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Hornets' Guard Out Six Weeks

Charlotte Hornets guard Eldridge Recasner will miss at least the first six weeks of the regular season with a broken shoulder and collapsed lung after an accident in which teammate Derrick Coleman was charged with driving while intoxicated.

Recasner was not listed as a patient at Carolinas Medical Center on Friday, a spokeswoman said. Another passenger in Coleman's 1996 Land Rover at the time of the wreck early Wednesday, Ebony Kimbrough, was in good condition at the hospital Friday.

Coleman was charged after the collision with a grocery store delivery truck. Coleman did not travel with the Hornets on Friday night for an exhibition game against Chicago in Chapel Hill. Team officials attributed Coleman's absence to soreness.

Recasner was in the passenger seat of Coleman's vehicle when Coleman apparently tried to make a left turn in front of the oncoming truck. The passenger side took the brunt of the impact.

"We're probably looking at him being out six weeks at least now," Hornets executive vice president Bob Bass said Thursday. "But that's not that bad when you consider he could have easily died in that crash. We're thankful it's not worse than it is."

No surgery is planned for Recasner's shoulder, but it will be immobilized for some time, Bass said.

Coleman needed stitches to his nose and forehead but was released from the hospital early Wednesday. He missed practice Thursday with what Bass said was general soreness and swelling to his face.

Bass said he hoped Coleman would be ready for the season opener against Orlando on Tuesday.

Hornets coach Paul Silas said he hoped the accident would encourage changes in Coleman.

"We're dealing with human beings and there are going to be problems. But it's something he's going to have to think hard about and deal with. If you have a problem I'm not necessarily saying he does have one you've got to admit it and deal with it. There's only so much we can do," Silas said.

©1999 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed

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