The Mavericks are negotiating to buy out the contract of C Shawn Bradley, a precursor to his likely retirement after 12 seasons.

Mavs owner Mark Cuban said yesterday that Bradley started the discussions "because of injury concerns," primarily his knee and hip. A seldom-used reserve anyway, Bradley has averaged less than 12 minutes per game each of the last two seasons.

The 7-foot-6 Bradley was such an intriguing prospect coming out of BYU that the 76ers made him the second overall pick in the 1993 draft. Despite his height, he never added the bulk to become a dominant inside player. He was traded to the Nets in his third season, then to the Mavericks in 1997.

* SURGERY: Nets C Jason Collins had surgery to remove torn cartilage in his right knee. Collins will undergo eight to 10 weeks of rehabilitation, but he is expected to be ready for the start of training camp.

* GUILTY PLEA: A Pistons fan pleaded guilty to throwing a quarter that hit 76ers G Allen Iverson during a Detroit-Philadelphia playoff game in April. Dennis Pauley, 31, of the Detroit suburb of Taylor, faces up to three months in jail and a $500 fine when sentenced Sept. 1.

-- From News Services