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Before he signed with the Los Angeles Lakers, Wilt Chamberlain was offered a spectacular deal with the Los Angeles Stars of the American Basketball Association. The Stars were prepared to pay Wilt a salary of $250,000 a season for five years. The other teams in the ABA were going to chip in to provide Wilt with the use of another $500,000 for five years for investment purposes, and with a deferred payment of $500,000 that would be paid in installments beginning 15 years from now. In agreeing to pitch in to help its L.A. entry, the other ABA teams obviously subscribed to a common cause. Or as Shakespeare said: "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings."
With Wilt gone across town to Inglewood to join Elgin Baylor and Jerry West, the Stars are now in an even more vulnerable position. Namely, they don't have any stars. It is apparently no more than circumstantial, but Bill Russell, who has not signed his 1968-1969 contract with the Celtics, has been in Hollywood all summer. He is an old teammate and business partner of Bill Sharman, the coach of the Stars, and recently Russell went out of his way to praise Sharman, coach and man, in a radio interview. Sharman, however, maintains that he has not so much as even said hello to Russell all summer long.
If that is so, and since all other NBA drawing cards are already under contract for this season, the Stars must be planning just to hang on, weather the Chamberlain-Baylor-West barrage this year and then use some or all of the money Wilt wouldn't take to try to lure Lew Alcindor into the ABA next year.
The other day Louis Martin swallowed two radio transmitters, suffered 47 electrodes trailing bundles of wire to be injected into his skin and picked up 1,000 pounds.
Thus does science come to the aid of the weight lifter. Martin (who hoisted the half ton altogether in a press, a snatch and a clean and jerk) is a middle-heavyweight lifter who will represent Britain in the Olympics, and researchers at Loughborough University in Leicestershire are helping him train.
The idea is to get an electronic profile of a good lift—to discover the patterns in which a weight lifter's muscles should operate. Then researchers can tell a man making a poor lift the reason why.
The transmitters in Martin's stomach registered internal pressures. The electrodes in his skin were connected to pens that recorded his muscle movements.