BASKETBALL—NBA: The Eastern Division race tightened up considerably as first-place BOSTON (27-11) won two out of three while red-hot CINCINNATI (28-14), second by only a game, swept four to make it nine victories in the Royals' last 10 games. After losing to the Lakers 120-113 in L.A., the Celtics journeyed to San Francisco and took back-to-back games from the Warriors. The Royals, also on the road all week, got fat on a diet of Western Division teams—the Hawks, Bullets and the Pistons twice. PHILADELPHIA (25-15) slipped two games behind Cincinnati with a 3-2 week, and last-place NEW YORK (14-26) played some exciting games but still dropped three out of four. The Knicks, failures in eight of their last 10 games by week's end, lost two nights in a row by a margin of three points—to the 76ers 129-127 and to the Warriors 118-117 before beating the Lakers 133-127. In the West, LOS ANGELES (26-20) boosted its lead to 3½ games by winning three out of four as second-place BALTIMORE (22-23) dropped three out of five. Even more heartening for the Lakers was the return to form of ailing Elgin Baylor. He scored 36 points in one game, 22 in another. SAN FRANCISCO (20-26) split four games, ST. LOUIS (16-24) lost four out of five and DETROIT (11-30) dropped three out of four. The Pistons' one victory—over the Hawks 137-97—was only the team's second in its last 15 games.
BOXING—Light Heavyweight JOHNNY PERSOL, 25, took a unanimous 10-round decision from former champion Harold Johnson, 37, in New York's Madison Square Garden. In a preliminary fight on the same program, the winner of the 1964 U.S. Olympic heavyweight trials, BUSTER MATHIS, now down to 267½ pounds, battered Chuck Wepner of Bayonne, N.J. until 1:58 of the third round, when the referee stopped the scheduled six-rounder.
Fifth-ranked Middleweight Contender RUBIN (Hurricane) CARTER gained a 10-round split decision over unranked Skeeter McClure, a 1960 Olympic gold medalist, after flooring McClure with a right in the first round in Chicago's old Aragon Ballroom.
Doug Jones, eighth-ranked heavyweight, scored his fourth straight knockout in three months, all in Miami, by dropping Archie McBride of Trenton, N.J. at 2:56 of the fifth round of their scheduled 10-rounder. Said Jones after the fight, "Now I'm going into camp, and I'm going to stay there until Cassius Clay gives me a shot at the title."
FOOTBALL—NFL: BALTIMORE, led by Quarterback Tom Matte, who threw touchdown passes of 15 and 20 yards and set up two other scores with tosses of 37 and 52 yards, crushed Dallas 35-3 in Miami's Playoff Bowl (page 16).
COLLEGE: The SOUTH came back from an 11-point half-time deficit to beat the North 27-18 in the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala. as Texas A&I's Randy Johnson completed 20 passes for 186 yards and two TDs. Steve Juday of Michigan State was named Back of the Game in the NORTH's 27-26 win over the South in the Hula Bowl in Honolulu for his 10 pass completions for 109 yards and a 20-yard run for a touchdown in the third quarter.
GOLF—ARNOLD PALMER inspirited his dwindling Army with seven straight birdies to take a commanding lead in the third round of the Los Angeles Open and then survived an erratic finish to win with a 72-hole score of 273 (page 8).
HOCKEY—NHL: CHICAGO (21-10-3) increased its lead over MONTREAL (19-10-4) to three points in spite of being upset by the Rangers. In other games, however, the Black Hawks beat the Canadiens 4-2 and the Maple Leafs 5-3. Montreal, meanwhile, dropped its second game of the week to the Red Wings after shutting out the Bruins 6-0. DETROIT (19-12-4) ran its winning streak to four with three victories and climbed into a tie for second with the Canadiens. TORONTO (15-13-5) lost two, while NEW YORK (8-20-7) shocked the Hawks by beating them 6-4. The next night the Rangers shocked themselves by losing to the Bruins 3-1. BOSTON (7-24-3), deep in the cellar, extended its latest losing streak to six with two more defeats before beating the Rangers.
MOTOR SPORTS—GRAHAM HILL's time of 1:02:56.5 for 40 laps around the 2.2-mile Pukekohe Track near Auckland won the New Zealand Grand Prix for the Britisher and his BRM. Jackie Stewart of Scotland, also driving a BRM, finished second while World Champion Jim Clark of Scotland was forced out early in the race by mechanical failure.
SKIING—The U.S. Alpine team's BILLY KIDD, a silver-medal winner in the 1964 Olympics, showed up Europe's best skiers in the Silbertannen races on Mount Iseler in Hindelang, Germany, with a first in the slalom (runs of 40.97 and 41.95) and a seventh in the giant slalom. WILLY FAVRE of Switzerland took the giant slalom in 1:38.31, followed by France's Jean-Claude Killy in 1:38.66.
Marielle Goitschel, France's 1964 Olympic giant slalom gold-medal champion, took the Oberstaufen (Germany) Cup for the third straight year with a first in the slalom (1:34.58) and a second in the giant slalom, which was won by her country-woman, MADELEINE BOCHATAY, in 1:31.23. Marielle's sister Christine, also an Olympic gold medalist, finished second in the slalom and third in the giant slalom, for second place overall.
SKI JUMPING—When the German-Austrian four-hill competition ended in Bischofshofen, Austria, the overall title went to Olympic gold-medal winner VEIKKO KANKKONEN of Finland, who totaled 869.2 points. Dieter Neuendorf of East Germany finished second, and Bjoern Wirkola of Norway third.
SQUASH RACQUETS—Pro MOHIBULLAH KHAN, representing the Boston Harvard Club, lost his first game in over two years of competition in the finals of the first North American Squash Racquets Tournament in Detroit but rallied to beat amateur Victor Niederhoffer of Chicago 15-2, 15-3, 12-15, 15-10.
TENNIS—ARTHUR ASHE, who had previously won the Queensland and South Australian singles titles on his down under tour, added the West Australian championship to his string by beating Cliff Richey of Dallas 3-6, 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 in the final in Perth. Australia's MARGARET SMITH defeated Nancy Richey for the women's title 6-3, 6-1.
TRACK & FIELD—In the first major indoor meet of the 1966 season, at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, JOHN PENNEL set an American indoor pole vault record with a 16-foot 7½-inch leap, breaking Billy Pemelton's 1965 mark by 1½ inches. Kansas University's JOHN LAWSON set a meet record and beat Gerry Lindgren by 15 yards in the two-mile run when he turned in a 58-second final quarter for an 8:40.4. Kansas freshman JIM RYUN set a track record with a 4:02.1 mile, and CHARLIE GREENE of Nebraska sprinted 60 yards in six seconds flat, 1/10 second off the world record. Returning to competition after a year's absence, PARRY O'BRIEN, 33, won the shotput with a 62-foot 3-inch heave.
MILEPOSTS—HIRED: By the University of Utah as head football coach, MIKE GIDDINGS, 32, former University of California tackle and assistant to John McKay at USC for five years.
PROMOTED: To head coach of the Buffalo Bills, JOEL COLLIER, a defensive coach for the past four years. Collier, at 33, will be the youngest head coach in professional football.
RESIGNED: Kansas City Chiefs' Head Talent Scout DON KLOSTERMAN, 35, after the publication of statements, attributed to and denied by him, to the effect that the Chiefs were considering a move to Los Angeles.
FIRED: After five years as head coach of the Washington Redskins, BILL McPEAK, 39, whose team finished fourth in the NFL's Eastern Division this season with a 6-8 record. McPeak's five-year score was 21-46-3.
DIED: Lieut. j.g. DONALD C. MACLAUGHLIN, 24, former All-America lacrosse player at the U.S. Naval Academy and recipient, in 1963, of the academy's highest athletic award, the Athletic Association Sword, in the crash of his Skyhawk bomber on a mountainside in Vietnam.
DIED: INGA VORONINA, 29, Russia's four-time world champion (1957, 1958, 1962 and 1965) woman speed skater, of stab wounds allegedly inflicted by her husband in her apartment in Moscow. Mrs. Voronina, who held world records at 500, 1,500 and 3,000 meters, had missed the last two Olympics because of illness.
DIED: HANK BOWMAN, 52, a leading boating writer and racer, of injuries suffered when he was thrown from the boat he was racing in the Orange Bowl Regatta in Miami.
DIED: WILLIAM HOWLAND TAYLOR, 64, managing editor and vice-president of the magazine Yachting until 1963, when illness forced him to retire, in Port Washington, N.Y. For his coverage of the 1934 America's Cup races, Taylor became the first sportswriter to be awarded a Pulitzer Prize.