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UPI NewsTrack Sports

Sept. 28, 2011 at 11:00 PM   |   Comments

Report: Entire NBA season threatened

NEW YORK, Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Amid reports he is ready to threaten the players with cancellation of the season, NBA Commissioner David Stern said Wednesday no labor settlement was in sight.

"We're not near a deal," Stern said following a 4-hour negotiating session with union officials. NBA players have been locked out since July 1 after the league's collective bargaining agreement expired.

Another bargaining session is planned for Friday after a break for the Jewish new year.

ESPN reported Wednesday that Stern planned to threaten the players with the loss of the season if major progress toward a settlement is not made by the end of the weekend.

"There are enormous consequences at play here on the basis of the weekend," Stern said. "Either we'll make very good progress -- we know how good that would be -- or we won't make any progress. Then it won't be a question of just starting the season on time. There will be a lot at risk."

The opening of training camps has already been delayed and about half the exhibition schedule has been wiped out. The regular season is scheduled to start Nov. 1.

"We realize the calendar, watch, clock, whatever, is running out in terms of starting the regular season on time," NBA Players Association President Derek Fisher said.

"If we can't find a way to get some common ground really, really soon, then the time of starting the regular season at the scheduled date is in jeopardy big time. We still have a great deal of issues to work through, so there won't be any magic that will happen this weekend and make those things go away."


Parcells among Hall of Fame candidates

CANTON, Ohio, Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Coaches Bill Cowher, Bill Parcells and Marty Schottenheimer were listed Wednesday among the 11 first-year candidates for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The list released by Hall of Fame officials contained 103 players, coaches and contributors. Other first-timers now eligible for selection are running back Tiki Barber, quarterback Drew Bledsoe and wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson.

The three coaches are all among the 15 top winners in the history of the NFL. Schottenheimer won 205 games with Cleveland, Kansas City, Washington and San Diego; Parcells won 183 games with the New York Giants, New York Jets, New England and Dallas; and Cowher won 161 games, all with Pittsburgh.

Parcells led the Giants to Super Bowl titles in 1986 and 1990.

Cowher is No. 6 all time in wins with a single team -- trailing George Halas, Tom Landry, Chuck Noll, Joe Gibbs and Bud Grant -- and led the Steelers to a Super Bowl win in 2006.

The first-time candidates will contend with those who were finalists last year, a group that includes running backs Curtis Martin and Jerome Bettis, wide receivers Andre Reed, Tim Brown and Cris Carter and defensive linemen Chris Doleman, Charles Haley and Cortez Kennedy.

The Hall of Fame selection committee will choose 25 candidates as semifinalists, a group that will be announced in November.

Further balloting will cut that number to 17 and the class of 2012 will be chosen the day before the Super Bowl.


Foster practices for Texans

HOUSTON, Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Arian Foster, the defending NFL rushing champion who has played in just one of the Houston Texans' three games this season, returned to practice Wednesday.

Foster has been plagued by a hamstring injury this year after gaining a league-high 1,616 yards in 2010.

He missed the opening game of the season, rushed for 33 yards in a 23-13 win over Miami and then did not play last week against New Orleans.

Foster went through all the drills Wednesday in preparation for Houston's hosting of Pittsburgh Sunday. Both teams have a 2-1 record.

Foster is in his third year with Houston, having played his college football at Tennessee. Last year's second-leading rusher, Kansas City's Jamaal Charles, has already been lost for the season.

The leading rusher through three weeks this season is Oakland's Darren McFadden with 393 yards.


T-Wolves officially name Adelman coach

MINNEAPOLIS, Sept. 28 (UPI) -- Rick Adelman officially became the Minnesota Timberwolves' coach Wednesday.

While the 65-year-old coach and the struggling NBA club had reached agreement in principle about two weeks ago, the deal wasn't sealed until now.

Adelman has a 945-616 career record as a head coach for Portland, Sacramento, Golden State and Houston. His teams have made the playoffs 16 times and reached the NBA finals twice.

In Minnesota, he will work to build a successful team around young all-star forward Brian Love.

"I'm eager to start another chapter in my coaching career with the Minnesota Timberwolves," Adelman said. "We have a good nucleus of young players that I feel can grow together and win. I'm looking forward to the challenge of building a playoff team here in Minnesota."

He has his work cut out for him. The T-Wolves haven't made the playoffs since the 2003-04 season under Flip Saunders. They had a winning record the next season but since then, Dwane Casey, Randy Wittman, Kevin McHale and Kurt Rambis have all failed to accomplish that feat.

David Kahn, the team's president of basketball operations, said he is happy to get a coach of Adelman's stature.

"Rick has proven time and again that he is one of the top coaches in basketball -- one of the top coaches in the history of our sport," Kahn said. We are excited to have him as the leader of our young and talented team."

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