America's National Basketball Association says it's postponed training camps and cancelled the first week of pre-season games as it struggles to reach a new collective bargaining agreement with players.
The NBA, in the midst of its first work stoppage in 13 years, says training camps scheduled to open on October the 3rd have been postponed indefinitely and 43 pre-season games from October the 9th to 15th have been cancelled.
Since locking out players on July the 1st after negotiations for a new labour deal collapsed, the NBA has cut its workforce by about 11 percent and postponed a programme that provides rookie players with skills and information necessary for a successful transition into the league.
NBA owners contend the league lost $US300 million last season with 22 of 30 teams in the red.
They want the league's share of basketball-related income increased from 50 to 57 percent, along with a firm salary cap and shorter contracts.
The players offered to reduce their share to 54.3 percent.
The lockout threatens the start of the 2011-12 season, scheduled to begin November the 1st, and marks the NBA's first work stoppage since the 1998-99 season was reduced by 32 games to 50.