Sports Extra

NHL

NHL and players union meet to discuss how to proceed

NEW YORK – The NHL and the players’ association are talking again as the lockout reaches its 25th day.

The sides met Wednesday in New York. On Friday, they held an unannounced meeting in Toronto to discuss where they were and how to move the process forward. Officials on both sides were in contact Saturday and Sunday, leading to the meetings.

The NHL canceled the first two weeks of the regular season Thursday, wiping out 82 games from Oct. 11-24.

Golf

Rain postpones potential McIlroy and Woods dual

BELEK, Turkey – The anticipated showdown between Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods at the World Golf Finals on Wednesday was pushed back a day because of thunderstorms at the Sultan course.

Torrential rain began lashing Antalya Golf Club shortly after the morning matches in the eight-player event were completed, forcing organizers to postpone the four afternoon matches to Thursday, with the semifinals staged afterward.

The other abandoned matches were: Justin Rose vs. Webb Simpson, Lee Westwood vs. Hunter Mahan and Charl Schwartzel vs. Matt Kuchar.

BELEK, Turkey – Tiger Woods will consider the possibility of joining the European Tour after changes are made to membership qualification.

The European Tour is expected to announce soon that participation in the Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup and Seve Trophy will count toward the 13 events needed for tour membership.

Woods said Wednesday he last looked into joining the European Tour in 2000 when the requirement was 11 events. Woods would be only two or three events short of the 13 if the list includes the Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup, four majors, four World Golf Championship events and appearances in either Abu Dhabi or Dubai.

Soccer

31-year-old Gordon hopes to earn his first USA cap

MIAMI – Alan Gordon will celebrate his 31st birthday Tuesday. Maybe U.S. Soccer will give him a cap.

Gordon is the fifth oldest player currently in camp with the U.S. national team, which is prepping for two matches that essentially will decide if the Americans will continue having a chance to qualify for the 2014 World Cup. Of the 24 players picked by U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann for these games, Gordon is younger than only defenders Steve Cherundolo and Carlos Bocanegra, along with goalkeepers Tim Howard and Nick Rimando.

Combined, those four players have 279 appearances – caps, in soccer vernacular – for the U.S.

Gordon has zero.

But he’s having a breakout season with the San Jose Earthquakes: His 13 goals in 23 games translate to a 0.9-goal-per-90-minute ratio, the best in Major League Soccer.

So, Gordon got the call to be part of the U.S. side for these qualifiers, first on the road against Antigua and Barbuda on Friday, then in Kansas City on Oct. 16 against Guatemala, the match that coincides with his birthday.

Ski Racing

Bode Miller will take a knee in the World Cup opener

SOELDEN, Austria – Bode Miller is skipping the opening race of the World Cup season to rest his surgically repaired left knee.

Miller’s equipment supplier said the skier, who had knee surgery eight months ago, will travel to Soelden, Austria, for training but won’t compete in the race Oct. 28.

Race director Rainer Salzgeber told the Austria Press Agency on Wednesday that “Soelden is no option for Miller; he has not been able to practice a single giant slalom turn so far.”

Salzgeber said the two-time overall World Cup champion won’t compete until the speed races Nov. 24-25 in Lake Louise, Alberta.

Associated Press