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Sports briefs

- - Tuesday, October 4, 2011

PRO BASKETBALL

NBA talks break down; preseason may be nixed

NEW YORK — NBA owners and players have failed again to get close to a labor deal, and union president Derek Fisher said he anticipates the rest of the preseason to be canceled.

Regular-season games could follow soon afterward, with talks breaking down and no meetings scheduled - players' association executive director Billy Hunter said the next could even be a month or two months.

Players had offered to reduce their guarantee of basketball-related income from 57 to 53 percent, which they said would have given owners back more than $1 billion over six years. But they said the owners' last proposal had them at 47 percent.

The sides met for more than four hours Tuesday, but Fisher says "today was not the day for us to get this done."

BASEBALL

Astros' Schafer faces felony marijuana charge

TAMPA, Fla. — Houston Astros outfielder Jordan Schafer was arrested and charged with felony possession of marijuana.

A Tampa police report said after a traffic stop, Schafer, 25, admitted smoking marijuana and that he had more in the vehicle. A subsequent search turned up less than an ounce in a plastic container and a small amount inside "three small marijuana peanut butter cups," according to the police report.

In 2008, Schafer was suspended for the first 50 games for a violation of baseball's drug policy. Evidence found that Schafer used human growth hormone while in the minor leagues.

c Astros pitching prospect Dustin Kellogg was killed in an automobile accident. Kellogg, 18, died late Monday when the pickup truck he was driving collided with a freight truck in suburban Houston, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

HOCKEY

Rangers' Avery headed to waiver wire

STOCKHOLM — Sean Avery appears to have lost out on the final spot on the New York Rangers' roster.

The noted agitator is likely headed to the waiver wire after being beaten out by fellow forward Erik Christensen. Avery could end up on another NHL team if claimed off waivers by Wednesday, on the Rangers' AHL affiliate in Connecticut, or loaned to a team in Europe.

Avery was a healthy scratch for New York's final exhibition games in Slovakia and Switzerland. The Rangers open the regular season this week with games in Sweden.

SOCCER

Bradley still savors chances with U.S. national team

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Michael Bradley was playing with his professional club in Italy on Sunday. A long flight and less than 48 hours later, he was on a sun-drenched field in South Florida training again with the U.S. men's national team.

Hectic, for certain. And it's exactly the life he wanted.

Bradley is expected to make his 61st career appearance with the Americans on Saturday night in Miami, when they play a friendly against Honduras. He says the thrill of being with the national team still is there - even after the dismissal of former coach Bob Bradley, his father.