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NFL Lockout: Court Of Appeals Rules In Favor Of Owners In Lockout

Bad news fans, the NFL Lockout is legal. That's the word from the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled that it is legal for the owners to lock out the players as the league's longest work stoppage enters its 115th day.

There is light at the end of the tunnel, though, as many reports indicated that the players and owners are close to reaching an agreement on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement.

So far, the lockout hasn't shortened any official part of the 2011 football season, which unofficially begins with the Hall of Fame game featuring the Chicago Bears and St. Louis Rams on August 7.

On the New England Patriots' end, it has been a relatively quiet lockout from the players perspective. Patriots owner Robert Kraft has been the organization's biggest face in the lockout, as he is one of the league's most involved owners in the labor negotiations.

For more NFL Lockout coverage, visit SB Nation and follow our StoryStream.