The National Lacrosse League and the Professional Lacrosse Players Association announced on Tuesday that the two sides had come to terms on a new collective bargaining agreement that runs to the conclusion of the 2020 season. "The new CBA will allow us to improve our business model," said NLL Commissioner George Daniel in a release. "This deal should foster a great era of growth for the league. I would like to thank everyone from both sides who worked on reaching this deal, but I would like to especially thank the players who participated in the bargaining sessions for their high level of professionalism during this process." Among the highlights in the new CBA are an expanded schedule (from 16 to 18 games,) an expanded playoff format (including a two-game series in the Divisional Finals and Championship rounds from previous single-game elimination format, the lowering of the qualifying age for unrestricted free agency from 32 to 30 and a reduction of the number of franchise designations per team from two to one. The 2013-14 NLL regular season begins on December 28th. Cheap Saucony Originals .C. -- Unable to get much lift off his sore right ankle, Bobcats centre Al Jefferson figured it was time to make an adjustment. Saucony Shoes Outlet .C. - Goodyear has warned teams that increased speeds at Charlotte Motor Speedway will put a heavy emphasis on the right front tires in Saturday nights race a€” a potentially key development for drivers trying to advance in the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship. http://www.cheapsaucony.us/ .A. remained bitter for Henrik Lundqvist and the Rangers on the long flight back home to New York. Cheap Saucony Shoes .J. -- The New York Jets have promoted Tony Sparano Jr. Discount Saucony Shoes .com) - On the bright side, either the Minnesota Wild or Buffalo Sabres will end their losing streak on Thursday night.FIVE QUICK NBA THOUGHTS: 1. GREIVIS VASQUEZ (Raptors): This is a bit of an adjustment period for Vasquez, as he deals with slightly reduced minutes (21.5 to 18.5) and hes struggled with his shooting (.340 FG% and .250 3P%) and hes only averaging 2.5 assists per game. He seems to be pressing a bit when hes out there, because opportunities are tight with the addition of Lou Williams and James Johnson in the perimeter rotation. I look at it all as a positive problem team-wise, yet something to keep an eye on to see if Vasquez will earn a bigger role (he and Kyle Lowry were quite effective together last season) as the season progresses. I love his energy, guts and swagger, but this means theres lots of internal competition, which is good. Terrence Ross must be feeling it, too - if hes inconsistent, I have no doubt that Dwane Casey, with greater options now, wont hesitate to play a Vasquez, Williams or Johnson in his place, with which I agree. Again, this is a nice issue to have. 2. JIMMY BUTLER (Bulls): I love this guy and Im sure Raptors fans are hoping that Terrence Ross can become this type of two-way player. Already a big time wing stopper, Butlers offence is sky-rocketing, averaging 21.3 PPG and 6.3 RPG, along with 3.4 APG. His shooting has improved greatly (.533 FG% and .391 3P%) and hes on his way to a big pay day, thats for sure. You can get better - a lot better - as a pro. Butler is case in point. 3. DERRICK FAVORS (Jazz): Favors is really coming into his own averaging 16.9 PPG and 8.3 RPG. Hes a load to deaal with in the post, can put it on the floor a little bit and has a decent game 12-feet and in.dddddddddddd. Favors plays hard and is consistent and is really starting to settle into a groove. The Jazz play through him in the post and he deserves the teams trust. Hes a good one. 4. BRANDON KNIGHT (Bucks): I mentioned coach Jason Kidd last week and a fine example of his leadership (a future Hall of Fame point guard) and that pertains to Knight here. Knight is taking big steps with his game. Ive watched the Bucks a few times already getting prepared on my off nights for upcoming Raptors opponents and I love what hes doing. Hes consistently putting up major numbers (18.3 PPG, 6.4 APG, 6.0 RPG, .449 FG%, .405 3P% and .875 FT%), while being in greater control of the team and putting teammates in spots to shine. Knight is a neat development to watch. 5. BRIAN SHAW (Nuggets): Im watching this 2-7 Nuggets team and I dont see lots of life or competitive spirit, overall. This is a dangerous time and Shaws got to get his team playing with greater urgency. Ive watched them a few times and Im shocked by how soft theyre playing. I was stunned to watch them give up 84 first-half points the other night to Portland. Its never easy when the losses pile up, yet when you lose, there is a right way to go down and Im not seeing enough of it. Id say its red alert time in the Mile High City. I like Shaw a great deal and hope he survives this, but, as we all know, theres not a lot of patience in todays NBA. Theyve gotta produce. ' ' '