Clock woes may keep NBA from Arena


Recurring problems with the shot clock and scoreboard at the Baltimore Arena prompted a visit to yesterday's Washington Bullets-Atlanta Hawks game by Matt Winick, the NBA's director of game operations.

Based on his observations, Winick could recommend to league officials that the Bullets discontinue playing games in Baltimore next season.

After less than eight minutes had elapsed in the first quarter, the shot clock malfunctioned. Because of past problems, the Bullets had two auxiliary 24-second clocks ready to be installed in the corners of the two baselines.

This saved the day because both the scoreboard and grandstand clocks took turns malfunctioning.

To avert such problems, the Bullets had called in computer experts from Chicago to stage a mock NBA game at the Arena last month. That went off without a glitch.

"I really don't know how to explain it," said Bullets president Susan O'Malley.

The Bullets, who have had three straight sellouts in Baltimore this season, have one Arena game remaining, against the Milwaukee Bucks on March 7.

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