Sadness and relief as a disgraced President becomes an ex-President. Shock and bafflement as Patty Hearst becomes a bank robber. Jubilation and disgust as the Broad Street Bullies become the NHL champs. Besides the Flyers, the A's, Steelers, Celtics, North Carolina State in basketball, and Oklahoma and USC in football are the big winners.
IN SI'S WORDS
It is hard to imagine what the extraordinary events in the predawn hours under a pale African moon in Zaire are going to do to the future of boxing. Kids who for years in the back lots of the world have emulated the flamboyant and graceful style of their idol, Muhammad Ali, the butterfly who floats and stings like a bee, will now imagine themselves coming off their stools and standing stolidly and flat-footed in the corner of the ring, or, more extreme, lolling back against the ropes, their upper torsos out over the press-row typewriters at the angle of someone looking out his window to see if there's a cat on his roof. For such were the Ali tactics that...proved insoluble to George Foreman, the heavily favored heavyweight champion, leading him to destruction as surely as the big cartoon wolf, licking his chops, is tricked into some extravagantly ghastly trap laid by a sly mouse.
IN SI'S WORDS
Henry Aaron's ordeal ended at 9:07 p.m. Monday.
It ended in a carnival atmosphere that would have been more congenial to the man he surpassed as baseball's all-time home run champion. But it ended. And for that, as Aaron advised the 53,775 Atlanta fans who came to enshrine him in the game's pantheon, "Thank God."
Aaron's 715th home run came in the fourth inning of the Braves' home opener with Los Angeles, off the Dodgers' Al Downing, a lefthander who had insisted doggedly before the game that for him this night would be "no different from any other." He was wrong, for now he joins a company of victims that includes Tom Zachary ( Babe Ruth's 60th home run in 1927), Tracy Stallard ( Roger Maris's 61st in 1961) and Guy Bush ( Ruth's 714th in 1935). They are destined to ride in tandem through history with their assailants.
No matter what the weight, the class of the tournament was Ray Charles Leonard, a 139-pound wonder who was busily dispatching his first opponent just about the time his high school class was graduating back home in Palmer Park, Md.
Though he was named after soul singer Ray Charles, Leonard is more aptly known to his sparring mates—and to covetous pro scouts—as "Sugar Ray."
—SI, JUNE 24
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Adrian Dantley gets his Irish up to end UCLA's streak at 88.