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RODMAN SETS DEADLINE FOR CONTRACT

Dennis Rodman has given the Chicago Bulls an ultimatum: No acceptable contract by noon Thursday, no Worm in 1997-98.

"Noon Thursday . . . just do it, get it out of the way," Rodman said Tuesday. "If it's going to be, let's do it. If it's not going to be, move on.

"There's always a chance I won't be here. If it doesn't happen, we go on with our lives. I go home, they stay here and we'll resolve it that way. Life seems to work itself out."

Rodman is unhappy with incentive clauses in the one-year contract he approved two weeks ago.

Around the rim

Shawn Kemp of Cleveland was one of five players suspended and fined by the NBA for their roles in a fracas during a preseason game between the Cavaliers and Minnesota Timberwolves on Oct. 12. Timberwolves center Clifford Rozier was docked two regular-season games and $10,000. Kemp was suspended one regular-season game and fined $2,500 for leaving the bench. . . . Dennis Johnson, accused of grabbing his wife's throat and holding a knife to her face, was released from jail after posting $5,000 bond and being told to stay away from his home. The former Boston Celtics star was allowed to go to his house to collect clothes and personal items but would have to stay away from his wife of 21 years.

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