BASKETBALL—NBA: Only the Knicks were excluded from the scuffle among the teams of the Eastern Division for first place last week. PHILADELPHIA (8-3), which began the week in third, took four straight games, including a big 123-114 victory over the Celtics, and finished up on top. CINCINNATI (9-4) won its only two games but slipped from first place to second, while BOSTON (8-4), with two in a row, extended its winning streak to five and leaped into first, briefly. A split of their next two games shoved the Celtics into third. Steady NEW YORK (4-9) dropped three games, giving the Knicks a record of seven losses in their last nine starts. LOS ANGELES (9-6) lost one to the 76ers, its third straight, then came back with victories over the Pistons, the Knicks (107-106 on Elgin Baylor's free throw in the last minute) and the Bullets, to take first place in the West from SAN FRANCISCO (8-6), which was two for four. The Warriors' two victories were both over the Pistons, one of them 103-102 on Guy Rodgers' two free throws after the final buzzer. ST. LOUIS (5-6) beat the Warriors 138-113, the Hawks' highest total of the season, but lost to both the Bullets and the Celtics. BALTIMORE (5-11) was successful once in four tries while DETROIT (4-11) was unsuccessful four times.
BOATING—Miamian DICK BERTRAM, winner of the Cowes-Torquay English Channel race, took the world ocean-race drivers championship by placing first in the 164.5-mile Miami- Key West ocean race for powerboats. Bertram averaged 52.2 mph in Brave Moppie, his 36-foot, wooden V-hull powered by two 550-horsepower Detroit Diesel engines, and completed the run in 3:07.29, a new record for the race.
BOXING—Sugar Ray Robinson, 45, lost his last chance for a middleweight title fight when he dropped a unanimous 10-round decision to JOEY ARCHER, the fourth-ranked middleweight (page 89). Next day Robinson, middleweight champion five times, announced his retirement after 199 fights (173 wins, 19 losses, 5 draws and two no-contests) in 26 years.
Carlos Ortiz, who lost his world lightweight title to Ismael Laguna in Panama last April, won it back with a unanimous decision in a 15-round rematch in San Juan, P.R.
Joe Frazier, the 1964 U.S. Olympic heavy weight champion, knocked out Abe Davis in the first round of their scheduled eight-rounder in Philadelphia. Each of his four fights since turning pro have been victories by knockouts.
FOOTBALL—NFL: BALTIMORE'S Johnny Unitas, injured a week earlier, failed to start for the first time since November of 1958 and was replaced by Gary Cuozzo, who threw five touchdown passes, a club record, in a 41-21 win over Minnesota. The victory kept the Colts a game ahead of second-place GREEN BAY, which beat Los Angeles 6-3 when a fumble recovery by Lionel Aldridge set up Don Chandler's last-minute field goal. Clark Miller of SAN FRANCISCO picked up a Milt Plum fumble and ran 75 yards with it for the deciding touchdown as the 49ers beat Detroit 27-21 (page 40). CHICAGO trailed St. Louis 13-10 at the half but rallied in a wild fourth quarter that saw four fights and 17 Bear points. The final score: 34-13. The victory moved the Bears into a three-way tie for third in the West with the Lions and the Vikings and dropped the Cards two games behind the first-place Browns in the East. Jimmy Brown passed the 1,000-yards-rushing mark for the seventh time in his nine-year career, when he ran for 156 yards and three touchdowns in leading CLEVELAND to a 34-21 win over New York, while DALLAS defeated Pittsburgh 24-17 on Don Meredith's 28-yard TD pass to Bob Hayes with two minutes to go. PHILADELPHIA beat Washington 21-14, for the first time in four games since the teams traded quarterbacks a season ago as Norm Snead outpassed Sonny Jurgensen, completing 21 passes for 311 yards.
AFL: In the week's major upset, KANSAS CITY smothered Western leader San Diego 31-7 as Len Dawson completed 13 of 22 passes for 710 yards and three touchdowns, while the Chief's defense intercepted six Charger passes. Oakland missed a chance to move within half a game of San Diego when it was edged by BUFFALO in the final seconds 17-14, and ended up instead tied for second with KC, 1� games behind. DENVER upset Houston, the second-place team in the East, 31-21 and boosted the Bills' lead in the East to 3� games. Rookie Joe Namath, playing the full game for NEW YORK, threw scoring passes of 22 and 36 yards to Don Maynard, and Jim Turner kicked three field goals as the Jets whipped Boston 30-20.
GOLF—With birdies on three of the last four holes, Australia's BRUCE DEVLIN won the Dunlop International on the par-73 Yarra Yarra course in Melbourne. His 285 total was one stroke ahead of British Open Champion Peter Thomson.
Homero Blancas went into the final round of the Mexican Open in Mexico City with a one-stroke lead and came out of it with a four-stroke win over Lee Trevino of Dallas, a fellow rookie on the pro tour. Blancas' score was 284, four under par.
HARNESS RACING—With her sixth straight victory, a 2�-length win over Egyptian Candor in the $81,386 Dexter Cup at Roosevelt Raceway, ARM-BRO FLIGHT ($3), the only filly in the race, clinched the 3-year-old trotting championship.