The owners of Minnesota's NBA and NHL teams are working on a deal to buy the Twins, contingent upon the construction of a new stadium in St. Paul.

The plan would have the Twins, the NBA's Timberwolves and the NHL's Wild start their own regional sports cable television network that would broadcast games of all three teams.

The principal participants in the talks were Wild lead owner Robert Naegele Jr., Timberwolves lead owner Glen Taylor and Twins owner Carl Pohlad, according to reports yesterday.

The Star Tribune of Minneapolis reported a group led by Naegele and Wild President Jac Sperling submitted a $100 million bid for the Twins earlier this week.

Any deal would depend on the city and the state agreeing to build a stadium for the Twins in St. Paul. City voters decide Nov. 2 whether to approve a 0.5 percentage point increase in the city sales tax to pay for one-third the cost of a $325 million ballpark.

As part of the stadium plan, Pohlad agreed with Mayor Norm Coleman last summer to find a buyer by today. Coleman aide Mike Zipko said yesterday the deadline could be extended a day or more if an agreement were imminent.

THOMAS CONTENT: Frank Thomas dismissed rumors he was feuding with White Sox Manager Jerry Manuel, saying he was happy with the 1999 season.

Thomas visited his teammates for the first time since a Sept. 13 operation to remove a bone spur in his right ankle.

"It was a very serious injury," Thomas said.

If Thomas had ruptured tendons, he could have been out for more than one year. Instead, he will begin weight-bearing exercises next week and predicted he will be 100 percent by spring training.

Thomas still needs to repair what was perceived to be a bad relationship with Manuel. The two reportedly argued after a doubleheader Sept. 6, when Thomas told Manuel he was unavailable to pinch hit because of the pain in his ankle.