Hoop Updates: Stern Threatening to Cancel Season, Sixers Make New Hire, Philly-DC Rematch Set

Hoop Updates: Stern Threatening to Cancel Season, Sixers Make New Hire, Philly-DC Rematch Set

We have an update on the NBA Lockout! And it's, uh, well…well it's not great.

After months of little to no progress, league commissioner David Stern may be at his wits end. Those of you watching the Rays-Yankees game last evening more than likely saw on the bottom of your sports ticker that Stern was threatening to cancel the 2011-2012 season if the owners and players could not make "major progress" on a deal by Monday.

In the intervening hours, the story has been largely squashed by a number of outlets as either a fabrication, misquote, or even your basic empty negotiating threat. Head on over to NBC Sports for a detailed wrap-up of of how this apparent "non-story" has unfolded.

Though its true that there's probably plenty of time to save at least part of the season—the drop-dead date often thrown around for that scenario is something like early January—the window is certainly closing on the idea of a full season. Piecing together the reports that have surfaced, it certainly sounds as though the two sides remain so far apart on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement that hope is running out to complete an 82-game schedule without moving the season passed its usual dates or trying to compress that season into a smaller time frame.

Negotiations are scheduled to resume this Friday in New York.

Sixers' Hire
Once the league is back in business, the Philadelphia 76ers will have a new assistant coach. Following the loss of Quin Snyder to Mike Brown's new staff in Los Angeles, coach Doug Collins has hired former Charlotte assistant Jeff Capel II to fill the void.

Prior to his time in Charlotte, Capel spent time at the college level coaching Old Dominion, North Carolina A&T and Fayetteville State. He has also spent time as a head coach in the D-League, returning to Fayetteville to oversee the developmental "Patriots."

In her report on the signing, CSN's Dei Lynam adds that the opening of NBA training camps has been pushed back until October 16th at the earliest. This date is obviously subject to further postponement given the success or failure of the league's on-going negotiations.

Battle for I-95 Rematch
And so, as long the players are locked out, they might as well do something, right?

Word is that the D.C. guys are a little salty about dropping that pick-up game to Team Philly last Sunday and are looking for a rematch in their hometown. Part II has been scheduled for October 15th from inside Coolidge High School in downtown D.C.

Rosters have not been finalized, but "some possible players for the Goodman League could include Kevin Durant, John Wall, Jeff Green, Michael Beasley and DeMarcus Cousins."

Former Temple Owl and Philadelphia's own Mark Tyndale announced on his Facebook page earlier this week that he has received an invitation to represent Team Philly just as he did with other former Owls Dionte Christmas and Mardy Collins at the Palestra.

In case you missed it, check out highlights from the "Battle for I-95" below.

I guess we're supposed to be arguing over which stretch of road is worse for traffic or something, as if its a sort of badge of honor that "it takes us longer to get home than it does for you—WE WIN!" Frankly, I don't think it's all that hard to agree that the highway can be a hellhole in and around both metropolitan areas and don't need to fight over whose construction patterns are worse.

But, if we agreed to that...then we'd get fewer 'oops. And then everyone loses.

Best of NHL: Blue Jackets crush Islanders, 7-0

Best of NHL: Blue Jackets crush Islanders, 7-0

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Unlike some other NHL teams coming off their bye week, there wasn't a spot of rust on the sleek Columbus Blue Jackets.

In their first game following a five-day break, the high-energy Blue Jackets blew out the New York Islanders 7-0 Saturday as backup goalie Joonas Korpisalo earned his first career shutout.

Josh Anderson and Nick Foligno each scored twice, and David Savard had a goal and three assists. Boone Jenner and Jack Johnson also scored to help the Blue Jackets end New York's three-game winning streak (see full recap).

Zibanejad scores in OT to help Rangers beat Devils again
NEWARK, N.J. -- The New York Rangers are finding ways to win, and the New Jersey Devils just aren't.

Moments after goaltender Antti Raanta stopped Kyle Palmieri on a breakaway, Mika Zibanejad scored 1:16 into overtime and the Rangers rallied to beat the Devils 4-3 on Saturday.

"I had to redeem myself after that letdown on the breakaway the other way," said Zibanejad, whose mistake gave Palmieri a chance to complete a hat trick. "Rants came up big and it's nice to see that puck cross the goal line once again and win the game."

The goal was Zibanejad's first in 16 games and it gave the Rangers their ninth win in 11 games (9-1-1). Struggling New Jersey got its fourth loss in five games (1-3-1) (see full recap).

Shaw's OT goal gives Canadiens 14th straight win over the Leafs
TORONTO -- Andrew Shaw scored 1:06 into overtime and the Montreal Canadiens beat Toronto 3-2 on Saturday night for their 14th consecutive victory over the Maple Leafs.

Max Pacioretty and Alex Galchenyuk had the other goals for the Canadiens, who increased their Atlantic Division lead to four points over Ottawa and five on Toronto. They are 3-7-1 in the last 11 games and 2-2-0 under new coach Claude Julien.

Carey Price stopped 32 shots for Montreal, including a breakaway by Auston Matthews in overtime. The 19-year-old Matthews scored twice to reach 30 goals in his rookie season, and Frederik Andersen was sharp with 25 saves for Toronto (see full recap).

Best of NBA: Noel scores 9 points, grab 10 boards in Mavs debut

Best of NBA: Noel scores 9 points, grab 10 boards in Mavs debut

DALLAS -- Harrison Barnes scored 19 points and Dirk Nowitzki had 18 points and nine rebounds as the Dallas Mavericks ended a three-game losing streak by beating the New Orleans Pelicans 96-83 on Saturday night.

The Pelicans fell to 0-2 since trading for DeMarcus Cousins and pairing him with Anthony Davis.

Davis had 39 points and 14 rebounds but scored only 12 in the second half. Cousins finished with 12 points and 15 rebounds.

Seth Curry scored 10 of his 13 in the fourth quarter to help Dallas pull away. His 3-pointer with 4:49 to play gave the Mavericks an 84-72 lead, and the Pelicans never got closer than six after that (see full recap).

Harden leads Rockets past Timberwolves in 142-130 shootout
HOUSTON -- James Harden had 24 points and 10 assists to lead the Houston Rockets to a 142-130 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves as both teams set season scoring highs in a Saturday night shootout.

Houston won for the sixth time in seven games, handing the Timberwolves their first road loss in more than three weeks.

Minnesota committed a season-high 25 turnovers that led to 38 points for the Rockets.

Playing against Houston's guard-heavy rotation, Minnesota went inside all night and outscored the Rockets 68-44 in the paint. Karl-Anthony Towns had 37 points and 22 rebounds, and Andrew Wiggins added 30 points (see full recap).

Bulls benefit as James sits with strep, beat Cavs 117-99
CLEVELAND -- Dwyane Wade scored 20 points and Jimmy Butler recorded a triple-double, leading the Chicago Bulls to a 117-99 victory Saturday night over the Cleveland Cavaliers, who played without LeBron James.

James missed the game with strep throat, and coach Tyronn Lue said he wasn't sure how long the Cavaliers would be without the four-time MVP. Cleveland struggled as it often does without its star - they are 4-19 without him since he returned to Cleveland in 2014, including 0-4 this season.

Chicago has won all three games against Cleveland this season. It took advantage of James' absence to win its fourth straight overall (see full recap).

George ejected, Heat stay hot with 113-95 win over Pacers
MIAMI -- Paul George had another frustrating night in Miami.

Hassan Whiteside scored 22 points and grabbed 17 rebounds, Dion Waiters added 22 points and the red-hot Miami Heat pulled away late to beat the Indiana Pacers 113-95 on Saturday night. Miami outscored Indiana 42-22 in the final 16 minutes, all with George watching from the Pacers' locker room after an ejection.

"It felt like a playoff-type game," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said (see full recap).