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Ray Rice grievance hearing vs. Ravens set for middle of January, sources say

Ray Rice's wrongful termination grievance hearing against the Ravens has been set for the middle of January, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.

Rice's hearing is set for Jan. 15 and Jan. 16 before an arbitrator.

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Rice's $35 million contract was terminated by the Ravens on Sept. 8 after a graphic video surfaced of him punching Janay Palmer, now his wife, in a casino elevator in Atlantic City, N.J.

Rice, who was suspended indefinitely by the NFL but was reinstated in November by former federal court judge Barbara S. Jones, seeks up to $3.529 million in lost salary for this season.

The grievance filed with the league falls under Article 46 of the NFL collective bargaining agreement, which prohibits an NFL player from receiving more than one punishment for a single rule violation. It's intended to guard against the legal concept of double jeopardy.

NFL teams have wide latitude to cut players, but Rice was released shortly before NFL commissioner Roger Goodell increased the three-time Pro Bowl running back's two-game suspension to an indefinite one.

Rice was signed to a five-year, $35 million contract two years ago. He was paid a $15 million signing bonus and a $7 million option bonus, along with $3 million in base salaries in 2012 and 2013 for a total of $25 million.

The Ravens have lost $1.411 million in salary cap space that will be held by the NFL until the grievance is resolved.

Rice's representatives and the Ravens can avoid the hearing if they reach a financial settlement. Rice is represented by veteran New York attorney Peter Ginsberg.

Ginsberg also represented Maryland basketball star Dez Wells in his lawsuit against Xavier University, former New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma in the Bountygate scandal and PGA golfer Vijay Singh.

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