Anderson, who has been jailed for refusing to testify, repeatedly injected Bonds with performance-enhancing drugs.Dressed in a gray pantsuit and white shirt, and with deep lines under her eyes, Bell answered 72 minutes of prosecution questions and was pressured during 4 hours, 15 minutes of questioning from the defense, who tried to portray her as a gold digger, a scorned former lover, a liar and the instigator of a mortgage fraud scheme.Defense lawyer Cristina Arguedas brought up an interview Bell gave Playboy and a television appearance on Geraldo Rivera."You have taken many opportunities to disparage Barry Bonds ... in the most vulgar ways possible?" Arguedas said in a question that was more a statement."Did you go on Howard Stern's radio show?" Arguedas continued. "Does he do anything that isn't vulgar?"When Arguedas repeated: "Did you say vulgar things about Barry Bonds?" Bell answered: "Please refresh my memory."With that, Arguedas took a break to talk with Allen Ruby, Bonds' lead lawyer. After a few moments, Arguedas told the court: "We're going to decline that opportunity to go into the gutter. No more questions."At the start of the day, Giants equipment manager Mike Murphy testified that Bonds' hat size increased from 7 14 to 7 3-8 in 2002. Murphy said that while Willie Mays and Willie McCovey needed larger hats, their increases did not happen until after they had retired as players.Former Giants head athletic trainer Stan Conte is to testify Tuesday along with former AL MVP Jason Giambi, brother Jeremy Giambi and Randy Velarde, other players linked to the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative, which ran a steroids distribution ring.While there were empty seats in the court room last week, the wood benches were filled for Bell's testimony and about a dozen people waited on line outside for one of the approximately 50 seats available to the public.Bell testified Bonds revealed his steroids use to her only once, between 1999 and 2000 at her apartment."He had an injury on his elbow and it was a big lump on his elbow," she said. "It looked really awful, and he said it was because of steroids. ... somehow it caused the muscle and the tendons to grow faster than the joint itself could handle."Bonds had left elbow surgery on April 20, 1999, and was on the disabled list until June 9. He holds the MLB records for home runs in a career (762) and a single season (73).Under questioning from Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey D. Nedrow, Bell said Bonds told her "he didn't shoot it up every day like body builders did.""That's how they were getting ahead, that's how they were achieving, by using steroids," she quoted Bonds as saying. She went on to say this was the period "when Mark McGwire was breaking records."Dressed in a dark blue suit, light blue shirt and blue-and-silver patterned tie, Bonds alternately watched Bell on the stand, scribbled notes and whispered to one of his defense attorneys, Allen Ruby. A few times, Bonds put on reading glasses.Bell met Bonds briefly outside Candlestick Park on July 3, 1994, when she was introduced by Kathy Hoskins, a former personal shopper for Bonds who also is expected to testify."He said: 'Damn girl, you're fine,'" said Bell, who occasionally dabbed at tears.She attended a barbecue the next day at Bonds' mother's house, and Bonds arrived with Bobby Bonilla. From there, they shared a romantic relationship that continued even after Bonds married Liz Watson, who became his second wife in 1999.In anticipation of defense attempts to discredit Bell, Nedrow asked about an interview and nude photograph shoot she did with Playboy that appeared in 2007."I was trying to put my life together," she testified. "Maybe it wasn't the best decision."Bell testified that Playboy agreed to pay her 100,000, but sent the money to her agent, David Hans Schmidt. Schmidt committed suicide in 2007 while under investigation for allegedly attempting to extort the actor Tom Cruise and Bell said she saw little of the Playboy payment - "about 17,000 or 18,000."While Ruby cross-examined the first four witnesses, Arguedas spent most of Monday trying to portray Bell as a jilted woman who had broken off her previous relationship on the day she was to be married.When Bonds told her in 1998 that he was going to marry Watson, Bell said the player told her "you can come see me on road trips." Bell testified that after Bonds married, he told her there were "girlfriend cities and wife cities" and that she wasn't allowed to travel with him to New York, Montreal and Atlanta.Bell said she went instead to San Diego, Houston and Miami. She recalled bitterly how Bonds told her to find her own way home from after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, when commercial airlines were shut down and Bonds was on the team charter."Barry abandoned me in Houston after 9-11," she said.Arguedas ran through a litany of financial benefits Bell received in "this position you had, as the girlfriend for road trips." Bonds bought her several cars and paid the down payment for her house in North Scottsdale, Ariz. Arguedas repeatedly brought up forms Bell signed in which she said it would be her secondary home, trying to portray Bell as a liar.Arguedas also quizzed Bell about an e-mail she sent to Bonds' website in April 2004, almost a year after their breakup on May 23, 2003. Bell said she listed all the women she knew that Bonds was sleeping with: a model in New York, another woman in Las Vegas and "the stripper from Phoenix.""This is the guy who you described as having penile dysfunction," Arguedas said. "That's a lot of action."Bonds covered his mouth in an apparent attempt to suppress a grin."I don't know what he was doing with them," Bell responded. "I can only imagine."

Hermanson scores 17, No. 22 Saint Mary's beats BYU 70-57

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USATSI

Hermanson scores 17, No. 22 Saint Mary's beats BYU 70-57

PROVO, Utah — Saint Mary's knows all about the raucous atmosphere at BYU. The Gaels hadn't won in Provo since 2013 and had only come out on top in three of their previous 12 trips.

Make it four out of 13.

Calvin Hermanson scored 17 points and No. 22 Saint Mary's cruised to a 70-57 victory over BYU on Saturday night, snapping a three-game road losing streak to its West Coast Conference rival.

"It's definitely one of the tougher places to play for us," Hermanson said. "Coming in here we know it's a huge crowd and we know they can get riled up on any 3-point shot or any run they make. We wanted to try to limit their runs and their big plays.

"The second half was pretty unbelievable how quiet the crowd was. It felt great for us."

With two games remaining on the regular-season schedule, the Gaels (24-3, 14-2) clinched a second-place finish in the conference standings behind top-ranked and undefeated Gonzaga.

Saint Mary's controlled the game most of the night, riding its staunch defense on one end and running efficient offense on the other. The Gaels were able to get to the rim consistently, but also knocked down 10 3-pointers.

BYU (19-10, 10-6) shot 39.7 percent from the field and connected on four 3s.

Evan Fitzner had 15 points for Saint Mary's, including 11 in the second half.

"We didn't turn the ball over and we shot the ball well," Gaels coach Randy Bennett said, "and were able to get some separation and then it made it tough on them. We kind of just wore them out after that.

"We're a little different team with Fitzner out there. He spaces the floor," Bennett added. "We just play a little different with Fitzner out there versus Jock (Landale). It's nice to have a Plan A and Plan B."

Saint Mary's took a 41-30 lead into halftime thanks to Hermanson's hot shooting and plenty of that trademark defense. The Gaels began the day ranked second in the nation in scoring defense, then held the Cougars to 37.9 percent shooting from the field in the first 20 minutes.

Saint Mary's shot 57.1 percent at the other end, including a 3-for-4 effort from Hermanson from behind the arc.

"I feel like we're better than we showed tonight," BYU guard TJ Haws said. "That team made a lot of runs on us. Tough defensive and offensive team. Very poised and disciplined.

"I want our team to just fight. When they punch us in the face, I want us to punch them right back."

BYU kept Landale under control in the half — and in foul trouble throughout — but Saint Mary's scored 22 of its 41 first-half points in the paint.

Eric Mika had 18 points for BYU, and Yoeli Childs added 13.

"The key to the game was that they were comfortable the entire time in our gym," BYU coach Dave Rose said. "That's on us. We need to be ahead. We need to get them to speed up a little bit because they're a little bit uncomfortable.

"But the game went pretty much exactly how they wanted it to go and we couldn't flip it. We couldn't get on top."

BIG PICTURE

Saint Mary's: The Gaels will be the No. 2 seed in the WCC tournament. No. 1 Gonzaga secured the regular-season title Saturday with a win over Pacific. An early December defeat to UT-Arlington is the Gaels' only bad loss this season, with the other two coming against Gonzaga.

BYU: The Cougars likely needed a win against the No. 22 team in the country to make an argument for the NCAA Tournament off their regular-season credentials. BYU has lost all three games against ranked opponents by double digits, including to Saint Mary's twice, and doesn't have a signature win. The Cougars get one last chance against Gonzaga next Saturday.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

No. 22 Saint Mary's might find itself moving up a bit after No. 17 Florida State and No. 21 South Carolina lost on Saturday.

UP NEXT

Saint Mary's: Travel to face Pepperdine on Thursday.

BYU: Play at Portland on Thursday.

Three takeaways: Fourth line leads the way for Sharks in Arizona

Three takeaways: Fourth line leads the way for Sharks in Arizona

For the first time in five tries this season the Sharks managed to secure a regulation win over the last place Coyotes, 4-1 at Gila River Arena on Saturday. They keep their four-point lead over Edmonton, and are assured of going into the bye week in sole possession of first place in the Pacific Division.

Here are our three takeaways from the win…

1 – Burns turns the tide…again

For the second time in a week, Brent Burns changed the momentum of a game with his deadly wrist shot. The Sharks were on their heels early – Arizona had a 16-9 shot advantage in the first period, perhaps jolted be a pregame ceremony – but Burns’ shot through traffic staked the Sharks a 1-0 lead and they were on their way.

“We kind of weathered their storm early,” Joe Pavelski told reporters. “There was a lot of energy in the building.”

It was similar to a game in New Jersey last Sunday, when Burns had a pair of second period goals, erasing a 1-0 deficit and putting his team on the track to victory.

According to Elias, Burns – who added a third period power play goal, too – is the first defenseman to score 18 goals on the road since Paul Coffey’s 22 in 1983-84. His 26 goals equal his total from last season, tying his franchise record.

“He’s having an MVP season,” Pete DeBoer told reporters. “He’s been that good for us all year and it’s every night. I don’t know what else to say. In my mind right now he’s the best player in the league, and we’re happy to have him on our team.”

Burns remains in third in the league in scoring with 63 points, four points behind Edmonton’s Connor McDavid.

2 – Dell gets the job done…again

Getting his second start in a week, Aaron Dell made a new season high (and, thus, career high) with 36 saves. His best stop was early in the second period on Radim Vrbata, when he managed to snag a pin-balling puck from crossing the line, keeping the Sharks ahead 2-0. Had that one trickled over, the Coyotes might have been able to seize the momentum.

“I think I had it the whole time,” Dell told reporters. “I kind of saw it for a second and then when I turned back I was able to find it and scoop it underneath me.”

DeBoer said: “He’s been good every time we’ve put him in there.”

Dell, whose goals-against average is down to 1.95, outplayed Sharks nemesis Mike Smith, who had stopped 121 of 127 San Jose shots in three games this season.

“We got to Smitty in the first period, which was great,” Pavelski said. “We kind of know what he’s done to us the past few games, stopping a lot of pucks. … That was a big key for us.”

3 – Fourth line magic

Through two periods, the Sharks’ top two lines had generated a total of three shots on goal – one each from Joe Thornton, Kevin Labanc and Patrick Marleau.

Fortunately for the big guys, the fourth line was there to pick up the slack. Melker Karlsson posted three points (1g, 2a), Micheal Haley had one goal and one assist, and the fourth line generated all three of San Jose’s goals through 40 minutes.

One goal from the fourth line is a bonus. Three is virtually unheard of. 

“They showed up and played the right way,” DeBoer said. “Right from the drop of the puck they put pucks behind the other teams defense, they had good support, they created a lot of chances, and got rewarded for it. I think Dell and them were the difference in the game early through the first half, until we got going a little bit.”