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Owner Calls Cassell-Sprewell a 'Failed Experiment'

Thursday, April 14, 2005; Page D07

According to Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor, the team's acquisitions of Latrell Sprewell and Sam Cassell two summers ago were a "failed experiment."

Before Minnesota's fifth-to-last game in a disappointing season, Cassell figured his time with the Timberwolves was nearing an end.

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"He told me right there he don't want me back," Cassell said yesterday when told of Taylor's critical comments.

For a story published in yesterday's editions of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, Taylor said he regretted trading for Sprewell and Cassell -- despite significant contributions from the two veterans that led to a run to the Western Conference finals last season.

"This was an expensive financial decision; certainly, financial-wise, it was a poor decision on our part," Taylor said. "Overall, it was just a failed experiment."

Cassell, 35, and Sprewell, 34, each complained in training camp about not getting contract extensions. Sprewell will be a free agent after making more than $14 million this season. Cassell has another year at about $6 million on his deal.

FORD GETTING BETTER: Bucks G T.J. Ford, who has missed the entire season with a spinal cord injury, is improving and will soon be able to resume workouts.

Ford bruised his spinal cord in a game on Feb. 24, 2004. He had cervical spinal surgery last May, but the injury has not healed enough to allow him to play this season.

Ford, the eighth selection in the 2004 draft, played well at point guard before the injury. He averaged 7.1 points and 6.5 assists in 55 games. He was given the okay to start working out Saturday.

-- From News Services

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