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Originally published Friday, July 8, 2011 at 10:29 PM

Federal appeals court rules NFL lockout can continue

A federal appeals court ruled Friday the NFL's lockout of its players can continue.

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A federal appeals court ruled Friday the NFL's lockout of its players can continue. It did not appear the ruling would have a significant effect on the negotiations between the league and players on a deal that would end the sport's nearly 4-month-old shutdown.

Shortly after the ruling was announced, the league and players issued a joint statement saying they were committed to resolving the labor impasse at the bargaining table.

"While we respect the court's decision, today's ruling does not change our mutual recognition that this matter must be resolved through negotiation," the statement said. "We are committed to our current discussions and reaching a fair agreement that will benefit all parties for years to come, and allow for a full 2011 season."

Players have been locked out since March 12, but the two sides met Friday in New York and seemingly have made progress toward a deal.

The ruling was made by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit. It reverses a late-April decision by a federal judge to grant the players' request for an injunction that would have ended the lockout. The ruling by the appellate court upheld the league's contention federal law, specifically the Norris-LaGuardia Act, prohibits a judge from issuing an injunction in a labor dispute.

Legal experts had said they expected the appeals court to rule in the league's favor.

Note

• A District of Columbia Superior Court judge agreed to a delay in the misdemeanor sexual-abuse trial of defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth of the Washington Redskins to help defense witnesses to schedule their appearances.

Haynesworth's attorney, Scott Bolden, requested the delay until Aug. 2.

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