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IC Cold Links: Fever Done After Dropping Game 3 To Dream; NBA Owners And Players Appear To Really Be Negotiating

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MVP Tamika Catchings tried to give it a go last night at Conseco FIeldhouse, but in the end neither she nor her Indiana Fever teammates had enough in the tank to challenge the Atlanta Dream, dropping the ECF-deciding Game 3, 83-67. Another tough end to the season for the Fever with Tamika's ill-timed injury leaving "what if?" as the only consolation.

Hard to believe we have to look to the NBA labor negotiations for some good news, but that's what we seemed to have yesterday afternoon when those meeting on behalf of the owners and players parted ways after just two hours of discussions giving off the indication that they were taking an altered offer back to their constituencies. 

Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the owners softened their stance a bit on the hard salary cap and in turn expect to diminish the size of the Larry Bird exception and mid-level exception while jacking up the luxury tax penalties for teams exceeding the cap. So the Lakers and Knicks can exhale but at least they'll be dumping more money in the pot to help other teams utilize the exceptions.

With the chance to still salvage the start of the regular season, both sides plan to meet today. Hopefully that positive momentum continues  without one of the sides blowing it to smithereens.

Plenty more on this in the links along with a Tyler Hansbrough sighting as he talks Tar Heels.