BASKETBALL—NBA: In the Game of the Century of the week, Midwest Division leader Milwaukee snapped Los Angeles' record-winning streak at 33 with a 120-104 win over the Pacific leader (page 12). Six days earlier New York and Milwaukee, the last two league champions, met for the first time this season at Madison Square Garden. It was the inaugural nationwide broadcast of the 1971-72 New York season, and the game was enough to gladden the heart of the most pessimistic TV mogul. New York won a thriller 101-99 when Walt Frazier scored his team's last 13 points, including the winning basket with three seconds left. But before New York fans could gloat over beating Milwaukee despite the continued absence of injured Center Willis Reed, who has been out since Nov. 11, the Bucks undid the Knicks 121-100 a night later in Milwaukee behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's 36 points. When the Knicks lost to lowly Philadelphia for the fifth straight time 117-113, Boston opened up a three-game lead in the East Division. Baltimore created some daylight in the murky Central Division by extending its win streak to five, taking all three of its opponents—Detroit 111-89, Chicago 104-94 and Atlanta 110-102. Jack Marin had 84 points and Archie Clark 79 for the week as the Bullets moved to a four-game lead over Cleveland.
ABA: There was still competition in the league—for playoff positions. As Kentucky (East) and Utah (West) maintained 7½-game leads, lesser lights were struggling for the fourth playoff position in each division. The week began with Carolina sending rookie Randy Denton, veterans George Lehmann and Warren Davis and an undisclosed amount of cash to Memphis for All-Star Forward Wendell Ladner, rookie Tom Owens and Bob Warren. The result: Carolina split four games, Memphis lost two of three, and both ended the week in last place. Pittsburgh, however, was giving Carolina a stiff battle in the East. The Condors lost to Carolina 130-116 and Virginia 137-130 to run their misery to 11 losses in the last 12 games before George Carter's 35-point effort led them to a 103-92 win over Virginia. Both Pittsburgh and Carolina were out of playoff positions in the six-team East. In the five-team West, Dallas stayed half a game ahead of Memphis as Donnie Freeman paced the Chaps to one win over the Pros, another over Florida and two over Indiana. However, they lost 103-84 to Denver as the other four starters totaled only 24 points. In a possible preview of the playoff finals, Kentucky, which lost to Utah last year in seven games, beat the Stars twice to even their season series at 2-2.
BOWLING—DON JOHNSON of Akron beat George Pappas of Charlotte, N.C. 233-224 in the finals of the $100,000 U.S. Open at Madison Square Garden (page 46).
FOOTBALL—Heisman Trophy winner Pat Sullivan of Auburn threw two touchdown passes and John Reaves of Florida added another as the SOUTH All-Stars topped the North 26-21 in the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala. Quarterback Jerry Tagge of national champion Nebraska directed three scoring drives and Penn State's Lydell Mitchell had two touchdowns in the Hula Bowl in Honolulu as the NORTH beat the South 24-7.
Van Brownson, Nebraska's No. 2 quarterback, led the NORTH to a 27-8 win over the South in the American Bowl in Tampa.
GOLF—MARLENE HAGGE won the $30,000 Burdine's Invitational in Miami by four strokes over Kathy Ahern and Sandra Palmer with a five-under-par 211.
HOCKEY—The St. Louis players took Coach Al Arbour a trifle too seriously when he asked them to "come out fighting." By the time they finished battling Philadelphia fans and police between the second and third periods at The Spectrum, the coach and three players—Phil Roberto, Floyd Thomson and John Arbour—had been arrested. There was one positive note: before the four were arraigned on charges of assault and battery the Blues rallied from a 2-0 deficit in the third period and beat the Flyers 3-2. Boston's players were fighting less and enjoying it more. Aggressive but controlled, the Bruins beat New York 4-1 despite being outshot 41-15, shut out Toronto 2-0 on Ed Johnston's 29 saves and blasted Buffalo 5-2 on three power-play goals to take first place in the East from New York before losing 5-3 to the entertaining Blues. It was Boston's first loss in 12 games. Defending Stanley Cup champion Montreal and West leader Chicago met in the first nationally televised game of the season, and Chicago used its habitual home-ice strength to win 5-2.
HORSE RACING—SPANISH RIDDLE ($8.80), ridden by Frank Ianelli, won the $50,000-added Dade Metropolitan Handicap at Miami's Tropical Park by 1½ lengths over Sensitive Music.
SKIING—FRAN√áOISE MACCHI of France won all three of her events and took a 27-point lead over defending champion Annemarie Proell of Austria in the World Cup standings.
SPEED SKATING—ANNE HENNING of North-brook, Ill. lowered her world 500-meter record by .25 with a time of 42.50 seconds in Davos, Switzerland. A day later Miss Henning was clocked in 1:27.3 for 1,000 meters, .4 better than the record held by Ludmilia Titova of the U.S.S.R. LEO LINKOVESI of Finland raced the 500 in 38.0, cutting .3 off the record set six days earlier by West Germany's Erhard Keller, then proceeded to win the four-event sprint to better the international record held by the Soviet Union's Valeri Muratov.
SWIMMING—SHANE GOULD, 15, of Australia completed her sweep of all the world women's freestyle records when she lowered by .4 seconds the 100-meter mark she had shared with Dawn Fraser, by swimming the distance in 58.5 in Sydney.
TENNIS—KEN ROSEWALL of Australia beat countryman Mai Anderson 7-6, 6-3, 7-5 for his fourth Australian title in Melbourne. VIRGINIA WADE of Great Britain won the women's title with a 6-4, 6-4 victory over Australian Evonne Goolagong.
TRACK & FIELD—CHERYL TOUSSAINT of New York City lowered her world 600-yard run record by .6 seconds with a time of 1:21.6, in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
MILEPOSTS—HIRED: CAL STOLL, 48, of Wake Forest, as football coach at the University of Minnesota. Stoll had a 15-17 record and one Atlantic Coast Conference title in three years at Wake Forest. Defensive Coordinator TOM HARPER, 39, was named to replace him.
HIRED: Assistant Coach AL CONOVER, 33, as head coach at Rice, succeeding Bill Peterson.
HIRED: JOHN RALSTON, 44, who guided Stanford to consecutive upset wins over Ohio State and Michigan in the Rose Bowl, as coach of the Denver Broncos, replacing Lou Saban who resigned to coach the Buffalo Bills. Ralston had an 86-47-4 record in eight years at Stanford and four at Utah State.
HIRED: Former astronaut RICHARD GORDON, 42, as executive vice-president of the New Orleans Saints. Gordon, who has had no previous football experience, is expected to operate as the club's general manager, replacing the fired Vic Schwenk.
FIRED: BUD CARSON, 41, only the fourth Georgia Tech football coach since 1904. The first coach to be dismissed in the school's 80-year football history, Carson had a 27-27-0 record for five years.
NAMED: BOB DEVANEY, 56, of national champion Nebraska, as college football's Coach of the Year, by the Football Writers Association of America.
NAMED: GEORGE ALLEN, 49, who led the Washington Redskins to their best record (9-4-1 and a playoff berth) in 26 years, as Coach of the Year in the National Football League, by the Associated Press; Running Back JOHN BROCKINGTON, who gained 1,105 yards for the Green Bay Packers, was Offensive Rookie of the Year; Linebacker ISIAH ROBERTSON of Los Angeles as Defensive Rookie of the Year; and Tackle ALAN PAGE of Minnesota, as Most Valuable and Defensive Player of the Year.
LIFTED: A two-year probation on YALE UNIVERSITY, by the NCAA. Yale had received one of the most severe penalties in NCAA history for using Jack Langer, a substitute basketball player who competed in the unsanctioned 1969 Maccabiah Games, during the 1969-70 season.
PLACED ON PROBATION: ILLINOIS STATE UNIVERSITY, for one year, by the NCAA, for a number of basketball violations, although the school will remain eligible for postseason competition.
VOTED: Freshman eligibility in basketball and football, beginning with the 1972 season, by the NCAA membership.
DIED: CLARENCE MONTGOMERY, 47, Florida A&M football coach; of a stomach ailment; in Tallahassee. Montgomery had a 6-5 record in his only season as coach.