Vikings vs. Seahawks
The moon fittingly will be in its last quarter as Seattle quarterback Warren Moon (above)—most recently with the Minnesota Vikings—begins the final phase of his pro career. On this Hall of Fame Game weekend, you can ponder whether Moon's accomplishments in 13 NFL seasons (he also played six years in the CFL) are substantial enough to earn him a spot in Canton after he retires. On numbers alone Moon, who entered training camp as John Friesz's backup, travels in the same orbit as John Elway and Dan Marino. Moon ranks fourth alltime in NFL passing yardage (43,787), but his teams have never won more than a wild-card playoff game.
•ABC, 2:30 PM
Mariners at Yankees
The battle for American League MVP began with a bang on Opening Day. Seattle's Ken Griffey Jr. fueled a 4-2 win over world champion New York with home runs in his first two at bats at the Kingdome. The following night Griffey's former Mariners teammate, Yankees first baseman Tino Martinez, blasted three home runs and had seven RBIs in a 16-2 rout of Seattle. At the end of last week, Martinez (below) led the American League in RBIs with 91 and was second in the majors in homers with 33 (one behind the Oakland A's Mark McGwire) while Griffey was right behind him, with 89 and 30, respectively.
•FOX, 4 PM
Only in auto racing can you be at fault in a 12-car collision and not only see your insurance premiums remain the same but also be a hero. Pole sitter Jimmy Vasser (below) delayed last year's inaugural U.S. 500 at Michigan Speedway by turning the race's final pace lap into something from a John Woo action flick. Vasser atoned for his gaffe by winning the race and the Championship Auto Racing Teams season title. Winless since last year's U.S. 500, he returns to Brooklyn, Mich., in seventh place in the 1997 points standings.
•ABC, 1 PM
Comedian Billy Crystal, who was bowled over by Kent State catcher Thurman Munson while unsuccessfully trying to turn a double play as a freshman second baseman at Marshall in 1965, discusses the influence that athletics has had on him, during this two-hour program. Of itinerant NBA coach Larry Brown, a high school classmate whose most recent move was from the Pacers to the 76ers, Crystal tells Dick Schaap, "He was my idol. I even moved five times when I was a kid." But seriously, folks, the real object of Crystal's veneration is Mickey Mantle, to whom he devoted a soliloquy in City Slickers and after whom he named the main character in Forget Paris, in which Crystal portrays an NBA referee. "At my bar mitzvah," says Crystal, who helped write Bob Costas's eulogy for Mantle, "I spoke in an Oklahoma drawl."
•CLASSIC SPORTS, 10:30 PM
Comets at Sparks
In Los Angeles the WNBA is beginning to resemble big brother. On July 16 the Sparks, mired in a two-game losing streak only 11 games into their season, fired coach Linda Sharp. Assistant coach Julie Rousseau was at her hairdresser's when word came that she had been promoted to interim coach, which prompted the question: When Paul Westhead was fired as the Lakers' coach after 11 games in 1981, where was Pat Riley? Next, the Sparks, who beat the Comets in Houston hours after the coaching change, hired former Lakers forward Orlando Woolridge as an assistant; another former L.A. forward, Kurt Rambis, is a Lakers assistant. Fans in the City of Angels must be wondering how long it will be before Sparks center Lisa Leslie (right) makes an unscheduled trip to Lake Havasu City.
•LIFETIME 9 PM
All times Eastern. Schedules are subject to change.